Let’s be honest. Since ADHD is still not well understood by neuroscience, what you and I ‘know’ about ADHD probably contains some erroneous assumptions, outdated clichés, and a few gaps. Possibly some major gaps.
I am going to suggest that there are some potential benefits to having ADHD. Symptoms that can be impairing in some situations can work for me in other situations. However, before we dive into this…A Caveat. A Clarification. A Disclaimer.
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder is not a gift.
Many adults who have ADHD, myself included, don’t feel we worry too much or are highly sensitive, anxious, moody, mercurial, easily upset, or quick to anger. We don’t feel that our emotions are a problem.
But talk to our friends and family. Hear what they say. (Awkward clearing of throat.)
I read this quote by Sydney Harris: “When I hear somebody sigh “Life is hard” I am always tempted to ask “Compared to what?”. Compared to what. That is very profound and deep… or possibly it’s glib and dismissive I still haven’t decided.
“Everyone is ADHD. It’s the internet and smart phones.”
“These days everyone is ADD.”
“Yeah, everyone thinks they have it.”
Uh… No! Sorry, friend, but the whole world is NOT suddenly suffering from Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder.
A question for anyone with ADHD: Do you really hate when things change? Are you like me, emotionally sensitive? Oversensitive? Prone to overreact? Outbursts of panic or anger? Once you finally figure something out, are you hugely upset when it gets changed, discontinued, or is only available in the New & Improved version?
Mastering ADHD challenges is an ongoing project. Always improving. Never perfect. My success requires an arsenal of mutually supporting tools. However when one strategy stopped working well for me, I would ‘try harder.’ And we know how that works…