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Who are you?

Good question, eh?

It’s Friday, and I’m busy. Nothing new in that, right?

It’s actually Black Friday though and, although I live in Canada and in a part of the country where crazy lineups at Walmart before they open are twelve people, I’m not impervious to the distraction this day brings.

I am, after all, the Man of Distraction! (You need to turn the echo and reverb on on your computer or phone when you read that part, it’s very exciting.)

But what is distraction really?

Good question. Why? Because distraction is subjective.

If I change focus from something I don’t care about to something I do care about, is that distraction? If I change focus from something I’m supposed to get finished to something that doesn’t need doing at all, is that distraction?

Circumstance gives context

If I’m working on something and I need a break, then doing something relaxing isn’t really a distraction, it’s a coping mechanism.

If I don’t return to what I’m supposed to be doing, then yes, I got distracted.

But more importantly …

If I’m working on something that is deemed important by others, but not so much by me, and I switch my focus knowingly to something I deem more important, is the view of others the criteria by which I am supposed to be considered distracted?

If it’s me that we’re talking about, I submit that I am only distracted if I perceive myself to be.

But don’t worry

There are plenty of occasions when I will be well aware that I have wandered off mentally. The bane of my existence is my constantly discovering where I am in relation to where I should be.

Distraction is the single most dominant problem for me and many others with ADHD.

The very definition …

… of ADHD is that we have trouble focusing our attention on single occupations to there completion. It is the thing that makes ADHD such an insidious disorder, the issue that makes it so huge a challenge for us.

And yes, I’m usually a positive person. I accept this disorder as the price of living this life and I love this life so it is a price I am willing to pay.

But here are my terms …

I will be the one to decide when I am distracted, and I may or may not tell anyone else that I am or am not distracted at any given time.

Since I am the one that has to deal with the ramifications of my distraction, physical and emotional ones, I will keep to myself the disposition of my distraction if I so choose.

And when I choose to share that I have been distracted, consider that this admission is a big thing for me.


We were supposed to be talking about you, right? You thought I got distracted? Well, maybe I did.

And if I’ve shared that I got distracted with you, you should understand that instead of feeling like I’m asking you to chastise me, you should feel that I’ve accepted you as a peer.

And you? You may consider yourself my ally, my confidant … you may call yourself, my friend.

Who are you?

Kelly Babcock

I was born in the city of Toronto in 1959, but moved when I was in my fourth year of life. I was raised and educated in a rural setting, growing up in a manner I like to refer to as free range. I live in an area where my family history stretches back 6 or more generations. I was diagnosed with ADHD at the age of 50 and have been both struggling with the new reality and using my discoveries to make my life better. I write two blogs here at Psych Central, one about having ADHD and one that is a daily positive affirmation that acts as an example of finding the good in as much of my life as I possibly can.

Find out more about me on my website: writeofway.

email me at ADHD Man

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APA Reference
Babcock, K. (2017). Who are you?. Psych Central. Retrieved on December 13, 2018, from


Last updated: 24 Nov 2017
Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 24 Nov 2017
Published on All rights reserved.