Overcoming Adult ADD/ADHD with Mindfulness

man feeling down 2Ever wondered if perhaps you – or your partner – could have Adult ADD/ADHD?

Here are some examples of what Adult ADD/ADHD looks like:

  • Trouble concentrating, easily distracted, thinking is fast/out of control
  • Shifts in energy from hyperactive to flat/fatigued (occur quickly and unpredictably)
  • Late, disorganized, forgetful, frustrated, overwhelmed, poor time management
  • May appear to others as lack of will power
  • High likelihood of overlap with another psychological disorder (anxiety or depression)
  • Overlook detail, zone out during conversation/interrupt, trouble completing tasks
  • Adult ADD sometimes results in compensatory ‘hyperfocus’
  • Forgetfulness, memory problems, losing things, generally disorganized
  • Spontaneous, addiction prone, recklessness, poor self-control
  • Easily stressed, doesn’t cope with frustration, temper and mood swings
  • Sense of underachievement, trouble staying motivated, craving excitement
  • Get bored easily, restlessness, risk-taking, trouble sitting still, multi-tasking
  • Performance problems at work, in sport and in relationships

ADD/ADHD can have a negative impact on every sphere of the individual’s life, from mental and physical health implications, to work life and therefore finances, to difficulties in personal relationships.

For example, adults with ADD/ADHD are likely to experience heightened stress and vulnerability to mental illness (eg depression, anxiety), substance abuse, addictive behaviour, low self-esteem and eating disorders. The individual’s career may be affected by these, or due to their poor time management and organisational skills.

Overcoming Adult ADD/ADHD with Mindfulness Techniques

Mindfulness is an approach which can be very effective in helping individuals with ADD/ADHD.

The aim of Mindfulness is to be present in the moment more often, and to observe our thoughts and how they affect our moment-to-moment focus.

Mindfulness exercises and mindfulness meditation have been shown to have a very positive effect on:

  • attention/concentration/focus,
  • self-awareness/reflection,
  • performance,
  • emotional wellbeing, and
  • pain management.

I utilize mindfulness-based techniques in my work as a sport and performance psychologist, as well as in my general psychology work and find it versatile and accessible to anyone. For adult ADD/ADHD it can improve concentration and attention faculties, and the emotional and social problems frequently associated with attentional difficulties.

Author: Abra Garfield, BPsych, MPsych (sport & exercise), MAPS; Medicare ATAPS provider.

To make an appointment with Abra Garfield try Online Booking – Loganholme or call M1 Psychology (Loganholme) on (07) 3067 9129.