The ADHD Solutions Blog

Free Webinar: Holistic Strategies for Staying Focused

Join us on May 24, 2012 at 3:00 EDT for a free webinar on Holistic Strategies for Staying Focused.

Regardless of whether or not you choose to take medication, there are holistic methods you can – and should - use every day to improve your focus and concentration.  We’re not talking about oddball Chinese herbs or mystery supplements; “holistic” simply refers to the “whole person”, mind and body.  Join Beth Main, in partnership with ADD Resources, on May 24 at 3:00 EDT and learn seven essential strategies for maintaining peak focus with or without meds.

Sign up here:  http://addresources.org/?q=node/148

Ask the ADHD Coach: a group video chat with Beth Main, CAC

Please join us for a group video chat on Tuesday May 1, 2012 at 12:00 p.m. EDT.  Bring your questions related to Attention Deficit Disorder (ADHD/ADD) and have them answered by Beth Main, Certified ADHD Coach.  Space is limited, so sign up now.

This is an informal event where like minds (in our case, minds that don't always focus appropriately) gather to exchange information.  Want to know what to do about a spouse who just doesn't get it?  How to get started on something you keep putting off?  What kind of time management systems work best for ADDers?  These are all great questions.  Yours are even better.

As an added bonus, Beth will be offering all attendees a free 15-minute individual ADHD coaching session to be scheduled after the event.

You can fully participate in the live discussion with your webcam, microphone and speakers, OR you can leave your camera and/or microphone off and simply ask your questions using the "Chat" interface.  Either way, you'll get answers via live streaming video and audio.  (Please note that you'll need speakers or earphones in order to hear the audio portion of the discussion; earphones are preferred to cut down on the "echo" effect that sometimes occurs with videoconferencing.)

Register here:  http://www.anymeeting.com/PIID=ED57DE84824C

Hope to see you there!

Testimonial

Received a nice testimonial from a client (we'll call him Dave) who recently finished his coaching work with me:

"You've given me strategies that I can apply immediately in my day to day life - right now, as soon as I hang up.  Others I've worked with have been more high level and theoretical, and I don't really know what to do with that."

Right on!  That's part of what sets ADHD Solutions apart.  We don't just explain, we actually help you implement the strategies you need to overcome your ADHD challenges.

Thanks Dave!  I wish you the very best that life has to offer.  And I know you'll achieve it.

Video coaching is now even better

Got a new HD webcam!  My video coaching sessions via Skype are incredibly clear now.  Almost as good as being in the same room. Did I mention I offer video coaching?  So whether you're on the other side of town or the other side of the world, we can still work together.  Contact me for a free initial consultation - www.adhdsolutions.net.

Time Management Webinar

Join me on May 25, 2010 as I present a time management webinar entitled "How to Make Room in Your Life for the Things that Matter Most", in conjunction with ADD Resources, on May 25 at 3:00 p.m. EDT. For more information and to register, visit http://www.addresources.org/?q=node%2F148 and scroll down to May 25.

The webinar will be recorded and available up to one week after the event.

Catch you there!

Video coaching via Skype available worldwide

A lovely young woman from Austria just signed up for coaching with me.   I've also worked with people from Bermuda, Canada, China, England, and Spain.  I'm excited about adding another country to the list!

If you are interested in coaching, but don't live in North America, don't let geography stop you.  I offer video coaching through Skype for international clients who speak English.  It works well for Americans who aren't close enough to meet in person, too.

I offer a free initial consultation to discuss your needs and how ADHD coaching can help.  Contact me at   beth@adhdsolutions.net or (717) 441-4354 to schedule an appointment.

See you on Skype!

In-Service Presentation on ADHD was a success!

I got to live a dream today.   I've been wanting to educate teachers about ADHD since my ADHD journey began six years ago, with the diagnosis of my then-elementary school aged son.  I just finished giving an In-Service presentation to the teachers at a local private school.  I was thrilled at how well it was received!

The topics were:
•    What’s it like to have ADHD?  A simulation.
•    Were you paying attention?  A quiz.
•    How does ADHD manifest in real life?  More symptoms.
•    What else could be going on?  Common co-existing conditions.
•    What if you suspect a child has ADHD?  What to tell the parents – and what not to say.
•    What can you do to help?  Strategies for the classroom.
•    What do students with ADHD need most?  Some guiding principles.
The teachers asked lots of intelligent questions and provided their own insights on what works for them.  Thank you, Harrisburg Academy!

Please visit my web site, www.adhdsolutions.net, and send me an email if you'd like me to speak at your school.  I'd love to continue the dream.

Time Management presentation

Beth Main is the featured speaker at the August 3, 2010 meeting of Harrisburg Business Women.   The topic is Time Management:  How to Make Room in Your Life for What's Really Important.    All Harrisburg area business women are encouraged to attend.  For more information, visit ww.harrisburgareabusinesses.org/hbwgroup

What’s in your gear closet?

Ah, the first backpacking trip of the season.   The weather was perfect.  The trail was uncrowded.  Metaphors about gear and ADHD strategies floated through my mind like sparks from the campfire.

I was never really a tool person.  It used to be there wasn’t much I couldn’t repair with duct tape, a kitchen knife, and a high heeled shoe.  When I started hiking many years ago, part of the allure was that I didn’t need any special equipment.  I could just get up and go.    Now I’ve amassed several thousand dollars worth of backpacking gear that I have no idea how I ever lived without.

ADHD coping strategies are like gear.  At first, you think you don’t need anything special.  You can hike just fine in a pair of sneakers as long as you don’t go too far or over rocky terrain.  But then you try to go a little farther.  Rocks and roots press into the soles of your shoes.  Your feet start to hurt.  So you bite the bullet and buy a pair of hiking boots.  They’re a little uncomfortable at first, and you think, is this really any better?  But then you start to get used to them.  Oh my!  What an improvement.

Your new footwear enables you to hit steeper and more difficult trails.  Being the adventurous type, off you go.  You notice other hikers using fancy aluminum trekking poles.  You laugh at them - what the heck would anyone need all that for?  You begin to understand the value the first time you twist an ankle, or fall in a creek, or slide down an incline on your back.  So you try out a pair.  Like the boots, they’re a little hard to get used to.  But soon you don’t know how you ever lived without them.

You are now a gear junkie.

It’s the same with ADHD coping strategies.  A long, long time ago, I used to just get up and go, not worrying about how my day went.  The farther I got from home, the steeper the hills were, the more I realized how hard life with ADHD can be.  I got to thinking that there must be an easier way.  So I started with one little strategy that changed my life:  I bought a planner.  At first it seemed cumbersome.  I had to carry it around with me, and remember to write stuff in it, and look at it regularly.  It was kind of a hassle, to be honest.  But before long I was relying on it more than my left arm.  How do people live without these things?!

Over time, I added more strategies to my ADHD gear closet.  Now I am functioning quite well.  It’s been years since anyone called me a derogatory name like Ditzy.  But just like backpacking gear, there’s always some new tool I’d like to acquire.  I hear about a new technique, wonder how I could possibly use it, decide to do something similar, figure out how, and integrate it into my life.  Then it’s on to the next thing.

Where are you on your ADHD journey?  What’s on your gear wish list?  Leave me a comment.

ADHD kids don't disappear - they become ADHD adults

I wrote the following "As I See It" op-ed piece that appeared in the Harrisburg Patriot News on Sunday:

What do you think of when you hear the phrase “Attention Deficit/ Hyperactivity Disorder”? If you’re like most people, you probably associate it with out-of-control kids who are given medication so they can sit still long enough to learn something.

Maybe you think it’s overdiagnosed or can be cured with a little discipline. But have you ever thought about what happens to these kids when they grow up?

They don’t disappear. They become working members of society. They become ADHD adults.

Although it’s usually thought of as a childhood disorder, about half the kids with ADHD will continue to struggle with it when they grow up. That equates to more than 10 million adults in this country with ADHD — roughly the same as the adult population of Pennsylvania. Because ADHD was virtually unheard of 20 years ago, many adults don’t even realize they have it. Or want to accept that they do.

People with ADHD are easily distracted and can’t control their attention. They have an inordinate amount of difficulty with tasks that involve planning and organization. They lose anything that isn’t tied down. They procrastinate. They lack follow-through. They’re restless and impulsive. They’re extremely forgetful. They tend to overlook details, leading to mistakes. They interrupt. They’re chronically late. They’re easily bored, thriving on novelty and instant gratification.

You might scoff and point out that everyone has these problems from time to time. While it’s true that everyone has some of the symptoms some of the time, most do not exhibit as many, or to the same degree. An ADHD diagnosis is warranted only when the symptoms cause significant impairment in daily functioning. Traits that are a minor annoyance to someone without ADHD are amplified to disability level for someone with this unique brain wiring.

And unique brain wiring is exactly what it is. ADHD is a neurobiological disorder. It’s not caused by bad parenting, laziness or lack of moral character. It’s caused by a deficiency of neurotransmitters in the brain. It’s been called an invisible disability because we can’t see it, like a broken leg or detect it with a blood test. However, differences in brain structure and activity can be seen on a SPECT scan, which shows how well each region of the brain is functioning. Several genes associated with ADHD have been identified, providing strong evidence that it’s hereditary.

There are good things about having ADHD. Many ADHDers are highly talented and creative. They’re spontaneous and not afraid to take chances. They can manage many projects at once and see things from different angles. Leonardo da Vinci, Thomas Edison and Albert Einstein were all believed to have had it.

Actors Ty Pennington and Howie Mandel have it, as do actresses Whoopi Goldberg and Lindsay Wagner. Athletes Terry Bradshaw and Michael Phelps have been diagnosed with it. Tommy Hilfiger overcame his ADHD and built a fashion empire. Activist Erin Brockovich used it to her advantage. JetBlue Airways founder David Neeleman appreciates the creativity that comes with having it. Charles Schwab considered it an asset.

I think it’s terrific that these public figures have acknowledged their ADHD. Their testimonies have gone a long way toward alleviating the stigma that ADHD holds for some.

Is there a cure for ADHD? No. But there are treatments. A lot of people think treatment means medication, but there’s a lot more to it than that. Other options include supplements, diet, exercise, sleep, stress management, neurofeedback, and behavioral interventions such as therapy and coaching. Although medication can certainly be part of a successful treatment plan, it can’t teach the planning and organizational skills that people with ADHD often lack. And it won’t make it go away.

The key to successfully living with ADHD is harnessing strengths and developing coping strategies for everything else. Like writing everything down. Using a planner, checklists and timers. Creating structure and routines. Wearing a watch that beeps, even if it’s ugly.

Accepting the need to do these things is a problem for some, because it means having to admit what they perceive to be a weakness. They self-stigmatize. Only by increasing public awareness will the myths and the stigma subside. Only then will people get the treatment they need and deserve.

About those out-of-control children? They’re good kids. They need our help and support. So do the 10 million ADHD adults who once were ADHD kids. They’re not lazy. They’re not stupid. It’s time to reveal the truth about ADHD and the people who live with it.

Pages

Subscribe to The ADHD Solutions Blog