Have you ever been in the middle of a project where you are met with an obstacle at a crossroads? One direction, for most this would be the most efficient route, requires you to retrieve an item from another room in your home, whereas the other direction leaves you in the same room but requires you to manufacture something to solve your issue but way less efficiently, and you choose that route because you know if you leave the very room you’re in, you’ll encounter thousands of distractions and may never return to the original project. That is ADHD
Have you ever stood amongst a group of friends all chit chatting and you feel overwhelmed to the point you have to walk away because you can not keep up with all the discussions happening at once? Like you can not even pretend to listen to one and really listen to another because your brain is saying system overload? That is ADHD.
Have you ever gotten lost in a conversation you started because someone walked past, drove by, or because you remembered that time you were five at the lake with your family and grilled hotdogs? For no reason at all? Nothing triggered this memory?That is ADHD.
Have you ever been in the midst a conversation where someone says one word, let’s say school bus (yes I know technically two words) and from that one word, your brain trails off in its own format and reminds you of a movie you saw one time where a character used that word, and oh that kid in the movie was so cute, and then, I think I’d like to have kids one day, and then before you know it you’re blurting out, “I love kids!” And everyone around you looks puzzled? That is ADHD.
It’s a constant reminder of what you know you’re capable of, but someone keeps moving the finish line back further and further every time you get close. It causes depression, anxiety, self doubt, and when you’re younger it can be so misunderstood that it results in disciplinary action. The sad part is, many adults feel the same way as the kids they’re disciplining, but are still in denial and do not know how to manage their ADHD, let alone try and help a child with theirs.
I am one of the lucky few who happened to find a career that thrives with my ADHD. As long as I give myself certain requirements such as timers, client notes, and ask that those clients text rather than call so I have a way to refer back when need be, I am good to go. I have new challenges every day and that keeps my brain fresh. It also allows a start and finish with each individual project, the same day and only takes a few hours. Long drawn out tasks are zero fun for people with ADHD. More often than not, if given a task to do over several days, people with ADHD will start on, but will not seriously work on those tasks until the day it is due, but they’ll rock it out because we thrive with a good time crunch. All the while feeling like they’re definitely going to bomb this because they can’t get their thoughts in order ahead of time like the others in the office or classroom.
With so little understanding of mental health today, the “just get over it,” or “just do it” mentality is still ever present. Not only is this inaccurate and impossible, but it restrains the creative thinkers, the dreamers, the outside of the box people, from moving forward with possibly some of the most ingenuitive and progressive ideals the world needs right now. Studies have shown that there’s a link between impulse control and those with ADHD. This basically means that because of that lack of impulse control, those with ADHD have an ability to take more risks than those without, allowing them to push the limits and set new ones. Studies have also shown correlations between ADHD and the invention of new technologies and products. As the mind wanders, it’s also very probable it is envisioning new ways to do things as well! How cool is that? A wandering mind does not often signify indifference or boredom, although that may be how it feels to an individual without ADHD.
If you find yourself struggling or unable to cope with ADHD, remember, you’re on the cusp of genius. Without people like us in the world, it would be stagnant and bland. You bring excitement and newness everywhere you go. If you find yourself unable to cope with someone with ADHD, that’s okay. Do your research and gain perspective. Chances are they are harder on themselves than you could ever be on them. Grace and understanding solves almost all things!