Here’s the kind of creepy thing about ADHD. It follows you everywhere you go.

You could be at work, doing chores, relaxing and having a conversation with someone – and then, you notice, there’s ADHD.

FollowingIn fact, when you notice the same symptoms causing you problems in different parts of your life, that’s one of the telltale signs that you’ve got more than just everyday distractibility going on.

It can be a little eerie to watch the same patterns play themselves out in every aspect of your life.

There’s that aha moment when you realize that your work, your domestic chores and the projects you do for fun in your free time all go unfinished (or haphazardly finished) for the same reason.

Or, it occurs to you that your boss, your friends and your partner all have the same complaint about you not listening when they talk to you.

Maybe you also see that the same way of being in the world that makes you so resistant to sitting still and doing work for extended periods of time is also the reason that household tasks get put off in favor of seeking out more stimulating activities, or that you have trouble sitting still and reading a book in your spare time.

It’s these sort of patterns that might first draw your attention to the existence of ADHD as a “thing.” Even if you don’t yet have a name for what ADHD is, you start to sense that there’s a common theme tying together problems in disparate parts of your life. A theme that involves distractibility, impatience, lack of motivation, disorganization and underachievement.

That’s what can make finally getting an ADHD diagnosis – or even just finding out what ADHD is – such a lightning bolt of insight. Suddenly, you have a name for this phenomenon, this thing that has been following you no matter where you go.

And having a name is the first step to figuring out how to coexist with it more peacefully. After all, if it’s going to be with you wherever you go, you might as well try to get along with it.

Image: Flickr/anjan58