Is your child obsessed w/certain things yet doesn’t seem to be able to complete a simple task? Here in ADHD-land we call that “hyperfocus” (unless it’s OCD and then it’s a different matter). Snapping someone out hyperfocus is no easy task, and failing to do so is not just willful disobedience on their part. Allow time for the transition & go into the situation hanging onto your temper. 🙂
People in hyperfocus mode lose all sense of time and schedules – which is terribly frustrating if YOU are on a schedule. To prevent hyperfocus from occurring, it’s a good idea to discuss ahead of time when a particular activity must come to… an end and a new one is to begin. Use a timer. Sometimes, you will physicially need to place yourself between the person in hyperfocus and the thing they are “obsessed” with ie. TV, video game, computer. Offer up something else that they enjoy to help the transition or a reward of some kind if they are able to break the focus within a certain time frame.
On the flip side, hyperfocus can lead to some amazing achievements. In adults especially if there is good direction, hyperfocus can be time of intense creativity and production. The key is to learn how to control it to make it work for you.