What is it really like to have ADHD and anxiety?

Why are you thinking so much? Did you take your medicine?

You’re in a great mood, why are you worrying about that?

Why can’t you focus? Use some self control.. Come on.

But you really should be starting this now instead….after you send that email and check on that load of laundry. Oh look, you forgot about that you started yesterday. What should you really be doing right now?

It’s not that it won’t let you focus, it lets you focus on 75 things at once. That’s normal, right?

When you finally get that focus channeled, there is no stopping you. It may be hours dedicated to one task or project.

When you lose the passion and excitement for the task, it’s hard to recreate that type of focus.

When you don’t feel passionate about something, you will do it but it has some strange soul sucking quality to it. Don’t they feel that too?

When you feel nervous about the smallest thing, even though it has no relevance to the situation.

When your room or your house is a mess you literally feel sick to your stomach, and your eyes and brain are darting around the room endlessly.  If you just clean it you’ll feel better.

When you don’t want to have a plan, you’re a free spirit. But you need a plan. You need the steps to follow.  You’re nervous with one and you’re helpless without one.

When you don’t want to even verbalize what you are nervous about because it’s so small and insignificant no one could possibly understand.

When you feel your chest walls pull like your heart is going to come out, your stomach hurts, your hands sweat. Your eyes get blurry.

When you aren’t scared of speaking in front of 1,000 people but you don’t want to talk to the mailman because he might judge you.

When you forget to take your medicine so you’re scatterbrained, kinda hyper and happy but also miserable because you can’t control it.

When you want to answer nicely, but instead  snap back an irritable response, it sounds like you’re in a bad mood but you’re really actually fine. Your attitude isn’t received so well by others.

When you can’t check your tax form that you know you have to do because every time you look at numbers or forms, you want to scream and cry and throw a tantrum on the floor.

When you suddenly feel like you have call this person, write this blog post, answer this email, make dinner, fold the clothes, finish your project, call the bank and instead of doing one thing you choose to do nothing.

When you feel guilty for being overly chatty and energetic when everyone around you just wants to chill.

When you actually have 26 tabs open on your laptop and metaphorically  in your brain.

When you meditate for 10 minutes and have to start over because you actually were lost in a thought train the entire time.

When you get anxious about not trying hard enough in your career and put so much pressure on yourself you can’t even enjoy the moment you are living in right now.

When you get anxious about not understanding your own anxiety well enough to help your partner understand it too.

When you actually want to know what your great, great grand children will do for a living and how your actions today may have repercussions for their future health, wealth and success.

When you are scared to admit any of this in fear of seeming weak, weird, or crazy.

When you realize after writing it down how much easier it is to cope with your feelings once you actually verbalize them.

When you have learned that many people won’t understand what you are going through, but so many people will and even more people need to hear it because they are scared to speak up right now, just like you were.

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Mental health is a topic that I am deeply passionate about. As much as I feel that I incorporate the message into my social media and coaching brand,  I don’t think I go in depth enough about what it actually feels like to suffer from mental health issues. When I wrote this out, it actually felt very therapeutic and funny at the same time.

Apart from medical terminology and scientific facts, there is whole world of what these disorders and illnesses do in the lives of millions of people worldwide. These conversations about mental health should be able to be casual.  Free from judgement. Everyday discussions. If someone has a short term physical illness, terminal illness, or physical disease or disorder-the conversation isn’t always simple and easy but it is much more socially acceptable. We still have thousands and probably millions of people who refuse to acknowledge things like depression and anxiety even exist. But we also have the President of the United States denying that climate change is real. So, there’s that. People often discredit and stereotype things they don’t understand. I happen to be someone who has lived my entire life as a part of groups that are stereotyped, so luckily, it doesn’t scare me off, (you can read more about my thoughts on stereotypes here) in fact, it actually motivates me more.

So, since I have recently moved to New Zealand and am adjusting to this new country, culture, and life I have been struggling a bit more than usual with my mental health issues. I have been struggling a bit more than I thought I would going into it with such a positive attitude and awesome vibes radiating into the Universe.  It has taken me a long time to even admit how much I actually struggle and I am still in the process of getting to the bottom of it, finding out how to best deal with it and how to manage a healthy relationship, business, social life and relationship with myself.

I have severe ADHD and general anxiety disorder. I feel as though the diagnosis can be different for everyone and it manifests differently for everyone so this is not in any way a reflection of other people’s experiences, just my own. I thought it would be insightful to share what it actually feels like. I talk more about my experiences here.

Each one of us is on a journey, mental health issues or not, we all have ups and downs and crazy thoughts in our heads that we would rather not share with anyone. It’s empowering to take control of what you can control. I do this through my writing, meditation, exercise, medication, a healthy diet and having a community that I can open up to whenever I need it. The community part is key. Most of the time getting things off our chest is such a huge help. This could be professional help, support groups, friends, family,  etc.

If you need a friend, and you are reading this. I am here. I never want anyone to feel alone or marginalized for something they cannot control. I am on a constant quest for how to manage my mental health issues and remain patient and compassionate with myself when bumps in the road come. Maybe you can relate to my experiences, maybe you can’t but I hope either way you can open your heart and remember that you never know what is happening inside someone else’s head. Ask. Listen. Show your heart and don’t be afraid to admit your imperfections. We’re all mad here.

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