Jim Livingstone

08 May 2024

ADHD with JIM LIVINGSTONE

Hello, and Welcome

G’day,

I struggled with undiagnosed ADHD for forty-six years, feeling like I didn’t fit in anywhere.

Since my ADHD diagnosis, I have spent the past twenty-six years reading, researching and testing every aspect of adult ADHD with the desire to become the very best version of myself.

Here are a few things I’ve learned along the way….

ADHD and DIAGNOSIS 101

Diagnosis can be a maze, to reduce cognitive load and enhance readability, here are the basic elements of getting an ADHD diagnosis

 NAVIGATING THE DIAGNOSIS PROCESS 

“ADHD means seeing the world differently. And that’s a strength”. 

Starting Points:

  – You’re undiagnosed? Start here.

  – If diagnosed, feel free to skip ahead.

Diagnosis can be complicated—let’s simplify it. It’s about learning your unique mind and improving life with that knowledge.

THE BENEFITS OF AN ADHD DIAGNOSIS

 Why get diagnosed? Here’s why it matters:

Validation: It’s about understanding your past struggles.

Treatment Access: Medication, therapy, life changes—all start here.

Self-Acceptance: Knowing your brain unlocks a more fulfilling life.

Discovering your ADHD is a journey of self-awareness and empowerment.

EXPLORING DIAGNOSIS OPTIONS 

Healthcare Professional Consult: Can take time but gives detailed understanding.

Self-Tests: Quick and private initial check.

 Remember, pros give depth, and self-tests give direction.

Adult ADHD Self-Report Scale (ASRS)

GETTING A MEDICAL DIAGNOSIS

 Start with your doctor, then a specialist. Here’s a game plan:

Prepare Your History: School, work records, and past feedback.

Research Providers: Check credentials, approaches, and patient reviews.

Ask Questions: Your concerns matter. Get clarity.

 A specialist will use standard criteria to understand you better.

 SELF-TESTING FOR ADHD

Why do it?

Insights and Direction: Begin unpacking your experiences.

But it’s just Step 1. It’s not a diagnosis.

 CHALLENGING THE NEUROTYPICAL SYSTEM

“ADHD adds colour to a monochrome world”.

 Our Mission:

  • Shift the view from “disorder” to “different.”
  •  Advocate for minds like ours.
  •  Celebrate and use our unique strengths.
  •  It’s about valuing diversity in how we think and work.
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10-Day Challenge

10-Day Self-Compassion Challenge

This challenge is simple: For the next ten days, stop beating yourself up and stop talking to yourself in a negative way. Don’t insult yourself. Don’t call yourself an idiot. Don’t blame yourself when you make a mistake. Instead, be kind to yourself.

Action:

Don’t worry about the small stuff. Most of the mistakes you make are not that big of a deal and certainly not a reason to disrespect” yourself. When you feel the urge to criticise yourself, pause for a second, then tell yourself that you’re doing okay. Encourage yourself to do a better job or learn a lesson when possible. To help, you can wear a rubber band around your wrist and snap it whenever you notice that you’re disrespecting yourself.

Source: Master Your Beliefs: A Practical Guide to Stop Doubting Yourself and Build Unshakeable Confidence by Thibaut Meurisse, Kerry J Donovan) Start reading it for free: https://read.amazon.com.au/kp/kshare?asin=B08HN6H1TG&id=cs6n75blizaefm47ybb7raxoqi

Get your copy of our 10/30/100-day challenge calendars 

link to 10/30/100 day challenge pdf

Are you interested in receiving a free, Advanced Readers Copy of my book to review? If so, please send me an email with your details via the link to comments below, many thanks

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Use your late ADHD diagnosis as a life-changing New Beginning, and Stop punishing yourself mentally and emotionally. Remove any feelings of shame or embarrassment. You’re capable, worthy and deserving.

  • Stop Feeling Overstimulated or Overwhelmed.
  • Become more organised and proactive rather than reactive.
  • Go from feeling confused or frustrated to relief and self-acceptance.
  • Quiet your inner critic, switch off when needed, and give yourself a break.
  • Get your emotions under control and develop mental and emotional resilience. 

It’s time to drop the Mask and be your best authentic self. Find the positives in your unique neurodiversity.

You’re capable, worthy and deserving just as you are. Forge a new path to capitalise on your ADHD strengths and skills.

Peek Inside My Book…here is an unedited extract from Chapter 8

Read more….

MANAGING RELATIONSHIPS 

– Discussing Your Diagnosis

   – One to One

   – Family Dynamics

   – Your Relationship with YOU 

ONE TO ONE

 Let’s explore the challenges experienced when navigating the unique dynamics of a one-on-one relationship with your spouse or significant other.

Talking from my own experiences, I destroyed my first marriage as an undiagnosed ADHD adult who struggled to just survive. I was at that stage of my life, out of control emotionally and financially.

I tried so hard to make myself fit the neurotypical mould, which only made things worse. After my divorce and subsequent ADHD diagnoses, I decided I was incapable of sustaining a long-term loving relationship and didn’t want to be responsible for hurting anyone else.

 Life decided otherwise; Louise came into my life twenty years ago and has been an amazing positive influence on my life. She loved and accepted me, along with the challenges I was working through.

We built our relationship on open and honest communication. We both read books on the effects ADHD can have on marriage and relationships.

Is our relationship perfect, hell no. I can still be a pain in the ass when my ADHD emotions get the better of me. But I recognise when I need to check my behaviour. 

Louise is not ADHD and is neurotypical, which I have found to be a benefit when I am trying to do something that needs to appeal to the neurotypical mindset. 

Together, we have made our relationship work while allowing each of us to live according to our different mindsets.

One of the major keys to our successful relationship was our commitment to learning to understand how the other person thinks and sees different and important aspects of life.

While we have different brain wiring, we share the same values and enjoy doing lots of things together.

I am the hyper one, and Louise is the chilled one.

Educating yourself and your partner is the pathway to building a loving and long-term relationship. 

With time, patience, and open communication, relationships can adapt and grow stronger despite the challenges of a late-in-life diagnosis.

Navigating Changes in Dynamics:

Accept that relationships will inevitably evolve as a result of the diagnosis, and you may have to modify expectations or find new ways to connect with loved ones.

 If needed, you can seek professional guidance, such as therapy, couples counselling, or family therapy, to navigate these transitions.

 Grasping the Impact of a Late Diagnosis:

 Discovering ADHD later in life allows individuals and their partners to gain insight into past struggles and challenges. It is crucial to understand your ADHD symptoms, including difficulties with attention, impulse control, organisation, and time awareness.

Recognising how these symptoms may have affected the relationship in the past is the first step towards fostering empathy and finding effective solutions. 

It is important to recognise that both partners may have experienced frustration, confusion, and even resentment without understanding the underlying cause.

Understanding ADHD and its impact on relationships is crucial to fostering empathy and moving forward together. 

Open and Honest Communication:

Strong relationships thrive on open communication, and this is particularly true when managing ADHD-induced challenges. Both partners must create a safe and non-judgmental space for open dialogue. 

Honest discussions about your experiences, concerns, and expectations are critical. Sharing personal stories related to ADHD can deepen understanding and help both partners develop empathy and compassion for each other’s perspectives.

By sharing personal experiences, challenges, and successes associated with ADHD, you can develop a better understanding of each other’s needs and limitations. 

Comprehensive Education:

Education about ADHD is essential for both partners. By learning about ADHD symptoms, its impact on relationships, and evidence-based coping strategies, couples can better understand each other’s needs.

This knowledge promotes informed decision-making, reduces blame or misunderstandings, and fosters a collaborative approach to managing ADHD together.

Seeking Professional Support: 

Professional help, such as therapy or counselling, can be invaluable when navigating the complexities of managing ADHD within a relationship. 

A mental health professional experienced in ADHD can guide couples through challenges, facilitate effective communication, and provide tailored strategies for overcoming specific difficulties.

Couples therapy can also enhance relationship dynamics and bring about significant positive changes.

Establishing Structure and Routine: 

ADHD often leads to inconsistent routines and difficulties with time management. Establishing clear structures and routines can provide stability, reduce stress, and enhance communication within the relationship. 

Couples can collaborate on creating shared schedules, organising tasks, and setting realistic goals. In addition, utilising reminder systems, digital tools, and visual cues can help manage time effectively and decrease frustration. 

Establishing clear boundaries, routines, and structures can help create a sense of stability and predictability in everyday life. Couples can work together to define expectations, set realistic goals, and develop strategies to overcome challenges that may arise.

Building Effective Coping Strategies: 

Working together to develop coping mechanisms is key to managing ADHD within a relationship. This may involve finding strategies to improve focus and organisation.

Collaboratively identifying and implementing techniques that accommodate both partners’ needs fosters a sense of shared responsibility and support.

Cultivating Empathy and Patience:

ADHD symptoms differ among individuals, and it is essential to exercise empathy and patience when navigating the ups and downs. 

Recognising that ADHD-related behaviours are not intentional and celebrating small victories can help the relationship flourish.

Cultivating empathy allows both partners to better understand each other’s experiences, emotions, and needs, resulting in a more compassionate and supportive partnership.

Balancing Independence and Togetherness 

Maintaining your individuality while building a strong partnership is a vital aspect of managing ADHD within relationships.

Encouraging personal interests and hobbies helps individuals maintain a sense of self. It is equally crucial to find a balance between independence and togetherness, ensuring both partners have their needs met and nurturing a sense of intimacy and connection.

  

FAMILY DYNAMICS

be continued next week………

Please let me know what you think, the good, the bad and wtf?…link to comments on website

PS Love to hear your story if you want to share.

be continued next week………

ADHD Logic

“I do my best proofreading after I hit send.”

READERS REVIEWS

“Amazing, having loved ones with an ADHD diagnosis, this book has helped me to understand how this condition works and also to help them set goals”. 

Lisa G.

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Download your complimentary PDF of the first couple of chapters.

Or if you have already and want to buy a copy

https://www.amazon.com//dp/B0BHKQV96M

Expect the Best,

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If you’ve got a second, I would love to hear your thoughts and comments. jim@jimlivingstone.com.au I reply to every email.

This site is not intended to provide and does not constitute medical, legal, or other professional advice. The content in this newsletter is designed to support, not replace, medical or psychiatric treatment. Please seek professional help if you believe you may have Mental Health Issues.

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