Jim Livingstone

24 April 2024

ADHD with JIM LIVINGSTONE

Hello, and Welcome

I grew up feeling like the odd one out. After forty-five years of trying to fit in, I was finally diagnosed with ADHD.

Since my diagnosis, I have spent the last twenty-five years researching and actively testing a massive amount of ADHD information.

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

ADHD and EMOTIONS

My emotions have always been an ongoing challenge for me.

After many years of criticism of my undiagnosed ADHD behaviour, I unknowingly shut down my emotions to protect myself.

While that did insulate me to some degree, I also lost the ability to feel positive emotions like love and joy. So, I go through the motions of doing things I used to enjoy only to find that it no longer gave me any joy or satisfaction. I turned to alcohol to supercharge the process. The problem was as my brain got used to the alcohol, I needed more and more often to feel positive emotions.

Then the next day, I felt like crap, so I would drink to wash away those emotions. Instead of confronting my emotions, I tried to drown them! Only when I stopped drinking (been sober for about 36 years) did I start to see my emotions in a more positive light.

I used to think emotions served no worthy purpose. I have learnt emotions can bring us priceless information from our soul. Even painful emotions bring vital information. Your ADHD journey can only progress when you allow the full force of your emotions from the depths of your soul to guide you.

To change your life and your future, you have to move from subconscious fear-based emotions to conscious love-based emotions. You have to learn to live with heart.

Without awareness of your emotions, you can’t tell if your personality and actions are aligned with your soul and life purpose. Start to notice if the emotions you feel are based on fear or love.

Fear-based emotions include anger, impatience, defensiveness, a closed mindset, and insincerity. Love-based emotions are open-minded, accepting, creative, and grounded.

Emotions guide our decision-making process whether we realize it or not. Being aware of this influence can lead to more rational and considered decisions

Emotional awareness is vital for self-regulation, which can help you develop better-coping strategies and reduce impulsive behaviour. It is also a cornerstone of your personal evolution and social harmony.

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I am currently writing this book, and I would like you to share the journey with me. I would love to hear your story and, with your consent, include it in the book, newsletter, or articles.

Peek Inside My Book…here is an unedited extract from Chapter 7

SELF- CARE

    – Self-Care is Critical

   – Self-Care Strategies

   – Benefits of Self-Care

YOUR SELF-CARE IS CRITICAL

In navigating the complexities of ADHD, self-care emerges not as a luxury but as a non-negotiable pillar for managing challenges and enhancing life quality.

The principle is clear: in the complex dance of life with ADHD, self-care is the consistent rhythm that brings harmony to the steps.

It’s never just about surviving with ADHD; it’s about thriving, and self-care is the bridge between the two.

Self-care provides many benefits—from improved focus and stress reduction to greater emotional control and better physical and mental health.

From Chaos to Focus: The Centrality of Self-Care 

Self-care is an encompassing term, covering a range of activities and practices to improve physical, mental, and emotional well-being. In the context of ADHD, where the brain’s self-regulation faculties are struggling, self-care becomes the external scaffold that supports and enhances the internal structure.

 

Cultivating a Mindful Mind 

Meditation and mindfulness are at the forefront of cognitive recalibration. ADHD can make the mind a raucous marketplace of thoughts. Mindfulness quells the noise, fostering an inner tranquillity that can sharpen intentional focus. Practising meditation regularly can help you attain better self-control over your impulses, a feat crucial for both emotional and mental regulation.

 

The Physical Reckoning 

Exercise is a potent supporting therapy for ADHD. Not only does it spike neurotransmitters like dopamine and norepinephrine, which are in short supply in an ADHD brain, but it also serves as an outlet for boundless energy, thus reducing hyperactivity.

 Moreover, physical activity engenders a robust circadian rhythm that is often awry in those with ADHD, and better sleep cycles lead to better attention spans.

 

Dietary Discipline and its Role

 In the ADHD experience, the maxim “You are what you eat” takes on an almost literal meaning. High-protein diets may augment neurotransmitter activity, leading to improved concentration levels. Balancing blood sugar through healthy eating can also stabilize mood swings and lower the emotional volatility often associated with ADHD.

 

Designing an Intentional Day

For the ADHD adult, a day without structure is like sailing a rudderless ship. Routines and schedules are self-care tools that add predictability and control to life.

Time allocation techniques, such as breaking tasks into small, manageable actions, can significantly decrease the overwhelm that leads to procrastination – a common adversary in the ADHD story.

 

The Balm of Balance: Sleep and Stress

 Chronic mental or physical fatigue can be a silent saboteur for the ADHD brain, making sound sleep a cornerstone of self-care. Establishing regular sleep patterns can diffuse the fog of daytime drowsiness and sharpen cognitive clarity. 

Moreover, stress amplifies ADHD symptoms. Engaging in relaxation activities and employing stress management techniques not only prevents burnout but also promotes a more focused and attentive mindset.

 

Navigating the Emotional Rapids

Emotional dysregulation, akin to the unexpected currents in the river of life, is a known challenge in ADHD. Thus, emotional self-care — from therapy to journaling, from deep breathing exercises to social connections — is vital.

These acts of self-kindness create safe harbours in the emotional storms, and over time, they help cultivate inner resilience, enabling better responses to life’s challenges.

The Social Scaffold

Humans are social beings, and ADHD does not negate this truth. Isolation can amplify ADHD symptoms; conversely, a supportive social network acts as a buoyant force.

Self-care, in this regard, means proactively seeking and nurturing relationships that offer understanding, encouragement, and a listening ear.

 

Professional Pursuits: Therapy and Medication

Sometimes, self-care entails recognizing when professional help is needed. Medication, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) and coaching for can dramatically improve quality of life.

These interventions, when seen as self-care, empower you to take charge of your treatment plans.

For adults with ADHD, self-care is not a sporadic indulgence but a way of life. It’s a multifaceted approach that demands consistency and dedication. The infinite benefits—from improved focus and stress reduction to better emotional control and physical health—are well-established.

 

 

Here is a brief list of resources to help you with self-care;

Attention Deficit Disorder Association (ADDA)

https://add.org/

Children and Adults with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (CHADD)

https://chadd.org/

National Resource Center on ADHD

https://safesupportivelearning.ed.gov/resources/national-resource-center-adhd

ADHD Foundation

https://www.adhdfoundation.org.uk/

Understood

https://www.understood.org/en/articles/what-is-adhd

ADDitude Magazine

https://www.additudemag.com/

The International ADHD Congress

https://www.adhd-congress.org/

European Network Adult ADHD (ENAA)

https://www.eunetworkadultadhd.com/

ADHD Europe

https://adhdeurope.eu/

Centre for ADHD Awareness, Canada (CADDAC)

https://caddac.ca/

Attention Deficit Disorder Support and Information Resources (ADDISS)

https://www.addiss.co.uk/

ADHD Australia

https://www.adhdaustralia.org.au/

CH.I.L.D. Association for Children with ADHD, Australia

https://adhdfoundation.org.au/

ADHD Foundation, UK

https://www.adhdfoundation.org.uk/

ADHD Support Organization, South Africa

https://www.adhdinsight.co.za/relevant-information/organisations-2/

ADHD Support Ireland

https://adhdireland.ie/

Australian ADHD Professionals Association (AADPA)

https://aadpa.com.au/

ADHD-Attention Differencey Distinction for Holistic Intervention Now (ADDHI)

https://childmind.org/article/what-is-the-difference-between-add-and-adhd/

ADHD Moms of Los Angeles

https://www.chaddofsfv.org/

Vancouver Adult ADD Support Group

https://www.psychologytoday.com/ca/groups/bc/vancouver?category=adhd

The Attention Deficit Disorder Parent Teacher Association (ADDA PTA)

https://add.org/

ADHD Support and Resources New Zealand

https://www.adh

“Develop Your Self-Care as a Lifelong Passion.”

Jim Livingstone

be continued next week………

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.

“I prefer not to think before speaking. I like being as surprised as everyone else by what comes out of my mouth.”

Anonymous

READERS REVIEWS

“I also have a lot of friends and family members who have ADHD, and I am excited to share this excellent book with them. The author’s personal experience and stories made it more amazing to me. I loved how the author talked about using ADHD habits as an advantage to improve life quality.

Overall, I highly recommend this book to anyone who has ADHD or, in general, wishes to learn more about ADHD and ADD”. 

Shalaka

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If you haven’t downloaded the complementary PDF of the first couple of chapters, now’s your chance.

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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