ADHD affects millions of people worldwide. ADHD symptoms can manifest in various ways but the ones affecting home life and routines the most include disorganization, being easily distracted, not completing tasks, forgetfulness, and time-blindness.
You can go a long way with a simple calendar and todo app, like Google Calendar, Google Tasks and Google Keep (or their Microsoft equivalents). But there are several apps available that can take it to another level and really help individuals with ADHD manage their symptoms and stay on top of their daily tasks. Some, like ChoreBuster, help entire families to work together better rather than focusing on individuals alone.
Roubit allows you to define a routine for each weekday and then mark off items as you complete them. Good for building daily habits.
Notion is an all-in-one app for note-taking and data organization. Essentially, it combines a wiki with a database. It offers a wide range of functionalities that are difficult to describe concisely. You could use Notion for taking notes, managing to-do lists, planning purchases, working on writing ideas, and much more.
Todoist is good for tracking chores, if you have a lengthy list of recurring chores that need to be done on a weekly, monthly, and quarterly basis. Notion is not equipped to handle recurring tasks effectively, and Roubit cannot accommodate tasks that occur less frequently than once a week. Todoist offers a clean and user-friendly interface for viewing upcoming tasks, and it sends notifications to a phone to help you remember to complete them.
ChoreBuster is similar to Todoist in that it sets up recurring chores although it also automatically shares them among members of your household in a fair way. Rather than focussing on the individual it treats the household as a group of people who can work together.
Cozi is a family organizer app that can help individuals with ADHD manage their family’s schedule and routines. The app allows users to create and share calendars, to-do lists, and shopping lists with their family members. It also has a feature called “Family Journal,” which allows you to record and share memories with your family.
Routinery (Android, Apple) creates a daily routine with large blocks of time set aside for each activity and alerts you when it is time to move on to the next activity. Great for time-blindness.
Blip blip is also good for time-blindness. It simply makes your phone beep on the hour (like an old school Casio watch, or other chimes) which is enough to gently remind us of the passing of time and snap us out of unproductive activities.
Trello is a free project management app that can be used to organize tasks and projects. It is an excellent tool for individuals with ADHD who struggle with disorganization and incompletion. Trello allows users to create boards, lists, and cards to organize tasks and track progress.
Forest is a productivity app that uses a gamified approach to help users stay focused and avoid distractions. The app works by encouraging users to plant virtual trees that grow while they stay focused on their task. If the user leaves the app, the tree dies, which helps to provide motivation to stay focused and avoid distractions.
Managing ADHD symptoms can be challenging, especially around the home. However, with the help of these apps, people with ADHD can stay organized, avoid distractions, manage their time better, and stay on top of their daily tasks and routines. These apps are not a substitute for professional treatment, but they can be a valuable tool for people with ADHD to manage their symptoms and improve their quality of life.
Some of you who have been using ChoreBuster for a while will have noticed an odd quirk – when you edit a chore it recalculates the entire schedule from when you made your account, often months ago, to the present, then off into the future. As chores are allocated based on what work gets done, the new schedule could look totally different to the one you had moments before.
This isn’t really a problem when you first set up your schedule but as people start to do chores it is – people who had recently finished chores would no longer be allocated those chores and so ChoreBuster would ‘forget’ they had been completed and calculating rewards based on chore completion becomes impossible.
Another side-effect of shuffling a schedule like this is that an email containing chores to do that day may no longer match what is on the website so if some people use the email and others use the website, confusion ensues.
This week those problems have been mostly solved – whenever you change a chore the new settings will only take effect from tomorrow onward. The past will be unaffected. If you delete a chore then it will remain on older days of the schedule and stop appearing from tomorrow onward.
This is achieved by creating revisions of a chore when it is saved, similar to how CMS software does when you edit a page. Each revision has a period of time when it is used to calculate the schedule, which is the time between revisions. The current settings, the ones you see when editing the chore are used from whenever you last saved the chore and into the future.
When saving a chore all future days will be recalculated, as before, so if the weekly email has been sent and you make some changes the day after then the issue of emails and online not matching will still occur. This problem should not occur with the daily email as new settings take effect the day after they were saved.
This was a major rewrite of some core parts of the ChoreBuster algorithm and there were some tricky parts that are hard to be 100% sure about. If you notice any strange behavior, please let us know. If it’s working properly but it is more annoying than helpful, please let us know!
If you change the start date of a chore the revisions don’t work and past parts of the schedule may end up looking different. Sorry, fixing that was too hard for now.
That is the main update we’ve been working on. But there are a few more things we’ve managed to squeeze in recently too, so read on for more.
Chore End Date
In order to make chore deletion work the way described above, every chore needs an end date. So when you delete a chore, behind the scenes they are not really deleted, just given an end date. It was trivial to provide a field in the user interface so you can set this to a value without deleting the chore.
This field is not likely to be used often so it is hidden away in the “Optional Extras” section when editing a chore.
Often you’ll want to create a few quite similar chores with minor variations. Now, you can create a duplicate of another chore with a single click from the Show Chores screen. Look for something like this:
Be aware that if you clone a chore with a start date in the past that this will cause the schedule to be recalculated from that date onward, potentially making a mess of your finished chores and rewards tracking. To avoid this you can edit the start date on the cloned chores.
Enhanced privacy – no more Google Analytics
Pretty much every website uses Google Analytics to analyze what people do on the website in order to support marketing efforts and diagnose problems. It’s free and the graphs are pretty. The issue with this is that it means Google then knows everyone’s activity on most of the internet and all the surveillance capitalism that implies.
ChoreBuster now self-hosts its analytics system, meaning no data about your behavior on this site is being provided to Google or other third parties (unless you use Google Chrome but there’s nothing we can do about that!). It was really simple to set up, about as easy to install as WordPress. If you’re running any websites and want a free, simple and high performance analytics solution, give Matomo a try. All you need is a LAMP stack – it’ll work on any shared hosting provider.
Recently we ran a poll of our most involved users, asking for their ideas and feedback about what features they’d like a ChoreBuster mobile app to have.
Most people want to use ChoreBuster on their phone in order to help with the day-to-day running of the household by keeping track of what needs to be done soon and what has been finished. So the first release of a mobile app will concentrate on that and leave making changes to the chores for the future.
This preference makes a lot of sense because having a larger screen, as on a laptop / desktop, makes it much easier to see more of the schedule and see the effect of your changes. Even the best-made mobile app is going to be hard to use for editing a complex schedule involving a few people, simply because of the small screen.
We will begin working on a mobile app in the very near future, as soon the current batch of work is finished. There will be an announcement on what that work is very soon – it’s a big change and fixes one of the longest-running limitations ChoreBuster has so we’re pretty excited about it.
We can all relate to the feeling of being overwhelmed with household responsibilities. But there’s just no getting around it: chores need to get done. And what better way to do them than with an extra set of hands?
Toddlers are very eager to be helpful. So, instead of imposing your expectations on them, ask them if they’d like to help you do whatever chore you’re doing. Then, when they get involved, aim to work together, so that the child feels like a full participant in the task rather than a slave to parental demands.
One great thing about toddlers is that they’re eager to explore and attempt new things. If you have a 2-year-old who likes helping you cook, let him mix a pancake batter or stir some spaghetti sauce. What he learns today could turn into the skills he uses for his own family someday!
You don’t have to wait until they can wield a broom or mop before involving them with cleaning up. It’s not just about getting the job done — it’s about teaching them how to do it. So if you’re sweeping the floor, offer opportunities for the child to help with what you’re doing.
It’s important not to force kids into helping with chores. The aim is not to control the kids, but rather to develop their own initiative and sense of responsibility for their actions. Kids will naturally want to be helpful if we give them opportunities and show them how much we appreciate their help!
If they participate, even if it means going more slowly or if you have redo the task, praise their efforts and let them know they are welcome. This will set off a developmental trajectory that leads children voluntarily helping and pitching in at home on their own accord.
Where possible, have young children do work that can be done as a group. For example, fold the laundry for the whole household together. That way they are building connections with their family rather than doing something alone as an individual. Chores becomes associated with a positive experience rather than a rushed halfhearted lonely one.
The two-year-old who stirs pancake mix today could turn into the six-year-old setting a pretty table and starting breakfast for everyone tomorrow — and will feel darn good about it.