How can you find your ADD/ADHD strengths and hone them into a valuable tool set?
Many with ADD/ADHD would say that life is a constant struggle, and the thought of finding strengths within their limitations feels like a futile endeavor.
In our world today, we are constantly pulled down, degraded, and defined by the boxes and titles that society puts on us.
To be “normal,” we need to fit the mold. If we don’t fit within the confines of that box, we think that our opportunities for success lessen.
Does it have to be this way? Is there a way for those with ADD/ADHD to rise above the titles and boxes?
The answer is a resounding yes!
Expert David Giwerc has this to say: “…Based on over fifteen years of coaching people with ADHD –families, professionals, executives, entrepreneurs, filmmakers, etc. — I have consistently observed: People with ADHD improve their chances for success, as they define it, by focusing on their natural talents – the ones that consistently yield excellent performance.”
How can those with ADHD and their loved ones focus on and find their natural talents?
First, simply identify what makes you happy.
What do you tend to think about during the day?
When your mind wanders, notice: where does it go? Once you identify that, it is easier to see what you find engaging, and where your passions lie. The things that you are able to maintain interest in are likely closely tied with your strengths – so what are they?
If you’re still struggling to find your natural talents, ask other people!
It often can be difficult for us to see our own strengths, whether or not we struggle with ADD/ADHD.
Chances are, your mom/dad, grandparents, best friend, etc. can give you a clearer picture of what they see you finding joy in.
Many people with ADD/ADHD excel at:
- Hyperfocus. Surprisingly, when you are doing something you love, you’re hyperfocused on it. Therefore, you see details and understand the inner workings of your passion in a way that many do not.
- Intuition. It may seem normal to you, but not everyone has as strong a sense of intuition as someone with ADD/ADHD does. Coupled with a strong intuition is usually a strong sense of fairness and genuine compassion.
- Energy. Being high energy makes it easy for people to follow your lead. Combine your high energy with the hyperfocus of your interests and you exude the traits of a natural leader.
- Creativity. Many people with ADD/ADHD are incredibly creative in their specialized fields. Chances are, you are too – you just need to recognize it!
What do I do once I find my Strengths?
An excerpt from a Huffington Post article had this to say: “In one experiment led by psychologist Martin Seligman, people who identified their strengths were temporarily happier and less depressed, but the changes didn’t last. Only those who identified their strengths and then actively used them achieved sustainable psychological gains: over the next six months, they were significantly happier and less depressed.”
Remember: just because you have ADD/ADHD does not mean that your strengths are less valuable than someone else’s.
In fact, your ADD/ADHD might just make your strengths that much more pronounced.