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How I Stay Organized In Graduate School With ADHD


I am currently in graduate school for Mental Health Counseling. Being a graduate student, there are high expectations for me to achieve academic success. Hence, I have to be very organized and complete all my tasks in a thorough, efficient manner. I have been able to accomplish this task and maintain a high grade point average each semester, since enrolling in graduate school. In this article I will explore the different ways I stay organized in graduate school with ADHD.


The workload in graduate school is significantly larger than it is in undergraduate school. You may wonder how I am able to handle this large workload while experiencing the daily struggle of having ADHD. To answer that question, I use a planner. To be specific, at the beginning each semester after I receive the syllabuses for each course, I write all the main assignments for each course in my planner. Like I mentioned in my journaling article, I am a very visual person. By writing down each assignment for each course in my planner, I am able to see all my assignments in writing.  Since I am able to see each assignment for each course in writing, I do not forget when they are due. This is just one of the methods that has enabled me to succeed academically with ADHD.

Post-It Notes

In addition to using a planner to stay organized with ADHD, I also use post-it notes, as well. Yes, I record all my assignments in my planner as a reminder to complete all my assignments in a timely manner. However, with ADHD, it is not uncommon to be forgetful at times. Hence, I make sure to write out a post-it note reminding me to complete each assignment close to the time when they are due. I place each post-it note on my bureau. My bureau is the first thing I look at each day in my room. As a result, I will not forget when each assignment is due for each course. Being a visual person, this enables me to remember to complete my assignments, despite writing them down in my planner. I highly recommend using post-it notes as an extra reminder.


Maintaining an organized lifestyle, while battling a busy school schedule can be an extremely daunting task for anyone who is enrolled in graduate school. However, for someone with ADHD, it can be an excruciating task. These are just two ways I have managed to exceed in my studies as a graduate student with ADHD. They have been extremely helpful to me. I encourage you to use them as well, whether or not you have ADHD.

Organized desk photo available from Shutterstock

How I Stay Organized In Graduate School With ADHD

Lauren Walters

My name is Lauren Walters. I am currently heading into my final semester of graduate school for Mental Health Counseling in the Spring of 2016. Through my own experiences with mental illness, I love to inspire others through my writings and reassure them that they can live healthy, productive lives, despite mental illness. I hope you enjoy my articles. Feel free to comment. I will be sure to respond to you questions and/or comments in a prompt manner. Enjoy!

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APA Reference
Walters, L. (2015). How I Stay Organized In Graduate School With ADHD. Psych Central. Retrieved on September 22, 2020, from


Last updated: 7 Dec 2015
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