I am slipping, I know, but can't get up again

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    • #168164

      I was diagnosed with inattentive ADHD when I was 32. I am 36 now. I always new ‘something was wrong’ with me, I alwasy have been labeled as ‘lazy, but with so much potential’.
      Somehow I managed to get a Masters degree in Microbiology.The research was easy, constantly changing, perfect!. The writing of the dissertation was extremely hard, practically writing it last minute.
      I know I have potentialin my career. So many ideas, so many facts, so much understanding of the natural world of microbes. Because of this, I have aced many interviews. But, I have been in and out of many jobs. Jobs which required so much concentration on specific projects, but with managerial roles – which means lots of paper work and documents to write! My downfall!
      I even became the top technical adviser for one large company. I couldn’t keep up with folowing up on clients demands, my priority listing was a mess. The job did not last long, with a very messy dissmissal. I was scared, I couldn’t understand how people had the energy to work like this. So many consultants found their job easy, and still had energy to do marathons on weekends (a very fit company). I was tired, exhausted all the time.
      I am anxiouse, and emotionally ‘weak’. Typically, I try to pass mistakes on other things, and messy personal live issues.
      At this time, even with a messy personal life, I finally came to the realisation I needed help. I went to see a psychologist to help get through a tough dissmissal and personal life, and, GodBless her, she made the breakthrough about the ADHD. (I got confirmation diagnosis from a ADHD specialist psychiatris).
      Wow, what a mind-blowing discovery. It explained so much of what has happened in my life. I got on medication quickly, started meditation, omega 3 supplements. I read self-help books etc. I was going to beat this ADHD and get my life back on track, to my vision.
      My wife and I had our first child, a beautiful boy. Maybe, my actions were causing things at home to go bad?
      But then, my wifes psycosis really kicked in. Things fell apart again.
      I had a stupid idea to leave my country (or it was a saving grace….?), take my family and try start a new life (my fathers country). Maybe our envuronment was wrong.
      Not speaking the language, having beaurocracy issues, losing my job AGAIN! (this time not do to me, but the company closing). No money, crappy apartment, crying baby, my wife psycosis became full blown pschisophrenia. She ended up in hospital, my emotional health was broken, maybe still is. My parents, whome I don’t particularly get along with, had to quickly make the desicion to move here as well. Move me and my family to my fathers birth town, small and quite. Help look after my children, and my wife, and allow me to concentrate on work.
      I am back on medication, but not therapy (can’t find a suitable psychologist who speaks fluent English).
      I have a investor who tuely believes in me, in my potential. It is great to have this confidence. She is such a wonderful person to work with. Build a lab for me, at my home, and we have started a company together. She in Germany, I am in Italy. During this stress, somehow, it gave me focus to concentrate on our new company, on developing products. I did so much, becuase there was so much to do. One project to the next. Working on several projects simultaneously. Perfect for my brain.
      No, things are calm, the wife is having such wonderful treatment, she is almost back to herself. Children are growing and happy, blossoming.
      I am also doing parttime jobs, to help with extra money.
      But, with my medication, and the storm has settled,work is going back to full on documents.
      I am slipping.
      Very fast.
      Depression is returning, I am internet surfing again, not working much. I am again trying to hide my lack of work to my boss. I have my lists, prioirities them. But everything now seems equally important. And, I have realised I have social anxiety. I can’t make a phone call to suppliers, collaborators. I can’t even get the focus to organise to send a simple package to Germany. I know what I am not doing, I am taking my meds, but, I can’t get my focus, my concentration, my will to work. The family has no idea I am battling. I don’t want to put the stress on them.
      I am slipping…..

    • #168248

      Believe it or not, what you are presenting is not at all unusual for our “tribe” of ADHD adults in the workforce. In your case, you are a semi-entrepreneur with a backer who believes in you and is now your boss. That likely puts a great deal of pressure on you to ensure he/she made a sound investment. Trust me, your benefactor made a great choice in you, and now it is important to answer a few questions:

      1. Do you actually enjoy the work you are doing?
      2. Have you identified the specific aspects of your work that you either don’t enjoy or struggle to keep up with (i.e. you enjoy it but there is just too much of it). You mentioned the paperwork. Paperwork can be the downfall of adults with ADHD. Can you hire someone part-time to help you with this so you can focus on what you enjoy?

      The key is to really identify those tasks that create overwhelm, frustration, missed deadlines, etc. and hire someone to manage those (I am sure your benefactor would agree that your brilliance is in doing the work you love and would support you on this – to protect the investment!

      Our brains are interest-based. We can manage doing a few things we don’t enjoy for a short period of time. However, if we are not doing what we enjoy most of the time, you end up in your current situation. Take a good look at this and “own” what you are not happy doing and have that conversation.

      Or, look inward and ask yourself if this is something you really want to be doing over the long haul. Take a breath, take some time to jot things down. Feel free to reach out.

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