Posted on March 11, 2014
I have a confession to make.
Ten days ago, I returned from our family vacation. And I’ve yet to unpack my filled suitcase, which is still sitting on my bedroom floor. Every morning when I wake up, I look at it and make a mental note that I really need to unpack that annoying thing. And every night when I hit the sack, I make a 2nd mental note that I really really need to deal with this.
It’s annoying because even with these daily/nightly reminders, I continue to procrastinate. Most without ADD don’t think twice about such a little inconvenience- they unpack the day or next day after a vacation. End of story. For those of us with ADD, it’s this constant hide and seek game we play- we know it’s there, know what needs to be done, but we avoid avoid avoid. “It’s boring”. “I’ll do it tomorrow.” Or..we’re so used to seeing it, it becomes part of the landscape of the room.
A suitcase is a metaphor of sorts for our ADD brain. We can keep it closed and no one can visibly see the tangled mess inside. If we’re trusting or alone, we open it to see the disorganization of our thinking processes and how it affects the world around us. Either way, the stuffed, disorganized suitcase is there and we know it. And we kick ourselves over it.
It’s not something people with ADD do on purpose- this pack ratting away of chores that need attending to. Our ADD brain makes it hard to deal with seemingly easy tasks because well, they aren’t easy at all! How do you transition from something you’re hyper focused on and enjoying, to doing something that’s painfully boring? Our poor sense of time makes the task seem like a 2-hour chore when in actuality, it probably would take only 10 minutes to take care of.
I know that at some point, I will get so annoyed with myself, that I will run in and remove everything from that box and put everything away. Once, it took over three months to get to that point of disgust. Ok, maybe six.
When you are faced with a chore or project that stops you dead in your tracks, whether it’s because it seems too difficult, too boring or too time-consuming, remind yourself: by putting in a mere 10 minutes, you will take away hours and hours of self-deprecation, obsessive thinking, and in cases like this, one heck of an eye-sore.
What’s in your “suitcase” that needs tending to? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.
** Do you need support and guidance in managing your own suitcase? Join the Queens of Distraction and let me and your fellow Queens help you get rid of clutter, finish projects and enjoy the camaraderie of those who truly “get” ADD.
Posted on March 06, 2014
People with ADHD tend to have a hard time regulating their emotions. For instance, they report going from zero to 100 in just several seconds, according to Roberto Olivardia, Ph.D, a clinical psychologist and clinical instructor in the department of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School.
“They report being emotionally hypersensitive, as long as they can remember.”
Their feelings also may be more intense. “[W]atching a sad movie can push them into an episode of depression or crying. A happy event can bring on almost a manic type of excitement,” said Terry Matlen, MSW, ACSW, a psychotherapist and ADHD coach.
Continue reading HERE
Posted on February 24, 2014
Ring. Ring. Most people accept that sound as a normal daily occurrence, pick up the phone and carry on a conversation with a friend, relative, doctor’s office or whatnot. The only time they get annoyed is if the phone rings during a meal or if there’s a robot on the other end asking you to hire him/her/it to clean your carpet.
Unlike some people who have a bad reaction to spoiled food, certain medications, relatives who annoy them or incessantly barking dogs, I get annoyed to the bone when the phone rings and worse, if that call is for me: I have an immediate adverse reaction. Not because I don’t love my family and friends, but because my ADD makes it hard to stay connected on the phone… and I get totally frustrated. You too?
It makes sense that this might be difficult if you have ADD. Here’s why:
- Hate to be interrupted when we are in hyper focus mode, having to stop whatever interesting activity we were doing before the phone rang.
- Hate to be interrupted when we’re not in hyper focus, having finally forced ourselves to get something done, like paying overdue bills. Getting de-railed by a phone call at times like that is like being thrown in front of a train.
- Abhor small talk. As we hear chit chat about this’n that, our brains are already miles ahead, waiting impatiently for the story to end to save us from all the details. Little do our callers know that we’re yessing and “mmmhmming” to disguise the fact that we’re thinking up an invention, planning a vacation or just floating away in our heads to somewhere much more interesting and exotic than a play by play of Aunt Gussie’s recent cataract operation.
- Interrupt out of fear of forgetting what we want to say. Then, we look rude. And feel bad.
- Can’t filter out extraneous sounds, like the cat’s belly growling from hunger. Or the faucet dripping two floors away, making it hard and frustrating to concentrate on the call. Of course, no one else can hear such things- only us.
- Struggle to hear the words on the other end when there are no visual cues (can’t see the mouth, so can’t hear the words). And God forbid if the poor soul has an accent. That, for me, anyway, makes it nearly impossible to stay connected.
How about you? Do your jaw muscles tense up when the phone rings? How do you manage when someone you care about calls? How do you stop yourself from mentally checking out?
Share your thoughts in the comment section below.