For me, school always felt harder compared to my classmates. I could never focus during class, I never remembered to do my homework, I couldn’t finish tests on time, the list goes on and on. It was only until my junior year of high school that I learned I have ADHD, which is why it took so long for me to figure out how to do well in school. Having ADHD does not automatically mean you’re going to be a bad student, but in my case it did which is why I’ve decided to share some of the tips that have helped me perform better.
The first thing I recommend for everyone is to get a planner. Whether it’s a physical planner, an online planner, the calendar app, it doesn’t matter as long as you use it. You have so many different assignments for multiple classes which makes it easy to forget something, and by writing down your due dates you narrow down what you need to focus on for each day. By knowing what you’re supposed to do each day, you don’t waste time figuring out what you have to focus on and you’re not scrambling to forget anything last minute.
The second is to find a place where you can work and not get distracted. For me, it is impossible to do homework in my bedroom because I have a TV and so many things on the walls that make me distracted, so I study in the living room. This is something that seems like a small adjustment but it can work wonders for your studying habits.
This third tip might not work for everyone so learn whether or not it applies to you, but forget what everyone says about starting your work early. For me I mentally cannot finish some assignments early. For example, I can write an essay the night it’s due and it will be ten times better than if I wrote that essay a week before it was due. Not all people are good procrastinators and that’s ok, if starting days early brings your grades up then keep doing it, but if you know how to procrastinate successfully and you’re not harming your mental health then I don’t personally see anything wrong with it.
The last tip is to talk to your school about receiving academic accommodations. This has a different meaning at each school, but for me I get access to PowerPoints from teachers and I get extended time for tests. This is an extremely useful option because the school system isn’t built to suit every kid’s needs, we’re all different so some of us need those accommodations because it can put us on the same level as everyone else.
Mental health is someone that many people struggle with, and it can unfortunately affect our daily lives in negative ways. If you’re struggling with ADHD or another illness that affects your academics, there are people you can talk to or strategies that can help you with whatever struggling with.