Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Long and Mostly Irrelevant

I am reading yet another book about Making ADD Go Away. This sort of book seems to be very popular. More stories of miraculous recoveries - all you have to do is refuse to believe that there is something wrong with you and center and ground yourself. Breathe properly. Correct your posture. The book is called Moving Beyond ADHD. I've also read "Stopping ADHD" (ADD is caused by a reflex and you must crawl and do exercises to cure it - I never did the exercises.) And I've read two books called "Healing ADD" (various ideas in each).

This latest book is interesting, and might even be somewhat useful, don't get me wrong. I'm always interested in this sort of thing, but not because I think it will cure my ADD. I'm always looking for tricks to improve my performance, especially since I'm not taking medication right now (still breastfeeding).

I think that some of the ideas from these books are useful, and some give people false hope. I spent years trying to find the Big Fix, and I never found it. But I funtion a lot better now than I used to, and even though I'm temporarily not on meds, I function better now than I did before I started taking meds. This is because of skills that I have picked up, mostly from coaching. Yes, coaches have coaches. Coaching works - so doesn't that make sense?

What else has helped?

  1. I have shifted my thoughtss from "what's wrong with me" - to "what's different". In coaching, you look at what is, and work from there. So by not allowing yourself to think in terms of what you "should" be able to do, you can get more done. This is because you aren't placing high expectations on yourself. You can actually get more done because you don't have all of that "should" crud holding you back.
  2. Nutrition. If I skip breakfast, eat junk food, or eat sugar, I will pay. It affects my mental functioning.
  3. Exercise. It increases circulation throughout the body, including the brain. Those SPECT brain scans that show areas of underfuctioning in the brain are showing areas of poor blood flow. It makes sense that moving around would help increase circulation in the brain. Not to mention, it helps to moderate the insulin response, so your efforts in nutrition will be boosted if you exercise
  4. Supplements.

But I still haven't found a cure. Maybe a "cure for everyone" is impossible because we are actually treating some personality traits as disease. Think of creativity and time-awareness as being linked. If you can picture that there is a 100% potential for someone to be creative, but that means that there will be NO time-awareness, 0% time-awareness, in other words (this is just a fake example), then a person could be 75% creative and 25% time-aware. The percentages would have to add up to 100% and to add to one would take away from the other. I tend to think that people's traits are linked to other traits in this way (keeping in mind that this is a fake example).

The reason I think this? My own personal experience with dyslexic symptoms. I have a friend, Ginger, who some of you know..... she's dyslexic. She likes to take everything she finds and turn it inside out, upside down, cut it up and put it back together a different way. This is the way she thinks. So you may understand that when she reads, the letters don't stay where they ought to. Her brain is still doing it's thing.

Well, when I spend a lot of time with her, her thinking patterns wear off on me and I start to actually see letters in the wrong order, and to transpose numbers I write. Strange, huh?

My point is that everyone can change the way they think. And maybe some people are "good" at one thing (back to my fake 75%/25% split again) that must correspond to something else that they are "bad" at. And if they can figure out how to be better at "time-awareness" they may find that they are less creative. Don't quote me because I'm no scientist. This is just what I suspect.

The more I read about personality types, the more I am convinced that at least sometimes, we are diagnosing personality traits as ADD. I think that all of the personality types have ADDers, but that some types are easily diagnosed as ADD, the ENFP being one of them. Some types are rare enough to fit into the percentages of ADD diagnosis without drastically affecting the estimates of how many people have ADD. You can read about personality types here:

It's important to figure out which part of you is you, and which part is AD/HD. Distinguish personality traits from symptoms.

At this point, this post has turned into a rant! It has no end in sight, so I'd better quit now.


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