Thriving with ADHD


Motivating the ADHD Brain

On our podcast episode with Jesse J. Anderson recently, I shared a little about how my ADHD shows up in my day-to-day life (and how it has since I was young). 

One of the things I spoke about was my tendency to essentially put things off until they were an absolute must eg: when I was in uni, I would have two full weeks off to study for my exams, but I would cram that study into 2 days before the exams. In the ADHD world, this is essentially referred to as “Time Blindness”. 

I went through my university degree without really knowing how my ADHD brain worked. I spent YEARS trying to essentially fit myself into this “neurotypical box” of ‘what I should be doing’ and what being a good student looked like (studying every day in that 2-week break for my exams because everyone else was!) But no matter how hard I tried it just didn’t work and ultimately I would just end up falling back into this pattern of cramming.

What I learnt down the track was that when things became URGENT for me, my productivity and kicked into overdrive. I was hyper-focused, I was retaining what I was doing and the motivation was there. So I started to lean into this and have confidence in myself that I knew this is how I operated best to get the desired outcome. This was a massive “aha” moment for me. 

So what did I start to do differently? 

I began to use that two-week study break differently. I spent 1.5 weeks resting, going to the beach, catching up with friends, exercising, getting my study space set up, cleaning it, and getting my books organised. And then… BAM. 2 days before the exams I was ready to go, the urgency was there and I studied like my life depended on it. And I smashed the exams! 

By the way… If you’re in school or uni currently, I am not suggesting this is something that you should personally do. Because what works for me may not work for you! What even works for me one week or month may not work for me the next.

The whole point is that ADHD can show up SO differently for everyone but the more you take the time to understand how it shows up for you…and what works for you… only then can you begin to implement the strategies to start to manage it. 

I hope this helped or was ‘food for thought’ for you as they say. 

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