March 23, 2011 at 1:17 am #89362
AnonymousInactiveMarch 23, 2011 at 1:17 amPost count: 14413
So, as most of you know, we ADDers, while highly creative, tend to do terribly when we’re forced to think out loud, at least in some situations. IIRC, the example in the book was of a seemingly brilliant college professor who gave a great prepared presentation and then bombed in the Q&A session afterwords when people asked questions that he didn’t have a prepared answer to.
I’ve found that this particular quirk makes us terrible liars. Additionally, we have a hard enough time keeping our everyday lives in order, how are we going to manage an intricate web of lies along with who is and isn’t in on the truth?
My solution to this has always been to just tell the truth, but now that I’m getting into the adult world more and more (I’m 25), I’m starting to find that this isn’t always doable. Employers are much less likely to hire someone who lives in another city, so I lie on my resume and use my grandmother’s address in the Washington, DC are when applying to jobs from there.
Today an employer who was maybe or maybe not from the DC area called and wanted to know where I was from and I didn’t have a clue what to tell them. So I bombed a really, really basic question, though I was eventually able to come up with a good enough excuse after I super-awkwardly asked them where they were located (DC). (told them that I was from where I’m really from and in the process of moving to DC, not entirely untrue).
So my question boils down to this: Do you have any advice for thinking on our feet in situations like this, especially when the pressure’s on? And some general advice about how to go about lying when absolutely necessary (bonus ethical quandary!)? Thanks.
For this particular situation, I’m going to tell future employers of unknown locale that I’m dividing my time between my hometown and the DC area, which is not entirely untrue.REPORT ABUSEMarch 23, 2011 at 1:31 am #102589
AnonymousInactiveMarch 23, 2011 at 1:31 amPost count: 14413
Cap’n…… I don’t want to get into morale ground here, it’s not my place but……..there’s this….telling the truth means you never have to try remember what you said.
toofatREPORT ABUSEMarch 23, 2011 at 2:25 am #102590
AnonymousInactiveMarch 23, 2011 at 2:25 amPost count: 14413
I know, this was covered in my post. I mentioned how it’s starting to become necessary to lie just a little if I ever want to get a job.REPORT ABUSEMarch 23, 2011 at 2:58 am #102591
AnonymousInactiveMarch 23, 2011 at 2:58 amPost count: 14413
Lying aside, does anyone have any advice for thinking on your feet. I’m like the college professor. I do well when I have something prepared, but I stammer and really look stupid when I need to speak off the cuff. even in ordinary conversation. In the areas that take organization, I’m beginning to do better, but this thing is ALWAYS ready to jump up and bite me.REPORT ABUSEMarch 23, 2011 at 4:08 am #102592
AnonymousInactiveMarch 23, 2011 at 4:08 amPost count: 14413
Hmmm……Cap A….maybe? I take it you don’t mean socially…this is in a business context??? My life before retirement was on the hot-seat driving the business (Competitive Policy) of a telecommunications firm in Canada. It was fun….but excessively and consistently hot!!!! Perfect for my ADD speedo brain…..
So here is how I managed in some of those grueling situations, and there were lots………..slow it down!!! S-l-o-w d-o-w-n the conversation…. to your speed……..take control. I found some people will try put you under the gun, rattle you….body language, verbage….even if they are not, and you find yourself stumbling and frenzied…….slow…… the….. conversation…. down to your speed. I found most of the really brilliant people I dealt with took time, and responded slowly….thinking about, and crafting their response(s).
There are tools to make pauses pregnant and slow things down…. and there is nothing wrong with that. Typical example is saying that you will need time to ponder their question….and will get back to them at a later date is cool to do. You can write down their question…that also gives you some time…study it for a minute, maybe make a note, say that out loud, it will give even more time……there are lots of ways to make time for yourself and relieve the pressure of the moment. Say their question back to them in your words, asking them for clarification, also fair ball…all are tools of conversation and negotiation. Easiest time grabber…sit back close your eyes,say give me a minuet, “I need to think on this”……take your time to respond. You don’t have to swing hard at every pitch…..
All of these seemingly simple tools will work…however, all of these tools need to be practiced, polished if you will, no different than playing piano, they are a skill. You can try them out in social settings where the consequences are not as dire. They will seem mechanical at first (again like first playing notes on a piano) but over time they will be more fluid more natural. You will be amazed…. what have you got to lose…try them out. They can actually become a very handy part of your repertoire of communication skills…not bad skills to have.
This might sound odd to you but….also….I talk to everybody…..the clerk in the store, the gas guy, the waiter, people standing in line. I don’t mean big stuff…. small talk…. chit chat….maybe fun stuff. It does many things, it keeps you sharp and comfortable talking off the top of your head, and it gets you service with a smile (nice plus)…. people in the service business will bend over backwards to service a nice friendly customer. It brightens my and their day…..they also will remember you next time. Lotsa advantages…… go on get out there and start yakin’. It’s fun!!! Maybe just start with your friends to get going???
Opps nearly forgot…..I have friends who did the Toastmasters thing and thought it did wonders for their conversational skills??? Just a thought…throwing it out there.
Yakity Yak……try talk back!!!!! Remember people are, or can be fun…….
toofatREPORT ABUSEMarch 23, 2011 at 10:57 am #102593
AnonymousInactiveMarch 23, 2011 at 10:57 amPost count: 14413
First, I commend you for bringing this particular issue to light. As a 48 yr old that has struggled and I mean struggled with ADD my whole life. Your questions of “thinking on your feet” and “lying” are dear to me As my disclaimer: I did not know I had ADD till about 3 years ago when I was diagnosed AND I DID NOT believe it. To be honest i did not even know what “it” was . I was not educated about it and only told I had it. It is only very recently upon knowledge gathering through a host of sources I have become aware that I let ADD control my life because of my ignorance as I was not educated about it. I own up to not only having ADD I need to gain control and manage it to be the best I can be for me and all those I touch directly or indirectly in all facets of my life.
Look at you Capt, you have come forth with an issue that all persons come across everyday. And you are sharing as an ADD’er where this everyday event can become a major issue no STRUGGLE because how your brain is wired (mine too). Speaking from experience “Do not lie”! And I can see in your post by the example you do not want to. However if you do spend time with family and stay with them sure why not say you live there if you do occasionally! If your applicant asks if that is your primary residence IKES tell them the truth Ex: No, However I stay there often as I need to keep my business options open and contacts close to me that is why I spend so much time there and offered the references i did blah blah blah… Many people have multiple places of residence today. But if you do not have family there and do not even know where Washington DC is, do not lie.
I agree with toofat also. Socially, you need to put it all on the table and the examples described by TF is exactly what I used to do without even knowing it. It worked well, I felt good, It allowed the good person in me out and it allowed for great personal growth. But remember you have ADD and it must be continually managed… and in my honest learned opinion you must MANAGE it. It is more than just OK for others to support you and you to lean on others for help. Just remember you are the boss of you… There are many outside influences some even close to you in the world today that can draw you into places that can satisfy your immediate needs and quenches of being an ADDer but you must think beyond. Sure that is easy for me to say that now but it is the truth IMHO as an ADD’er. Again I see that you had an immediate need for a job but is Maryland the right place for you? Do you really have a place to live, do you have the contacts or education that the job requires etc.? Why did you apply for a job there in the first place, do you have a long lost acquaintance that lives there? Why not move there and make that your primary residence? Those are questions only for you to know and answer… blah blah blah
I have similar impulsiveness behaviors as Toofat and maybe as you Capt. That is why I am going the med route in conjunction with the holistic approach. It is a decision based upon knowledge gathering which took time and patience to obtain. I had to reach down deep with great difficulty to get educated, (I can hardly sit still and read anything due to the constant distraction and fuzziness in my head). If not for many circumstances I may not even be going this route. I was trained from a young age all mental health issues can be fixed just by doing physical work, all psyche medications are bad for you and keep all your inner problems inside….Wrong!…all that was said out of either lack of knowledge or for ulterior motives …. First how can I work if the instructions I am supposed use to work I cannot even remember what I read because of my clouded brain that suppresses me from learning how to do something. Or I blurt out incorrect or incomplete answers instead of being able to sit still in a class to learn something. How come I gaze into space or outside because I need to wander and dream excessively….
To live life to the fullest I think a plan that can be continually tuned up is needed. It may not need to be a perfect plan and it should allow room for exploration but you should have many many contingencies in place as life is not perfect and for an ADDer it can be even a little more difficult BUT the rewards can be magical!
Best of luck Capt and great advice and suggestions “TF”.REPORT ABUSEMarch 23, 2011 at 3:43 pm #102594
AnonymousInactiveMarch 23, 2011 at 3:43 pmPost count: 14413
Ha…..thanks NJ and I agree completely. If I might add….we have a wonderful gift in the ADD brain….but with that comes some obstacles or hurdles…..life is not perfect. It seems, as you say, it is important to manage the hurdles, and, it takes practice and time to develop those skills, any skills actually. Very few folks are naturals. It seems the gifts have wings of their own and can just fly. Give that speedy brain purpose and direction and watch out!!!!!
Magical rewards……yes, for sure. Just as encouragement for you……I can hold a conversation with anybody comfortably, about damn near anything Cap’n. Public speaking to large crowds…..is fun. Taking questions off the floor is a gas……..these things are learned skills, practiced though. Hahahaha not without error I might add. One of biggest hurdles is to try…….step out and try. First you must try, it’s only fear and fear can be conquered..
Having said that……educating oneself, getting some tools in the tool box…..”how to” stuff is critical, it helps to seriously reduce the fear or anxiety. The more you know the better chances of success…and there are many ways to gather tools and confidence.
I checked, there are many sites on line that speak to these issues and give you free information. As I mentioned previously there are probably many outlets near you that have short course in speaking and negotiating……all good tools. Your Community College might be a good place to start looking.
Get out there……don’t procrastinate.
toofatREPORT ABUSEMarch 23, 2011 at 3:55 pm #102595
HansMemberMarch 23, 2011 at 3:55 pmPost count: 51
Amen- My mind surfed to fast also. Being impulsive and a hyper processor I blurted my truth also. Not always good to do this at work. It placed a large target on my back.
Upper management loved me because I was so smart and hated me because I was so smart. I did not fit the corporate mold and was unpredictable.. I spent several years implementing data processing proceedures /organizing corporations and fixing job/employee responsibilities.
When I did this I would only report to the CEO/president. My moto-“I can only have four of the five directors mad at me at one time.
I was effective-but once finished-out of work..
.REPORT ABUSEMarch 23, 2011 at 5:35 pm #102596
AnonymousInactiveMarch 23, 2011 at 5:35 pmPost count: 14413
Hahahahaha…..Hans, had to laugh sorry. Yes we seem to have traveled similar roads in some ways. The ADD mind (to me) is a great tool. I love it and would not have it any other way….we seem to see the future with clarity ….and the best path to get there. We are fantastic at out of the box solutions…..we are quite often sharp witted and cleaver, and speak (right or wrong) in very direct terms. All that is great….but…….sadly…it is also very intimidating for many of the linear/compartmentalized people, or so my experience tells me. Isn’t that one of the pitfalls for us???
Sure Hans, to build on your CEO comment….. how many people in a large corporations do the President and Executive know by name, personally? I would guess, probably their ADD futurist, and maybe a few others…..but we are up there…..always. My god…this is so funny. I found that as I progressed through the company, my job description didn’t matter much…it actually didn’t ever say much, no matter what department I was hired into next. My function was always similar….figure out how to change the department or the corporation, it could be anything from process(s), to overall corporate business direction …..and…. how to implement it.
Hahahah, (I’m still giggling) your right….once a project was completed……they seemed to put me back in the closet until the next huge impossible problem came along. I know as I read this, it sounds egotistical, but, that was my experience, time, and time again. Being put in the closet usually meant I should look for another position, in another department before I became stale and lost value. That was the trick….maximizing or capitalizing on my present value and keep moving from success to success. Left to languish, I was a problem. Why…..well I could always see the broken bits no matter where I went….people don’t want to hear what they are doing or how they are running a branch is screwed up…..really badly. It is hard on their ego and intellect!! God I could go on but…my self indulgence must be held in check.
Except for this bit…..
My experience is these traits even extend socially. I make people laugh, often ( as many of us seem to do)…..just because I’ll say say things that everybody else was maybe thinking but….hmmmmm….thought maybe they should keep to themselves. It’s just I’ll verbalize it, no problem!!! My friends expect it from me. I have a great sense of humor but sometimes it’s over the top….tough shit!!! I don’t get stumped, I seem to be able to converse and respond without effort…..the gift of ADD. I really think it’s the best of options. I know….I know… some struggle and struggle hard…. I feel that here. That is why I visit so often and share as much as I can…maybe too much??? I can’t help but think if those in the struggle can find what ever key it is that will allow them to harness the high-horse power brain….the sky is the limit.
Naive maybe hmmm…. I don’t know…….an eternal optimist maybe….that I can live with.
toofatREPORT ABUSEMarch 23, 2011 at 6:56 pm #102597
munchkinMemberMarch 23, 2011 at 6:56 pmPost count: 285
Two things about thinking on my feet… FIRST – I overprepare, and keep a cheat sheet if it’s something really important like getting a job. I use my “over-focusy” brain to do some contingency planning, and write down what I’ll say in each situation, and keep that with me at all times in a folder with my resume, etc. Then I can breathe a sigh of relief and quit tensing up and furrowing my brow as I try to repeat the facts to myself over and over so I don’t forget. Once I know I have a strategy for remembering, I feel a lot happier, and my relaxed state actually helps me to think better on my feet. SECOND – I get over the fact that I’m going to screw up, and have a sense of humor about it. For me, part of thinking on my feet is blurting out the wrong thing and then recovering beautifully from it, and laughing with them instead of feeling laughed at. This is what I TRY to do because the other people aren’t perfect either, and they are going to have to accept me for who I am if they want the benefits of my talents – and I am willing to do the same for them. I’ve had it with trying to keep this silly secret and make everyone think I’m actually a super organized freak. (Although I still try to improve on my disorganization as much as possible – but not beat myself up too bad)REPORT ABUSEMarch 23, 2011 at 8:22 pm #102598
AnonymousInactiveMarch 23, 2011 at 8:22 pmPost count: 14413
Great tips Munch….REPORT ABUSEMarch 23, 2011 at 8:41 pm #102599
AnonymousInactiveMarch 23, 2011 at 8:41 pmPost count: 14413
Here are my two pennies,
Thinking on your feet is something that takes a little practice and there is one simple simple tip that everyone for gets…….Silent Pause……..I bet right now your thinking “what the hell does he mean by silent pause”. Well when your trying to come up with an answer do a SILENT pause. Most people us “um” or “like” when ever they are thinking and the thing is you never even know you do it. The silent pause says “yes I am thinking but I know the answer” where as saying um over and over just immediatley makes you sound out of place. Watch episodes of American Chopper and listen to Senior speak he constantly says um and no matter what he is talking about it sounds like he is making it up. Getting this down takes some practice and once it is mastered then when thinking on your feet you naturally stop pause silently and come up with an answer, true or not. Of course pausing when ever asked where you live or your name is a bad idea due to the fact that it should be so ingrained you dont even have to think.
As for lying dont if your applying for jobs in DC say your grandmother lives there and you can be in the city within the week if need be. People understand that you may need to move what they are trying to avoid is the person that wants them to pay for it.
I lied (spelling?) alot when I was younger and I mean a lot. It was due to the fact that I hated everything about myself. It got to the point that I didnt know if I was telling the truth or lying and no one around me ever trusted me with anything. It lead to so many issues I cant even tell you and it all started with one simple little lie. Yes your going to have to tell your wife she looks good when she doesnt or “no mom I was trying to stop a cramp.” But when it comes to who you are or what you know lying is a horrible idea because it will come back to haunt you every single time.REPORT ABUSEMarch 23, 2011 at 10:44 pm #102600
AnonymousInactiveMarch 23, 2011 at 10:44 pmPost count: 14413
I think lying and exaggerating became the norm for me due to my all ways trying to make up for not doing what I was supposed to do. Also I think because of never feeling like I fit in, having two left feet and all around being useless at most things that required any kind of coordination, caused me to all ways be making excuses and making up reasons when I really had no idea why I was the way I was. Speaking of excuses, I ran out of them for being late, so if anyone has any spares they could pass along.
JohnREPORT ABUSEMarch 24, 2011 at 2:18 am #102601
munchkinMemberMarch 24, 2011 at 2:18 amPost count: 285
I really got into this thing about how “I can’t lie” too. I rarely do – except joking lies that won’t matter if I screw them up. I have had really bad humiliation occasionally because of my poor lying skills. Still – I have a job where there is a lot of confidentiality, and you have to remember who is allowed to know what – which is kind of along the same lines as remembering who you told which lie to… I love my job, but there are really bad consequences of screwing up with confidentiality. Sometimes I think this is what could lose me the job if I don’t watch out. Still – I can’t give up, because there is a crisis, problem solving part of the job that is so perfect for me. So, I’m not going to say “I can’t” to anything. I keep trying to figure out what I did on the days when I forgot really important stuff – and usually I can point to how I had stopped using my tricks and systems, and didn’t take good care of myself, like staying up late, eating terrible food, etc. Then it helps my see why I need to stay on top of that stuff if I want to keep progressing.
Maybe if it’s really important to be able to lie – like in negotiating situations and such – you could practice with non-eventful lies. That way if you mess them up, you’ll just get a laugh out of it. Also, you could test out what is going on when you are less or more able to pull them off. Plus- to build confidence – see that you can pull it off to some extent…REPORT ABUSEMarch 24, 2011 at 3:40 am #102602
AnonymousInactiveMarch 24, 2011 at 3:40 amPost count: 14413
Lots of great advice in here. Thanks, everyone!
I ended up sending the employer a followup email thanking them for considering me, saying that I was excited about this possibility, and “clarified” that I’ve been dividing my time between DC and NC since I got back to the mainland, which isn’t totally untrue.REPORT ABUSE
ADD and Lying2011-03-23T01:17:20+00:00
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