12 SMART Goals Examples for Managing ADHD

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a medical condition that can significantly impact an individual’s ability to reach their goals. Those with ADHD often struggle to maintain focus and concentration, making it arduous to plan activities and stay on track.

SMART goals are an effective tool for managing ADHD as they provide structure and guidance for people to set achievable objectives. This article will cover examples of SMART goals that can help those with ADHD better manage their condition.

What is a SMART Goal?

The SMART system enables you to create practical goals for yourself. In case you weren’t aware, SMART stands for specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-based.

Need more clarity? SMART goals are:

  • Specific: The more detailed you are in setting goals, the higher your chance of meeting them. Make sure you break down the required steps and create a roadmap to achieve your objectives.
  • Measurable: Measurable goals allow you to monitor your progress and make necessary changes to stay the course. If you miss out on this criterion, it may be challenging to determine whether or not you’re on the right path.
  • Attainable: When developing goals, realize that they should ideally be realistic. Establishing achievable goals can provide a sense of accomplishment and motivation.
  • Relevant: Make sure you pursue goals that align with your core values. Otherwise, it is easy to become directionless and unfulfilled.
  • Time-based: Remember to have a specific timeline for meeting your goals. That will keep you accountable throughout your road to success.

Following the 5 SMART components will help you effectively manage ADHD. You will finally take actionable steps to elevate the quality of your life.

12 SMART Goals Examples for Managing ADHD

Want to create the right kind of goals for yourself? Below you’ll find 12 SMART goals examples to manage ADHD more effectively:

1. Organize Your Schedule

SMART Goal: For the 5 months ahead, I will create a schedule that includes specific deadlines and breaks to ensure I am organized and focused. I want to create a structured yet flexible system to help me stay motivated throughout the day.

  • Specific: The goal is evident in that the person wants to create a schedule for 5 months.
  • Measurable: Determine whether or not you’ve been able to stick to the schedule.
  • Attainable: Creating a schedule is achievable because it can be easily implemented in your daily life.
  • Relevant: Being organized can help you focus and accomplish tasks more efficiently, making this a pertinent goal for those with ADHD.
  • Time-based: Five months is required to accomplish this goal.

2. Improve Focus

SMART Goal: I will make sure I am not distracted by anything during meetings and tasks that require concentration. To do this, I’ll turn off my phone notifications, close unnecessary browser windows, and avoid multitasking by the end of 6 months.

  • Specific: This SMART goal states explicitly how they will enhance their focus.
  • Measurable: Count how many times you can keep focus during meetings and tasks.
  • Attainable: This goal is realistic as it can be realistically accomplished in the allotted time frame.
  • Relevant: Having a better focus can improve productivity and performance, which may help you overcome ADHD symptoms.
  • Time-based: You have a 6-month window for goal attainment.

3. Increase Time Management

SMART Goal: To manage my ADHD symptoms, I will develop and implement a time management system that will enable me to better organize my days within two months. This system will help me prioritize tasks, keep track of deadlines, and have enough time to complete all my responsibilities.

  • Specific: The statement is well-defined; the person wants to develop a time management system.
  • Measurable: You can track how long the system takes to implement.
  • Attainable: This goal is absolutely doable if you stay disciplined and organized.
  • Relevant: A time management system is a great way to manage ADHD symptoms, so this goal is appropriate.
  • Time-based: You have two months to meet this particular goal.

4. Reduce Stress Levels

SMART Goal: I will practice mindful breathing for 10 minutes daily for the two months ahead. Additionally, I’ll aim to take a break from technology every hour to give myself time to relax and refocus.

  • Specific: The goal is to practice mindful breathing and take a break from technology every hour.
  • Measurable: Determine how much time you spend practicing mindful breathing and how often you take breaks from technology each day.
  • Attainable: The person can realistically practice mindful breathing for 10 minutes daily and take breaks from technology hourly.
  • Relevant: Learning to manage stress can improve your overall well-being.
  • Time-based: The SMART goal should be completed in two months.

5. Enhance Your Productivity

SMART Goal: I will improve my productivity by organizing my workspace and daily routine in a way that works best for me. For the next four months, I’ll set aside a specific time each day for work, make lists of tasks that need to be accomplished, and break down larger tasks into smaller ones.

  • Specific: You will work to create a workspace and routine that helps you stay productive.
  • Measurable: You can note the completion of tasks and changes in productivity.
  • Attainable: Arranging a workspace and routine is a realistic goal that can be accomplished.
  • Relevant: Organizing your workspace and routine allows you to stay productive, which is essential for combating ADHD.
  • Time-based: There is a four-month deadline to meet the goal.

6. Prioritize Tasks

SMART Goal: I will prioritize tasks to be more efficient in completing projects, even if it means I must re-prioritize as things change. I’ll review my tasks each morning and evening to focus on the most urgent ones. This will prevent me from getting overwhelmed and overworked.

  • Specific: You will strive to prioritize tasks more effectively.
  • Measurable: You can measure the successful completion of projects.
  • Attainable: This goal is reachable because it requires only simple task organization skills.
  • Relevant: Prioritizing tasks could reduce stress and overcome ADHD symptoms.
  • Time-based: The statement is ongoing because the person will review their tasks every morning and evening.

7. Reduce Procrastination

SMART Goal: By the end of two months, I want to reduce my procrastination by replacing it with creative problem solving. I will use a timer to set goals, track my progress, and reward myself for completing tasks on time.

  • Specific: You will replace procrastination with creative problem solving.
  • Measurable: Use a timer and reward yourself for finishing tasks on time.
  • Attainable: This should be achievable with some effort and dedication.
  • Relevant: Preventing procrastination will encourage you to take control of your life.
  • Time-based: Set a two-month timeline for this SMART goal.

8. Improve Self Discipline

SMART Goal: By the end of the year, I will have improved my self-discipline by practicing mindfulness meditation and other strategies for 20 minutes every day. I’ll use this practice to better focus on my work tasks and improve my productivity.

  • Specific: The goal states the desired outcome and how it will be achieved.
  • Measurable: The individual can evaluate their progress by meditating every day for 20 minutes.
  • Attainable: This is possible with mindfulness meditation and other strategies.
  • Relevant: Improving self-discipline will keep you focused on your work and boost productivity.
  • Time-based: There is a timeline of one year for completing this goal.

9. Lean on Your Support System

SMART Goal: I realize the importance of having a support system during tough times. To have the right people around me, I will reach out to two trusted friends or family members for emotional support and advice once weekly for the following four months.

  • Specific: This goal is explicit in its aim for emotional support.
  • Measurable: Count the number of people you contact and the frequency.
  • Attainable: Having a support system is within reach with two close friends or family members.
  • Relevant: Those dealing with ADHD may find support beneficial in curbing their symptoms.
  • Time-based: The goal is expected to be achieved within four months.

10. Make Healthy Choices

SMART Goal: I’ll strive to make one healthy choice each day, like taking a walk in the park or eating nutritious meals. I will also evaluate if I am making enough healthy choices over the course of each week and make adjustments if needed.

  • Specific: This SMART goal states what you need to do (make one healthy choice each day) and how often you need to evaluate your progress (each week).
  • Measurable: You can track the number of healthy choices you make on a daily basis.
  • Attainable: Making one healthy choice per day is achievable.
  • Relevant: Eating nutritious meals can help manage ADHD symptoms.
  • Time-based: It is implied that the goal is ongoing, so you should pursue it daily.

11. Identify Triggers and Avoid Them

SMART Goal: I will take time to identify what triggers my ADHD symptoms and create a plan for avoiding or mitigating those triggers by the end of three months. I want to proactively take steps to reduce the impact of my ADHD on my daily life.

  • Specific: You’ll figure out what exactly triggers your ADHD symptoms.
  • Measurable: Pinpointing your triggers is a quantifiable goal you can accomplish.
  • Attainable: You have the power to identify and avoid your triggers.
  • Relevant: This goal is appropriate for managing your ADHD and reducing its impact on your life.
  • Time-based: You have three entire months to achieve success.

12. Maintain a Positive Outlook

SMART Goal: I will work on maintaining a positive outlook and refusing to let frustrations get the best of me. I want to focus on the big picture and solve any issues I encounter. By proactively managing my emotions, I can remain productive and successful in my work and personal life.

  • Specific: The goal is to maintain a positive outlook, avoiding getting frustrated or overwhelmed.
  • Measurable: Make sure you focus on the big picture and find solutions to any issues.
  • Attainable: By proactively managing emotions, it is possible to remain productive and successful.
  • Relevant: Cultivating positivity will promote happy emotions rather than negative thoughts.
  • Time-based: You want to work towards this goal on an ongoing basis.

Final Thoughts

The SMART goal-setting method is a powerful tool in your arsenal to help manage ADHD. Make sure you break down overwhelming tasks into smaller segments and focus on the positive aspects of meeting these goals.

You’ll be able to use SMART goals to achieve higher productivity, success, and satisfaction. And by involving family members or friends in goal setting, you can benefit from additional support and motivation.

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Rei Shen

Rei is the founder of Success in Depth. Based in Washington, he graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Computer Science. He brings years of experience in goal setting to empower readers to reach their aspirations.