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Focus Strategies for ADD and ADHD

July 10th, 2013 05:00:00 am

There are a number of different factors to examine when looking to increase focus in the ADD gifted individual.  Factors can run the gamut from diet, environment, organizational set-up, to support, and through supplementation of one kind or another.


One of the primary things I have learned in the last decade or so of working with ADD/ADHD individuals as an alternative coach and counselor is there are no magic pills or easy one-step solutions.  Just as in dealing with any issue within the human species, everyone is an unique individual and the best programs are always ones which are individually created.


It has not been unusual for me to receive a call or an e-mail from someone who said they tried a supplement, technique, or even a lifestyle adjustment one of my other client or that was in my book or that I mentioned on the radio and it didn’t work for them. The reason? They are not the person for whom the recommendation was made. If they had read or listened closely, they would have noticed phrases like “has been known to help” or “can help some people who…”


In treating what we have labeled a disability (a point with which I strongly disagree), we end up trying to treat the disability instead of recognizing, understanding and embracing the individual and creating something that will work best for them.


So let me highlight a few things to take into consideration. Here are some focus questions. The answers will help create the strategies that can best work for an individual.


                  What kind of learner are you?


Even if you are not in school, or in any capacity officially learning, understanding your learning style means that there are some focusing, remembering tools that will work better for you than others.  A visual may work better with color-coding or list making might be the trick.


For example:


                  Are you better at big picture or are you more detail oriented?


Before an ADD individual can focus and do what needs to be done, there has to be some buy-in.  Knowing whether you are a big picture or a detail orientated person helps to communicate what will help the buy-in process and engage the mind.


                In which environments do you find it easier to focus?


For some people, silence absolutely works really well. For others, if they have 2 or 3 other noise sources (TV, Radio, IPod…), they do better.  Also, some people have a really negative reaction to fluorescent lights or they do better if there is air circulating.  Are you better outside, inside, in big space, in small space? Different things will create the ability to hyper focus and go into mode.


I have found through the years certain aromatherapies, foods, drinks or supplements can help an individual go into hyper mode.  I have given you things to think about and consider here instead of “magic pills, foods or answers.” The better you understand yourself or someone you are trying to help, the more effective and easy the solutions will be.


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