What is ADD Coaching?
Medication and coaching combined help people living with ADD be more successful, confident and feel in control of their lives than medication alone. Yet, we often see ads encouraging the use of medications or minimizing the positive impact of ADD coaching.
Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) is a disorder of adulting. Adulting is being successful in all areas of adult life:
working to support your lifestyle
managing stress and anxiety
dealing with emotions in healthy ways
restful sleep (8-10 hours per night)
developing healthy eating habits
making time for friends and family
Digging a bit deeper, some of the tasks of adulting include:
setting and sticking with a regular bedtime
remembering where your keys are
arriving to work on time
eating tasty, nutritional meals several times a day
not forgetting to eat
scheduling time for homework, family time, alone time, self-care
meeting work, school, and personal deadlines
ADD brains are structurally different than other brains. First, the prefrontal cortex, the part of the brain responsible for organization, starting and stopping tasks, and focus are often underactive in ADD brains. This is why medications work so well... they help jump-start this part of the brain. Fun, engaging activities can also activate the PFC.
Medications can help make life management easier but they fail to do several things... Medications don't teach us how to deal with life demands, changes to our schedules, how to handle our emotions when everything goes wrong. hyper focusing, anxiety, and self-esteem issues. This is where ADD coaching comes in.
ADD Coaches help you create plans and learn strategies to be successful in all areas of your life. They help educate you on the benefits of creating a consistent, structured plan to help your brain work more efficiently. They focus on behavioral interventions to help you be more efficient and better at acknowledging and identifying your emotions, energy wasters, and activities and mindsets that zap your motivation.
I love working with ADD clients, partly because I have ADD and had to figure out what works and doesn't work for me, my brain, and my lifestyle. One of the things I started years ago was hanging a key hook next to my front door or on the back of the door. I try to put my keys there every day when i come home. This works about 95% of the time and makes arriving at work so much easier and less stressful.
This is just one little tweak. Even when I feel very disorganized, I usually know exactly where my keys are. I also have a backup set... just in case. An ADD coach can teach you hacks and tools to make adulting so much easier.
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Sara Minges, M.S. is a former therapist, ADD Coach and Founder of Playful Awareness. She offers specialized ADD Coaching and Consultation Services for Children, Teens, and Adults living with ADD/ADHD. To book a session with Sara, send an email to email@example.com.