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Re: ADD assessment in Ottawa

Re: ADD assessment in Ottawa2010-08-04T16:52:34+00:00

The Forums Forums Ask The Community ADD assessment in Ottawa Re: ADD assessment in Ottawa


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To be honest, I don’t know what specific learning disability I was diagnosed with. I was in the 6th grade, so around 10 or 11 years old at the time of the diagnosis. I was young but I always assumed I was diagnosed with ADD, apparently not. I’ve always been easily distracted, but throughout most of elementary and Junior high, I was an above average student, I worked hard because I wanted to suceed and I luckily had a mother who was always there to help me. BUT, she didn’t do the work for me, she encouraged me and was often around to keep me on track. I started to have difficulty in high school. I was taking a lot of University level sciences and maths and made the honour roll twice in 10th and 11th grade, just barely though. In 12th grade, I couldn’t handle the workload anymore and drop out of one of my maths classes as I couldn’t keep up. I stayed away from medication all this time, fearing the side effects. I remember there being a critical article about ritalin posted on a cork board in one of the student special needs class rooms. I’m not afraid to try medication anymore, but I’m still cautious about it. I’m tired of not achieving what I want to achieve. So I want to see if it will help; Provided of course I’m actually diagnosed with ADD.

I’ve always been a hard worker, but I’ve always had to struggle to get anything done: if there’s a window nearby I often start daydreaming. Now I’m studying traditional animation in college, a job that requires me to sit on a chair for many hours and draw (or work at a computer). It’s INCREDIBLY rewarding when I get something done, but it’s rarely happened as of late, so I have low confidence and the hours just tick away while I barely get anything done. Switching from one task to another is difficult. I have a big issue with procrastination; Often telling myself to just start doing the work but I allow myself to get distrated by the computer, it’s easier and naturally more stimulating (youtube, digg, reddit and wikipedia are the bane of productivity if you’re not careful). It’s also infuriating. Once I start to work on something, I feel relieved but I have a hard time maintaining momentum with the work and get easily distracted.

I work for maybe twenty minutes and then lose focus and get out of my chair to move around, or I’ll hear a conversation in the classroom and my focus will drift to what they’re talking about, or someone’s headphones are playing too loudly and I start wondering what the song is that he/she is listening too. It’s incredibly frustrating.

In certain situations, I find that listening to music helps me focus, but this is useful only during a form of physical activity that doesn’t require too much “thinking”. For example, if I’m trying to tidy up my room, I’ll put headphones on to eliminate any other distractions while I move around the room. But if’ I’m working on a a piece of animation, which requires me to thinking intensely on what a characters is doing (where’s the arm going to go, what’s he feeling, what’s his expression changing too….) music just distracts me. UNLESS it’s music that doesn’t have spoken words. So I enjoy listening to movie or game soundtracks if it’s not to bombastic, or jazz like Oscar Peterson. Mellow music that’s pleasant but doesn’t dominate my attention. It’s all very trial and error.

I recently came acros a time management technique that has a lot of promise for me, but I just need to develop the habit of using it (another thing that I find difficult to accomplish :) ). It’s called the Pomodoro technique, and depending on the task you’re working on, I think it can help. http://www.pomodorotechnique.com/ I also have a hard time with organization. I’ll clean my room, throw out uneeded bills and put DVDs back in my library when I let them pill up on the desk instead of putting them away right away when I’m done with them.

wow, talk about hyperfocus :P


I suppose I should add that while I was energetic as a kid, I was not hyperactive as far as I could tell. cheeful and excitable, yes, which got me picked on by other kids unfortunately. I was never mean spirited.

Another note about procrastination. I’m entering the final year of the program I’m studying, where we produce a short independant animated film (roughly 2 minutes in length). During the summer, we are expected to send 2 to 3 story ideas to our teachers for them to approve. The further along in development, the better for your preparation. I haven’t sent anything to my teachers yet, even though I think about it every day. It makes me feel like I’m lazy. I want to succeed at this but I always feel overwhelmed, nervous, or I’m busy trying to get some Gen Eds out of the way, or I’m at work. I might very well not succeed next semester. BUT I’m trying very hard to not despair. I know that I can do it, I just need help with my focus, hopefully in time that will come.