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  • Mattia

Finch: ND-friendly self-care app (ADHD self care especially)

There are a lot of self-care apps out there to help people do the boring daily "maintenance tasks" that need to happen routinely. For me, ADHD means I never stick with them. After a few weeks or months when the novelty is gone, I just never go back to it.

For about 8 months, I've actually stuck with the Finch app! Honestly, I'm amazed. Especially since I do sometimes forget about it and then come back to it...

Here's what I love about it:

  • It's easy to get started with guided journeys of suggested tasks, so you don't have to make a bunch of decisions

  • Once you know what you want, the tasks are extremely customizable

  • The bird is so darn cute!

  • As you do tasks, you can buy items for your nest, and clothing for your bird, and it's kind of like a mini Sims game without being a total time sink

  • It's just fun enough that I want to look at it, but again not a time sink

  • If you know real-life people who use the app, you can send each other encouragement. If you don't, the app will automatically give you some

  • The built-in regulation exercises are pretty good imo

Why it's specifically ADHD self care for me:

I get so bored with taking care of my body day after day after day. Especially when it comes to some of the things that might be an unpleasant sensory experience.

Often I forget whether or not I've done something in a day. And most "tracking" systems get me super bummed out about seeing the days I missed. ADHD self care for me means making myself feel better, not bummed out!

It's really easy to see what core things I've done with this app (mine include things like "step outside once" and "change clothes" and "drink water"). If I've done them, it feels good. There's NO guilt if I miss them, and I like that it lets my bird go on an adventure every day.

Potential downsides:

  • If the tasks feel like demands, and if customization doesn't change that, this app is probably not for you (i.e. if you have very intense demand avoidance)

  • The free version of the app doesn't include all of the regulation exercises (you can apply for a one-month scholarship to the full version)

  • If you're going to feel guilty for forgetting about your birb...well... see the personification note below :)

If you strongly personify things, a couple of notes:

  • There are no penalties in the app for not showing up. I.e. your bird will not be "hungry" or "sad" that you're not there!

  • I was sad when my bird became "full grown" in the app. No idea why, but I was sad about it for a few days, and it almost made me quit the app!

  • On the positive side, my birb sending me encouraging messages almost feels as good as getting them from a real person.

Each month there's a theme that the daily items are based around. Here's the very random outfit my bird is wearing today:

Cartoon bird & tiny white fox. Text reads: Happy Wednesday! You've made it to the middle of the week with Zuby! Zuby rested after their last adventure and has something to tell you!
screenshot upon opening the Finch app

Personally I find these little interactions/conversations really cute, and occasionally they're quite heart-touching because they address an inner child wound of mine.

This one's neutral for me emotionally, just wanted to include a screenshot of the type of conversation you can have! There's also a "write your own response" option that I rarely use, but love to have as an option.

Screenshot from the Finch app of a conversation about a yo-yo
your bird asks you questions after an adventure

As always, different tools work for different people, so no worries if Finch doesn't work for your brain! Personally I've found it much more compelling than just a checklist-type thing.

Here are the links to download for Android and iPhone.


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