2407@2x PACT Goals for ADHD

How PACT Goals Work for Your ADHD

Never heard of PACT goals? You’re in for it today! We’re talking about a goal-setting metaphor with greater attention on outcomes than process and we think it has real legs when it comes to ADHD.

Episode Hosts: ,

Subscribe to Taking Control: The ADHD Podcast in Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or anywhere else you find your favorite podcasts!

Support The ADHD Podcast and get great perks by becoming a Patron • Learn More and Join Now!

Never heard of PACT goals? You’re in for it today! We’re talking about a goal-setting metaphor with greater attention on outcomes than process and we think it has real legs when it comes to ADHD.

PACT is a goal-setting technique and stands for Purposeful, Actionable, Continuous, and Trackable. Compared to other methods that focus on outcomes, PACT goals focus on output. What does that mean? Well, hopefully, but the time you get to work on your well-formed PACT goal, you’re doing it without all the shame that comes from feeling as if you’ve failed a process. This is a tool and a metaphor, and if it works for you, you’ll be building new habits in no time.

Links & Notes

Episode Transcript

Brought to you by The ADHD Podcast Community on Patreon

Pete Wright: Hello everybody, and welcome to Taking Control: The ADHD Podcast on TruStory FM. I’m Pete Wright, and I’m here with Nikki Kinzer.

Nikki Kinzer: Hello everyone. Hello, Pete Wright.

Pete Wright: Do you remember when we did our SMART goals episode, Nikki?

Nikki Kinzer: I do remember it. It probably had to have been eight years ago, I swear, it ad to have been …

Pete Wright: It feels like years ago, it feels like years ago. And today, we’re throwing all of that to the curb.

Nikki Kinzer: Yes, we’re going to do something different.

Pete Wright: Throw it to the curb, it’s time for something meatier.

Nikki Kinzer: Something new.

Pete Wright: That’s right. Very excited to talk about PACT goals today. I read the article and I’m very interested in our conversation today about PACT goals and how they might work for ADHD, PACDHD. Before we do that … Okay, we are in the pledge drive, Nikki Kinzer.

Nikki Kinzer: Yes we are.

Pete Wright: What does that mean?

Nikki Kinzer: Well, it means that we just saw in the pre-show, the cover art for Pete’s new podcast called the Placeholder, and it is awesome.

Pete Wright: It’s Pete as a sketch.

Nikki Kinzer: It is so good. It’s Pete as a sketch, and you summed up what this podcast is going to be in what? Five words or something.

Pete Wright: 10 words.

Nikki Kinzer: 10 words.

Pete Wright: 10 words.

Nikki Kinzer: Great.

Pete Wright: Yeah.

Nikki Kinzer: What is it?

Pete Wright: Yes.

Nikki Kinzer: Placeholder what?

Pete Wright: Placeholder, Placeholder. You want to know what the actual words are? I can give you the words.

Nikki Kinzer: Well, it’s Placeholder, which is the title, but what’s the little subtitle or whatever?

Pete Wright: The tagline is …

Nikki Kinzer: The tagline.

Pete Wright: Oh, it is a show about the tech we use while we’re waiting for something better.

Nikki Kinzer: Just sit with that for a little bit.

Pete Wright: I think it sums it up pretty well.

Nikki Kinzer: Yeah, yeah.

Pete Wright: I think that sums it up pretty well. I’m very excited about the show, working on the trailer right now. It’s going to come out the next week, and then episode one before the end of the month. And hopefully, that will entice you all. If you are thinking about this show and what the ADHD podcast has been to you, the Placeholder will be a member only podcast. You’ll only be able to get it through your personal Patreon feed, podcast feed. We’re taking a real flyer on this. We hope that it means something to you, that it is of interest to you. We’re excited about sharing it but it won’t be available anywhere in any of the other podcast directories, it’s just for our members. And I plan on talking to members on the show. I plan on interviews. I plan on lots of real internal cool stuff. And so I hope it’s exciting to you. It’s available to all members but of course, we’ve got some other stuff coming up that we are talking about for the month of March, to get you excited about the community, the ADHD community. What else do we have going on?

Nikki Kinzer: Oh, we’ve got Coffee with Pete.

Pete Wright: Coffee with Pete.

Nikki Kinzer: We have Coaching with Nikki and these things …

Pete Wright: Coaching with Nikki, hallelujah.

Nikki Kinzer: Yes, yes. These two new benefits are going to be part of our next tier, our new tier in Patreon. What do we have? We have deluxe, supreme and platinum.

Pete Wright: Platinum.

Nikki Kinzer: Yes. But every member for the month of March, is going to get a sample of Coffee with Pete and Coaching with Nikki, so now is definitely the time to sign up so you can check those out and check out the trailer and everything.

Pete Wright: What are you doing in Coaching with Nikki? Can you give a description of what that event is going to be like?

Nikki Kinzer: Yeah, exactly. Yeah. Of course, I will. And so this is how I vision … This is how I envision it. Envision, vision. What is that word I’m looking for? Visualize.

Pete Wright: Envision. Visualize, envision. You’ve done it all, you’ve got it all.

Nikki Kinzer: Okay, good. All right.

Pete Wright: Yeah, you did good.

Nikki Kinzer: Yeah, I’ve got this. Got this.

Pete Wright: Yeah, you got this.

Nikki Kinzer: Okay. What I’m thinking, I’ll just go with that, is we have themes or at least we have somewhat connections between shows per month right, because then we decide, "Okay, this is what we’re going to focus on in the month of March. This is what we want to focus on in April." We have something that ties everything together. My thought is that at the end of the month, we’re going to have a coaching group with Nikki. I am going to actually start with a topic that’s going to be in relation to what we’ve talked about on the show. For March, my idea is that we’ve been talking a lot about lists and prioritizing and time, and these goals that we’re going to talk about today. And so I’m going to come up with something that is probably going to be around I would say ADHD time, and start the conversation with folks and answer questions. I hope to have everybody chime in and support each other but I really do want it to be a time for people to get some support around their ADHD and really come away from it with maybe some tangible things to work on or to be thinking about.

Pete Wright: And so the Coffee with Pete … Yeah, I’ll be taking questions. I think I envision it more as a workshop around technology and systems and so …

Nikki Kinzer: Oh, I like that.

Pete Wright: If you have ideas, if you want to you want to run ideas by, you want to jump on, we’ll do some screen sharing and look at each other’s systems and look at ways we use the technology that we use to make our lives work better and more smoothly. That’s the idea behind Coffee with Pete. There will be coffee and if nobody has any technical things to talk about, I’ll either bring one or we’ll just jaw. I’m okay with that too, but the whole idea is let’s actually move our systems forward and play with the technology that’ll help us do that. I’m very excited about bringing a group together who can come and do this. We’ll also create channels in the platinum category and Discord for those who decide to join that tier. And hopefully, we’ll have some good discussions in there. Looking forward to it, looking very much forward to it. Can I just add, speaking of Discord, thanks to member Jay Foster, who is a Discord grandpa in the community, he’s fantastic. He had the suggestion yesterday to start up a new channel that I 100% relate to, which is the business channel. And it’s for anybody who is in any work environment as a team leader, a manager, a small business owner. If your ADHD is impacting the way you lead or manage your business or a part of the business, that’s the channel for you. And I’m excited to have that channel spun up too. That’s a new thing, that’s another new thing. We just opened that new channel for March. New tier, platinum tier, Coffee with Pete, Coaching with Nikki, the Placeholder podcast finally coming together, trailer coming out in March, episode one coming out in March. The last point is our goal. What are we trying to do? This is a pledge drive for a purpose, and the pledge drive … We’ve done the math and we have figured out that in order for us to be able to do and sustain all of the things that we want to do, the new podcast, the time invested in the new coaching and the Coffee with Pete, the work we’re going to do with people in the new tier, it means we need to hit a certain number of members. And so if you have been considering joining the ADHD community, now is a great time to do it, now would be the time to do it that would help us the most. If you care about the ADHD podcast and seeing the community thrive, this is the time. We need to hit over 250 current subscribers. And you can see it right on our Patreon page at patreon.com/theADHDpodcast. At any given time, you can go and see how many members we currently have in the community. Once we hit over 250, we’ll be able to launch, release and sustain all the new things we want to do as we continue to work to grow the community. And that is really our singular measure of success. If you support the show and you appreciate what we do, please help us help you. That’s the Jerry McGuire pitch right, help us help you. And also, air-dry Jerry. I think that’s it.

Nikki Kinzer: That’s it.

Pete Wright: Should we talk about PACT goals?

Nikki Kinzer: Yes, let’s do it.

Pete Wright: PACT goals, Nikki Kinzer. Are we stacking goals? Is that the point, we’re stacking goals? It’s just goal upon goal upon goal.

Nikki Kinzer: Goal upon goal.

Pete Wright: Our cup runneth over with goals.

Nikki Kinzer: Well, I got to tell you, have you ever heard of PACT goals before I brought it up?

Pete Wright: You brought it up some weeks ago, I think. You said, "Hey, this is a new thing. We’re going to put it in the schedule." And that’s when I got invested in it. And my interest was peaked, I have to say.

Nikki Kinzer: Well, I have never heard of this either and it’s not exactly like it’s brand new. It’s just that I don’t think it’s talked about very often. And the inspiration of this, where I got the information about PACT goals, was I was having dinner with a good friend of mine and we were talking about business and she talked about … Or she started saying something about PACT goals. And I’m like, "You mean SMART goals?" "No, PACT goals." She’s like, "Don’t you know what that is?"

Pete Wright: PACT goals, dummy.

Nikki Kinzer: Come on. Yeah. I’m like, "I have never heard of it." Of course, at the dinner table, I’m Googling it and we’re talking about it and I’m thinking, "Oh, my gosh. I love this. I love what this stands for and this could be actually a better way of approaching our goals for the ADHD brain and for any brain because it just feels nicer than SMART goals." And I’m not saying SMART goals aren’t nice, there’s a place for them, for sure.

Pete Wright: And so let’s review just very quickly. Can we just review what SMART goals are, in order to have a conversation about PACT goals? There are way too many acronyms in this conversation.

Nikki Kinzer: Yes, I know, right. And okay, SMART goals …

Pete Wright: SMART goals, it is an acronym. It stands for specifics, S, specific, M, measurable, A, attainable, R, relevant and T, time based. And figure it out, right. Sure, that’s the mnemonic for remembering it, and that’s what SMART goals stand for. And SMART goals are very popular.

Nikki Kinzer: They’re very popular.

Pete Wright: People love thinking about SMART goals.

Nikki Kinzer: And there’s a lot of great things about this, for sure.

Pete Wright: Sure, sure. Though interestingly, for ADHD, it’s always just … I haven’t really put my finger on it but I don’t use SMART goals at all. I don’t think about the goals that I want …

Nikki Kinzer: You don’t have a poster up on your wall.

Pete Wright: I don’t have a poster. It’s never a thing that I’ve … For a long time, I had the GTD workflow poster, that I connected with right, because I was using it. It was an actionable thing. And SMART goals, I just never … I personally tried it, I tried to make all my goals with the little SMART and I tried to make it work, and I never quite did it. And then I read this PACT goals thing and I thought, "Oh, this addresses why I was challenged with SMART goals."

Nikki Kinzer: … what was missing a little bit. Right, right.

Pete Wright: Yeah. Is that your relationship with it?

Nikki Kinzer: Yes. And that’s why I thought, "Well gosh, I think this is just not only nicer … " But yeah, just more of an ADHD friendlier way of going about something that has maybe less shame around it.

Pete Wright: Yeah, you put. It’s nicer, it’s nicer. And that’s what we need, more kindness.

Nikki Kinzer: Yes, absolutely. People are wondering, "What is this? What does PACT mean?" It is a goal setting technique, and it stands for P, is purposeful, A, is actionable, C, is continuous and T, is trackable. There’s some similarities for sure but it is a little bit different. And I just want people to know that in the show notes, we are going to put an article that I read and that Pete read, and a lot of what I’m referencing is from this article, because I thought it was really well written. And so if you guys want to check that out a little bit more in detail, it will be there for sure.

Pete Wright: And I just posted that link in the show notes for people who are … Or in the livestream chat for people who are joining us for our live stream, another member benefit. There you go.

Nikki Kinzer: Yes it is, there you go.

Pete Wright: Plug.

Nikki Kinzer: All right. Compared to other methods that focus on outcome, PACT goals focus on output. By focusing on output, some people have found that PACT goals allow them to track progress towards achieving a goal and creating new habits. The PACT technique works especially well for long term ambitious goals because they are focused on continuous growth.

Pete Wright: Yeah. Could you break that down?

Nikki Kinzer: Yes.

Pete Wright: Do you want me to drop a fat beat?

Nikki Kinzer: Yes, I do want to break that down but I also want to give you a little bit of history in my work when it comes to the word goal.

Pete Wright: Okay. Goal stands for good objective and life.

Nikki Kinzer: Really?

Pete Wright: No, I [inaudible 00:13:57]. Everything’s an acronym, I’m just going with the flow.

Nikki Kinzer: I didn’t know that goal meant anything.

Pete Wright: Wow.

Nikki Kinzer: Wow.

Pete Wright: I cannot tell you how excited I am that I almost had you. I should have leaned in on that, I will regret that forever. Oh, wow. Okay.

Nikki Kinzer: Yeah. You had me there for a second because I’m thinking, "Wow, what did I miss?"

Pete Wright: Good objective and life.

Nikki Kinzer: That’s good, that’s really good. Okay, moving on.

Pete Wright: Sorry.

Nikki Kinzer: Not my favorite description of good whatever you said. And this actually came up in my accountability groups a few years ago, because in the accountability group, we started off as, "Okay, what’s your goal for the week?" And what people were coming back with is shame and guilt, because they didn’t accomplish their goal for the week. And so they don’t want to talk about it because they didn’t feel good about it. And when we started to break down the word goal, what I learned and what I agree with, is that it felt very like, "This is the beginning and this is the end. And if you don’t get to the end … "

Pete Wright: It does, it feels totally binary.

Nikki Kinzer: Yes.

Pete Wright: It’s like a score, right.

Nikki Kinzer: Yes.

Pete Wright: We use goal when we actually make a touchdown or a soccer goal, you make a goal.

Nikki Kinzer: Right, absolutely. And so there’s nothing in between. And so if you didn’t get it done and you can’t check that box, it feels really bad. And most goals aren’t something that just is open and ended, right. And so what we did as a group is we said, "Okay, we’re going to change the way that we describe this." And we changed it to focus. What is the focus for the week? This felt so much better, there was so much less shame. And it was more of an understanding that this is always going to be a work in progress and it’s a habit that we’re trying to build. And I think that’s why I really resonated with PACT. All right, going back to breaking PACT down, P, purposeful. A purposeful effort represents your goal’s foundation, its meaning and the passion that drives you toward achieving it. This digs a little bit more into your values and the emotions behind how you feel about what it is that you’re trying to accomplish.

Pete Wright: I love purposeful because of that language, the passion. I can see how if you are setting up a goal of something you have to achieve for some external motivation, like work, if you’re trying to refine a goal, a measurable or new metric that you have to measure for your job that you’re not excited about, coming up with language that is passionate, that describes how you connect with it, can be hard. The flip side of that is that’s huge opportunity because you get to reframe everything about your goal in language that connects with you. And that I think, is the objective. I guess, when I hear it, I can see easily how people could take a cynical perspective of this first point. And I want to just encourage you to think about it from the other side, that you have the opportunity when you’re defining your goal, to define it in a way that fuels you, that allows you to create something toward the same end but in a way that makes sense to you, to your brain, to your heart. How’s that hit you?

Nikki Kinzer: And I agree. I think that that’s the biggest issue, is that it has to mean something to you because if it doesn’t, it’s not ever going to happen.

Pete Wright: Yeah.

Nikki Kinzer: You’re not going to be able to make it a work in progress because it’s going to be really hard to even get started. I do think it’s important to take a step back and really think about what this truly means for you. And is it something you truly want or is it something that you feel like you should want, or somebody’s pushing you into it? Those are all very different factors.

Pete Wright: And when you’re running your own business or your own team or association, whatever, you have a lot of choices, right.

Nikki Kinzer: Right.

Pete Wright: I think this step is an interesting flag gate right, that says, "Hey, if I can’t come up with language that defines the purpose of this thing that I’m doing, maybe that should tell me that this isn’t really a good thing for me to work toward. I need to find another way in to whatever this is because it’s not for me, I’m not connecting to it."

Nikki Kinzer: Absolutely. All right, actionable. Being actionable is about taking action today to avoid over planning for the future. This means making efforts to change the things within your reach that you can control, instead of focusing on distant outcomes. Think of actionable as being similar to the adage, living in the now.

Pete Wright: Living in the now. Yeah, I love this because it’s … I had a therapist a long time ago who said, "Your power ends with your skin, right."

Nikki Kinzer: Yes.

Pete Wright: It ends with what you can touch. You can’t influence things you can’t touch. And obviously, we can come up with lots of examples of things that I can change without touching them, but I like the metaphor and I love this because it keeps me focused in my immediate sphere of influence when I’m working towards something. I think that’s really nice.

Nikki Kinzer: And the next part of this that they talk about in the article, I think is so relevant to ADHDers. Of course, preparing for the future is essential but there can be downfalls to over planning. Many of us overanalyze a situation, which can lead to inaction. That sounds very, very familiar. This analysis paralysis keeps us away from how some of us may learn best, which is practicing and trying something new.

Pete Wright: I feel like you should have started that with Dear Pete, because I …

Nikki Kinzer: Does this happen to you?

Pete Wright: Yeah. Does this happen to you? Dear Nikki, I never imagined I would write this letter. I feel like this choice paralysis, you introduced me to a new term, FOBO.

Nikki Kinzer: Right, yes.

Pete Wright: FOBO, Fear of a better option.

Nikki Kinzer: Yes.

Pete Wright: I have never heard of that.

Nikki Kinzer: I had not either.

Pete Wright: It’s Monday 8:00 AM for me.

Nikki Kinzer: I know.

Pete Wright: Wow, wow. FOBO.

Nikki Kinzer: I think we might be take … Or I think we are going to be talking about it next week.

Pete Wright: Well, I hope so because I have some thoughts. I’m going to just table that for a little bit because this whole overplanning, overanalyzing and not committing to a direction, is really hard for me. I live in that strike zone constantly.

Nikki Kinzer: And this is going to come up again in the continuous part of PACT. With the continuous pursuit of repeatable and straightforward routines right, so we’re taking some action all the time, a little bit every day, we can avoid choice paralysis when too many options keep you from immediately doing something actionable, otherwise known as analysis paralysis or FOBO, fear of a better option. This is the consequence of overplanning and overanalyzing a situation. This is the consequence of overplanning and overanalyzing a situation.

Pete Wright: What is it about continuous? What are you actually doing in the continuous stage when you’re setting up a PACT goal? What is it that you’re doing that helps you beat FOBO?

Nikki Kinzer: I think the way that I take it, is that it’s an action that you can continue doing daily. It’s building the habit.

Pete Wright: And this was the piece that I think we really want to bring out, which is the experimentation part, right. And it goes back to what is actionable. When you think through the things that you’re doing every day and you are trying again and again through different iterations for each attempt that you’re doing, you’re constantly revisiting your own process every day, instead of sitting down and thinking, "Oh, I’m going to try everything all at once because what if I’m missing out on all of this stuff?" What you’re saying is, there’s opportunity for me to change my system every day. I can make little micro changes to my system and to my process and try new stuff. That’s experimentation. And that’s very much a part of the continuity state in PACT. And she had this great quote that she teaches her students, like, "Once I know better, I do better." Right, I don’t think that was hers. I think that’s [inaudible 00:22:49].

Nikki Kinzer: That sounds like Oprah.

Pete Wright: I think it was Bob Marley. And so this high ideal of through … As long as you don’t stop moving right, just keep swimming. As long as you don’t stop moving and keep experimenting, keep your eyes open to new ideas, then you’ll all always be learning how to do better next time. But this is the trick, you don’t want to get into the state of making giant changes every single day, right. You don’t want to be in an experimentation mode like Pete does, please do as I say, not as I do, right. You don’t want to say, "Okay, I’m going to try a whole new system." And go and eat all of the elephant today. You want to look at the little changes that you can make every day, little iterations, little new ideas that help you improve what you’re doing, what you can touch right now. And that’s what I really like about these two steps right together.

Nikki Kinzer: This article is encouraging us to try new things, try, practice, see what you can do. Little things like you said, and have that be a continuous effort. And what I think gets in the way of that, is the FOBO. When you’re so stuck in overthinking and researching, then you don’t do anything. You’re not doing any action and you’re not doing anything that could even build a habit.

Pete Wright: Exactly.

Nikki Kinzer: It did, it did connect with me. Thank you for that.

Pete Wright: Trackable.

Nikki Kinzer: Trackable. This is just a different take on measurable from SMART goals. And this approach can impact your mental health and wellness. And oh boy, do we not need that? We need good impact on those things because it’s based on effort and progress. It’s not on that end result, it’s not that deadline that you missed or didn’t miss. And that’s the part I think, with SMART goals, that’s really hard.

Pete Wright: And what I love about trackable, is that it implies you are the one taking action, right.

Nikki Kinzer: Right.

Pete Wright: Measurable seems like any system can measure something, but metaphors matter right, especially for ADHD. And for me, trackable implies I’m the one doing the work. It’s my goal, it’s my action, it’s my habit every day. It is also me, I’m the one who’s going to see the results and be able to track them. And that helps me personalize it, take authority and agency over what it is that I’m going to do. It also makes the goals more clear. She uses these examples of study at least two hours for every one hour in class and complete all homework for every class on time. That’s something that is … It sets up a very clear, easy to internalize goal. And you know when you’re hitting it because you’re the one doing the work, you’re the one checking the boxes. Run every day this year, that is a PACT goal in its simplest form. And it seems like … I can see how you’re coming at this, if you come at this sideways and you think, "Oh. Well, that sounds like a resolution, like a new year’s resolution." It does until you go back and break down the P-A-C-T of it, and you realize, "I can internalize this because I can put a definition to … It’s purposeful, it’s going to keep me healthy and my heart strong. It’s going to keep my muscles oxygenated. It’s actionable, I’m the one who’s going to be doing the work. I’m going to get out and get my running clothes on and I’m going to hit the streets every day. It’s continuous, it’s daily. And it’s trackable, I’ll know when I’ve done it when I hit 365 at the end of the year." That’s a useful and so simple, so simple way to approach this stuff.

Nikki Kinzer: And something that I would want to add is, I know for tracking, for me, it can sometimes be negative if I’m focusing just on the days that I didn’t do something. And so one of the things that I would say to folks out there that are like that as well, you maybe are a little fearful of tracking because of that, I would say what I do is change the way the tracking sheet looks. It’s not Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday and you have to check each day, I would say you check every time you do something that you want to do so that at the end of the week, you can say, "Hey, I did that two times last week." That’s a very different thing than saying, "I missed five days last week." You can celebrate the two days and not focus on the bad. Just another thought, that you can tweak even how you track to work for how you think.

Pete Wright: I just want to throw in how much I like the word PACT better than SMART.

Nikki Kinzer: SMART.

Pete Wright: Right.

Nikki Kinzer: I know, right.

Pete Wright: I get smart, I understand it but I also … I love PACT because PACT implies the agreement, right. I’m making an agreement with myself.

Nikki Kinzer: Yeah, right, a PACT. Oh, that’s right. I love that.

Pete Wright: Right, for a future state of success. I am buying into … It’s not the thing that’s smart, it’s the agreement that I am a part of it. I am taking action, I have agency in this discussion. I really, really like that. And so yeah, to say I connected with PACT goals over SMART goals, it just answers a lot for me. It answers a lot of questions and so I’m pretty excited. We do have a question in the chat room that I want to get to right now, because I think it’s really important. And it is a thing that also sticks in my head, which is okay, let’s say we’re taking our running every day for 365, getting out to run is where the problem lies. The goal itself is great but how do you apply motivation to a PACT goal? I have some thoughts. Do you have thoughts?

Nikki Kinzer: Oh, I have a lot of thoughts. Yeah, so motivation. All right. I think that motivation is a really hard word for ADHDers to wrap their heads around, because you can have all of the wonderful intentions in the world and really want something, but it’s so hard to get started. The motivation isn’t always what we need to look for. I think it’s important that we go back to the purpose of the running.

Pete Wright: Yes.

Nikki Kinzer: Yes. We need to figure out what it is that you’re looking for, why you’re doing this, what makes it important, how does this connect to your health, how is it going to make your life better, how is it going to impact other people, right? We definitely want to look at the purpose and revisit that, and maybe even have a little reminder somewhere that you see every day of why you’re doing what it is that you want to do. But then I think in a more practical strategy wise, you’ve got to think about, "How can I get started?" Not necessarily, "How am I going to motivate myself to decide to run?" But, "How am I going to get started to run?" And it goes back to these mini habits and tiny habits that … Isn’t it funny that there’s two books, that one’s called Mini Habits and the other one is Tiny Habits. It’s really basically the same thing. Anyway.

Pete Wright: It’s the same thing, yeah.

Nikki Kinzer: Throw that out there. But what I think is awesome about that, is I read Mini Habits and I really resonated that if you want to exercise every day, you start with one pushup. If you want to run every day, you start with putting your shoes on and you I don’t know, run to the mailbox or something, make it really small. Maybe it’s just putting your shoes on for the day right, but it’s making it so small that you can get started and you can do it no matter what. And I remember we talked about Mini Habits a while ago when we reviewed the book. And I remember, I don’t know if I said it in the podcast or maybe in the livestream but I remember thinking, "Well yeah, if you want to work out 30 minutes a day and you start with one pushup … " You can do a pushup in a wedding dress, right.

Pete Wright: Yeah, yeah.

Nikki Kinzer: You can do that no matter what. And so I think it’s also just figuring out what’s the smallest point of entry to get you started?

Pete Wright: Yeah, I think so too.

Nikki Kinzer: And make it fun.

Pete Wright: Yeah. Yeah, I go back to that too. I feel like part of the reason I’m resonating with PACT … And time will tell because PACT is a new thing for the way I think about it, to leave that metaphor in the back of my mind. But my sense is when I think about the stuff that motivates me, it all comes back to what affinity I have to the objective, like, "How passionate am I about this thing?" I know where my motivation will suffer. And I also know that if I am able to frame my connection to whatever it is I’m trying to do in a way that really connects with my heart and my head at the same time, that I am more likely to start taking action toward those tiny habits that will lead toward that ultimate outcome. And that’s one of the reasons I like about it because it’s focused not on the shame, it really is focused on your daily activity. And that daily activity can be just one teeny tiny little motion towards the end, right.

Nikki Kinzer: Absolutely, absolutely.

Pete Wright: It doesn’t have to … I think using an example of run every day this year is not a great example if you’re not a runner, right.

Nikki Kinzer: Exactly, yeah.

Pete Wright: If you’re not a runner but you want to be a runner, then just putting your shoes on in the morning is step one, 8:00 AM Monday morning.

Nikki Kinzer: Exactly.

Pete Wright: If you’re already a runner and you enjoy the experience of running, which I do, it makes it much easier to make that goal, run every day for a year, something useful, because I can hyper focus when I’m running. If my knees aren’t hurting, I can actually go to a brain space that is of some use to me, right. It’s healthy and makes me feel good but it’s not a good example for everybody. If you can’t even imagine running, then you can’t imagine feeling passionate enough about something to set a goal for it.

Nikki Kinzer: No. And I think for me, it was 30 minutes of exercise. And that’s where the pushup came from. It’s 30 minutes of exercise every day, "How do I get to that?" One pushup a day, "All right, I can do that." But something that just … When you were talking about running, it reminded me. For all of our listeners who’ve listened to us faithfully for a long, long time, do you remember the episode that … I don’t remember specifically which one it was but we were talking about running and you were telling me about the zombie.

Pete Wright: Yeah, zombie run.

Nikki Kinzer: Yes.

Pete Wright: Oh, yeah.

Nikki Kinzer: And every time I think of that, I just smile and I’m thinking, "That’s how you make running fun. You put on an app, you walk around and then you hear the zombies coming and you run for your life."

Pete Wright: That was exactly it. I don’t even know if that game is still around or if that app is still around. But yeah, it was a health app and you’d be listening to music or a podcast and suddenly, you’d turn a corner and you’d hear in your headphones, zombies coming out and it would tell you, "You’ve got to run to the next wait point." And you haul it to get to the next thing, yeah.

Nikki Kinzer: You run, you run fast. Yeah.

Pete Wright: So fun, so fun.

Nikki Kinzer: Anyway, all right.

Pete Wright: I think that’s really it. And I know it’s hard and I know what … One thing I do know is that hearing us talk about it on a podcast makes it sound easy. And I want to say for sure, it’s not easy.

Nikki Kinzer: No, no.

Pete Wright: All we’re doing is searching for the right metaphor for some of you listening, that you might be able to connect to, that actually gives you some hope toward your goals. And if this isn’t the one for you, please move along. Let’s experiment in some new ways together. But we will post the source article in the show notes so you can take a look for it yourself and see if it works for you. I’m excited about continuing to think about how the things I want to accomplish this year fit into the PACT mindset. I think it’s working a little bit for me. There you have it.

Nikki Kinzer: There you go. Thank you everyone.

Pete Wright: That’s it. Thank you, absolutely. Thank you everybody for downloading and listening to this show. Thank you for being a part of our March pledge drive, our march toward 250, the march to 250 and to the Placeholder podcast, into all the new stuff that we want to do in this year. Thank you for help helping us to continue to make this a bigger part of our lives and of our livelihoods, and to be a part of this fantastic ADHD community. We’re honored by being in your orbit. Thank you everybody, for downloading and listening to this show. Thank you for your time and attention. If you have something to contribute to the conversation, head into the show talk channel, there’s a thread live over there about this stuff. We’d love to hear what you have to say, and you can join us by becoming a supporting member at the deluxe level or better. On behalf of Nikki Kinzer, I’m Pete Wright. We’ll see you back here next week on Taking Control: The ADHD Podcast.

Through Taking Control: The ADHD Podcast, Nikki Kinzer and Pete Wright strive to help listeners with support, life management strategies, and time and technology tips, dedicated to anyone looking to take control of their lives in the face ADHD.