Andrew: Is there a high success rate with the people you coach, in making these changes in their attitude?
David: A very high percentage. However, I have to add a note of caution. A very high percentage, if they’re willing to buy into the philosophy of coaching. You are absolutely right, Andrew, if a person thinks that there’s a quick fix, there may be a problem. We live in a world that people think you take a pill and the pill will give you the skills.
With diabetes you take insulin and live a better life. ADHD medication is just one element that allows you to be on a level playing field. But if you’re on a level playing field, you’ve still have to learn how the rules and skills of how to play soccer.
Andrew: Medication doesn’t teach football skills or win games?
David: That’s right, in Europe it’s football and here we call it soccer right! But if you’ve never learned how to play and you’ve been told that you’ll never be able to play, and you get these medications so all of a sudden you’re able to get on the field. Once you are there you think “Now what do I do? I’ve never learned. Nobody has taught me.” Well, are you willing to learn?
People coming to terms with their ADHD are like kids learning to walk – once they can understand the moves they can go anywhere they want to go! The key is learning about your biology, then looking at the fuel that affects that biology: your daily thoughts.
These subconscious daily thoughts are so powerful, Andrew, you and I both know that to not pay attention to them is to really mess up your life. I say to my clients “If you want to leave this negative pattern that you’ve been in for the last 40 years, you’re going to feel uncomfortable because change is not easy.
But you have two choices: to remain stagnant and be comfortable, or to become uncomfortable and to change your thoughts and life in a positive way. It’s your choice. For ADDers it so much more difficult to make these changes. It is why they need a well trained coach in their corner that understands them and speaks their language.
You know that we’re often the first person to hear an ADHD adult say “You’re the first person that really understands me.”
Andrew: I have heard that many times, it is so sad to live alone, often for decades with an invisible problem, but I love to help people feel less alone.
David: This is very powerful, that partnership, but the partnership is only the beginning. The willingness to take action and being reminded of what actions they need to continue taking should go hand in hand, so it’s repeated over and over again until a new habit develops.