I assume ADD discussion is cool here, forgive me if not. This is all pretty new to me (ADD that is)
Background: I never really liked the labeling someone as ADD since I've always felt that it was more likely a person's different method of learning rather than something 'wrong' with them.
I did OK in school and seemed to well respected in most jobs I had so I never considered the possibility that my focus was problematic. I had tried a couple of my own businesses, but they'd never turned out well and I had chalked it up to being 'bad at business'. ADD had never even crossed my mind as the source of some of my issues.
Until I read a thankyou on a Kickstarter page from a successfully funded project (no idea what it was). They had said something along the line of "Amazing what you can do with great ideas and Ritalin". For some reason this struck a chord with me, because I've always felt like I never lacked awesome ideas (or skills to accomplish them) but rather a feeling that they'd never see light because I lacked what I felt was motivation.
This prompted me to wonder whether Ritalin was something that might help me. Since we were now 6 months into a new home business venture and I was struggling daily to stay on task and feeling terrible under the weight of condemnation that I heaped on myself over not seeming to accomplish the few simple tasks I'd set for myself.
For the next few months my wife and I wavered back and forth over the topic and a few times were resolute in deciding that we didn't want to turn to drugs to try to help me focus.
After a few more months I was feeling quite desperate.. I had spent weeks feeling quite depressed at my own failure and I honestly couldn't see any way out so we booked in to see a Psych (the law here requires shrink approval). After the 2nd visit I was approved for a trial.
10mg Ritalin 3x daily.
It only took me halfway into the second day to feel such a relief and peace that I'd not felt in a looong time. Firstly I was surprised at the mellow feeling - since I'd expected it to act like a mega coffee or something (didn't do much research beforehand) and I was blown away by my newfound ability to focus on the tasks that I had set for myself.
Not just focus, but to enjoy the work as well! I felt satisfaction in just doing the work and not just completing it.
I still had in mind the task list of things I needed to work on but now it all seemed quite fine to complete this task and focus on those afterwards. There was no constant fight in my mind among my thoughts, the endless juggling and switching focus between the myriad of tasks. I wasn't working for 10 minutes, then jumping up and switching to something else, then again to another project, then another. I could sit for hours and enjoy it!
It feels silly to be grateful for the discovery of a drug like this.. But I feel for the first time there's hope that I can move myself forward. I'm not lazy. I'm not unmotivated. I'm not a slacker. I'm not bad at business... I just have a hell of a time staying focused on a single task (even one I'm really excited to work on).
I still view this as a temporary thing. Not sure if it's a 6 month or 2 year stint... I would still rather tailor our business to play to my strengths and weaknesses, but that's once we're doing ok and have the luxury of hiring people to take on the tasks that I don't feel natural in. In the meantime the work still needs doing and I'm stoked because I can do it!
That's it... Just thought you'd like to hear someone who was happy to find himself anew.
Things I've learned in this last month:
- Coffee and Ritalin is awful! I used to drink 2 per day and quit cold turkey (first week was some headaches). I randomly had another coffee one morning and it was a very unpleasant experience - like drinking 5 coffees in a row.
Music. I find I really want to listen to music more. Not sure if this is a Ritalin thing or if it's just that I'm really enjoying focusing on something and I don't want to be distracted. Got myself a Soundcloud and Apple Music account and have been steadily consuming electronic chill for weeks now. Nice headphones help :)
I sleep better. I think just because I feel accomplished and thus I can relax and rest and not be concerned about how much I didn't do during the last day/week/month
A little less hungry. I can tell when it's wearing off because I suddenly want to eat something.
I can focus in conversations better
I read slower and comprehend more. I can still read as quickly, but I'm not as interested in skimming the text.
I've accomplished more in this last month than I have in months previous.