ADHD and Motivation

Dr. Russell Barkley says that ADHD is more about loss of interest and motivation than attention and concentration. This makes sense, as we know ADHDers can pay attention for hours  on tasks they love.

Motivation is a characteristic that makes us want to ‘do’ an activity. Unfortunately, there is lotsof moral judgement about motivation and people think lack of motivation is a sign of laziness or not caring. The good news is that in recent years studies have found evidence that motivation is more about brain chemistry, than will power. It has been found that motivation problems in people with ADHD are due to lower levels of dopamine in their brains. The larger the disruption of the dopamine pathway, the greater the ADHD symptoms and the lower the  levels of motivation.

Now that you are armed with this knowledge what can you do?

happenADHD and Motivation1) Take good care of yourself the Untapped Brilliance way. This means, taking Omega 3 supplements, eating an ADHD friendly diet, getting enough sleep, exercising and meditating. All these activities increase the dopamine. If you need help incorporating these into your life check out Untapped Brilliance book.

2) What do you love to do? What are you highly motivated to do? When you know what those activities they are, make some changes in your life so you spend more time doing the activities you are motivated to do. Your life will become more productive and enjoyable.

3) Get creative with the activities you have to do, but don’t enjoy. Use your timer, as that creates a challenge and a sense of urgency. Set up a reward system that motivates you. For example, put one dollar in a jar every time you do X. Apply it to something that does interest you. Michael Phelps’ (Olympic Swimming Champion) Mom did this for her son. Michael hated math, but loved swimming. So she customized his math problems ‘If you swim one meter per second, how long would it take to swim 800 meters?’

When you make these changes in your life, you will definitely notice a new level of productivity and purpose in your life.

Comments

  1. Dr. Carole O'Beirne says:

    Dear Jacqueline:

    Wonderful article! Thank you very much. Your articles are so positive and refreshing.

    Best wishes for the Holidays and for a Happy New Year!

  2. Hi Jacqueline,

    Thank you for your article! I love the timer idea. I’ve used that concept as a homework coach and it really helps to motivate students, especially the middle school boys! I think they like the challenge of seeing how many problems they can complete before time is up!

  3. Timers are the BEST! so happy you have had a positive experience with them with your students Megan. I even pack a timer when I go on vacation.

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