Iced Time Blindness

Aug. 1st, 2016

In the summer months I like to have something readily on hand to drink that’s cold and isn’t water. I also don’t drink alcohol. I’ve used frozen juice, as well as powdered iced tea, and those are all well and good. There’s just something about homemade, fresh brewed iced tea. Or rather, sweet tea, as my American pals might say, because I don’t think I could ever drink it without sugar. I am weak.

ADHD has a real problem with time, including a phenomenon known as “time blindness”. Basically this means we have no clue how much time has passed at any given moment. We can look up from something and almost always be surprised at what the actual time is, either that it has sped by or dragged along. This produces a mindset of “now” and “not now” being the only two states of being. This makes it hard to wait for anything, as one example complication.

Homemade, chilled, iced tea is a lot like time blindness. Either it is “now”, made, cold, delicious, or it is “not now”, unmade, perpetually at least a few hours in the future. So I began a habit of making a batch every day, to replace the batch I was currently drinking. I was making an effort for “not now”, which, even though logically I know “I’ll be thirsty tomorrow” still seems like a funny thing to actually be doing.

This is a hurdle anyone with the “now” and “not now” brain filter must contend with daily. We all do things (or fail to do things) that benefit us down the line. The trick is finding out how to do it and do it more or less consistently. I have imagined the result in my mind (which is especially easy to do when I’m drinking iced tea made the day before) and that can provide motivation. Another way to overcome this challenge is to make contracts with yourself or others, or simply to make the action or habit a Rule, something you do, no matter what, because it’s 2:30PM on a Wednesday.

Time Blind Iced Tea

  • 8 cups boiling water
  • 2 tea bags, orange pekoe
  • 1/3 + 1 tbsp. (or to taste) white sugar
  • 1/3 + 1 tsp. (or to taste) lemon juice

  1. Steep tea bags in water 5-9 minutes, or to desired strength. Stir in sugar, ensure it has entirely dissolved. Stir in lemon juice. Remove tea bags.
  2. Cover with a cloth and allow to cool at room temperature until it reaches a temperature you find acceptable to place in the fridge. Chill overnight. Serve with a lemon wedge on the glass, if you’re feeling that.

What can you do now that will benefit your future self?