Talking About ADHD

“No One Talks About the Positives of ADHD — So I Found Some”

When Johan Wiklund, a business professor at Syracuse University, was diagnosed with ADHD, he noticed something: only the negative aspects of the condition were ever discussed. So he set out to figure out the positives — through scientific research.

Johan Wiklund, a researcher who explores the positives of ADHD
Johan Wiklund headshot, red sweater glasses

When I got my diagnosis, I knew nothing about ADHD. I read up on the condition. I was baffled by the fact that there were 10,000 stories written about how bad ADHD is. Only a handful told about the positive aspects of it.

So I did my own study, interviewing people with ADHD who operated their own businesses. Everybody said, “I would rather be the way I am and have the diagnosis than not have it.” Many people said, “I could not imagine working for somebody else.”

I began to think about ADHD in terms of my being a very tall person. I’m 6 feet, 7 inches. Is that a good thing or a bad thing? It depends. It’s bad if I’m flying across the Atlantic. It’s pretty darn good if I’m in a big crowd.

[Read: “I Have ADHD, and I Don’t Need to Be Fixed”]

It’s the same with ADHD traits. They are largely negative, and they sometimes lead to problems. But when you’re running your own business, you can adapt ADHD traits to your own personal needs.

I found that those with ADHD symptoms have higher entrepreneurial intention. They are intuitively more attracted to starting a business than other people.

[Read This Next: ADHD Coping Strategies You Haven’t Tried]

Thank you for reading ADDitude. To support our mission of providing ADHD education and support, please consider subscribing. Your readership and support help make our content and outreach possible. Thank you.