ADD ADHD and Focus, Or Not — ADD Tip O the Day 617

Can’t Focus?

Sometimes it’s said that those of us with ADD ADHD can’t focus. I believe it’s more accurate to say we can’t control our focus.

Often I can’t focus on things that are important but I can hyperfocus on other things.


Hyperfocus can be very useful. I can get a lot done. But it can be a real problem because I can’t control it. I can’t choose what to hyperfocus on and I can’t un hyperfocus when I need to.

I may have trouble focusing on this post and getting it started and sticking with it once I start instead of getting distracted into several other directions. But I can hyperfocus on a computer game for hours even though I eventually realize it’s a total waste of time.

” But just one more game. I bet I can do better this time.”

 “Focus Center” – A Hypothetical Part Of Our Brain

Most people’s  focus center is turned on  if something is important. 

Ours is turned on if something is personally interesting, novel, challenging or has an immediate heavy deadline and consequence. It may or may not be important.

Important is not important to us.

Strategies and Medications

The purpose of the medications is to help us focus.

Many of our strategies are aimed at dealing with this focus problem.


Bonus Links

On focus and hyper focus from carolyn

“10 surprising signs you might have ADHD”       Not so surprising to me, but a good article

Question O the Day:

ADD,ADHD,attention deficit,adult ADD,adult ADHD,focus,hyperfocus,strategy,strategies,brain


 Am I an expert on ADD ADHD?

I hope to address this question soon.

I hope to address a lot of things.

If I can just focus.


or learn to use twitter?  #ADD #ADHD

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Leave of Absence — No ADD ADHD Tip O the Day

I’ll be doing prison ministry Thursday thru Sunday so my next post, God willing, will be next tuesday.

But here are some good links i’ve been saving.

Thank you for your support, interest, reviews, and comments.


ADD,ADHD,attention deficit,adult ADD,adult ADHD, ,gift,adult ADD,adult ADHD, ADD,ADHD,attention deficit,adult ADD,adult ADHD, strategy,strategies,symptoms,problems,dysfunction,problems

Another gift moment from ADD ADHD


Time management tip from Dana

From Homey – another way to look at the ADD ADHD strategy of small steps

Attitude magazine on ADHD and food –  I think most of the information here is not bad; healthy diet is good for anyone, but i think most of it is not supported by scientific evidence.  Still, everyone is different, and some of these things might make a difference for some people with ADD ADHD.


The full food coloring report

Question O the Day

Do you think I’m  being just a wee tiny bit over compulsive posting this instead of just waiting til Tuesday?

Posted in add, ADD problems or symptoms, ADD strategies, adhd, ADHD problems, ADHD strategies, clutter, dysfunctions, strategies | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

ADD ADHD Terms and Definitions Controversy – ADD Tip o the Day 616

my mind  Joe recently posted on the net:


GratefulEnergy Health Guide September 09, 2013
  • Before His Death, Father of ADHD Admitted it Was An Over-Diagnosed Disease”

(well, anyway, i just came across it recently)

So, is it not an disease, or is it an over-diagnosed disease?

Starting from there, the article dives deeper into BS.  But what is a disease?  And what is ADD ADHD?

There’s a lot of confusion about terms.  There certainly is in my mind.  So I did a little research (a little).  Here are some of the results:


 any deviation from or interruption of the normal structure or function of any body part, organ, or system that is manifested by a characteristic set of symptoms and signs and whose etiology, pathology, and prognosis may be known or unknown.


 a derangement or abnormality of function; a morbid physical or mental state.


 not normal; contrary to the usual structure, position, condition, behavior, or rule.


 management and care of a patient or the combating of disease or disorder.


I don’t find any of these definitions very satisfying.  How about you?

I don’t think medicine has any generally accepted definitions of these terms.  But most of us have our own favorite definitions; there’s just not a lot of agreement.

I think in order to be a disease or a disorder, it has to cause some kind of problem?

The DSM V calls it “Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder”.   That’s OK.  Personally I call it ADD ADHD and I call my personal version ADD.

The DSM V requires for the diagnosis that it “interferes with functioning or development.”  That’s good, tho I’m not sure what interferes with development means?

Then there are number of criteria that have to be present before the diagnosis can be made, including symptoms of hyperactivity and inattention.  Which cause problems.  You see what I’m saying?

A while back there were a bunch of posts about ADD ADHD being a “gift”.  Oh, my.  And of course there’s the group that says it’s just normal active kids.  Oh, my.  And the smaller group who say they have it but wouldn’t want the boring life of being normal. I have some good days, partly due to my Daytrana, and might get close to being “normal” for a little while.  I’ve never found it “boring”, just calm, productive and fulfilling.

But we’re all different, aren’t we?

I hope to address the issues of cause and treatment soon, if i can get a little more focused – a little closer to “normal”. “Boring” I think I could live with.


Puzzled Note O the Day:

I forgot the hashtags.  Here we go: #ADD #ADHD #YourLifeCanBeBetter . I don’t like the way they look in the title.  The video helped some but I’m still confused.

Quiz O the Day:

Did you notice that I’m fishing for your comments on these issues? 


Joe’s post

Lynne on exercise – Genuine good stuff. Read the comments.  Question – is exercise “treatment”?





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How I Screwed Up A Perfectly Good ADD ADHD Strategy – – – ADD Tip O the Day 615 #ADD #ADHD

Puryear’s principles of human nature (this is number two or three or something)

We struggle with a problem until we find something that works. Then we quit doing it.    Or we screw it up.

That’s what I did.


I got off structure  on vacation. When I got back, I tried to put my Daily Priority Strategy back into effect but I’ve been having trouble doing it. It was working before vacation. I’ve just realized I screwed it up by putting too many things in each day.


ADD,ADHD,attention deficit,adult ADD,adult ADHD, strategy,strategies,symptoms,problems,schedule,structure,human behaviormom hook up

The Post Vacation Schedule

The strategy is to have ONE priority each day and get that done before anything else. Then if I do nothing else, at least I’ll have that done, and by the end of the week I will have done something in each  major categories.

But, if I choose too many “priorities”, then they aren’t priorities at all.

ADD ADHD Problems

There’s too many things I want to do.

I have trouble setting priorities.

When a strategy is working, I often quit using it or screw it up.

Do you see where this is going?


I made a new schedule and tried to put only one thing in each day. As you see, I only partly succeeded, but it’s an improvement, and I can rationalize why I have two on some days. (But it’s still a mistake. Oh, well.)

ADD,ADHD,attention deficit,adult ADD,adult ADHD, strategy,strategies,symptoms,problems,schedule,structure,human behavior

The New Schedule


The Hope

Now if I can just stick to it!  The rule is that the priority(s) of the day gets done before I can do anything else.  (Frank commented that the problem is that we don’t keep commitments to ourselves – he’s onto something there.)


Bonus Links:

From Homey – another way to look at the ADD ADHD strategy of small steps


Experiment O the Day

I’m trying to learn about hashtags, but I don’t understand them.

Do I just put #ADD # ADHD #adultADD anywhere, like this?

And that does something????    Advice is welcomed.



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Shannon’s Approach to the ADD ADHD Time Problem — ADD Tip O the Day 614

-and Shannon’s comment was so good I’m just posting it here:

“Agreed. Time is a problem! And schedule what’s important!

What I’m trying out is putting those things in a non-scheduled category of my todo list until they are important enough to me to move to the scheduled part. I’m using the 5 categories published in “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Adult ADHD” by EIleen Bailey & Donald Haupt, M.D.. First book I bought; Doug’s was the second. My time management system is a mix of tips from both, and of course it’s complicated so I’ll (try to!) just talk about the bits that are important for this topic – the categories I use and how I move things between them.

Categories are (paraphrasing), from highest priority to lowest:

Absolutely Urgent = Important to me, my family or my job (and thus things I want to do) and have a due date.
Urgent = Important to me, my family or my job (and thus things I want to do) and don’t have a due date.
Chores = Things I don’t necessarily want to do, but have to do anyway (if chores are important to me, my family or my job then they go on the Absolutely Urgent or Urgent list; if cyclical like housework they get repeating daily/weekly/monthly due dates)
Maybe = Things I would like to do, but they’re not really important, and it doesn’t matter when you do them
Dreams, Wishes & Ideas = Things I might like to do, not important, not time sensitive

I enter my todo items into Wunderlist, an app I like because it syncs across all of my devices and my laptop, and it does most of what I like in a todo app. I then use the “due today” view from Wunderlist each morning to create my 5 item working list. Anything due that day automatically pops up, and I don’t have to see (and worry about) stuff due later. It gets first priority on the working list. If there are spots left on the working list, or if I get through the working list early, next priority goes to Urgent items, and so on down the list.

Stuff like guitar lessons (I’d love to get back into and better at playing too!) start off in Maybe. Once they’re in that category, I tend not to think about them in “as soon as” terms anymore. They’re recorded, and I know that they will come up in my daily process when I have time for them.

If they start to feel more important to me (if I am more often feeling a lack in my life because I’m not doing them, if I find myself thinking about them more often, etc…) then they get moved up the category list to Urgent. If something important to me spends too much time on the Urgent list, I assign it a due date and move it to the Absolutely Urgent list. That’s the part that I’m still trying to work out – how much time on the Urgent list is too much time? For stuff that’s important to my family or job, I use Doug’s 3 day rule – if it’s on there for more than that people are waiting too long and a due date is assigned. But if it’s “just” important to me, like guitar lessons? I don’t know. I’m trying to go with how urgent it feels to me right now, but I’ve only been on my meds a couple of months and I’m still getting the hang of things in that context. Any suggestions are welcome!

So that kink’s not worked out yet, but I am finding this system is keeping me away from “as soon as” thinking, and once something like guitar lessons makes it onto my Absolutely Urgent list, it is scheduled and fiercely defended. So it’s working so far in that sense.”

Thank you, Shannon.

I especially like your comment about “scheduled and fiercely defended.”  We need to fiercely defend our schedules.  We need to learn to say “No”, to ourselves and to others.

ADD,ADHD,attention deficit,adult ADD,adult ADHD, strategy,strategies,symptoms,problems,time,dysfunction,busy,pressure,rush,hurry,attitude,illusion,schedule,scheduling,saying no

You have the whole day ahead of you. But, how can it go so fast!?


Note O the Day:

If someone makes a request of you, and you say “No”, and they get upset, then it wasn’t a request, it was a demand.

Bonus Links:

On the usefulness of  “No”

Hurry! Hurry! Hurry!

Staying On Task

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I Don’t Have Enough Time! – – – ADD Tip O the Day 613

ADD ADHD and Time Pressure

Here I am “retired” and still feeling that same old sense of time pressure, the fly wheel constantly spinning inside.  And the damn old voice –“Hurry up!  Rush!  You have so much to do!  You’ll never get it all done!”

Know what I mean?

Even on vacation I was feeling the same urgency to get to the next stop, quickly! And there was absolutely no reason for it.

I think this is just part of ADD ADHD and has little basis in reality.  It’s an attitude. 

(But it also seems like a physical feeling.)

Three ADD ADHD Attitudes -Lies We Tell Ourselves:

1. Rush!

2. I don’t have enough time.

3. I have too much to do.


Wouldn’t it help if I set priorities? (Are you thinking, “Priorities, Yeah, right!” ?)

I can shorten my lists – “What would happen if I didn’t do this?”.  “What is the payoff for doing this?”

I can be sure to keep my short list to five max.  But in reality I only have one thing to do.  Right now, it’s writing this post.  When I finish, it will something else, some other one, but right now – I only have one thing to do. One!

I’m working on meditation and mindfulness.   Surely they will help, if my problem with time doesn’t sabotage me. (Is “working on” meditation and mindfulness a paradox?)


I’m getting some really great comments.  Hope you read them.  Wish they would just show up at the bottom of the post.  Need to find out how to do that.  I’m going to just post some of them.  In the mean time,  see “recent comments”over to the right.  Clik on the name of the post and it will show you all the comments.


you can clik on the “comments” down at the bottom of each post, lost at the end of all the other stuff :

Posted in add, ADD problems or symptoms, ADD strategies, adhd, ADHD problems, ADHD strategies, attitudes, dysfunctions, strategies | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments | Edit”

See , its here in red.

Check ’em out.


Bonus Link:

A great story from Tired – many good points and lessons. Highly recommended.

Question O the Day:

How do I get the comments to show up right here?   Homey does it!

Gratitude O the Day:

ADD,ADHD,attention deficit,adult ADD,adult ADHD, strategy,strategies,symptoms,problems,time,dysfunction,busy,pressure,rush,hurry,attitude,illusion

Isn’t ADD ADHD life interesting?


Thank you for making those great comments!



Posted in add, ADD problems or symptoms, ADD strategies, adhd, ADHD problems, ADHD strategies, attitudes, dysfunctions, strategies | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

“As Soon As —” – An ADD ADHD Time Problem — ADD Tip O the Day 612

“As Soon As—“

There are several things I want to do, “as soon as – — -”

                         I want to start Spanish lessons again.

                         I want to resume fishing.

                         I want to cleanup the disarray in my office.

These are on my “on-hold” to do list. They’re important to me but not urgent or imperative.

I was going to get to them “as soon as” –

           I got back from vacation.


         as soon as – I finished the doctor’s appointments and procedures.


         as soon as – I finish the prison ministry weekend.

But the spaces in my appointment book and calendar are already starting to fill up for even after all that. I don’t think “as soon as” will really ever come.  It’s like a fairy tale I’m telling myself.  Maybe this is part of the ADD ADHD problem with time?

Have  you noticed that we’re not good about time?

 I need to stop waiting for the “as soon as” and the empty calendar spaces. Ain’t gonna happen.

If I want to get those things done I’m going to have to just schedule them and do them.


Quote O the Day:    

“It’s always something.”

Rosanna Rosannadana

ADD,ADHD,attention deficit,adult ADD,adult ADHD, strategy,strategies,symptoms,problems,time,dysfunction,busy

Where does all the time go?


Bonus Link O the Day:

Bonnie’s tips for packing for a trip – but this could apply to other things too



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Helpful Things for ADD ADHD – Meditation Light??? – – – ADD Tip O the Day 611

Three Helpful Things for ADD ADHD

Everyone agrees that certain things are helpful for anyone but especially helpful for those of us with ADD ADHD:




And I would add, getting out-of-doors.


I’ve been practicing a simple form of meditation for years. I find it helpful, but difficult.

On a good day, I can meditate for maybe 10 minutes, on a very good day.

Meditation helps me with the inner sense of  time pressure –“Rush, hurry, urgency, so much to do and so little time to do it in!”  This is an ADD ADHD symptom.

Meditation helps this.  But of course, this same time pressure gets in the way of meditating.

(I will probably write more about time pressure in the next post. Probably.)

Meditation Light

For now I’m continuing my short daily meditation but experimenting with meditation light.

In our new living situation, I need to walk the dog three times a day. I could see this is a burden. It takes up precious time. But it’s an opportunity. It gets me out-of-doors. There’s a bench where I sit for a minute and pet the dog. I’m going to count this time as meditation.

There’s also a Koi pond. I enjoy just looking at the fish. I’m getting to know some of them individually. I’m going to count this as meditation as well.

So I plan to continue the morning meditation but I’ll try to feel less pressured about it — –“I need to meditate. I don’t have time to meditate. I’m not meditating long enough.”

(These damn voices!)

Do you think this will work? Do you think it will count as “meditation light”?


ADD,ADHD,attention deficit,adult ADD,adult ADHD, strategy,strategies,symptoms,problems,brain,exercise,sleep,meditation,,meditating,meditation,mindfulnes,outdoors,sitting

Relax!  Just try harder to relax!

Bonus Links:

Meditating, sitting, willpower

Prayer, meditation, yoga, massage

Meditation and ADD ADHD

Meditation Techniques

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Learning From Experience with ADD ADHD — ADD Tip O the Day 610

We learn from experience

One  of the basic tricks to that learning is to remember the specific experiences.  And make rules from them. If we remember the experience, its easier to remember the rule and to follow it.

Losing the car

I remember spending 10 minutes looking for the car in the gym lot.  Rule – Say out loud where I parked it.

Ken pointed out that I need to say it every time I park the car, not just when I think I might lose it. That’s how you make a habit.

Losing the iPhone

I remember the result of sending my iPhone thru the washing machine.  Rule – search every pocket every time before I put anything in the wash.

And a positive experience

Here is Ram’s recent comment: “A couple of days ago, I was quite in a depressive mood and decided my ADHD wasn’t gonna get the best of me so I said “make two of the things in the list!” and after I did them, I said “well, the third one is so easy, you can do it even while watching netflix”. And I did!”

I hope he will review and remember that experience so he can use that strategy the next time he gets stuck.

The strategy

Hang onto that experience, keep it in the active file in your mind. You paid for it.


Bonus link – another example of misinformation:

Melissa posts: “Poor diet or nutrition defeciency are often the cause of attention disorders as medical studies reveal. “

Melissa’s link

ADD,ADHD,attention deficit,adult ADD,adult ADHD, strategy,strategies,symptoms,problems
Another Gift From ADD ADHD


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The Rule for ADD ADHD — ADD Tip O the Day 609

The ADD ADHD Problem

I keep losing my car in parking lots.

(Some of you might note that this problem is not limited to ADD ADHD)

The Strategy

 When I park the car, say OUT LOUD where it is -“3rd row from the street, in line with the A in the sign.”

The Rule

Say it out loud every time.  Every time. EVERY time!

The Slip 

I drove to the gym, parked the car, and did not follow the rule.  I didn’t say it out loud.

The Consequence

I couldn’t find the bleeding car!  Took about 10 minutes.  I was mostly looking where I’d parked the day before and it wasn’t near there.  Had the days mixed up. My key thing has a beeper but it didn’t carry far enough.

The Lesson

When I have a rule, I need to follow it every time, every time, so that it becomes a habit.  But for a while I will have slips, but I need to just keep doing it.  It will become a habit.

The Principle

Identify a SPECIFIC problem.  Make a strategy.  Make it a rule.  Stick with it, through the slips.  Make it a habit.

Another Principle

Only work on one or two things at a time.


Bonus Tip

I will remember that ten minutes I spent searching for the lost car.  That will help me remember the rule.  The strategy – remember incidents, both of success and of failure.

Bonus Link

Memory Tricks


If you haven’t already, a review of either of the ADD ADHD books will be much appreciated.  Remember to do that.  Even better, do it right now and save your memory for something else.



ADD,ADHD,attention deficit,,strategy,strategies,rules habits,tips,memory,find your car
Memory needs help.

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Two Tips About Goals and ADD ADHD — ADD Tip O the Day 608

Achievable Goals
My wife asked me, as she often does, "What are you doing?"
"Trying to get organized," I replied.
"That's your motto", she said.
"No, that's my mantra."
What's the difference?
But then I had a small insight. Maybe getting organized is not a 
destination, but a journey? 
Maybe it is not a goal, but a process? 
The strategy is to only set achievable goals.
Maybe "getting organized" is not one of them.

Small Goals
This morning I used a related strategy - set small goals. 
I was doing my exercises. I set my goal for 20 reps. 
When I finished the 20 reps, I said, I can do six 
more. And I did, for a total of 26 reps. 
But I think if I had set my initial goal for 26 reps, I likely could not have done it. 
Then that would've been demoralizing, which I do not need. 
This way,if I'd only been able to do 20, that would have been a success.
I try to set small achievable goals.
Then if I overachieve, that's all to the good.

add,adhd,adult add,adult adhd,attention deficit,goals,strategies

Maybe goals help us stay focused?


Bonus Links:
Goals and ADD ADHD


More On Goals

And Even More
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Here’s The Poop On Food, Diet, Dyes and ADD ADHD — ADD Tip O the Day 607

How Many Helped?  How much help?

There’s nothing wrong with a good healthy diet. I’m skeptical that it makes much difference for very many people with ADD ADHD.

Research shows that the food dyes do make a small difference for a small number of people and special diets do not.  However, I’m sure the special diet has helped some people somewhere.  The studies of course are talking about on average and there are always outliers.  And if you’re the one, its 100%.

Follow the links below.


Good Links :

clik  dr Kinsella on foods and medicines

Dr. Farone on foods

One woman’s kids and diet

Dr. McNeal makes some sense here – some

Dr. Brezin doesn’t

Another ADD ADHD Denier

There are still those denying the existence of ADD ADHD.  You’d think that would have faded into the distant past by now.

This kind of nonsense doesn’t help. Is he just trying to get publicity? Is he really unaware of the research?  And he has good credentials?????

ADD,ADHD,adult add,adult adhd,attention deficit,controversies,science,studies,food,diet,food coloring,dyes,medicines,medications

Sometimes it drives me up the wall. Or beyond.

Posted in add, adhd, controversy, educate yourself, educate yourself, medication, medicine, science, stimulants | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments

Open Mind? or Naive? Or Old and Ignorant? About ADD ADHD — ADD Tip O The Day 606

Lots of input about different approaches to helping with (treating?) ADD ADHD.

Many different people have been helped by many different things.  Could this be because different people have different sets of genes?

Dr. K traces his ADD ADHD to a cascade of consequences initiated by a birth injury to his cervical spine, and exercises are helping, through improving the connections between the cerebellum, basal ganglia, and pre frontal cortex.

Dr. Parker’s book has a lot of information interesting to me tho sometimes hard to follow, but is he in the woo woo camp or on the cutting edge of the frontier, with SPECT imaging, bowel and allergy issues, and unusual lab testing? He’s ahead of me for sure, but some of the points i can use.

I think we all agree that sleep and exercise are essential, and diet and no food coloring are sometimes of some help for some people.

Isn’t life interesting?


Bonus link:

Homey Likes Long Lists

add,adhd,adult add,adult adhd,medicines,medications,strategies,controversies,alternatives,woo woo,cutting edge,advanced,spect,scan,neuro anatomy,cerbellum,basal ganglia,frontal cortex,prefrontal cortex
I like to make a list of all my lists. Smart? or just compulsive? You decide..


Posted in add | 6 Comments

Keeping An Open Mind About ADD ADHD — ADD Tip O the Day 605

New Information

I wrote about how hard it is for a person to change their opinion once it is formed.

But I am getting a lot of new information.

Dr. Charles Parker – I am reading his book- The New ADHD Medication Rules –  and it is very informative.  Three types of ADD ADHD – acting without thinking (impulsive), thinking without acting (paralyzed, indecisive), and not acting and not thinking.  So a lot of mis and missed diagnosis.  And lots of other new ideas for me.  I recommend it.

Dr. Kinsella – good description of neuroanatomy, cerebellum, basal ganglia, prefrontal cortex, and how his ADD ADHD came from a birth injury to his cervical vertebrae.  Honestly, at first I thought he was too woo woo for me, but he is teaching me a lot and I am starting to understand it, it’s making sense.

Angelique- is sending me information on the benefits of marital arts for ADD ADHD.  I suspect this will fit in with Dr. Kinsella’s info- exercise the cerebellum.  Angelique is also a fan of special ADD ADHD diets.

An  ADD ADHD expert who I can’t find now – ARGHHHH!!!- who has good results using brain training techniques.?

(Does anyone else find ADD ADHD sometimes frustrating?? This was good stuff which I planned to use.  )

Hey!! its Maya.  I found it.

Stephanie, who has offered me a  hypnosis session, to help me prioritize better,  but I just haven’t found time to follow up.  (Do you think if I could prioritize better, then I could find the time?)


Jonathon Marx and Dr. Farone have provided good information.  It is now clear that food dye does make some difference in some people.  But how many?  And how much?  Not as much as medication.

The Over Generalization Problem

Somebody finds something that helps them – maybe they just think it does, or maybe its placebo effect, or maybe something else is going on – but then they tend to think it is The Answer for every one. What we need is more studies – what per cent of people benefit from this?

This certainly does suggest that there are different causes and probably many different types of ADD ADHD, and therefore probably many different treatments – different ones for different people.  Its complicated, and often over my head.  But lets keep trying to muddle through.

I would like to be up on all the latest science and research, but honestly, my thing is strategies, whatever your cause and whatever else may help you.

Progress is being made and I am trying to keep an open mind – I don’t mean like a sieve.


ADD,adhd,adult add,adult adhd,science,dye,diet,food coloring,neuro,biofeedback,brain,controversy,research
Are we all in the same boat?


Dr. Parker

Read the comments from Dr. K and Angelique

Maya brain training


More to come – I hope.

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Committing With ADD ADHD — ADD Tip O the Day 604

ADD,ADHD,attention deficit,adult ADD,adult ADHD, gifts of ADD,gifts of ADHD,benefits of ADD, ADHD, benefits, controversies, opinions

Why I have trouble keeping up with the blogs.

To Commit

No, I don’t mean to get someone locked up, unless its myself.  I do try to lock myself into things, where I can’t not do them.  If I walked to the end of the scary high dive, I could always chicken out and climb back down, humiliating tho it was.  But if I took a running start from the back, then I couldn’t stop and off I went.

When I sat down to write this post, I committed to finishing it before I got up again. Good strategy, but only if I follow it.  That requires willpower, which I’m short on, but its worth a try.  ………………..

Short Break

Well, didn’t make it.

Bathroom.  Couldn’t pass up the opportunity.

But the commitment helped me come right back and not go  off and do something else instead.


So that’s the strategy.  When you start something, you can make a commitment to finish it.

Works sometimes.


Bonus Link:

I don’t usually watch videos, have no patience. But this one is worthwhile:

What no ADDer says

Posted in add, ADD problems or symptoms, ADD strategies, adhd, ADHD problems, ADHD strategies, distraction, dysfunctions, strategies | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

To Medicate Or Not To Medicate ADD ADHD. Is That The Question? — ADD Tip O The Day 603


Would you like medication with that?

Questions about strategies – are they enough?  Questions about medicines – are they enough?

My opinions:  

Some people just use strategies, and do OK. Some people, for various reasons, don’t like the idea of medicines.  They don’t work for everyone.

Some people just use medicines, and that’s enough. Some people for various reasons, don’t like the idea of strategies.  They can be hard to use. You have to pick a problem that bothers  you enough to make using the strategy worth the effort.  But if you stick with it, it will become a habit and then it takes no effort anymore.

For most of us, the combination of medicines and strategies works best.  One of the experts, Dr. Goodwin, says that the purpose of the medicines is to enable us to focus enough to use the strategies.

There are also alternatives to medicines.  Some of them apparently are helpful to some people.  I’m working on my lack of information (i.e. ignorance) about them.


Note: I’m still working on trying to correct some of my previous misconceptions.  A mind is hard to change.  I looking at information from Maya, Dr. Parker, and others, and will get back to you.

Question: do you use medicine- ritalin, strattera, adderal, concerts, vyvanse?  Or strategies?  or both? or neither?  (this is like a survey!)

ADD ADHD medication?

add,adhd,adult add,adult adhd,medicines,medications,strategies,controversies,alternatives,alternative,ritalin,adrenal, strattera,vyvanse,concerts,amphetamines

Life is hard. It’s harder with ADD ADHD.

Posted in add, ADD strategies, adhd, ADHD strategies, attitudes | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 31 Comments

What Do You Believe About ADD ADHD? — ADD Tip O The Day 602

People are interesting.  Here’s how our minds work:
We form a belief or an opinion based on our emotional response to an idea.
Then we look for data to support it. This may be scientific evidence, Bible verses, or what someone else says.
Then we believe that we formed our opinion or belief through logic and reliable information, and that it is a fact.
From then on, any data that would support it aggregates to it.
Any data that doesn’t support it is either not noticed or is simply dismissed.
It becomes a cherished belief and is impermeable to new information.
If you try to argue with someone about their cherished belief, they bring up their arguments against you, and in doing so, their belief becomes stronger and more firmly entrenched.
Have you ever changed anyone’s mind about anything? I have – once.
Aren’t people interesting?
In logic, this process is called “confirmatory bias”.   

Note 2:

There are still people who do not believe  ADD ADHD  exists, or in using medication to treat it, or in climate change.  I could go on, but won’t. Not today anyway.

Note 3:

I’m being provided with new information that goes against some of my beliefs.  I’m struggling to evaluate it with an open mind. Struggling. Maybe more on this later.

Note 4: Thank you and welcome to all the recent new followers. I hope you will find this blog interesting and useful and that you will make comments. I love comments.

ADD ADHD,add,adhd,adult add,adult adhd,attention deficit, controversy,controversies,logic,beliefs,attitudes,confirmatory bias,argue, arguing,changing mind

There’s still a little controversy.

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Ten Basic “Facts” About ADD ADHD — ADD Tip O the Day 601

I just did a guest post for Naill of Ireland.  Here it is:

“Ten” Basic “Facts” About ADD ADHD

  1. ADD ADHD exists. Our brains function differently than other peoples. This has been shown by brain imaging.
  2.  Our main difficulty is an inability to control our focus. We are either unfocused or him:hyperfocused. Most of our difficulties come from that.
  3.  Thus we tend to be distractible, impulsive, irritable and unreliable. We forget things and lose things. We procrastinate. We get eagerly involved in something and then quickly lose interest. We have trouble finishing things. And so on and so on. We each have our own individual pattern of problems.
  4.  This can make our lives very difficult, but there are things we can do to make our lives better.
  5. Medication helps many people who have ADD ADHD, but it is not for everyone. It primarily helps with focus.
  6. Strategies are very helpful. We identify a problem that causes us enough trouble to make it worth working on. We devise a strategy. We persist in that strategy until it becomes a habit. (The problem must be specific – for example, “I lose my keys.” not “I lose things.”)
  1. Many physicians, psychologists, and psychiatrists do not understand ADD ADHD. Many of them do not understand that they do not understand. Certified ADD ADHD coaches can be very helpful.
  1. We need to educate ourselves about our condition and how we can cope. There is a lot of good information on the net. There is a lot of garbage on the net.

        I recommend three books: Driven To DistractionThe ADHD Effect On Marriage,      and most humbly, my own, Your Life Can Be Better, primarily about using strategies. I recommend three websites: Naill’s, and, and even more humbly, this one.

  1. The basic basics: You need an appointment book and a to do list, or their electronic equivalents, and you need to know how to use them. You needed sleep, structure, strategies, exercise, and outdoors.
  2. Every person is unique. You need to find what works for you.
  3. Your life can be better.

Note: Sometimes people confuse their opinions with facts. I call these ten “facts” because some of them are truly facts and some of them are more my opinion.

Note: There are three kinds of people, those who can count and those who can’t.

Note 2: There are two kinds of people in the world, those who can get Word and WordPress When my brain works at all.

When my brain works at all.

to lay out posts  the way they want, and the rest of us.


Great Bonus Tip O the Day:

from Homey- how to schedule when life is unpredictable



Posted in add, ADD problems or symptoms, ADD strategies, adhd, ADHD problems, ADHD strategies, controversies, dysfunctions, science, strategies | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments

Where, Oh Where, Did All My Structure Go? – – – ADD Tip O the Day 600

With My ADD ADHD, Boy, Do I Need Structure

Structure is a basic part of coping with ADD ADHD. We need routine, schedule, organization. I always eat three meals a day. Go to bed  about the same time each night. Brush my teeth twice a day. Have a quiet time every morning.

Good, that’s structure.

So, What Happened?

Closed my practice, December 2013; the practice had structured most of my week.                2014 was interesting – illness, treatment,  moving. Upheaval, disruption, change. Chaos!  Started volunteer teaching on Mondays – that was structure, but disrupted the rest of my week.  That just ended.

So, What Now?

Well, obviously it’s time to get organized again. That’s easy for you to say.

I kept saying I’d  get organized once the treatment was over. Then, once we were moved in. Then, once the teaching ended.

Well, that’s now.

Drawing up a new weekly calendar. Not done yet. But for example:

Mon                Tues                 Wed                 Thur              Fri                 Sat             Sun

Spanish          blog                marketing         write             guitar          Spanish     church    

                         guitar                                                                                     blog         clean desk

The Strategy

Those are priorities.  I make sure to  get at least those  things done that day.                     Then  I can do more (theoretically), but I’ll have those things done anyway.

So have I been procrastinating, or just too disorganized to get organized, or can I blame it on circumstances? 

Anyway, it’s time to get with it.  Now!

Did you hear me?


ADD,ADHD,attention deficit,adult ADD,adult ADHD, strategy,strategies,procrastination,schedule,structure,calendar

Maybe tomorrow? Maybe.

James Clear on structure

Bonus Links:

Structure with ADD ADHD

More Structure

“I don’t need structure.”

Posted in add, ADD problems or symptoms, ADD strategies, adhd, ADHD problems, ADHD strategies, dysfunctions, organize, procrastination, strategies | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Talking To Yourself ??— ADD Tip O the Day 599

Is Talking To Yourself A Problem, A Symptom, or What?

Someone asked me if talking to yourself is okay. I said I certainly hope so, cause I do it all the time.

I don’t think it’s a symptom of ADD ADHD; it’s a coping strategy.

I say, “Right now I’m writing this post and when I finish, I’m gonna do the Spanish lesson.”

And I made a commitment to myself to finish the post before I let myself do anything else. When a tempting distraction pops up (don’t they always?) I write it down and keep going. And I’m coaching myself, “No, finish the post first!”

I coach myself through the day, often out loud.  So maybe it’s a little weird?  But it’s a lot better than the alternative.


Note: this is not exactly the same as what I call “self talk”.  More on that later.

Bonus Links:      

from Katy:  29 Things Only a Person with ADD ADHD Would Understand

How to Cope with Distraction

More On Distraction

ADD,ADHD,attention deficit,adult ADD,adult ADHD, strategy,strategies,coaching,talking to yourself,coaching,commitment

Spring has sprung,the grass is green,
I’ll go get my tambourine.
Spring has sprung, the grass is wet,
help me find my clarinet.


Posted in add, ADD problems or symptoms, ADD strategies, adhd, ADHD problems, ADHD strategies, distraction, dysfunctions, strategies | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 22 Comments

Scattered, Distracted, and Too Many Options for ADD ADHD — ADD Tip O the Day 598

Isn’t Life Interesting!    So Many Shiny Things To Choose From!

I’m working on:

Executive dysfunction and EFD ( executive function disorder) and ADD ADHD

Food allergies and food coloring and ADD ADHD

New York Times says childhood trauma can mimic ADD ADHD

The neuro anatomy of ADD ADHD

Do you see where I’m going with this?

Me neither.


Tip O the Day: Try to pick one thing and focus on it until it is done.

(Yeah.  Right.  If I can do that, maybe I don’t have ADD ADHD after all?!)


Links: (Take your choice)             

ADD,ADHD,attention deficit,adult ADD,adult ADHD,food,diet,food coloring,food colouring,choices,options,NYT,new York times,child trauma,childhood trauma,trauma,efd,executive function,executive dysfunction,brain circuit,neurocircuitry,

But isn’t hyperfocus a gift?


Food and food coloring

neuro circuitry




Posted in add, ADD problems or symptoms, ADD strategies, adhd, ADHD problems, ADHD strategies, attitudes, dysfunctions, organize, strategies | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

Are Natural Substances Safe? — ADD Tip O the Day 597

Natural Substances

Many people with ADD AHD are helped by medicine – Ritalin, Adderall, Strattera, etc.- but many are concerned about medication side effects.  Some prefer “natural” substances but not all “natural” substances they use are safe.  Here’s a report on one with dangerous side effects:

“— increases intracranial pressure (ICP). It is this increase in pressure which leads to the first observable symptoms  —: headache, personality changes, changes in behavior, confusion, irritability, and drowsiness. These are sometimes followed by difficulty breathing during exertion, muscle weakness & pain, twitching, or cramping, nausea, vomiting, thirst, and a dulled ability to perceive and interpret sensory information. — The cells in the brain may swell to the point where blood flow is interrupted resulting in cerebral edema. Swollen brain cells may also apply pressure to the brain stem causing central nervous system dysfunction. Both cerebral edema and interference with the central nervous system are dangerous and could result in seizures, brain damage, coma or death.[11]

Other possible side effects include frequent urination, serious infections and increased risk of cancer. It also has the potential for abuse.

Side Effects

Soon I’ll post about side effects in general.  Oh, did you realize that the “natural” substance above is water?


The Link

Bonus Link O the Day:

Dr. Hallowell on ADD ADHD medicines or alternatives

Quote O the Day:

“Moderation in all things, but don’t overdo it.”

Interesting Image

Posted in add, attitudes, controversies, educate yourself, medication, medicine, science, stimulants | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Food Coloring And ADD ADHD and Doubts— ADD Tip O the Day 596

My Doubts:

that ADD ADHD is one thing

that food coloring has much effect on very many people

that “natural” substances are better than medicines

that stimulants are helpful to people who don’t have ADD ADHD

that medicines prevent kids from being themselves

that everything we read on the net is accurate

that people who don’t believe in ADD ADHD have any idea what they’re talking about

Ram’s good information on a food coloring study:

The Panel concludes that the McCann et al. study provides limited evidence that the two different mixtures of synthetic colours and sodium benzoate tested had a small and statistically significant effect on activity and attention in some children selected from the general population, although the effects were not observed for all children in all age groups and were not consistent for the two mixtures. The findings may thus be relevant for specific individuals within the population, showing sensitivity to food additives in general or to food colours in particular.

(” the target colours are more frequently used in sweets but also occur commonly in soft drinks and benzoate is frequently present in soft drinks.” – don’t soft drinks also often contain caffeine?)

Ram’s follow up on the study:

This study was very criticized for not being very scientific and not proving consistent results, but the comitee of the EU still passed a law in 2010, that these food coloring must have such a warning on the label.

Note: I may have finished the various treatments for ADD ADHD. Would love your suggestions about what I left out or  comments on what I put in.


The full food coloring report     


ADD ADHD,add,adhd,adult add,adult adhd,attention deficit,medicine,medication,medications,drugs, side effects,controversy,controversies,side effects,alternatives,natural,herbs, vitamins,supplements,biofeedback,neuro feedback,neurofeedback,natural,food coloring,food additives

We are creative!


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Alternatives to ADD ADHD Medicine Part 3 and Beware! -More Snake Oil– ADD Tip O the Day 595

Buyer and reader, Beware!- More ADD ADHD snake oil

Here’s the headline on a recent article:

New treatment for kids with ADHD retrains their brains, reduces symptoms

Here’s the report on the study that is being done:

Researchers hope that retraining the brain waves of children with ADHD will permanently increase the power of beta waves which control alertness, attention levels, and concentration. The power of theta waves that are associated with inattentiveness and drowsiness should also be reduced. Researchers speculate that once the brain is trained, children with ADHD may not need further treatment or medication.

(I added the bold.)

Herbal Supplements:

The New York Times reports that four out of five store brand supplements contained none of the herbs on the label…Walmart had the worst showing; only 4% of the products tested contained any of the herbs listed on the label…Supplements are exempt from the FDA approval process.  Some of the supplements and other natural/alternative/vitamins contained steroids or other dangerous substances.

I personally take a number of vitamins and supplements but am considering stopping or at least cutting down.  The only one with proven benefit, given a normal diet, is omega 3 fatty acid (fish oil) but some of the brands are no good.

 And now for something postitive – Biofeedback for ADD ADHD

Lawrence Klein reports on a 2013 study showing that biofeedback can improve attention and  the improvement is correlated with small changes in the brain shown on imaging.  Other studies suggest it may be as good as medication (I’m a little doubtful) and that it may have long term benefits.


ADD ADHD,add,adhd,adult add,adult adhd,attention deficit,medicine,medication,medications,drugs, side effects,controversy,controversies,side effects,alternatives,natural,herbs, vitamins,supplements,biofeedback,neuro feedback,neurofeedback

Can herbs help?


The article with the headline

NYT on supplements

Another one

Biofeedback, neurofeedback

More on biofeedback

Posted in add, ADD problems or symptoms, adhd, ADHD problems, controversies, educate yourself, medication, science | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Alternatives to ADHD Medicines, part 2 —ADD Tip O the Day 594

There are lots of alternatives to cover, and recent studies show that the supplements don’t contain what they claim.  What are you supposed do to?

Omega-3 fatty acids (fish oil) for more than ADD ADHD

It helps ADD ADHD some. I take it for general health and recommend it to everyone. The ratio needs to be correct, 4 EPA to 3 DHA. Much that is sold is useless.

Consumer Reports top pick:

Research Verified (brand name) Premium Omega-3

Second choice:Life Extension Super Omega-3 EPA/DHA

Third choice: Nordic Naturals Ultimate Omega


I was addicted to caffeine before I knew I had ADD ADHD.  Studies show it can help some but may need excessive doses and thus  side effect problems – I sure did.

Food additives and coloring:

For children on high intake of food additives, decreasing them may help some – that has surprised me.


Dr. Farone on foods


More on food and supplements

Even more

The rap on science – but it’s better than the alternatives

Consumer Reports on omega-3 fatty acids (fish oil)

Note: I never claimed that this  survey was going to be well organized, but I hope to cover all aspects.

Note 2: Your input on these topics will be much appreciated– I don’t think I can cover all aspects and there are different viewpoints from mine.

Bonus Link:

How to eat a mango.

ADD ADHD,add,adhd,adult add,adult adhd,attention deficit,medicine,medication,medications,drugs, side effects,controversy,controversies,side effects,alternatives,natural,herbs vitamins,supplements

Healthy ( if you know how to eat them).


Posted in add, controversies, educate yourself, medication, science | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

ADD ADHD Poem —ADD Tip O the Day 593

Ode of an ADDer to a neat wife

Please don’t put my stuff away.
Please don’t move it, just let it lay.
If I can’t see it, it doesn’t exist.
I’ll forget to do something and we’ll both be pissed.

That library book is lying on the floor
so that I can’t miss it when I go out the door.
It’s already a week overdue
and if I don’t see it, it’s gonna be two.

You can’t stand clutter in your face
so I try to keep  it in my own space,
but sometimes it just kinda overflows;
how that happens God only knows.

I have a place for everything; where
it winds up isn’t always there.
If it gets too bad just tell me to move it.
If you do it yourself then I’m just gonna lose it.

I guess that’s all I’ve got to say
I love you,
and please don’t put my stuff away.


add,adhd,adult add,adult adhd,attention, deficit,strategies,add and stress,adhd and stress,coping

Roses for you!



Posted in add, ADD problems or symptoms, ADD strategies, adhd, ADHD problems, ADHD strategies, clutter, dysfunctions, marriage, relationships, strategies | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Non-stimulant Medicines for ADD ADHD (plus other tips on medicines)— ADD Tip O the Day 592

Advantages of the non-stimulant medicines for adult ADD ADHD:
Don’t cause agitation or insomnia; not controlled and easier to obtain; not abusable or addictive; longer acting and smoother effect. Sometimes added to stimulants to improve symptoms or reduce side effects.

Probably most commonly used are Strattera and guanfacine.

Strattera (atomoxetine)- an antidepressant, works mostly on norepinephrine. No generic, capsules, expensive. Takes some weeks to work; must be taken consistently.

Possible side effects include: upset stomach, decreased appetite, nausea, dizziness, fatigue, mood swings.

Guanfacine generic (brand name Estulic, Tenex and the extended release Intuniv) –   a high blood pressure medicine, not officially approved for adults (may be less effective in adults?). Inexpensive, except for extended release.

Possible side effects include: headache, fatigue, abdominal pain, sleepiness.

Other non-stimulant medicines for ADD ADHD:

Clonidine generic (Kapvay)- a different high blood pressure medicine, inexpensive.

Possible side effects include: drowsiness, dizziness; feeling tired or irritable;cold symptoms such as runny or stuffy nose, sneezing, cough, sore throat;mood changes;sleep problems (insomnia), nightmares; headache, ear pain; mild fever; feeling hot; constipation, diarrhea, pain in your upper stomach; dry mouth, increased thirst; loss of interest in sex, impotence, difficulty having an orgasm.
(I don’t think these are very common. If they were, would anybody use clonidine?)

Buproprion generic (Wellbutrin) -antidepressant, works on dopamine and norepinephrine. Not expensive.

Possible side effects include headache, dry mouth, insomnia, nausea, sore throat, dizziness, constipation, irritability, ringing in the ears.

Other antidepressants – less studied for ADD ADHD but reported to be helpful for some people. Probably have a higher frequency of side effects than the other medicines.

Important note for any medicines:
Always check for interactions with other medicines or other substances you are taking. Your doctors should do this but I can’t promise they will.

Next Note, on expense:.
You can usually save money for any medicine: buy larger quantity, get large doses and cut pills, get coupons online, shop different pharmacies, ask your doctor about samples or certificates. If you have a hardship, you can sometimes get a break – ask your pharmacy and/or the manufacturing company.

Next Note:
I haven’t personally used nor prescribed any of these medicines for ADD ADHD. I believe they tend to have a lower rate of effectiveness than the stimulants but every person is unique.

Advantages of the stimulants:
You can usually tell if they will help you with only a few doses and you can take them only when you want to.


Important link:

Check medication interactions


He who knows not and knows he knows not, he is a child, teach him.                   He who knows and knows not he knows, he is asleep, wake him.                          He who knows and knows he knows, he is wise, follow him.                                   He who knows not, and knows not he knows not, he is a fool, shun him. .

ancient Persian proverb

Posted in add, adhd, educate yourself, medication, science, stimulants | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Taking Medicines, ADD ADHD or Any — ADD Tip O the Day 591

About taking any kind of medicine, not just ADD ADHD

I wanted to write about the non-stimulant ADHD ADHD medications, but thought this should come first.


Always ask about the generic. They should always be much cheaper (should).  Not all the generics are as good as the brand name but most are. Also, the generic brands are not always equivalent to each other, but most are.


If the medicine comes in a pill and it’s not timed or delayed release, you usually can cut the expense by getting the biggest dose they make and cutting the pills. (Pill cutters are inexpensive.)


I recommend starting with a very low dose and gradually increasing it.  This minimizes the chance of getting side effects. Increase until either you do get side effects or you have no symptoms (unlikely) or the increase doesn’t add any benefit. Then either stay at that dose or drop back one dose.

Possible Side Effects

If you do get side effects  they usually go away in about a week if you stay on that dose. I usually suggest not reading the list of possible side effects  – doing so seems to increase the frequency of getting them. Just pay attention to anything  that you think might be a side effect and ask your doctor.

That list was written by the company’s lawyers to protect them and includes any symptom that anybody anywhere at any dose ever had that might possibly have had anything to do with the medicine. The list can be useful when it gives the percentages of people who actually got that side effect, but those are hard to find.

Almost all side effects are reversible if you just stop the medicine. It is very rare that anyone should need to put up with any significant side effects.

Very Important Bonus Tip

Always check for interactions with other medicines or other substances you are taking. Your doctors should do this but I can’t promise they will.

Check medication interactions

Coming very very soon:

Non-stimulant ADD ADHD medicines!


ADD ADHD,add,adhd,adult add,adult adhd,attention deficit,medicine,medication,medications,drugs,side effects,side effects,

Just being normal active boys misdiagnosed as ADD ADHD

More on side effects

More on medicines

Buproprion (Wellbutrin) etc.

Posted in add, ADD problems or symptoms, educate yourself, medication, stimulants | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Snake Oil for ADD ADHD — ADD Tip O the Day 590


In the 1960s  a new cure for schizophrenia popped up every couple of years.  Dr. Linus Pauling, a Nobel prize-winning chemist, discovered that massive doses of vitamin C would cure schizophrenia along with a host of other things.  But in 2015  we’re still looking for a cure.

Many things are advertised to “cure” or at least help ADD ADHD.

Cerebellar training, homeopathy, various alternative substances, special diets, etc. There is  little research to support them.  It’s possible that some really helpful approach is lost in the static. It’s  possible that somebody somewhere sometime was really helped by one of these approaches.


George is selling training for ADD ADHD and learning disabilities.  I hope it works.  If someone has a product for ADD ADHD that works, why would they need to spread false information about medicines?

Dr. Klein posted a long anti medicine article from Dr. Mercola, who it turns is selling natural substances and has been discredited. Dr.Klein retracted his statement.


The web is full of fantastic claims and gross misinformation. This is unfortunate and a little scary. The misinformation about medication will scare off some people who could really benefit from it.

That’s a shame.    meetings-add funny


the post from george

dr. mercola

Dr. Klein on Dr. Mercola

an example of lots of them

Coming Soon:

Non stimulant  ADD ADHD medications,

then alternatives to medication, hopefully without the BS.

Posted in add, controversies, educate yourself, medication, science | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Amphetamines for ADD ADHD: Follow-up. Plus, Foundations — ADD Tip O the Day 589

Great Comment On Last  Meds Post From Dr. Boerboom. Summary:

Dexedrine is not very addictive/abusable.  It has a low incidence of side effects. They are different from methylphenidate.

Dextroamphetamine (Dexedrine) may cause side effects, but apparently not often.

  • restlessness
  • difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep
  • headache
  • uncontrollable shaking of a part of your body
  • dry mouth
  • unpleasant taste
  • diarrhea
  • constipation
  • loss of appetite
  • weight loss
  • changes in sex drive or ability

Seems to me similar to Ritalin (methylphenidate)

See Dr. Boerboom’s full comment

I disagree on one point – I have been called obnoxious, inappropriate, silly, but not boring. I think the medicine helps me focus and be more of myself, not less. It helps me focus enough to use strategies and my life is better.


Bonus Links:

Dr Anahi Ortiz on Medicines  part 1    part 2


While we’re talking about medicines, let’s not forget the foundations:

Sleep, exercise, structure, strategies, outdoors, prayer or mediation or yoga

And the other faciliators: coaching, therapy, support groups, education about ADD ADHD


ADD ADHD,add,adhd,adult add,adult adhd,attention deficit,medicine,medication,medications,drugs,insomnia,side effects,controversy,controversies,Ritalin,strattera,side effects, methylphenidate,Dexedrine,dextroamphetamine,speed,Ritalin,abuse, misuse,stimulants

Why, yes, sometimes I am a little hyper and socially inappropriate.  Screw you!

Posted in add, ADD problems or symptoms, ADD strategies, adhd, ADHD problems, ADHD strategies, attitudes, controversies, medication, science, stimulants, strategies | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Is It ADD ADHD or Executive Dysfunction? — ADD Tip O the Day 588

From a recent article:

“Is It Executive Function Disorder (EFD) or ADHD?

Children and adults with executive function disorder (EFD) have problems with organizing and schedules. They may also have ADHD and/or learning disabilities, but not always — it’s a common misdiagnosis for those who are actually living with EFD.”

This is new hot topic. At least luke warm.Some are saying that ADD ADHD is getting misdiagnosed when it’s really executive dysfunction.  But the symptoms of “Executive Function Disorder” listed below always seemed to me to just to be part of my ADD, although they’re not all part of the official definition and criteria.

” … deficiencies in planning, abstract thinking, flexibility and behavioral control”

Sound like anybody you know?

“In both children and adults with ADHD, an underlying executive dysfunction involving the prefrontal regions and other interconnected subcortical structures has been found.”

“Warning signs that a child may be having difficulty with executive function include trouble in:

  • planning projects
  • estimating how much time a project will take to complete
  • telling stories (verbally or in writing)
  • memorizing information
  • initiating activities or tasks
  • retaining information while doing something with it (for example, remembering a phone number while dialing)”

“…executive functions involve (at the very least):

  • planning for the future and strategic thinking
  • the ability to inhibit or delay responding
  • initiating behavior, and
  • shifting between activities flexibly”

Difficulty in being able to:

“Plan, Sequence, Prioritize, Organize, Initiate, Inhibit, Pace, Shift, Self-monitor, Emotional Control, Completing”

Sound like anybody you know?

Whichever of our brain networks and functions are off, they presumably produce all of these symptoms as well as the currently popular “benefits and gifts”.

My current best guess is that executive dysfunction is just another name for ADD AHD, maybe without the hyperactivity?  Maybe the inattentive type?



ADD ADHD,add,adhd,adult add,adult adhd,attention deficit, controversy,controversies,executive dysfunction,executive function, executive function disorder,EFD,incoordination,dyscoordination,dyslexia,learning disabilities, executive function disorder

Did I mention that sometimes I’m socially inappropriate?


What is the difference? – I find this confusing.

Executive Dysfunction        

Which is it?

Part 2 of Which is it?

Irrelevant Irreverent Comment:

We also have auditory processing disorder, dyscoordination, dyslexia,learning disorders and dystechnologica.

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Stimulant Medicine for ADD ADHD and New Research — ADD Tip O the Day 587

 Medicines for ADD ADHD

Like everything else, this is going to be harder and take more time than I thought.

To repeat – everyone is unique. What works for one won’t for another. You need trial and error to find the right medicine at the right dose on the right schedule that works for you.  For some, these medicines work a miracle, for some, they are helpful, and for others, no.

The Stimulants:

Methylphenidate – Ritalin (plain, long-acting, sustained-release, in a skin patch), Concerta, Daytrana, Focalin, Focalin XR, Methylin, Medadate CD/ER.  Most common possible side effects are stomach upset, anxiety, loss of appetite; these can usually be managed and minimized if they do occur. Safe, but use carefully with heart problems or high blood pressure. Not very addictive but are being abused/misused by college students. Probably not helpful unless you have ADD ADHD. Very expensive brand-name, but generic is available for some.  An advantage is you can take them when you want and leave them off when you want.

Amphetamines – Adderall, Adderall XR, Dexedrine, Vyvanse (less abusable)- Probably not more effective than methylphenidate, although they will be for some people. Probably more addictive and more abused. Side effects, probably about the same. Again, use or not when you want to.

From Oren Mason MD based on newly published research:

  1. We are beginning to understand the causes of ADHD. ADHD is a condition that involves abnormal brain function.
  2. Specifically, normal folk have capabilities in their brains that ADHD folk don’t. So far, the reverse hasn’t been seen.
  3. Stimulant medications restore (at least some) normalcy to brain function. They are not–as they are sometimes described–giving ‘speed’ to normal brains. They bring normal brain function to people who were born without it.
  4. These findings have been so consistent across multiple studies, that they can be considered “scientifically proven”.


I have no experience with the amphetamines. Medicines are not The Answer for most people. I recommend medicines, strategies (often with coaching) and therapy (to deal with the underlying shame, low self-esteem, depression, etc.). You need a careful evaluation to rule out other possible causes of the symptoms and comorbid conditions which are frequent.  I don’t think these medicines calm us down. I think they basically help us focus and then we can calm down. I haven’t been able to clarify the actions of stimulating release of norepinephrine and dopamine from the neurons versus blocking their reuptake, or both. I get conflicting stories.

Happy Valentine’s Day!


Bonus links:

Dr. Mason’s post is worth reading, shedding light not only on ADD ADHD but also on the scientific method, which is not widely understood.

Adderall versus Ritalin

Lots more, especially about Ritalin:

1     2         3         4        5         6

I am hoping to get some clarifying comments, as well as any questions you may have.

Valentine,ADD,ADHD,adult ADD,adult ADHD,attention deficit,methylphenidate,Adderall,Concerta,Daytrana,focus,calm, Dexedrine,Focalin,Metadate,Methylin,Ritalin,Vyvanse,research,brain

My brain functions more normally with medicine.

Posted in add, ADD problems or symptoms, ADD strategies, adhd, ADHD problems, ADHD strategies, controversies, dysfunctions, medication, science, stimulants, strategies | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 17 Comments

Why Valentines Day Is important With ADD ADHD — ADD Tip O the Day 586

Valentines Day is February 14, this Saturday, that’s this coming Saturday, two days off, this Saturday, day after tomorrow.


1. We forget all about it.

2. We think it’s a long way off and don’t buy a card until the last minute.

3. The card we impulsively at the last minute  is not very good.

– Or we didn’t really read it, and it is bad.

– Or we were captivated by a card that is really, really, really funny. funny.

Bad idea.

A Second Chance

If we really plan ahead (Ha!) and knock ourselves out on the card, and perhaps dinner, chocolate, roses, jewelry—

perhaps –


perhaps we can make up for some of our more recent screw ups.

It’s worth a try.

Good Luck

What’s your strategy for making sure you don’t forget?


Bonus Nudge:

If you’re going to take them to a good restaurant, you’ll need reservations for Valentine’s Day, and it’s already a little late, don’t you think?

Remember last year?

Bonus Links:                                                                      


Flowers                                       Relationships, marriage,Valentine,ADD,ADHD,adult ADD,adult ADHD,attention deficit,forgetting, Procrastinating,procrastination, strategy,strategies

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Talking About ADD ADHD Medicines — ADD Tip O the Day 585


When, and why, did medicines begin to be called drugs?  That used to be the term for illegal substances of abuse. Were I a little more paranoid I’d be suspicious. I’m old-fashioned and prefer to say medicines.

Side Effects

Almost every medicine has side effects – potential side effects. That means you may not get them.  Water “has side effects”.  When you read that the side effects of this medicine are X,Yand Z, you’d like to know what percentage of people actually get them, how serious they are, and if they are reversible.

If someone does get side effects, they can usually be managed by adjusting dosing and scheduling, or the medicine can be changed.  A person should hardly ever need to put up with any significant side effects. Rarely are the benefits of a medicine so essential and the options so limited.

Some people are frightened about side effects, but if they try the medicine and do have side effects, they do have the option of immediately stopping it. In general, side effects, if any, will go away quickly.

Side effects are not a life sentence.

What is the best medicine for ADD ADHD?

There is no “best” medicine. Every person is unique and needs to find the medicine that works best for them. You might choose a medicine that worked for a relative, or has a lower percentage of side effects, or doesn’t have potential side effects that particularly concern you.  And cost is a factor; only some of them are available in generic.

For example, Daytrana, Ritalin in a skin patch, has a lower frequency of side effects than the pills and gives you more control over the dose and timing.  But it has a high incidence of skin irritation.  This was a minor annoyance, but apparently my skin has gotten used to it.  And I don’t get the mild side effects that I got from the pills. I take it off by 2:00 or I’ll have insomnia.  It is expensive.


Side Comment

I am suspicious about how patients began to be called clients. I see patients.

Second Side Comment

Change of plan already. I wanted to get terminology and side effects done before getting into the medicines.

Coming up: executive dysfunction, opinions, stimulant medicines, medication or therapy?


ADD ADHD Medicines

Trying Medicine – Are we guinea pigs?

Ritalin and Daytrana

Side Effects

ADD ADHD,add,adhd,adult add,adult adhd,attention deficit,medicine,medication,medications,drugs,insomnia,side effects,controversy,controversies,Ritalin,strattera,side effects,best medicine,best drug,skin irritation,cost,insurance

Acme Health Insurance Company

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About ADD ADHD Medications—ADD Tip O the Day 584

Review of ADD ADHD Medications, Alternatives, and Issues

Over the next couple of months I plan to review medications for ADD ADHD, including alternatives,  This will be too basic and repetitive for some of you, so it will be every other post or so and the posts will include some other interesting stuff. Hopefully we’ll get some comments, elaboration and discussion,  some agreeing and some not so much.

The Anti- medication Faction

Some people don’t like to take any medications, some people just not for ADD ADHD. Some people don’t want to take stimulant medications.  Some people don’t vaccinate their children.  This is all generally due to a combination of a lack of information, possession of wrong information, and misunderstanding of information.

XXXXXXX XXXXX XX XXXXXX. I would like to be able respect everyone’s right to their opinions  without getting sarcastic. That’s why I just blocked out that sentence.  Admirable for someone with the impulsivity and poor social judgment of ADD ADHD.

Everyone Is Unique

Medications are extremely helpful to some people, sometimes a life-changing miracle. They’re somewhat helpful to some.   For some people, they’re either ineffective or have troubling side effects. In my opinion, medication is certainly worth a try to see how it will work or not for you.

Every person is unique and there’s a trial and error calibrating process of finding the right medication, the right dose, and the right scheduling for each person.

Here’s the plan:

(I would appreciate your comments or suggestions about the plan and reserve the right to change it.)

1. Stimulant medications.-Ritalin  etc.

2. Non-stimulant medications.-Strattera, etc.

3. Alternatives to medications:

            A. Alternative substances. -fish oil, etc.

            B. Alternatives to any substances.-exercises, etc.

4. Side effects and other difficulties.-insomnia, etc.

                  (The ugly truth about side effects.)

5. Safety- cardiovascular risks, etc.

6. Myths, misconceptions, and misunderstandings.- Oh, my!, etc.


Quote O the Day:

‘Anyone who thinks he knows something just hasn’t caught on yet.’

St Paul     1 Corinthians 8:1-3


Myths about ADD ADHD

Meds vs Structure?

You are unique

ADD ADHD Medications are like cocaine and crystal meth

Bonus Tip O The Day:

from Homey – on coping with Overwhelmed

(You know about overwhelmed, don’t you?)

ADD ADHD,add,adhd,adult add,adult adhd,attention deficit,medicine,medication,medications,alternatives,drugs,insomnia,side effects,controversy,controrversies

Is the insomnia from ADD ADHD or from the medicine?





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To do list – Foto -for Priorities— Addendum to ADD Tip O the Day 583

ADD ADHD Tip O the Day 583.5

I couldn’t get the darn thing to print the image when I was doing the post on priorities.     Think I’ve figured it out now, again.

Technologically challenged!

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Messed up again!


Note to myself, because I’ll forget again:

1. In Picassa, can export to My Pictures.

2. In WordPress, double-click on the image to get the option to edit,  which is the icon of the little stubby pencil.


Make notes to myself where I can find them when I have to. Maybe need to make a note about where to find the note?


The post on priorities

Bryan’s book on confidence- today only

Bonus link:

homey on overdoing

Bonus Tip O the Day:

Sometimes good enough is good enough.



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Priorities and ADD ADHD: Incompatible? – – – ADD Tip O the Day 583


Setting priorities is an executive function and with ADD ADHD we tend to not be very good at it.

I sit here looking at a long to do list. Where do I start?

Do you see how this can lead to procrastination? Maybe I’ll just give up and play some computer games.

Homey’s great strategy:

“If I could only do one thing today, what would I do? That is your priority!”

My Efforts:

One of my strategies is to make a list of three off the long list, but – that requires prioritizing.

I can number the items one to whatever down the left-hand side of the list, based on how important they are. i.e. prioritizing. – I ask: What is the payoff for doing this task or the penalty for not?  How does the payoff correlate with the time and effort that would be involved?

If I  do the numbering quickly, don’t get bogged down in thinking, maybe the numbers  aren’t accurate but at least I’m starting to do something.

But what if I also put numbers down the right-hand side, indicating how pressing the thing is, depending on deadlines?

If a task has  a one on both sides,  it’s important and urgent, so that’s  a priority. But what if the deadline is tomorrow, a one, but it doesn’t seem very important? If it’s really not important, what if I don’t do it at all? Just cross it off? There’s plenty of other things still on the list.

If I get too caught up in this, will I just wind up stuck, paralyzed,doing nothing? Or will I drive myself crazy?

Sometimes it’s more about how important the task is and sometimes more about how urgent. Getting my taxes done is really, really important, but right now doesn’t seem very urgent (sometimes we work better at the last minute).  Getting this blog done is moderately important, a little urgent. But it’s what I’m doing.

My usual strategy:

My strategy is to just  get a feeling of importance and urgency and make a short list and just do it. Sometimes I just guess,  almost close my eyes and pick a task at random, just so I can start moving.  Eventually things get done.

Maybe you can offer a good strategy for handling this?  Please.


Bonus Tip O the Day:

If you open a bottle or jar, put the lid back on as soon as possible, preferably before trying to do anything else.

Bonus Tip O the Day # 2:

Do not set the bottle or jar down near the edge of a counter.

Note: these tips are from personal experience.

Bonus Links:

My Worst ADD ADHD Problem

Dr Marx ADD ADHD videos and posts

There's still a little controversy.

There’s still a little controversy.





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An Excess of Blessings From ADD ADHD – – – ADD Tip O the Day 582

Gifts, Benefits, and Blessings of ADD ADHD

Have exhausted this topic for a moment. Got lots of good comments on both sides of the question.  Thank you.

But –

I am overly blessed with the gifts of creativity and wide range of interests. There’s so much I want to do and I’m not good at setting priorities or saying no to myself.

I’m not feeling overwhelmed but overloaded.  Some sense of pressure, even since I “retired”. How did I ever find time to work?

To Do

Here’s what I’m trying to do, listed from daily to less often:

Quiet time (prayer, meditation, journaling, Bible), read the papers, exercise, emails, Spanish (duolingo), guitar,reading two books,cocktail hour with Martha, evening movie with Martha, helping teach AP psychology (lots of work, challenging, time-consuming, enjoyable), blog, write autobiography, marketing books, seeking locums jobs, church, errands and tasks and chores, Kairos prison ministry, Cruzada men’s group, PERA job,planning long trip, to say nothing of eating and trying to get enough sleep.

My days are only 24 hours long.

Give Something Up

That’s one strategy. I gave up chess several years ago. Now I’m giving up studying genetics. I’ve pared my email connections way down. There’s nothing else I want to drop, but then I didn’t really want to drop chess or genetics, either.

Strategies –Plug away, et. al.

Plug away is a strategy. I can only do what I can do. Try to watch priorities.

So much is attitude. If I can stay aware of what’s going on and just keep plugging away, it’s actually all fine.


I’m planning to do an intermittent series covering medications for ADD ADHD– to take them or not? stimulants. nonstimulants. alternatives.

Any suggestions are  very welcome.


Whine O the Day:

Some days it seems like half my time is spent trying to find things I’ve misplaced and the other half trying to find things someone has moved.

Bonus Links

Videos on ADD ADHD   I don’t watch  videos, but I would guess that these are good.

On the ADD ADHD gifts benefits controversy     one  two   three  four

On overloaded and overwhelmed    one   two three  four

Where does all the time go?
Where does all the time go?


Posted in add, ADD problems or symptoms, ADD strategies, adhd, ADHD problems, ADHD strategies, attitudes, controversies, dysfunctions, marriage, medication, stimulants | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 13 Comments

ADD ADHD As We Age: The Older Adult — ADD Tip O the Day 581

I didn’t discover I have ADD until I was 64.

Suddenly, a lot of things made sense – why I couldn’t make model airplanes as a kid, why I killed a pregnant Guppy fish, why I was always losing my keys, why I always carried a pocket full of index cards and an appointment book. I was using strategies that I didn’t realize were strategies cause I didn’t even realize there was a problem, but they made my life easier.

Medications, and the Elderly

I saw Dr. Evaldson,  the Santa Fe ADD ADHD expert. He confirmed my diagnosis but was a little reluctant to give me Ritalin because of my age.  But I was in good health so we tried a low dose.

The research doesn’t show any real danger of the stimulants – Ritalin (methylphenidate), Adderall, Vyvanse, Daytrana, amphetamines-especially in the absence of heart disease or hypertension. The antidepressants – Strattera, Wellbutrin- may be a little more problematic but we use them in the elderly.

Changes With Age

ADD ADHD by definition begins in childhood. Basically, we’re born with it, but it often doesn’t really show up in symptoms until we start school, or occasionally later.  8% of children have it. I was wrongly taught that we outgrow it in adolescence; we don’t. But due to some combination of maturing, learning strategies, and improved self-control,the symptoms become less noticeable, especially hyperactivity,and only 4% of adults meet the criteria for diagnosis, even though some of the brain abnormalities persist.

Does our ADD ADHD improve as we get older? Or does it become worse? How do we distinguish between the symptoms of normal aging versus ADD ADHD? I’m not sure there are good answers to these questions, but if the only symptoms are of memory or first appeared and old age, it is presumably not ADD ADHD.

In my little research of the net, there’s not a lot of information about this, and most of it comments that there’s not a lot of research about it.


It is clear that in making the diagnosis other medical problems (hypothyroidism, vitamin deficiency, dementia, etc.) need to be ruled out, but that’s true for younger people also.

I hope our viewing doctors will make some clarifying comments.


Definition of Old:                                                    

And it doesn't get better.  And tax season is going to sneak up on us.

And it doesn’t get better. And tax season is going to sneak up on us.

Anyone 10 years older than me.

Quote O the Day:

“White hair is a sign of wisdom, if you keep your mouth shut.”

Rant O the Day:

Actually, the stimulants may be less problematic for us than the benzodiazepines that so many of us are on.

Comment  O the Day – Three of the Bad Things About Getting Old:

1. Losing your vision

2. Losing your hearing

3. I can’t remember the third

The Links:

from Dr. Adler

Aging and ADHD

Attention Deficit Symptoms in Older People

Is It ADHD  Or  Aging?

ADHD in Older Adults

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Do We Really Need More Controversy About ADD ADHD Benefits and Gifts? — ADD ADHD Tip O the Day 580

Aaron Smith said it very well:

  • Aaron Smith

    Aaron Smith

    ADHD Achievement Strategist & Motivational Coach

    “Like everything else in life, it’s easy to paint ADHD with a broad brush. Saying it’s “all bad” or “all good,” if only life were that simple. ADHD can be your greatest asset and your Achilles heal. It’s not an “either or” question, it’s an “and both” way of being and relating to your various contextual environments. It’s what you do with your unique mind that makes all the difference, and how you perceive yourself. If we become overly negative, we lose sight of opportunities for growth. There are always ways to harness your ADHD and cultivate greater depths of insight into your mind. Let’s support each other and offer constructive narratives, uplifting strategies, helpful tips, etc. There’s already so much negative stuff out there in society, why not instead offer solutions. For every failure or scenario where someone has given up, there’s someone who has found improbable success through dedication, perseverance, and establishing a growth mindset. We need to learn from these individuals, and understand that their successes could be your own success with the right strategies, tools, systems of support, the right outlook, self-confidence, and persistence.”

    Right on, Aaron!

    May I proffer my opinions (Again)?

    1. Maybe there isn’t really a need for controversy. Clearly, ADD ADHD provides both benefits and detriments.

    2. What is the benefit in standing around shouting about the benefits? Maybe it helps sustain morale and encourages us to make the most of our strengths?

    3.What is the benefit of sitting around moaning about our deficiencies?   None.         And beating up on ourselves is destructive.

    4. But there is also no benefit in denying them. If we acknowledge our problems, then we can address them and come up with ways to cope with them, strategies that will make our lives better.

    5. Unfortunately, for me, the benefits, such as creativity, a wide range of interests, and the ability to hyperfocus (not under my control, sadly), are often overwhelmed by the detriments, such as distractibility, difficulty setting priorities, and procrastination.

    Conclusion: How to Live Well With ADD ADHD

    So, let’s be kind to ourselves, capitalize on our abilities, acknowledge our problems, and come up with strategies for them.



    Pete Quily’s wonderful list of 151 benefits of ADHD

    link for Aaron Smith

    Previous Posts on the Controversy:


    add,adhd,adult add,adult adhd,attention deficit,strategies,gifts,benefits,controversy,hyperfocus,staying on task,distractions,procrastination, creativity,controversy, controversies
    Enjoying one of my ADD ADHD gifts!




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It’s In the Cards – Another ADD ADHD Strategy — ADD Tip O the Day 579

New Year, new strategies, maybe the novelty helps

You may know that I’m a big fan of index cards.  My system of  colored cards I keep in my shirt pocket. I call that half my brain. The other half of my brain, I call Martha.

Scott has given me another use of index cards, and I really like it.

I got this strategy from Scott:

… one thing I’m trying is I have a pile of 3X5 cards with quotes I have collected on them. Each day or so I take the card from the top and put it on the bottom, revealing a new quote for the day. When I find something that works (and remember to do this) I sometimes write it down as if it were a quote and put it in the pile so I will run into it some day in the future. Sometimes that gets me started doing it again. Also, I don’t always put the old card on the bottom of the pile. If it is something I want to run into again sooner I will put it somewhere in the middle of the pile.

Mottoes, Tips, Strategies, Prompts, Quotes?

I keep the cards on my desk where they’re easily seen. I’m not sure what to call them. Recently I had a week of feeling pressured, overloaded and over whelmed, and that’s when I started using the cards.  They have helped.

Sample Cards

Focus on the positive.

Take it easy.

What does it matter?

Plug away.


We’ve learned that our brain can generate new brain cells. Yea! So maybe this is a third part of my brain.


Bonus Spanish verb O the day:

zumbar – to buzz, hum, flutter around

That’s kind of what I was doing.


ADD,ADHD,attention deficit,adult ADD,adult ADHD,New Year, strategy,strategies,card,cards,system,brain

A New Card Strategy


ADD,ADHD,attention deficit,adult ADD,adult ADHD,New Year, strategy,strategies,card,cards,system,brain


Bonus links:

save one hour a day – from julie

The Colored Card System

Using the Colored card System





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ADD ADHD and Goals-Can We Use Them? — ADD Tip O the Day 578

Goals are important, whether we have ADD ADHD or not

In prison ministry, we notice that many of the men do not have the concept of goals other than short term “I want this now”.

Goals help us with focus, planning and setting priorities, and motivation, all of which are issues with ADD ADHD.

Very short-term goals would include the to do lists, and we feel satisfaction when we get something done, which gives us more motivation to move on to the next thing.


When I list longer term goals, it’s useful to write down the steps I need to do to move towards them. This is  the concept of “small steps”, and also motivates me and helps me get moving.

My goal is to become a better guitar player, but my immediate step is to learn to play a G chord using my little finger. It’s hard.


My long-term goals need to be aligned with and reflect my values. I try to check them every six months and see if how I’m spending my time is congruent with those goals and if I’m making progress.  Again, under each goal. I list things I can do to move towards it.

Here is Scott’s great strategy from his comment:

I like to make a list of things that are important to me; Marriage, Work, Exercise, my Boat, dealing with ADD, etc., and then under each heading I write some things that I can do to help with that. Sometimes these are things I do once and they are done, like finishing a specific project. Sometimes they are ongoing things, like remembering to use specific strategies for dealing with my ADD. Then I put that list in a place, like on a wall, where I will see it on a regular basis, so it reminds me of those things that are important and what I can do to support those things in my life. Throughout the year I may update my list if I think of something appropriate, come up with a new strategy, or finish a project that is on the list. Sometimes I put a date next to a crossed out project and that allows me to see progress, but it isn’t a to-do list. It is more like a reminder of what I consider important and how I plan on achieving that.

Reasonable Goals

We ADDers tend to set goals that are impossible, always overestimating what we can do and being unable to assess how much time we have to do it in. This leads to demoralization, procrastination, stagnation, and inertia ( Is that a little repetitive?)


Set goals a little under what you can achieve. When you reach one, you can always cross it off and set a new goal (Does this sound a little un-American? Or just un-ADD?).

Some of my current goals include losing weight (but I hate to think of the steps that are involved), being a better husband, and producing quality blog posts.  We’ll see how it goes.


Bonus Thought:

Writing this, I realize I also tend to set too many goals – prioritizing is another ADD ADHD issue.

Bonus Links:

Homey has a different viewpoint on goals for ADD ADHD

Goals 1

Goals 2

Goals 3

ADD,ADHD,attention deficit,adult ADD,adult ADHD,benefits,gifts,controversy,controversies,add controversies,adhd controversies,hearing,auditory,auditory processing disorder,resolutions, goals

Goals: More New Year’s Resolutions


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A New ADD ADHD Strategy for the New Year — ADD Tip O the Day 577

Why a New ADD ADHD Strategy?

One of Puryear’s Principles of Human Behavior:

Once we finally find something that works, we quit doing it.

I have strategies that work, and make my life better, but sometimes I drift away from them.

Do We Need Novelty?

So, do we need to keep changing our strategies? I’m taking a little different approach to my desktop used envelope immediate to – do list. ( my DUEITL)

I turn the envelope long wise and put a line down the middle. On the right, I list the next 5 to 10 things I need to do. On the left, I list the next two or three things I’m going to do. When I get one done, I cross it off, and pull one over from the right to the left and cross it off on the right.

Obviously, as life goes on, I can keep adding things to the right, but never let the list on the left get over three.

So far, it seems to be helping.

dougADD,ADHD,attention deficit,adult ADD,adult ADHD,New Year,new strategies,to do list,to-do list,To do lists,to-do lists   ADD,ADHD,attention deficit,adult ADD,adult ADHD,New Year,new strategies,to do list,to-do list,To do lists,to-do lists







                                          To Do List, New format,              To Do List, New Format

                                                          Close Up

Bonus New Strategy:

If you noticed the list on the bottom left, that’s my early morning schedule, what I need to do when I first get up. Since my life has gotten a little disarranged, I keep forgetting to do the basic things, and so I write down the schedule – walk the dog,eat breakfast, brush my teeth, etc.   It helps, but you probably don’t need that.

More Links:

Bonnie Mincu’s new course on being productive

I Can’t Use Lists

Pete Quily on To Do Lists

How to Make Lists Work


Posted in add, ADD problems or symptoms, ADD strategies, adhd, ADHD problems, ADHD strategies, dysfunctions, organize, strategies | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

ADD ADHD and “Auditory Processing Disorder” —ADD Tip O the Day 576

ADD ADHD and trouble hearing

A fellow ADDer recently asked me if his difficulties in hearing were part of his ADD ADHD. He particularly has trouble in a crowded restaurant, hearing the person across from him.

I’d never thought about it. I  thought my trouble hearing was age. In a restaurant, I like to sit with my back to the wall, but thought that was just paranoia. Maybe it’spart of ADD ADHD? I’m interested and curious and want to know what’s going on. But maybe it has something to do with hearing? Less noise from behind me?

Auditory Processing Disorder

So I did a little research and came up with  auditory processing disorder (APD).  Apparently, like dyslexia, there is a correlation with ADD ADHD  (see links below, once you get there).


1. Do you have trouble with hearing? Do you think it’s part of your ADD ADHD?

2.  Are these things, like APD, a basic part of ADD ADHD, or do they just run together because we have various brain dysfunctions, not just one.

3. Currently, ADD ADHD is divided into three types, hyperactive, inattentive, combined. But are there actually many more varieties, coming from different genetic combinations and environmental exposures and manifesting different combinations of symptoms?

Requesting Your Comments:

Your opinions will be appreciated,valued and respected (even though I may totally disagree with them).


Quote O the Day:

“Old age is not a battle. Old age is a massacre.”

Philip Roth

Bonus Quote O the  Day:

“Respeto tu derecho de su opinions, aunque sonidos como los delerios de un hombre loco.”

My attempt at  an old Spanish saying

Totally Irrelevant  Thought O  the Day:

“APD also stands for Albuquerque Police Department.”

(- because I have the gift of creativity, which takes me off on all kinds of irrelevant nonproductive tangents, although it has some good effects also.)

Bonus Irrelevant Thought O the Day:

Couldn’t APD  as well be called CHS?

Oh, well.

Finally, Here Are the Links:



auditory processing disorder

auditory processing disorder 2


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It’s not too late for yet more New Year resolutions!


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Free ADD ADHD Training from Bonnie Mincu

free training clik here– free video, and webinar is tomorrow jan 8



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Oh! Is it here already?!!

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You Can Keep Your @#$##@@ Benefits! – – – ADD Tip O the Day 575

Different Opinions About the Benefits of ADD ADHD

Yes, we do have different opinions and viewpoints, not surprising, and I appreciate all the comments. And I respect all the opinions, but –

Here are my responses, from my viewpoint:

1. ADD ADHD gives us the gift of creativity

Yes, I believe we tend to be more creative, and I value my creativity. But it’s not that much of a benefit if I’m trying to create all kinds of things at one time and can’t get anything done.

2. ADD ADHD gives us a wide range of interests

Yes, but I’m interested in so many things that I find it hard to set priorities and learn anything in depth – “I know a little bit about a lot of things –” (song from before your time).  It’s hard to let anything go. Right now I’m into songwriting; and enjoying it, but think there will be very little return. And there are better uses of my time.

3. ADD ADHD helps us think outside the box.

Yes, that’s a gift, but sometimes I blurt out off-the-wall things, and often I find it hard to do things just the regular way, which might be the most efficient way,, which might be the reason that it’s the regular way.

4. ADD ADHD gives us compassion.

Well, maybe. Maybe any kind of chronic problem or handicap would give us compassion?  But I think if I’m too tied up and struggling to just get through the day, manage the hassles and sort out the problems I have caused for myself, I may not have much time, energy, or attention left over for compassion for anyone else’s problems; I may not notice them at all.

5. ADD ADHD gives us hyperfocus.

Yes, I love it when I can hyperfocus on something and be really productive – if it is on something that is in fact productive and not a tangent or waste of time, and if I can unconnect from it when necessary.



Sorry if the title was offensive.  Was that an example of impulsive blurting out poor judgement or a shrewd hyperfocused creative way to get your attention?

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 Review of ADD ADHD benefits posts and comments:

one two    

And here’s a copy of the discussion:

Responses to Benefits of ADD ADHD — ADD Tip O the Day 568


  1. I consider ADD a gift at least for me. It helps me see different perspectives, come up with twisty connections for things “Normal” people wouldn’t consider connected, helps me get interested in all sorts of cool things and see how other people can enjoy those things. I love it when I get hyperfocused on a project and dealing with ADD has helped me find yet one more reason I need to get regular exercise (that reason actually finally got me to exercise regularly!)
    Yes, dealing with the downside of ADD can be a pain. Going after every “shiny” thing keeps me from getting the things done that I care about. But I still manage to get a few things finished here and there and life goes on. I would never trade what I’ve been given with my ADD, problems and all, for being “normal”. I’m pretty spoiled though. I think my ADD helps in too many ways that the normal literature doesn’t seem to quantify.

  2. I agree – it’s not a gift. I’d much rather NOT have it or have the option, like you said, of returning it! But it is what it is. I guess thinking of it as a gift makes it less offensive and easier to swallow.


  3. The only time my ADHD is a gift is when I become microfocused on something that I actually need to get done! That rarely happens. Usually I microfocus on whatever shiny thing is most entertaining at the moment.

  4. D K Powell says:

    I can see both sides to this! I loved the quote at the end – that is so very me! The great thing about living in Bangladesh was that no one uses their given name – everyone is ‘brother’ or ‘aunty’ and so on. It made life very easy for me!

    I DO see my ADHD as a gift but that’s because it enables me to work at very high speed and have interests in many, many fascinating subject (several of which gave me a wonderfully varied career as a teacher and now come in useful to me as a freelance writer). I’m not unaware of my issues (ask my wife to find out ALL of them 😉 ) but overall if you could give me a pill to make it go away I wouldn’t take it. I love my ADHD – its the best present life/God/fate ever gave me 🙂

    • ken – thank you for showing the other side. I too like the hyper work when i can focus it and the varied interests when i can do anything with any of them instead of trying to ride off in all directions at once, and when I’m not trying to schedule 36 hours of stuff to do into 12 hours of wake time and when I can prioritize the ones that will pay off, but I wonder if my issues don’t outweigh my benefits. I’m not sure, I also like the creativity.
      So if the pill took away the ADD, would it also take away all the good things? Probably?
      I think I would take it.
      however, that is not an option because there is no such pill, so I’m happy with the Ritalin. That helps me focus enough to get some things done and doesn’t take away anything, and helps me focus enough to use the strategies to cope with the other stuff.
      Thank you for your insightful comment.

  5. Gail – I hope tomorrow will be much better. Just because we can cope and survive. I don’t think that makes it a gift? If my legs amputated, and I learned to walk on a prosthesis, does that make the amputation a gift?
    But, on the other hand, I agree, there are a lot of things much worse than ADD ADHD, so we can be grateful.
    Thank you for commenting.

  6. Gail B says:

    Interesting concept. Not sure about ADHD being a gift. On the days when life does not go as planned, such as forgetting an important task, I am reminded (again and again) that I have to take extra measures to survive in the world. Perhaps ADHD is a gift when you actively participate in surving the common everyday events? But then, I know so many different people who have to adjust for something. I do feel fortunate at times that I can usually deal with life’s events by adding structure.

    Today was not one of the better days.

    After talking to a close friend about this whole gift thing and saying I would gladly lose my depression, she (who also struggles with depression even more than I do) said that the depression gives us compassion. I think that is true for ADD and all sorts of other things that we struggle with. A Priest once told me to be thankful for the things that go “wrong” as well as the things that go “right”. That is a very difficult one for me, but it really helps me to see that things do turn around and some things that seemed very “wrong” eventually turn and blossom in ways I could never have imagined. A crazy metaphor for this is I have been practicing running barefoot on gravel to help my running form (which has always been lousy) become smooth and learn not to pound. Who in their right mind would look for sharp gravel when barefoot? It has helped so much though! Go figure.
    Thank you Doug for a great blog!
    All the best,

    • Scott – thank you for great comments!
      Yes, I’ve seen many things that I thought were really bad turn out to have been blessings in disguise. Or at least to work out okay in the end. My ADD has not been one of those yet.
      Depression maybe teaches compassion, after it is over. Usually when we’re depressed, we are miserable and pretty much focused on ourselves and our misery, and not compassionate at all.
      barefoot on gravel?
      Wow! Good for you.
      Thank you for commenting.

    • Love the running on gravel example, Scott. I do agree that having ADD/ADHD (or anything difficult) helps us to be more compassionate. The people who don’t seem to have many issues don’t tend to be very understanding of those who do. I came across someone like that recently and was amazed at how little compassion she had.

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ADD ADHD and Eating Mangoes??? — ADD Tip O the Day 574

ADD ADHD and No Patience

I love mangoes but I rarely eat them.  Peeling a mango is a hassle.                                     Don’t we all want instant gratification with minimal effort?

A Revelation

Then I had a miraculous spectacular stupendous revelation.                                                   And now I know how to peel mangoes the right way.

How to peel a mango


Who told you you have to peel mangoes? 

Don’t do it.

Just wash the fruit and take a bite out of it.  Ummm, delicious!

I spit out the peel or else I swallow it without chewing it..

Actually, you can eat the peel; it has a good mangoey flavor, but it’s a little bitter.

What In The World Does This Have To Do With ADD ADHD, You May Be Asking?

First, it involves identifying a problem.  In this case, two problems:

         1) I don’t eat enough mangoes –  because  –    2) they’re too hard to peel.

But I don’t have to accept that this is just the way life is; No, it’s a problem.

Second, once we identify something as a problem, we can come up with a strategy.

I believe that every problem has a solution, or at least a strategy to help cope with it.

Our life can be better.

Start 2015 off right, enjoying your mangoes.


Bonus Tip O the Day :

It’s also fine to eat sweet potato skins- has vitamins and roughage, saves peeling and waste, and they’re not bitter.

Bonus Links O the Day:

Have an organized 2015

Dr Mason’s Secret about ADD ADHD

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Two Mangoes, Unpeeled




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Two Mangoes, Close-up

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Goals, Self Abuse, and ADD ADHD– – – ADD Tip O the Day 573

New Year’s Goals

At the beginning of a new year, we often yield to the temptation to set new goals. We did this last year, and the year before, but we don’t seem to learn. How did that work out for you?

Actually, it can be helpful to set goals, especially if we have ADD ADHD.                           Here are some strategies to help make it helpful.


Set reasonable goals.  (When you finally meet a goal, you can always set a new one.)

Think small steps.

Encourage and reward yourself.

Expect setbacks and have a plan for them.

Do not beat yourself up, and stop that negative self talk.

Medications may help, or not.


Meeting Your Goals, from Maria

Meeting your goals Without Abusing Yourself,  from Kelli

Bonus Links:

Goals 1         Goals 2       Goals 3

Smalls Steps

Self Talk 1     Self Talk 2






      Time and the river keep flowing, no matter what you do.

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2014 in review: report on the blog from wordpress

The stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 25,000 times in 2014. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 9 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

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The ADD ADHD Year In Review –– – ADD Tip O the Day 572

Another Year with ADD ADHD

We are starting a new year, 2015 -I just thought I would remind you of that, since so many of us are chronologically challenged.

2014 has certainly been interesting:

ADD ADHD Bashing:

Esquire bashed ADD ADHD,  followed by the New York Times crusade against us and against medication to help us.  Esquire   NYT 1     NYT2

Actually, I’m  overly sensitive (another ADD ADHD trait?) – some of this was bashing but some of it was just silliness.

ADD ADHD controversies: 

Does ADD ADHD even exist? – Well,  scientific evidence continues accumulating that shows our brains are different.      Brain 1    Brain 2

Is ADD ADHD a disease? A disorder? A syndrome? A normal variation? –  I was surprised to find that there is no clear, coherent accepted definition of “disease”.                    Disorder?  Disorder 2?

Should children be treated for ADD ADHD?  –  Or should we just stand by and watch their lives go down the toilet?   Treat?

Is it overdiagnosed or underdiagnosed? – I think both. I believe diagnosis should be made carefully by a qualified professional.  Evaluation        Qualified

Is ADD ADHD a gift? Do the benefits outweigh the problems?-  We have a higher incidence of depression, anxiety, substance abuse, arrest, school dropout, job problems, and divorce.  And daily hassles. The benefits would have to be pretty heavy.               Benefits  Controversies

The blog:

The blog was named the number one ADHD blog of 2014  by psychcentral!       clik

(I was astonished, thrilled, and very grateful.)

We’ve had over 55,000 hits from all over the world.

Lots of comments –I love comments!                                                                                       Homey is the top contributor and has been a great asset to the blog. Thanks, Homey!   Homey

Also thanks to Scott, DK  and all the commenters.  You add so much!

Favorite post:  Lisa’s beautiful description of life with ADD ADHD keeps  pulling them in. Lisa 1   Lisa 2     Lisa 3

The books:

The books have sold nearly 19,000 copies so far, and there’s been lots of feedback from people who have found them helpful.  Again, I’m astonished, thrilled, and very grateful.

You’re Life Can Be Better              Living Daily with Adult ADD ADHD

New Strategies:

This isn’t new,  but with moving, I’ve realized again just how important structure is. structure

I’ve added several new strategies this year; may make another blog on this.            strategies


2014 has had its good points and it’s not so much.                                                                     I’m looking forward to 2015, and wishing the very best to all of you.

Thank you for all your interest and support.  (And comments.)


Interesting Image




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Christmas and ADD ADHD — ADD Tip O the Day 571

ADD,ADHD,attention deficit,adult ADD,adult ADHD, gifts of ADD,gifts of ADHD,benefits of ADD, ADHD, benefits, positive attitude, ADD and depression, depression, and ADHD

We are blessed with an abundance. El Castillo dessert table.

May each of you have a blessed Christmas – and if Christmas is not your holiday, I still pray you have a blessed Christmas day anyway and also your own holiday days.

This is a good time to reflect on our blessings (though some of us don’t consider  our ADD ADHD among them).

Actually, reflecting on our blessings is a good strategy throughout the year.  It helps keep things in focus and is a good antidepressant.

Bonus Link:

great new free little easy ADD ADHD book -highly recommmended!  a gift

Nonsense O the Day:

This post has been checked for political correctness (by me).


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The Gifts and Benefits of ADD ADHD, Again – ADD Tip O the Day 570

Different viewpoints

Many of you do see ADD ADHD as a gift, and you focus on the benefits. I think focusing on the positives is a good strategy. I guess I take the positives for granted and focus on trying to find strategies to help cope with the negatives.  Or at least I try to focus.

from Scott:

“I consider ADD a gift at least for me. It helps me see different perspectives, come up with twisty connections for things “Normal” people wouldn’t consider connected, helps me get interested in all sorts of cool things and see how other people can enjoy those things. I love it when I get hyperfocused on a project and dealing with ADD has helped me find yet one more reason I need to get regular exercise”

from Homey:

“I agree – it’s not a gift. I’d much rather NOT have it or have the option, like you said, of returning it! But it is what it is. I guess thinking of it as a gift makes it less offensive and easier to swallow.”

from Livelife:

“The only time my ADHD is a gift is when I become microfocused on something that I actually need to get done! That rarely happens. Usually I microfocus on whatever shiny thing is most entertaining at the moment.”

from D K powell:

“I DO see my ADHD as a gift but that’s because it enables me to work at very high speed and have interests in many, many fascinating subject (several of which gave me a wonderfully varied career as a teacher…….if you could give me a pill to make it go away I wouldn’t take it. I love my ADHD – its the best present life/God/fate ever gave me :)”

from Gail:

“… Not sure about ADHD being a gift. On the days when life does not go as planned, such as forgetting an important task, I am reminded (again and again) that I have to take extra measures to survive in the world. Perhaps ADHD is a gift when you actively participate in surving the common everyday events?”

from Sarah-louise:

“… gifts are supposed to be nice surprises. it’s not a gift when you have to find good out of something with is a problem most of the time.”

from me: the gifts include creativity, wide range of interest, ability to hyperfocus, thinking outside the box, and not always being constrained to act like other people do.

I hope to comment a little bit more on these gifts next time.



Question O the Day:

Are there two sides to the question of whether there are two sides to every question?

The original post: Benefits of ADD ADHD

ADD,ADHD,attention deficit,adult ADD,adult ADHD, gifts of ADD,gifts of ADHD,benefits of ADD, ADHD, benefits, controversies, opinions

Why I have trouble keeping up with the blogs.

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More ADD ADHD Strategy— ADD Tip O the Day 569

No willpower with ADD ADHD

We’re moved into our new place, love it! Still unpacking (don’t love that).

One problem – the food. It’s terrific. I’ve gained pounds. There’s a choice of four desserts, and at least one of them is chocolate.  Have I ever written about a lack of willpower?         As in none?

I don’t know if the weight  problem is more due to the delicious entrees or to the ice cream after the third helping of desert.  But when they serve pecan pie and tiramasu on the same menu, and offer unlimited mint chocolate chip ice cream, what’s a guy sposed to do?

Strategy – the grateful notebook

I keep a “grateful” notebook by my bedside, and every night record several things I’m grateful for. This practice is a good antidepressant  and helps me stay aware. I also record my weight (ugh!) and the routine things I’ve accomplished for the day – E,S,G – for exercise, Spanish, guitar.  This helps me keep track of what’s happening and to be responsible, and is also a reward, positive reinforcement.

New strategy – D

Now I have a new rule – only one dessert and only one scoop of ice cream.  Now each night I record “D” and the number of desserts. Later I may cut down further on the deserts and ice cream but “small steps” is one of the keys to success.


Four posts on willpower

one   two   three   four

Two on ADD ADHD and weight

one    two

Quote O the Day

“Too much is never enough.”    Old Texas saying

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El Castillo dessert table.

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One of the gifts of ADD ADHD.








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Benefits of ADD ADHD — ADD Tip O the Day 568

ADD ADHD as a gift?

Christmas makes us think of gifts, hopefully among other things, and that reminds me of those who write about enjoying the gift of ADD ADHD.

Yes, we do tend to be creative, think outside the box, be able to multiple task, and have exciting lives – if you call jumping from catastrophe to catastrophe exciting.

And I do appreciate those aspects, but in honesty, if my ADD ADHD is a gift, I would like to know where I could return it.

Here is an example from a book blurb:

Making ADHD a Gift advocates that individuals with ADHD use their disorder to maximize attention span, improve social skills, harness impulsivity, and turn hyperactivity into periods of extreme productivity

Personally, I do enjoy the occasional hyper productivity, especially when it is  on something that is in fact productive, but I don’t understand how I can use my weaknesses to improve my weaknesses.??  But, I haven’t read the book.

Research from the net:

I did a little research on ADD ADHD being a gift, and most of it seems to be saying to realize and utilize your strengths, don’t think of yourself as a loser and a victim, and when you recognize the problems your ADD ADHD  is causing you, come up with strategies to cope with them rather than being destroyed by them. Nothing there I would disagree with, except the original concept of the gift.

Being positive about ADD ADHD

So to me, when I recognize my ADD ADHD problems, I’m not being negative, I’m being positive, because then I can come up with strategies for them. And still appreciate and use my strengths, and find the kind of job or activities that are best suited for me.


from Edwin Brodin – 4 surprising benefits of having ADD ADHD

Bonus links:

I decided not to include them, because overall, they didn’t make much sense to me. Sorry.

Question o the Day:

What is your position on this question?  Are you grateful for your gift of ADD ADHD?     Do you acknowledge the problems so you can cope with them?

But I'll never forget your face!  I won't be able to put it into context, or know how i know you.... what did you say you name was, again?

Is this a gift?



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Dyslexia and ADD ADHD – – – ADD Tip O the Day 567

ADD ADHD and dyslexia run together

I’ve just finished reading a very interesting book on dyslexia.

The author, a prize winning poet!,  talks extensively about his life long experience with dyslexia. It is heart rending. but when I read it, so much of it is familiar – he never mentions ADD ADHD, but I wonder if he has both.  We know that they often run together.

Or could it just be that the long-term consequences of both– shame, depression, lack of confidence, etc. -are so similar?

Both ADD ADHD and dyslexia have demonstrated brain “abnormalities”, but  not the same ones.

Questions of the day:

1. Do you have dyslexia too?

2. What do you make of all this?

The book would be educational reading for anyone who wonders what it is like living with ADD ADHD.

My Dyslexia

Whine O the Day:

As if ADD ADHD weren’t enough.


Bonus Links:

More on dyslexia

ADD ADHD and reading

more on reading



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Have You Heard? Christmas Is Coming! — ADD Tip O the Day 566

Not this time, ADD!

With my ADD ADHD, Christmas usually sneaks up on me and I’m rushing to try to find a gift for my wife.  But this time I’m ahead.  Why, it’s two whole weeks away, and I’m already thinking about it!

The  ADD trap and the red flag

Actually, with ADD ADHD, everything sneaks up on me.  It’s a red flag when I hear myself thinking, “It’s two whole weeks.”  That seems like way far off but I need to realize it’s just around the corner or I’ll be in trouble, again. The red flag warns me of the trap.


Fortunately, Christmas falls late in the month, so every time I check my appointment book, there’s a chance I might see it – it’s circled in red.  And with ADD ADHD, I’ve needed to make the habit of checking the appointment book many time a day.

And the three month at a glance calendar on my wall also shows the 25th in red. And I need to look at it frequently too.

And “Christmas present” is on my to do list for today (of course, it was on yesterday’s list too.)

So hopefully this will work and my marriage will stay safe.

ADD ADHD and time

This is a major problem.  Why??  It doesn’t seem to be just due to lack of focus.              Need lots of strategies to cope with this.


bonus links:

Homey’s approach to special days

ADD and time

Getting there on time


add,adhd,adult add,adult adhd,attention deficit,strategies,strategy,time,procrastination,marriage

Oh! Is it here already?!!


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Another Way to Structure for ADD ADHD – ADD Tip O the Day 565

Missing Posts

Just got back from  Houston seeing our daughter win a big award. Just got moved into our new apartment, lost my travel computer in the process. (Also lost my house keys on the trip). Could not get organized to do a post on the trip.

Unstructured (Disstructured?)

The move has me totally messed up, but now that we’re in it’s time to reorganize. Here’s one strategy:

add,adhd,adult add,adult adhd,attention deficit,strategies,schedule,structure,strategy,disorganization

A weekly schedule.




I want to keep up with my blogging, marketing, guitar, Spanish, etc.– and I sure haven’t been. With this schedule, each day I have one or two things that I specifically devote time to. When I have done them, then I will do other things. By the end of the week, each of those actions will have been addressed at least once.

, for example – I’m determined to do some writing each Thursday. That doesn’t mean I won’t do it other days also, but I will get some writing done on Thursday for sure.


This provides  structure and cuts down on having to decide what to do.  It’s time to get back on track – I’m tired of floundering around.


Did I mention that our daughter won an award?

ADD,ADHD,adult ADD,adult ADHD,attention deficit,

Greater Houston Women’s Hall Of Fame



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ADHD “Natural Fix” Letters to the Editor; and ADD ADHD Brains— ADD Tips O the Day 564

Dr. Marx posted the letters to the editor about the sensational NYT article “The Natural Fix” for ADHD.

I was surprised that they’re so positive. And from some apparently credentialed people. And there wasn’t a single negative one.

Very surprised.

Am I once again just being too suspicious?

Here’s the letters

My comment on the article

What do you think???

I promised to provide summaries of the studies I quoted:

The  brain has two systems, one is on when our brain is resting, and another when we are focusing on something. When one of them is on, the other is supposed to be off.  But in us ADDers, they both stay on all the time. We are pressing the accelerator and the brakes at the same time. And that persists even in people who appear to have outgrown their ADD ADHD.

Also our brains have fewer dopamine receptors in the reward network, which suggests it would take something extra intense to satisfy us.

Our brains are different.

Yes, Virginia, ADD ADHD exists.

The quotes from the studies are here


Bonus link-“Does ADHD Exist?”

Bonus Bonus link – ” The brain in ADD ADHD” -about basal ganglia

Bonus factoid:

People who have two long versions of a dopamine receptor gene are more likely to have ADD ADHD. This is a new concept to me and I haven’t digested it yet.

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This makes everything clear now, right?     Right?


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Happy ADD ADHD Thanksgiving – – – ADD Tip O the Day 563

Challenging Occasions

Thanksgiving can be particularly challenging for those of us with ADD ADHD                  (but then, so can any day).


Adjust as fits if you are the host/hostess or if you are a guest.           Check all that apply

1. Didn’t burn the turkey nor serve it still partly frozen.

2. Didn’t spill all the gravy on the rug.

3. While “helping” with the dishes, didn’t break more than one.

4. Didn’t inadvertently insult the host or hostess or a distinguished guest.

5. Didn’t drink way too much, or if you did, did not barf in a conspicuous place or require much help to get to your bed or car.

6. Didn’t tell  more than one grossly inappropriate joke or sing more than one unrequested song.

7. Your significant other has not requested a separation or divorce – yet.

8. miscellaneous – you did not break any furniture, get into any fistfights,  set fire to anything, pull the tablecloth and dishes off the table, arrive more than one hour late or at the wrong house or give erroneous directions to incoming guests.

Test results

If you scored four or more checks, congratulate yourself – you successfully got through another  Thanksgiving (successfully for someone with ADD ADHD).

Happy Thanksgiving!


We are especially thankful that we are moved into our new digs. Hallelujah!

bonus links



blurting out

ADD ADHD and relationships

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Well, but you are creative!



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Moving with ADD ADHD – – – ADD Tip O the Day 562

Are we having fun yet?

Nothing tests a marriage quite like moving. Probably even more so with ADD ADHD.


1. Recognize that your life is in turmoil. Your structure is gone. Your schedule is in disarray. You will barely be able to function at all.                                                                   Your job right now is moving.

2. Recognize that she is very stressed; don’t take it personally.

3. Get all the help you can.

4. Remind yourself, this too shall pass.

5. Try to maintain the practices that help you cope with stress: my quiet time, exercise, the little Blue Book.

6. Perhaps this will prove to have been an opportunity to take a look at things, restructure, reorganize and reprioritize, and perhaps something better will evolve out of it.                    Or perhaps it will just prove to have been a major pain in the neck.


Bonus Links:

Structure in ADD ADHD

Relationships and ADD ADHD

The Blue Book


Sometimes it all just seems a little too much.

Sometimes it all just seems a little too much.

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Stimulants for Children with ADD ADHD? – – – ADD Tip O the Day 561

New report on stimulants for children with ADD ADHD

It depends on how you spin it :

The headline:

Increased risk of cardiovascular events in children on stimulants – Wow! Bad!

Makes a sensational headline.

111 children out of 714,258 had events.  The events were dose-related.                                     It doesn’t mention deaths; that might suggest there were none.  I don’t know.

That’s .01554 % if my calculations are correct.

I would like to see a study of the risks of water, or carrots ( I’m sure some children have choked on carrots), or exercise.

Reevaluation of risks

Dr. Mason on side effects of exercise


Bonus links:

Homey’s grocery list

Kiera on organizing, candy and grocery lists

Is Ritalin safe?

Studies on the safety of stimulant medicines 

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Do what’s best for the children.


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A Startling Thing From The NYT Natural Fix ADHD Article – – – ADD Tip O the Day 560

From the NYT sensational article on ADD ADHD

This is the thing that startled me:

Psychostimulants like Adderall and Ritalin help by blocking the transport of dopamine back into neurons, thus increasing its level in the brain.

I’d understood that the stimulants  work by increasing the release of dopamine and norepinephrine.

When I looked this up on the net, I found studies supporting both effects, including contradictory studies from Dr. Volkow.

What’s a poor boy to do?  I’m sure, or at least hopeful, that some of you out there can clear this up?


An excerpt:

Dr. Nora D. Volkow, a scientist who directs the National Institute on Drug Abuse, has studied the dopamine reward pathway in people with A.D.H.D. Using a PET scan, she and her colleagues compared the number of dopamine receptors in this brain region in a group of unmedicated adults with A.D.H.D. with a group of healthy controls. What she found was striking. The adults with A.D.H.D. had significantly fewer D2 and D3 receptors (two specific subtypes of dopamine receptors) in their reward circuits than did healthy controls. Furthermore, the lower the level of dopamine receptors was, the greater the subjects’ symptoms of inattention.

Yes, we are little different aren’t we?

More studies: 

If you don’t want to wade through these, I’ll summarize them in another post.

Aaron T. Mattfeld, a neuroscientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, now at Florida International University in Miami, compared the brain function with resting-state M.R.I.s of three groups of adults: those whose childhood A.D.H.D persisted into adulthood; those whose had remitted; and a control group who never had a diagnosis of it. Normally, when someone is unfocused and at rest, there is synchrony of activity in brain regions known as the default mode network, which is typically more active during rest than during performance of a task. (In contrast, these brain regions in people with A.D.H.D. appear functionally disconnected from each other.) Dr. Mattfeld found that adults who had had A.D.H.D as children but no longer had it as adults had a restoration of the normal synchrony pattern, so their brains looked just like those of people who had never had it.

But from MIT

In people without it, when the default mode network is active, another network, called the task-positive network, is inhibited. When the brain is focusing, the task-positive network takes over and quiets the default mode network. This reciprocal relationship is necessary in order to focus.

Both groups of adult A.D.H.D. patients, including those who had recovered, displayed simultaneous activation of both networks, as if the two regions were out of step, working at cross-purposes. Thus, adults who lost most of their symptoms did not have entirely normal brain activity.

So, if we lose most of our symptoms, like in a perfect work or  school environment, our brains still function differently.

The NYT article – What??  You haven’t read it yet?!


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We can all use a little help.

Bonus Links:

The NYT War On Ritalin

Ritalin – cons and pros

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The Natural Fix For ADD ADHD Revealed At Last —ADD Tip o the Day 559

From the sensational new New York Times article:

I promised to reveal “the natural fix for ADHD.”

So, here it comes.

Both parts.

Part A:

Adults should find a job that is suitable for them!

But wait, there’s more!

Part B :

Here it comes – wait for it. – Wait for it. – Wait for it. –

Schools should adjust to fit children’s needs!

Let me repeat that.  Schools should adjust to fit children’s needs.

Wow! Who’d a thought it?!  What a novel concept! Bet you didn’t see that one coming!

Yes, kids will do better in a school that fits their needs. But they’ll still forget their homework, unless there’s no homework. They’ll still blurt out.  Fidget. Daydream. Have trouble getting along with other kids. Lose their pencils, and their gloves, and their hats. Etc.

Point being, if the environment is just right, kids and adults will have less trouble from their symptoms, and they’ll have maximum opportunity to excel, but they’ll still have   ADD ADHD, won’t they?

But there’s still  more to say about this  article.

One thing startled me, about the stimulants.

And there’s some interesting science; may I even say, nuggets, hidden in the BS.

More next time.


Bonus links

Mike’s comment on my comment

Science or hash?

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