Blog Post | 7 Tips to Build on Our Self-Reliance Mindset

7 Tips to Build on Our Self-Reliance Mindset

Just about everyone can benefit from building a self-reliant mindset. Think about it; all it means is that you rely on yourself more. You are more independent, and your success isn't tied to anyone else. You don't have to give up all help and social contact though, simply knowing that you can stand on your own two feet will grant you the confidence to excel in all areas of your life.  This blog offers you 7 tips to help develop more self-reliance and a 3-step action plan to get you going.


#1 - Believe in Yourself

The first step to being more self-reliant is to FEEL more self-reliant. With ADHD, our confidence can take a big hit with ongoing mishaps.  The truth is that you have amazing strengths and things about you that set you apart.  The more you use them, the better life gets.  You have to believe that you can stand on your own two feet, or you will never become more self-reliant.

#2 - Recognize Your Dependencies

It's important to figure out who and what you are currently dependent on. You don't have to make any major changes at this point. Just recognize your dependencies and be curious about which of them you can learn to do yourself.  The more independent you become, the more self-reliance.

#3 - Accept Responsibility

With ADHD, we may have a heightened sensitivity to things going wrong and feel the urge to deflect the blame, make excuses or become defensive to ease our pain and shame. If you want to be more self-reliant, then you need to accept responsibility. But remember to offer yourself some kindness and grace when you own up to the mistake.  No one is perfect and sometimes we expect absolute perfection from ourselves.  The problem is that this just makes our shame and sensitivity worse. 

#4 - Be Your Authentic Self

You should know your core values and what you believe in. Furthermore, it would help if you also acted in ways that reflect those values. Don't try to be someone different.  It takes all kinds of people with different perspectives and abilities to make the world go round. If you want to be more self-reliant, you need to be comfortable in your skin at all times.

#5 - Look After Yourself

A big part of self-reliance is taking care of yourself. You need to make sure both your mental and physical well-being is taken care of. This includes the habits that helps us to be our personal best -- sleep, exercise, diet, downtime and play and our strategies to help with stress management.  A poor spell of mental or physical health will almost ensure your reliance on others.

#6 - Commit to Lifelong Learning

While you can't possibly learn everything and be everything, it is important to commit to constantly learning if you want to be self-reliant. With each transition in our lives, we must prepare to embrace change with new knowledge and skills to support us. You need to keep learning, so you are ready to face these changes independently.

 #7 - Know What You Want

What do you want out of life? Self-reliance and goals go hand in hand.  It is the pursuit of our goals that contributes to more fulfillment in life.  If you want to be more self-reliant, you need to know exactly where you want to go and create the goals no matter how small that keep you moving forward.  

Taking Action:

Which of the seven tips resonated for you?  Here are a few ways you can build on self-reliance. 

Brainstorm Your Dependencies. Figure out the people you are currently dependent upon. You don't have to stop depending on these people, but you should take steps to make you feel comfortable if you couldn't depend on them.  Identify an area of dependence and focus the next week on learning how to handle this yourself.

List Your Values. Take some time to think about the core values that you hold. What are the things that you believe in, no matter what? Being true to these is an important part of self-reliance.   Identify a core value that will direct your actions for an upcoming situation.

Address a Weakness. Think about any weaknesses you might have. Once you have thought of a few, think of a simple step, you can take to address one of them and then take it.


Robin Nordmeyer, PCAC
ADHD Coach | Center For Living Well with ADHD, LLC

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