“I can’t stop blurting out things. I’m such a loser”
“Why can’t I get started on that project for work? The boss will realize I’m not competent and will fire me”
“I can’t have people over- my house is a total wreck. What is wrong with me??”
I talk to women with ADD every day that have negative tapes playing in their head- sometimes 24/7- who feel like complete failures because they can’t keep up with the rest of the world, or because they make ADD faux pas, and more. They begin to identify themselves as people who can’t measure up, period. They accept the negativity some people throw at them, mainly friends, relatives, bosses and co-workers who have no clue about ADD- and they begin to believe what they hear.
Does that sound like you?
After years and years of living with (usually untreated) ADD, this can certainly take a toll on you until you get to the point of not even wanting to socialize, make new friends, or even attempt to get a job better suited to your abilities- hey, it’s much safer to hide behind the Wall of Shame and avoid anything that might hurt your already battered self-esteem.
Don’t give up hope.
8 ways to stop tormenting yourself with negative self-talk
- Realize and accept that ADD is a medical condition, not a character flaw. Accept who you are instead of rejecting that part of yourself, which is biologically based.
- Rejecting your ADD challenges is rejecting you. You may not be able to get rid of all of them, but you surely can learn new strategies and get help from a professional who understands how your ADD impacts you.
- Instead of clobbering yourself over the head over every ADD -related challenge, recognize your own uniqueness in a positive way. Move immediately into a mental image of what you do well instead of obsessing over what trips you up.
- Honor your differences. Do you really want to be like everyone else?
- Hang out with people who accept and support you.
- Stop trying so hard to fit in. Our finest thinkers, artists, musicians stand out; they don’t blend in
- Instead of being critical of yourself, spend time on strategizing solutions. Problems with being late to work? Break your mornings down into 15 minute increments- write each step- and follow them every morning.
- Listen to the criticism of others as an opportunity to explore change and solutions and self-discovery. Use criticism as a doorway towards something positive instead of negative. If there’s a pattern, maybe it’s time to get professional help. Often, an ADD coach is just the ticket you need to learn new strategies for areas of challenge.
Are you ready to make the move from negative to positive? What do you plan to change about yourself right now?
Share your thoughts in the Comment section below.
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