One of the biggest issues that we with ADHD have to deal with is distraction.
Distraction, it is thought, begins with something attracting our attention.
Attraction and distraction are really the same thing. They are antonyms that, in our case, result in the same situation.
But, I see I’ve become distracted from what I was talking about.
I’m getting there … hang on. Distractions come in many forms, the TV screen that you accidentally sat down facing in the restaurant on that first date, that’s a distraction.
And even though you want to talk to the person you came with, possibly more than anything in the world, the damned stuff on that screen will only be there for a few seconds and if you don’t watch it now it will be gone.
So, I guess what I’m saying here is that you should choose your seat carefully when you go out.
No, sorry, I got distracted again. I’m trying to get to the point of the post and that point is my imagination.
But it is actually distraction as well.
If you put a form in front of me and ask me to fill it out, I’m going to be hard pressed to just put my head down and do that. Anything and everything in my immediate area is going to distract me.
After sixty years of living with ADHD I’ve figured that out. I let my mind wander a bit, but try to keep the original job in mind so that I’ll come back to it.
If I try to keep focused on something like filling out a form, I will simply start to read a line in order to determine what is required of me and then my mind will skip off the track and I’ll have to start that line again.
And again. And again. And again …
Now you’re thinking …
Put me in an empty room, blank walls, one table, one chair, one pen, one form, no windows, door behind me …
That will not work. Well, it won’t work any better than any other thing.
Because there is still a window in that room, it’s in my mind. I will start to wonder about how the table is put together, whether the table and chair match, are they wood, metal, a combination? What make is the pen? Is it new or has someone else had it in their hands, possibly in their mouth? (My pens spend lots of time in my mouth, fair warning if you’re borrowing one from me.)
I’ll look behind me to check the door every time I hear a sound, or think I hear one.
And when I have exhausted those distractions, I’ll leave the room.
Well, I’ll leave it in my mind. I’ll be staring at the place where the wall meets the ceiling and I’ll be in some meadow miles away or in a curling rink throwing perfect rocks, or on the bay in my kayak, or watching a movie, singing a song, imagining being out with a good friend …
I can be distracted so easily.
And I don’t need any help.
I have ADHD.
And an imagination.