3 Secrets of Good ADHD Money Management

ADHD money management is a paradox. The first thing financial experts say is never let anyone else have control of your money. The next thing they say is that you need to follow a strict budget, avoid impulsive spending and save for the future.

As an adult with ADHD, you know that is a recipe for disaster. After all, they are asking you to:

  • pay attention to the details of a budget,
  • consistently micro-manage your finances to get out of debt,
  • eliminate impulsivity in your spending,
  • planfor the future,
  • organize all your bills and receipts,
  • and so on…

It flies in the face of the very challenges ADHD adults face. Just think about how most ADHD adults see money management.

Typical ADHD Money Management

Budgets are so boring! Most people don’t use them, let alone ADHD-ers. Getting out of debt is the slow drip of water torture, unless you’re planning on winning the lottery! (Not an effective plan, by the way.) Eliminating impulsivity in something that’s as much fun as spending money? Forget it! Oh, and plan for the future? When there is only “now” and “not now,” you’re not going to put money you could spend NOW for sometime that is NOT NOW! Sound familiar?

Harv Ecker, the well-known author of “Secrets of the Millionaire Mind,” and a popular speaker on the subject of personal finances tells people that if you count on getting rich enough to have someone else take care of your money, you won’t make it. He explains that you won’t get rich if you don’t learn to manage your money, and you won’t stay rich if you let someone else take control of your money.

For adults with ADHD money management is so difficult that many (I’d even guess most) ADHDers never learn how to do it effectively. Studies show that on average ADHDers earn $10,000 less per year than non-ADHD-ers, and if you have trouble earning it, you’ll also having trouble keeping it. It doesn’t have to be that way though.

There are many ADHD-ers at the top of their game who excel in their careers, earning far above the average person with a comparable background. They’ve learned to work with their strengths and compensate for their weaknesses. Your challenge is to become one of them, and it is possible, but it won’t happen by itself.

Learning ADHD Money Management

Where can you learn ADHD strategies for money management? Personal financial management is rarely taught in schools, so unless you’ve sought out extra education, you’re following the only financial model you’ve seen. You manage your money just like your parents. If your parents are excellent financial managers, if they are wealthy and are living the life style you dream of living in the future, good for you. However, if your parents aren’t living the life you want, it’s time to change your approach.

You can learn personal money management through books, seminars and classes. Unfortunately, even when they teach personal money management, nothing is said about ADHD money management, and without specific ADHD strategies, you might never get out of debt let alone build your savings. In traditional approaches, the first step to getting a handle on your finances is to “prepare a budget,” and as you know, those words will make almost any ADHD adult shudder in fear.

Keys to ADHD Money Management

While you can’t learn all about ADHD money management in one article (see here to learn more), to get your financial affairs in order, apply these three ADHD strategies. The three keys to ADHD money management are:

  1. Pay yourself first. You must save for the future. At some point, your income may be interrupted. You may need or want to stop working, and if you have no source of income, you’ll need to survive on what you’ve saved for a rainy day. Your first priority must be to save up for that umbrella! If anyone counsels you to pay all your bills and put the rest into savings, run away! You already know there’s never any left to go into savings.
  2. Make everything automatic. While you don’t want to delegate responsibility for your personal finances, you can make the decisions about your ADHD money management strategies and then set up systems to operate according to your wishes. When you drive a car, you decide to speed up and step on the gas. The car responds to your bidding, but it doesn’t demand that you get out and push it yourself. When you automate your payments, with Internet banking and other systems, you set the strategy so you’re not giving up control, but the system compensates for your ADHD challenges. You’ll save on late fees and interest charges by never forgetting a payment, and you’ll protect your credit rating too.
  3. Use what’s left over for whatever you want. If you’re saving for the future and paying all your bills, any money that’s left is yours to play with! It’s now safe to be impulsive if you want. Even if you spend every penny left over, your financial success strategy is still executing perfectly. You can spend it all, or save for a big purchase like a dream vacation.

Life’s Better with ADHD Money Management

While traditional approaches to managing personal finances may give you a headache, once you get an ADHD money management strategy established and the systems set up to make sure it’s executed as planned, things get really interesting. You see, once you stop concentrating on mundane tasks like paying bills, you can turn your attention to earning money. ADHD-ers actually have a good chance of outperforming the general population in terms of personal prosperity. Once you focus your energies on getting the most out of your strengths. Typically, an ADHD-er who chooses a career that plays to his or her strengths will excel far beyond the average person.


If you’d like to receive more details about ADHD money management and how you can improve your life by putting the right ADHD strategies into play, than can fit in this article, just enroll in this free ecourse at https://coachlindawalker.com/adhd-money-management/. You’ll receive your first email immediately and you can get started on improving your financial future today.

Make Reaching Goals Inevitable!

goal-settingAre you having difficulty reaching goals? Around this time of year, New Year’s Resolutions usually fall by the wayside. The average New Year’s Resolution only lasts 17 days, so what makes reaching goals so hard? It doesn’t make a difference if it’s a New Year’s Resolution or the goals we set the rest of the year. They’re all hard work, often too hard!

Experts debate over the precise wording of goals, as if that would make it easier to quit smoking, lose weight or spend more time with your kids. No, the secret to reaching goals has nothing to do with the wording of your goals, or even which goals you choose.

The Secret to Reaching Goals is…

Clarity. Yes, the secret to reaching goals is clarity, but I not clarity in how you write them. Thomas J. Leonard, founder of CoachU and the father of personal coaching said, you need clarity in three distinct areas:

Commitment vs. Striving

First, you must decide, once and for all, if you are committed, or if you are striving. Striving, of course, is hard work. If you are fully committed, however, you no longer need to strive. Striving requires that you push yourself. Commitment doesn’t require nearly the effort once you’ve made the decision. Most smokers will tell you that “trying to quit” doesn’t work. The day you commit, however, reaching goals becomes much easier. The day you become a non-smoker, success becomes inevitable. 

Vision vs. Pipe-Dream

Second, you need to distinguish between a vision and a pipe-dream. Your vision is an inevitable result based on facts. A pipe-dream is a hope or a wish based mostly on desire. My husband, who has ADHD, was seriously overweight and warned by his doctor to lose weight or suffer serious health consequences. Diets had never worked. He only lost the weight, and kept it off, when he was able to transform his own vision of himself and his life. When he saw himself, not as a fat person struggling to lose weight, but as a thin person, behaving as a thin person would, the pounds melted away. After all, if he behaved as a thin person, because that was the way he saw himself, it was inevitable that he would lose the weight.

Present vs. Future

Third, you must live in the present, not in the future. Live your life right today and reaching goals will happen automatically. Do you live in the future? Do you say things like, “Once this project is delivered, I’ll take a few days off to spend with the kids”? Of course, the next project follows right on the heels of this one, and before you know it, your kids couldn’t pick you out of a police lineup. Want to spend more time with your kids? Start today. Cut your meeting short. Go home and spend that 15 minutes talking with your kids about their day. They don’t need a few days at some fictitious time in the future. They need a few minutes today, and tomorrow, and every day.

It’s really that simple. Get clear on those three things and reaching goals becomes inevitable. Stop trying, and make a real commitment. Clarify your vision until you can really see yourself succeeding. And finally, make it happen today. Don’t wait for the planets to align or a miracle to happen. Take one small step today, then another tomorrow. Before you know it, you’ll be setting and reaching goals with hardly a struggle.