Two lovely ADHD characteristics are that you are ’emotionally intelligent’ and ‘sensitive’ people While being sensitive is not considered ‘cool’ in a culture that values ‘strong and independent’, being sensitive is an incredible gift. It allows you to relate to other people’s emotions and empathize with how they are feeling. This, in turn, allows you to connect within a deeper level that is rewarding and fulfilling.
Whether you wear your heart on your sleeve or have developed a thick outer skin, your sensitivity is a gift and can help you in your personal and professional life.
However, as with all gifts, there is a downside.
Life events that seem quite small to a non-ADHD’er can leave you mulling over that event for days, and the lovely ADHD characteristics seem more than a burden than a gift. People’s reactions to something you said, did or didn’t do stay with you for a long time. It’s hard for you not to take things personally. Perhaps a first date that doesn’t want a second, ‘ A friend’ who deletes you from facebook, or the car behind you honks their horn because they don’t agree with how you’re driving.
When things happen like this it’s easy to think “what did I do wrong, was I too…” A brief reflection on a situation is healthy. However, usually it’s nothing to do with you and everything to do with the other person.
Don Miguel Ruiz wrote powerful small book called ‘The Four Agreements’ .Each agreement is a combination of old Tolec wisdom and modern day knowledge. The second agreements is ‘Don’t take Anything personally’ and it’s powerful advice for everyone with ADHD
If someone doesn’t want a second date with you, it’s not because you aren’t a beautiful human being inside and out; perhaps you reminded them of their ex. If someone deletes you as their Facebook ‘friend’, it could be because they don’t want to see what a fun life you are having, or a zillion other reasons that you couldn’t even begin to imagine. The man behind you is honking his horn not because you violated a road safety rule but because he is in a rush, or had a fight with his wife and is feeling grumpy. Rather than spending hours thinking of different reason for someone’s behaviour and feel bad about yourself, simply remember Don Miguel Ruiz words: ‘Don’t take Anything personally’ and move on to the next fun item in your day.