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Can’t Stop the (ADHD) Feeling!

“If you’re a young person being called weird or different, I’m here to tell you that your critics do not count. Their words will fade. You will not.” Why we love Justin Timberlake and these other famous celebrities with ADHD.

Paparazzi photographing a famous person with ADHD through limo window
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Diagnosed and Famous

Some of the world’s most accomplished athletes, musicians, actors, and TV personalities struggle with ADHD and comorbid disorders. They don't let their diagnosis get in the way of success, and neither should you. Let these famous people with ADHD inspire you to overcome your diagnosis and reach your full potential.

Channing Tatum, an actor with ADHD
photo by George Skidmore
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Channing Tatum

Channing Tatum is now a household name, leading blockbusters like 21 Jump Street and The Vow. He’s won hearts across the nation with his classic looks, dance skills, and comedic chops. But it wasn’t always a primrose path. He’s spoken openly before about his difficult past, and now he confides his learning challenges — including ADHD, dyslexia, and medication — in an interview with New York Times’ style magazine. He told T magazine, “You get lumped in classes with kids with autism and Down syndrome, and you look around and say, ‘OK, so this is where I’m at.’ Or you get put in the typical classes and you say, ‘All right, I’m obviously not like these kids either.’ So you’re kind of nowhere. You’re just different.” He certainly didn’t let different stop him!

Photo by Gage Skidmore

Soccer star Tim Howard recently became a World Cup hero after breaking the record for the most saves in a match (16), but it was not an easy road to international stardom. At a young age, Howard began displaying strange behaviors that included rituals and rhythmic tapping. At age 11, he was diagnosed with ADHD, OCD, and Tourette’s syndrome. Though he still follows a ritualistic pattern in putting on his soccer gear, once he hits the field all his attention problems and compulsions melt away.
photo by Aleksandr Osipov
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Tim Howard

Soccer star Tim Howard recently became a World Cup hero after breaking the record for the most saves in a match (16), but it was not an easy road to international stardom. At a young age, Howard began displaying strange behaviors that included rituals and rhythmic tapping. At age 11, he was diagnosed with ADHD, OCD, and Tourette’s syndrome. Though he still follows a ritualistic pattern in putting on his soccer gear, once he hits the field all his attention problems and compulsions melt away.

OCD and ADHD haven't stopped this superstar recording artist and actor from "Bringing Sexy Back." While he doesn't often speak publicly about his conditions, JT once shared his frustration with his diagnosis in an interview with collider.com, saying, “I have OCD mixed with ADD, you try living with that.”
photo by J. Vettorino
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Justin Timberlake

OCD and ADHD haven't stopped this superstar recording artist and actor from "Bringing Sexy Back." While he doesn't often speak publicly about his conditions, JT once shared his frustration with his diagnosis in an interview with collider.com, saying, “I have OCD mixed with ADD, you try living with that.”

As lead singer of Maroon 5 and a vocal coach on the popular TV show The Voice, this ADHDer is thriving. Levine was diagnosed early and was able to manage his ADHD as a child. In adulthood, however, his symptoms became incapacitating at times. When recording music became difficult, Levine knew it was time to get help. Today, the rocker is very vocal about ADHD and reminds fans that they’re not alone in the ADHD struggle.
photo by gashleygoh
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Adam Levine

As lead singer of Maroon 5 and a vocal coach on the popular TV show The Voice, this adult with ADHD is thriving. Levine was diagnosed early and was able to manage his ADHD as a child. In adulthood, however, his symptoms became incapacitating at times. When recording music became difficult, Levine knew it was time to get help. Today, the rocker is very vocal about ADHD and reminds fans that they’re not alone in the ADHD struggle.

Renowned journalist Lisa Ling got a sneaking suspicion that she might have ADHD during the filming of a recent ADHD–themed episode of “Our America With Lisa Ling.” Her reporting on the disorder compelled her to get an evaluation, and at age 40, she was diagnosed with adult ADHD. "My head is kind of spinning," she said in the episode after receiving her diagnosis. "But I feel a little bit of relief because, for so long, I've been fighting it and I've been so frustrated with this inability to focus."
photo by Greg Hernandez
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Lisa Ling

Renowned journalist Lisa Ling got a sneaking suspicion that she might have ADHD during the filming of a recent ADHD–themed episode of “Our America With Lisa Ling.” Her reporting on the disorder compelled her to get an evaluation, and at age 40, she was diagnosed with adult ADHD. "My head is kind of spinning," she said in the episode after receiving her diagnosis. "But I feel a little bit of relief because, for so long, I've been fighting it and I've been so frustrated with this inability to focus."

Diagnosed with ADHD at age 9, Michael Phelps went on to become the most decorated Olympian of all time, swimming his way to a record-breaking 18 gold medals. According to his mother, Debbie Phelps, swimming helped her son manage his symptoms from a young age by keeping him focused and disciplined.
photo by Agência Brasil Fotografias
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Michael Phelps

Diagnosed with ADHD at age 9, Michael Phelps went on to become the most decorated Olympian of all time, swimming his way to a record-breaking 23 gold medals. According to his mother, Debbie Phelps, swimming helped her son manage his symptoms from a young age by keeping him focused and disciplined.

Four-time Super Bowl champion turned sports analyst and commentator, Terry Bradshaw revealed in his book Keep It Simple that he has struggled with ADHD for years. He’s also battled clinical depression along the way, but none of his diagnoses stopped him from being inducted into the National Football League’s Hall of Fame.
photo by Photographers Mate 2nd Class Damon J. Moritz
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Terry Bradshaw

Four-time Super Bowl champion turned sports analyst and commentator, Terry Bradshaw revealed in his book Keep It Simple that he has struggled with ADHD for years. He’s also battled clinical depression along the way, but none of his diagnoses stopped him from being inducted into the National Football League’s Hall of Fame.

This seven-time Grammy Award winning recording artist has found a way to make his ADHD work for him -- through music. He’s stated that music serves as his ADHD therapy and helps him bring control to his thoughts while keeping his mind focused.
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will.i.am

This seven-time Grammy Award winning recording artist has found a way to make his ADHD work for him — through music. He’s stated that music serves as his ADHD therapy and helps him bring control to his thoughts while keeping his mind focused.

This game-show host and comedian/actor has been very open about living with ADHD, OCD, depression, and anxiety. He’s even published a tell-all book, Here’s the Deal: Don’t Touch Me!, about his life-long struggles and adult diagnoses. In sharing his story, he hopes to inspire others to get the help they need.
photo By Chloeelmaleh
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Howie Mandel

This game-show host and comedian/actor has been very open about living with ADHD, OCD, depression, and anxiety. He’s even published a tell-all book, Here’s the Deal: Don’t Touch Me!, about his life-long struggles and adult diagnoses. In sharing his story, he hopes to inspire others to get the help they need.

It only takes a few minutes of watching Ty Pennington on the show Extreme Makeover: Home Edition to pick up on the star’s hyperactive energy. Diagnosed as a child, Pennington continues to manage his ADHD with the help of stimulant medication. According to his mom, Yvonne Pennington, the very traits that once held her son back are now what make him a huge success. She encourages parents to focus on what their child can do, as opposed to what they can’t do.
photo by Josh Hallett
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Ty Pennington

It only takes a few minutes of watching Ty Pennington on the show Extreme Makeover: Home Edition to pick up on the star’s hyperactive energy. Diagnosed as a child, Pennington continues to manage his ADHD with the help of stimulant medication. According to his mom, Yvonne Pennington, the very traits that once held her son back are now what make him a huge success. She encourages parents to focus on what their child can do, as opposed to what they can’t do.

Successful political strategist turned TV personality, James Carville did not always have such a winning streak. According to an interview with Health.com, he flunked out of college due to his ADHD. Today, Carville credits his ADHD with keeping him hyperfocused, adaptable, and full of energy -- the winning combination for a fast-paced career in politics.
photo by Brian Johnson and Dane Kantner
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James Carville

Successful political strategist turned TV personality, James Carville, did not always have such a winning streak. According to an interview with Health.com, he flunked out of college due to his ADHD. Today, Carville credits his ADHD with keeping him hyperfocused, adaptable, and full of energy — the winning combination for a fast-paced career in politics.

Bex Taylor-Klaus has come a long way since her third-grade after-school drama class. Born and raised in Atlanta, Georgia, Taylor-Klaus now travels between Los Angeles and Vancouver to play roles on the hit TV shows Arrow, The Killing, and House of Lies. Her advice to ADHDers? "Embrace it. It may be a nuisance, it may be hard to deal with sometimes, but you can learn to manage it. Don't ever try to get rid of it entirely. Attention deficit makes you special."
photo by sean.koo
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Bex Taylor-Klaus

Bex Taylor-Klaus, 22, has come a long way since her third-grade after-school drama class. Born and raised in Atlanta, Georgia, Taylor-Klaus now travels between Los Angeles and Vancouver to play roles on the hit TV shows Arrow, The Killing, and House of Lies. Her advice to others with ADHD? "Embrace it. It may be a nuisance, it may be hard to deal with sometimes, but you can learn to manage it. Don't ever try to get rid of it entirely. Attention deficit makes you special."

Karina Smirnoff of Dancing with the Stars has lived with ADHD her entire life, but wasn't properly diagnosed until adulthood. She's worked with her doctor to find the best treatment for her inattention and impulsivity, and, according to an interview with ABC News, Vyvanse helps control her symptoms. As a professional dancer, Smirnoff channels her ADHD energy into her work.
photo By Anthony Citrano
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Karina Smirnoff

Karina Smirnoff of Dancing with the Stars has lived with ADHD her entire life, but wasn't properly diagnosed until adulthood. She's worked with her doctor to find the best treatment for her inattention and impulsivity, and, according to an interview with ABC News, Vyvanse helps control her symptoms. As a professional dancer, Smirnoff channels her ADHD energy into her work.

This Major League Baseball player remains outspoken about his life-long battle with ADHD. According to an interview with ESPN.com, ADHD made Victorino a hot-headed child. He amassed 10 ER visits before he was diagnosed with ADHD at age eight. Victorino continues to manage his ADHD symptoms through counseling and medication. In spite of his hyperactive tendencies, ADHD hasn’t stopped him from becoming a World Series hero.
photo by Keith Allison
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Shane Victorino

This Major League Baseball player remains outspoken about his life-long battle with ADHD. According to an interview with ESPN.com, ADHD made Victorino a hot-headed child. He amassed 10 ER visits before he was diagnosed with ADHD at age eight. Victorino continues to manage his ADHD symptoms through counseling and medication. In spite of his hyperactive tendencies, ADHD hasn’t stopped him from becoming a World Series hero.

Daniel Koh, the chief of staff to Boston Mayor Marty Walsh, has two degrees from Harvard, and was named one of Forbes magazine's "30 under 30" at age 26. Yet, as a child, teachers deemed him a lost cause and he struggled to sit still in class. He still sees ADHD as a positive. As he told the Boston Globe, "ADHD has caused me to learn practices and habits that I wouldn’t have learned otherwise, and I see it as a strength."  Image by Jonny Yao.
photo by Johnny Yao
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Daniel Koh

Daniel Koh, the chief of staff to Boston Mayor Marty Walsh, has two degrees from Harvard, and was named one of Forbes magazine's "30 under 30" at age 26. Yet, as a child, teachers deemed him a lost cause and he struggled to sit still in class. He still sees ADHD as a positive. As he told the Boston Globe, "ADHD has caused me to learn practices and habits that I wouldn’t have learned otherwise, and I see it as a strength."

Image by Jonny Yao.

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