I have ADHD - and I have lived with this every day of my life since junior / primary school. As an Adult ADHDer, it’s only now, nearly 5 years after my ‘clinical diagnosis’ that I feel I can say I have ADHD. I’ve preferred to keep it a secret.

I’ve wanted to avoid negative stereotypes

We automatically attach labels to people we know and interact with - we do this so we can understand the world we live.  Labels can be good like ‘cool guy’, know-it-all, easy-going, motivated, caring - around the office we use lables to stereotype and pigeon-hole our colleagues.

Stereotypes become ’negative’ when combined with another label - inattentive, motor-mouth, hyper-active, ‘micro-manager’, task-focused - all have different meanings when you ADHD to these labels.

So I didn’t want people too know. I didn’t want my professional life to be affected by ADHD. And yes, I also thought that people would react negatively or try to treat me different.

That’s that.

Funny thing is, I’m in more control of my life now. When I wake up, I take my medication and by the time I leave home I feel human. Actually I’m better professionally now then I have been. Sure, my brain still leaps between ideas faster then you can possibly understand. I can switch from on task to another in a fraction of a second and I can walk out of a room and back having forgotten what I was going to do. BUT - I can sit down and do stuff. I can concentrate more, I write better, I think in detail better and I find the method in the madness.

Tags: ADHD, Health

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Damien Saunders
An experienced management consultant and business leader interested in digital transformation, product centred design and scaled agile. If I'm not writing about living with UCTD (an autoimmune disease), I'm probably listening to music, reading a book or learning more about wine.
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