How to turn your ADHD symptoms into positive traits

Share on facebook
Share on google
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin

Sometimes it’s easy to get hung up on the negativities that come with having ADHD.  Some seeing it as a hindrance.  A condition that holds us back or causes disruption in life.  When actually, once we get on top of managing our symptoms, triggers and cofactors, our ADHD traits shine through, bringing a variety of positive and valuable benefits.  

Not convinced?  Don’t forget the likes of Sir Richard Branson and these celebrities have all used these powerful traits to their advantage and used the gifts they’ve been given.

Our unique personalities make us who we are.  We’re spontaneous, caring, energetic and creative people.  So rather than thinking of your symptoms negatively, look for the positives.  Here are a few ways of how you could turn your ADHD symptoms into positive traits.

BUT, remember that everyone is different and what works for one person, won’t necessarily work for another.  It’s about finding the way that works for you.

Impulsiveness

Impulsiveness is acting in a way without considering or thinking about what you’re saying or doing.  In ADHD, this could be interrupting others when they are talking, rushing through tasks and projects, and the most common, buying things without much thought whether it’s something you need or can use.

The disadvantages of impulsiveness

Whilst we may take chances, we can sometimes act too hastily, leading to regret.  You may find constant erratic behaviour can lead to feelings of instability.

The advantages of impulsiveness

The biggest benefit of being impulsive is having the confidence to take chances.  Where others may hold back, we’re out there living it.  We don’t waste time.  We jump at opportunities that come our way.  Impulsive people are also considered to be creative. 

How to manage impulsiveness

Acting on impulse can lead to wonderful things.  But it’s important to find the balance between taking a chance and regretting your decision.  Here are some ways to try to manage impulsiveness:

  • Being aware of what triggers you to act impulsive
  • Finding methods to take you away from the situation you are in to give you time
  • Finding alternative ways to react to your impulsive instincts
  • Trusting a family or friend to bounce ideas off of before making a decision

Hyperfocus

Hyperfocus happens when we become so focused on a particular task or project that we lose track of everything going on around us. 

The disadvantages of hyperfocusing

When we hyperfocus we can forget and ignore everything going on around us.  This can sometimes result in us spending too much time on something.  Leading to missed appointments, forgetting things and not getting other things done.

The advantages of hyperfocusing

Hyperfocus is an extraordinary gift.  It allows us to fully devote our attention onto something that interests us.  Whether it’s learning about a particular topic or working on a project.  Because it’s something we enjoy, we can easily throw ourselves completely into it.  Learning and absorbing as much information as we can.  And because it’s something that we find interesting, we’re less likely to procrastinate and can be more productive.

How to manage hyperfocus

Hyperfocus is about finding the right balance for you and setting your own boundaries.  Remember what works for one person may not work for another.  Here are a few things to try:

  • Workout what things you hyperfocus on so you can be aware of when you’re likely to become hyperfocused on something
  • Plan when you can hyperfocus.  Sometimes it’s easier said than done.  But by knowing what causes you to hyperfocus can help.  Avoid starting anything that causes you to hyperfocus before bedtime or when you need to rush off somewhere
  • Set timers and alarms or ask someone to come in or call you after a certain amount of time to break your concentration.  It may take some time to see results but by introducing the time limits, you’ll soon find you are more aware when you are hyperfocusing 
  • Set goals of what you want to achieve before you start.  Once you’ve then hit your goal, you may find it easier to then break away from the project

Fidgeting

Being unable to sit still and constantly fidgeting is a sign of hyperactivity and impulsiveness in ADHD.  Sometimes it can be a simple tapping of your foot, playing with a ring on your finger or tucking your hair behind your ear.  Just the need to be moving in some way.

The disadvantages of fidgeting

There’s nothing worse than being somewhere like a meeting, the cinema, an aeroplane or somewhere where you need to sit still but can’t.  But as soon as you start to fidget, it can cause others to feel uneasy or give the appearance that you’re bored and uninterested.

The advantages of fidgeting

Research shows that fidgeting actually helps to keep our brains stimulated and alert.  This means that when we fidget, our concentration levels actually increases.  

How to manage fidgeting

We can’t just make the need to fidget go away, and if it helps us to concentrate, why would we want to!  However, if it’s causing you to feel uncomfortable, you can learn to subtly change the way you fidget to something less noticeable and less distracting to you as well.

As with the other symptoms mentioned above, it’s important to first understand your fidgeting.  What makes you fidget, what do you do when you fidget, what breaks you away from fidgeting?

Understanding your triggers and what movements you are doing will help you to then change the cycle.  Now rather than naturally waiting for your fidgeting habit to start, you can create a new one.  Maybe you’re someone who normally starts jiggling your leg and tapping the floor during meetings.  By knowing what triggers you, you can change the habit to something more subtle.  Try something like rotating a pen around in your fingers.  Or twisting the ring around your finger.  Something more subtle but allows you to be able to fidget and keep your concentration. I love the spinner rings from HyggeMe.ukIf you’re ready to take control of your ADHD symptoms, you want to find ways to work with your ADHD rather than fighting against it, then why not book in for your assessment consultation.  Or if you want to find out more about how I could help you find tranquillity and harmony with your ADHD, contact me here.