Written by John J. Ratey, M.D.
Impaired executive functions in the frontal lobes, in particular erratic working memory and a faulty attention system, contribute to procrastination. Working memory can be likened to the RAM of a computer. Without sufficient RAM, the brain moves on to the next issue or stimuli, completely wiping clean what was being considered before.
Despite the awareness of the importance of getting started, the ability to procrastinate is often intertwined with the sometimes amazing ability of people with ADHD to forget, suppress, and repress their desired goals and “get busy” with some other activity, regardless of how meaningless it might be.
Trapped in the moment, the person forgets even painfully catastrophic consequences paid in the past for their avoidance and procrastination. The double-edged sword of procrastination for persons with ADHD is that so often they are able to “pull it off at the nth hour.”
By activating cortisol, the body’s stress response and stress hormone, dopamine, the primary neurotransmitter of the attention system, is released. This serves to correct the lethargic attention system and “turn on” the frontal cortex, which improves RAM and all other executive functions., The person then is able to become focused and sustain the effort and attention to start and complete tasks. This is why individuals with ADHD develop the false believe that they will always be able to “pull it off.” This works well until the complexity of their demands increases, and then they begin to fail.
Article from ADDitudemag.com. Found here.
The textbook symptoms of ADD — inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsivity — fail to reflect several of its most powerful characteristics; the ones that shape your perceptions, emotions, and motivation. Here, Dr. William Dodson explains how to recognize and manage ADHD’s true defining features.
The DSM-V – the bible of psychiatric diagnosis – lists 18 diagnostic criteria for attention deficit disorder (ADHD or ADD). Clinicians use this to identify symptoms, insurance companies use it to determine coverage, and researchers use it to determine areas of worthwhile study. The problem: These criteria only describe how ADHD affects children ages 6-12, and that has led to misdiagnosis, misunderstanding, and failed treatment for teens, adults, and the elderly. Most people, clinicians included, have only a vague understanding of what ADHD means. They assume it equates to hyperactivity and poor focus, mostly in children. They are wrong. When we step back and ask, “What does everyone with ADHD have in common, that people without ADHD don’t experience?” a different set of symptoms take shape. From this perspective, three defining features of ADHD emerge that explain every aspect of the condition:
1. an interest-based nervous system
2. emotional hyperarousal
3. rejection sensitivity
Click here to read original article from ADDitude.com!
We asked, “You know you have ADHD when…” and you shared these funny, sad, and poignant ADHDisms. Read. Share. Enjoy. Here’s to living well with — and finding humor in — attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)!
1. You can’t find your car keys or your spare set, and your husband is hesitant to lend you his keys because you will probably misplace those, too. (And, you agree, he may be right!)
—Kathy Zimovan, South Carolina
2. You can’t see your alarm clock on the nightstand because of the stack of books you’re reading — all at the same time.
—Stan Herring, Birmingham, Alabama
3. You buy another organizing system, to organize your last five organizing systems.
—Letta Neely, Boston, Massachusetts
Research shows that physical activity — even a little foot-tapping or gum chewing — increases levels of the neurotransmitters in the brain that control focus and attention. Learn how a subtle fidget may help block out distractions, fight boredom, and increase productivity.
Dealing with Rejection Sensitive Dysphoria (RSD) and ADHD
Tuesday, November 28 2017 Noelle Matteson. Original article found here: https://www.healthyplace.com/blogs/livingwithadultadhd/2017/11/adhd-and-rejection-sensitive-dysphoria
Psychiatrist William Dodson developed a term specifically applicable to people with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD): rejection sensitive dysphoria (RSD). Rejection sensitive dysphoria applies to people with ADHD because ADHDers tend to be particularly sensitive. While the existence of RSD is up for debate, the emotionality of ADHDers is not. Many with the disorder agree that they are extremely sensitive to rejection, criticism, and failure.
Mindful Awareness: How to Combat ADHD Symptoms with Meditation [article]
Article found at: https://www.additudemag.com/mindfulness-meditation-for-adhd/
For many adults and children with ADHD, two persistent daily challenges are paying attention and maintaining self-regulation. So it stands to reason that some kind of attention training that also hones self-control would be invaluable — and incredibly powerful.
Well, it turns out one such treatment strategy has been around for thousands of years, and it’s a hot research topic at the UCLA Mindful Awareness Research Center (MARC). ADDitude’s Carl Sherman, Ph.D., spoke with psychiatrist Lidia Zylowska, M.D., who heads the center’s ADHD program.
*Article from www.additudemag.com*
Children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) do better when they know what to expect — and what’s expected of them. This is especially true of younger children, who are quick to shout, “I’m bored” if there isn’t something going on every second. So, what can a parent do to make sure their kids’ and pre-teens’ days are filled with structure and fun activities this summer?
Experts agree that it’s important to exercise a child’s body and mind. “Children can lose a lot of what they’ve worked so hard to gain during the school year,” says Jane Hannah, Ed.D., author of Parenting a Child with Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder. Plan some regular activities to give them a boost. Decide whether you and your child can do them on your own or whether he would benefit from a tutor, a specialized camp, or a workshop. Reinforce academic accomplishments with fun rewards — bowling, visiting the playground, swimming.
Parents’ Best Boredom-Beating, Brain-Boosting Summertime Tips:
Create summer routines and schedules. Don’t wait for your child to ask for direction. Post a weekly schedule of planned activities, along with blocks marked out for free time. As new ideas occur, fill in the free-time blocks. List everything — from casual, open-ended activities, like reading or time on the computer, to structured ones, like cooking projects.
ADHD Is Different for Women [article]
Article found at: https://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2013/04/adhd-is-different-for-women/381158/
When you live in total squalor—cookies in your pants drawer, pants in your cookies drawer, and nickels, dresses, old New Yorkers, and apple seeds in your bed—it’s hard to know where to look when you lose your keys. The other day, after two weeks of fruitless searching, I found my keys in the refrigerator on top of the roasted garlic hummus. I can’t say I was surprised. I was surprised when my psychiatrist diagnosed me with ADHD two years ago, when I was a junior at Yale.
In editorials and in waiting rooms, concerns of too-liberal diagnoses and over-medication dominate our discussions of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD. The New York Times recently reported, with great alarm, the findings of a new Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study: 11 percent of school-age children have received an ADHD diagnosis, a 16 percent increase since 2007. And rising diagnoses mean rising treatments—drugs like Adderall and Ritalin are more accessible than ever, whether prescribed by a physician or purchased in a library. The consequences of misuse and abuse of these drugs are dangerous, sometimes fatal.
Uncomfortable Truths About the ADHD Nervous System [from www.additudemag.com]
Easily bored, sensitive to distractions, creative and intense. If you grew up with ADHD, chances are you always felt “different.” Now here’s a scientific explanation, finally, of why we act the way we do.
What I have come to understand — something that people with ADHD know from an early age — is that, if you have an ADHD nervous system, you might as well have been born on a different planet.
Most people with ADHD have always known they are different. They were told by parents, teachers, employers, spouses, and friends that they did not fit the common mold and that they had better shape up in a hurry if they wanted to make something of themselves.
As if they were immigrants, they were told to assimilate into the dominant culture and become like everyone else. Unfortunately, no one told them how to do this. No one revealed the bigger secret: It couldn’t be done, no matter how hard they tried. The only outcome would be failure, made worse by the accusation that they will never succeed because ADHD in adults means they don’t try hard enough or long enough.
It is very common for those of us with ADHD to be introverts; completely capable of entertaining ourselves and thoroughly enjoying alone time. We have the innate ability to hyper-focus, and we are easily distracted – two characteristics that can make it hard to live in a world where extroversion is valued.
Original article found here.
Why Social Situations Exhaust Introverts: A Programmer’s Take – by Erik Dietrich
I’m going to apologize in advance if this winds up being a long post, but it’s a topic that requires a great deal of introspection and I find that attempting to explain myself is one of the hardest things to abbreviate. Over the years, I’ve read a bit about the topic of introversion versus extroversion and, being in an industry in which introversion is often assumed, I’ve also seen a number of memes about it. This one is probably my favorite, if for no other reason than seeing the poor introvert hissing like a cat at some invasive extrovert.