Raising awareness and discussing real-life topics that affect many people in their wedding planning and in life itself, is something we’re passionate about. We’ve been on a mission to talk about them for years now. We have also spoken to several people in our Magpie Lovebirds Club about topics that really impact their wedding planning and next up, we want to talk about how ADHD or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, can have an impact on your wedding planning.
ADHD is a neurodevelopmental disorder. It means it is a disorder of brain development that affects behaviour. The symptoms of ADHD are varied but they include; inattention, hyperactivity and impulsivity. ADHD is diagnosed when these symptoms make your life considerably more difficult on a social, academic or occupational level. The presentation of ADHD in each person is variable and can affect people in different ways.
We spoke to two experts who both work to support those with ADHD and who have both been diagnosed with ADHD themselves to give you some advice on how to go about planning your wedding. Take a look at their advice:
Natasha Hickling is an ADHD life coach and runs her company The Indigo Hub. She has also been diagnosed with ADHD.
“There are plenty of things to consider when planning a wedding. A long list of decisions and deadlines awaits before the much-anticipated walk down the aisle; and when ADHD is added to the mix, the planning process can feel quite overwhelming before you even get started. If you also struggle with executive functions like keeping organized and problem-solving due to your ADHD, getting all the details right and overcoming little hiccups along the way can be great challenges too. However, fret not! It is still very much possible to plan the wedding of your dreams on your own. All it truly requires is some good structure that you can follow, stride by stride”
Use Your Creative and Innovative Minds
One of Natasha’s top tips is to use your own personal strengths and those that set you apart to your advantage when starting the planning process.
“ Yes, ADHD can be hard, but it also has its own set of strengths and distinctive characteristics. The extra sense of creativity and innovation are skills you can draw from and planning for a wedding is the perfect event to use these skills for. Think of and connect the ideas you have brewing in your mind to paint yourself a rough picture at first. No idea is ever too small so write them down or tell someone. Believe me, you will want to be able to recall all of those ideas. What you note down can also be used as a reference later on, when the planning and logistics start to get in the way. It will do you good to remember your ideas as clearly as possible as after all, it’s the ideas that will keep the passion alive!”
Yogi Erasmus has been an event organiser for roughly 20 years and was formally diagnosed with ADHD (both types, hyperactivity and inattention) two years ago. Yogi owns the company ND Positive– A new space dedicated to understanding, sharing, and exploring the positive elements of living a neurodivergent life. Celebrating neurodiversity and the difference it makes to business, the arts, science, music, and most importantly, your life. Yogi also states that utilising your own strengths and creativity is one of the best ways to get started when planning. Those with ADHD should “make use of their creative streak and leftfield thinking” seeing this as a positive and a strength that shouldn’t be overlooked.
Get Some Clarity and Organise Tasks
Yogi also talks about how having clarity as much as possible can be really beneficial for both yourself when starting to plan and also for when it comes to discussing your ideas with potential suppliers. Breaking it all down into different chunks and bitesize tasks can keep you focused and clear on everything without feeling overwhelmed and wanting to avoid doing anything. Trying to keep as organised as possible was really important to help you feel you are on track on tasks, especially if sticking to plans is something that you personally struggle with;
“Many people with ADHD struggle to stick to a plan or deadline. I am aware that this is a problem for me and I have put strategies into place to help me master the skills required to deliver on time and work under pressure”
Natasha also spoke about keeping organised and came up with ways that you can create some organisation;
“There is no right or wrong way to plan and organise a wedding. Getting organized, however, can be a challenge for those who struggle with executive functioning skills as explained earlier. Brainstorm your ideas and make a visual chart. If you are a list person, you can make checklists using apps, use Google planner, or keep an old-fashioned pen and paper diary. Simply use what works for you in your daily life and apply it to your wedding planning process”.
Delegate Tasks to People You Trust
Delegating can be really helpful for anyone when planning a wedding, as it often involves a lot of different elements that can get very overwhelming, but particularly so if you have ADHD. If the thought of your to-do list alone is making you want to avoid things and feels too much then pick out some tasks that you can delegate to other people. Whether this is someone you know personally and trust or it might be finding a wedding planner who can help.
Natasha talks about using what she calls the “Double D” approach, where you consider what tasks you don’t have to do yourself and offload them onto someone else.
“Once you lay out a plan, using the “double d” approach as I call it, can be helpful! Delegate the tasks you do not need to be closely in charge of and set deadlines for the ones that require your direct input. Delegating means you will cut your workload in half and establishing deadlines means you can pay more attention to the tasks you are holding yourself accountable for!”
Speak to Other People
Both Natasha and Yogi state that a really important thing to do is to speak to other people who have planned their weddings and find out about anything they found helpful or that might have influenced them during the process. Speaking to others can also allow you to share how you feel and also find out about how the process was for others. It can also give you an insight into tasks that need to be done and anything to watch out for.
“You can reach out to people on support groups or social media to get in contact and discuss what’s on your mind. You will surely find many others that have shared similar experiences as yourself in the past. Having someone to speak to, relate with, and brainstorm your ideas with can help you feel less alone in the process!” Natasha says.
The process of planning a wedding can be a huge challenge for those with ADHD and we really hope that these tips will help you at the start of the planning process. If you would love to find out more about both Yogi and Natasha and the work they do to support those with ADHD, take a look at the links below.
Find out more about Yogi and ND Positive here
Find out more about Natasha and The Indigo Hub here
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