By Rick Green,
[The founder of TotallyADD, creator of the PBS documentary ADD & Loving It?!, and an adult who used to suffer from ADHD, but now just has it.]
The other day, driving to the dentist, I almost had a serious car accident. (So, a typical day for me.)
Although I had checked my mirrors twice, a large SUV had somehow materialized in my blind spot. Normally, our car’s mirrors are perfectly angled so that there is no blind spots for the driver.
The problem comes from having one car. Which we both drive. Naturally my wife and I adjust the position of the drivers seat. So I hopped in, felt scrunched up, and slid the seat back 3 inches to where I like it, and drove off. Forgetting to adjust the mirrors which had been angled for my wife.
Blind spots around a car can lead to obvious disaster.
And yet our own blind spots around our beliefs, our ideas, and how we deal with the world are just as dangerous. And unlike a car with power mirrors, there is rarely a simple adjustment to eliminate a personal blind spot. We have no idea what our blind spots are. “What blind spots?” you may ask, to which I reply, “See!”
This is why we created a lively full-length video about the value of having a Certified ADHD Coach and gave it away free on our YouTube channel. It features coaches, psychologists, and psychiatrists addressing every concern I, and most folks have, about coaching.
Yes ADHD medication, mindful meditation, exercise, and dozens of simple ADHD strategies can help with focus, motivation, and self-esteem. But our blind spots will still trip us up.
Our beliefs about ourselves and the world limit us in ways we can rarely see. Now and then you may have had an epiphany and realized something about yourself. And when you told others about your incredible insight, they may have shrugged, “Yeah, we all knew that. It was kind of obvious.”
Blind spots are insidious. It doesn’t matter who you are, if the world doesn’t see your strengths and abilities, they are useless. For example, if you’re an honest person, but people think you’re not, you’ll wonder why you never get hired, promoted, or included in activities.
It can be easy to see other people’s blind spots. We shake our heads and think, “She worries far too much.” Or, “He doesn’t get how overbearing he is.” Or, “She needs to acknowledge other people and stop hogging the limelight.”
And don’t get me wrong, those assessments are often pretty accurate. Most people would agree with that, “She worries too much. And it’s wearing to be around. She’ll never succeed unless she just goes for it.”
We can clearly see what others cannot. And yet, somehow we assume that we don’t have blind spots. Or that they may be obvious to someone else. Maybe everyone else.
Three Benefits of Having a Coach
Quickly spotting blind spots is one of three big benefits I’ve gotten from having a certified coach: seeing what I cannot see, sensing where I’m working against myself, sabotaging myself with beliefs and assumptions that I’m certain are real, true limitations.
The Second Benefit?
A coach clarifies my thinking. Which is crucial because with ADHD I have thousands of thoughts every day. Or every a minute-and-a-half. My coach works with me to clarify what it is I want, what really matters out of the 100,000 possible things I could, should, and would be doing. Prioritizing. And then setting goals that are achievable, and laying out the path to get there. All by asking questions. And listening carefully to my answers.
The Third Benefit of a Certified Coach?
He keeps me on track. Not as a task master, but as a second set of eyes, seeing from a boarder perspective, catching what I may have missed. And then helping me to identify where it is that I stray from the plan, why I stray, and what to do about it.
Sometimes straying is good. Mostly it’s not. My coach doesn’t keep me on track. He helps me identify where I get derailed, how to get back on track, and what I might do or add to prevent it from happening again and again.
A coach is VERY different from a doctor or therapist. They are results oriented. They help you get where you want to go.
Which is why a coach in any sport can work with dozens of different athletes and help each of them. The best basketball coach isn’t as good as any of his players. But he sees what they cannot.
This is why the best athletes in the world all have coaches. And why they can soar with the right coach, or struggle if it’s a bad match.
It’s not just athletes. The best singers have vocal coaches. The top actors have acting coaches. The top entrepreneurs have business coaches.
If you’ve never worked with a coach, try it. It’s not forever. A coach will work with you in any way you want, for as long as you want, focussing on a project, or achieving a particular goal. Our video explains all the ways it can work.
“What about the cost?”
That was my biggest concern. Until I realized that one goal to set with my coach was that the coaching more than paid for themselves by increasing my productivity, eliminating wasted time, and boosting my income.
By the way, there are coaches out there who can focus not just on ADHD, but on parenting, students, business people, and so on.
Each with a different speciality and interest. And each with an ability to spot the blind spots and the opportunities, that you cannot see.
Rather than being sidelined by an accident they can get you into the fast lane, so you arrive wherever it is that you want to go.
In in our video ADHD & Coaching: You Don’t Have to Go It Alone (Now Free On YouTube) it’s actually the doctors who most recommend coaching.
As Dr. Derryck Smith says, “Our patients could learn the strategies themselves, but why go through 20 years of struggle when they can hire a coach who can help them get their in a 3 or 4 months.
That made sense to me when he said it, and now, having worked with a coach, I totally get it.