I’ve read every self-help book. Okay, that’s obviously not the case, but sometimes it feels that way. I’d mosey around Barnes & Noble and ultimately find myself in the self-help section. I’d look at the books and think, “Hey! There’s one about depression! OCD! ADD! Anxiety! Schizoaffective Disorder! I hope they have some helpful tips!”
Eagerly, I read the book hoping to consume some sort of insight about the desperation I felt. However, I always felt like these books were written for someone who was much healthier than I was. I couldn’t even get dressed. I could barely fix my own meals. I hadn’t slept for days. I’m sure meditating and cutting down stress and taking long runs are helpful, but they seemed unachievable for me. In addition, the suggestions were too vague or ambitious for me. Cut down on stress? I have a full-time job, school, and a life. How is that possible?
I also didn’t want to rely another people. Whether it be because I was too ashamed or I didn’t want to admit that I needed help or just that I felt like I should be able to do it on my own, I wanted to be able to take care of myself. While it can be helpful to have friends, family, and support network to help you, ultimately you have to rely on yourself.
In the years since my diagnosis, I’ve come up with a few tips that I use on a daily basis to manage my symptoms and make my life easier. I embrace the design and psychological concept called “desire lines.”
Desire lines generally refer to worn paths where people naturally walk—the beaten path that trails off the sidewalk, usually as a shortcut to a destination—but can be applied more broadly to any signs or traces of user activity in an object or environment. The implicit claim of desire lines is that they represent an unbiased indication of how an object or environment is used by people, which is valuable information that can be applied to the design or, in some cases, redesign of the object or environment.
– Universal Principles of Design by William Lidwell, Kristina Holden, and Jill Butler
I decided to apply this concept to my everyday life. I asked myself, “What do I do and need on a daily basis?” I noticed where I put my trash or where places in my home got messy or what activities typically made me anxious. Using this information, I attempted to address each one of my “desire lines.”
I’ve compiled these “life hacks” and, with additional tips from the internet, have assembled them into this small guide. All of the resources I personally prepare on this website are and will always be free and ad-free.
Good luck and enjoy!
I’m a young adult living with ADHD, Anxiety, OCD, Panic Disorder, and Schizoaffective Disorder (Bipolar Type). I hold down a flexible full-time job and live with my boyfriend and cat. I still rely on a variety of medications and my support network (family, friends, my psychologist, and my psychiatrist).
Note: I am not a doctor or licensed in any way. I can only speak to my experiences and convey what I’ve learned. If you have any questions, please talk to your physician.
Note: I am not sponsored or compensated in any way by the products or companies I recommend in this guide. I simply like them and use them.