Seeing the Big Picture Living with ADD

Not one to look for things to do, because I am a person with an ADD/ADHD style of brain construction, I have more than enough ideas and activities to keep me busy. I never have nothing to do, nor do I need to re-invent, copy, or window shop for ideas. Sound familiar to you? Or to someone you know? Well, join the crowd. Let’s wend our way to a new understanding of what we’re all about as we walk the labyrinth of ADD.

It all began in the late 1980s when I realized that ADD is simply a difference, not a mental health Disorder of pathological magnitude. It was then that a new perspective began to emerge: ADD as a Diversity issue.

Others have stepped forward who see the new view and I invite you to join those of us who are wending our way through the ADD labyrinth of positive recognition of our way of being and doing.

Here’s what we can do today:

Step 1. Realize that varying styles of brain construction are different and equally valuable in order to accomplish a quality of life both personally and in the work world. We each have something to contribute to the whole of our society. We need one another. When you do believe that, you can say, “I have something special to give. Yes, I need others, but they also need me.”

Step 2. Identify our personal Attributes from an ADD brainStyle so we recognize the innate contributions that we have to offer our personal and work life and that contribute to our society at large. Oh, yes, and when we do, we end up feeling really, really good about ourselves as we shine in our own special way—a way that is much needed. We end up no longer feeling “broken.”

So, today, here’s the first attribute for you to consider in building your worth.

Attribute 1.  Seeing the Big Picture

“You and I and many others with ADD attributes tend to see a Big Picture that contains the details that make up our dreams and goals. Usually creative by nature, big picture people often see a complete vision of what we want to achieve before we start moving toward our goals. In fact, we don’t travel well to any goal unless we are provided with the big picture to begin with.” (View from the Cliff, Weiss, 2001)

Next, go back and read this description through a couple of times. Let the ideas and concepts mix thoroughly with your feelings as well as your cognitive thinking mind. Notice any pictures, stories, remembrances, or the like from earlier times in your life that show themselves to you now. Whatever appears is not a coincidence. These may be memories from both good and bad times: times of pain and times of joy. From both, you’ll learn about yourself and what fits your style of brain construction.

Your reward will be “getting to know yourself” and how you work. In the long run, you’ll receive all the information you need for whatever you’re doing. Your job will be one of learning how to use these brainStyle attributes to your advantage. And you’ll be able to choose routes to your goals and dreams that are less painful because you’ve chosen a route that fits your brainStyle: the ADD Way.

I’ll help you. And so will others who read this blog or cross paths with books or talks about this way of looking at ourselves. You have many mentors to help you. Comment on this blog and let us know what kind of feelings or thoughts you had as you read it.

And if you have ideas, answers, or thoughts that you’d like to share with others, make a comment at the end of the blog. You may have had to spend a lot of time working with your own or another’s ADD or you may not have. It doesn’t matter. I’ve heard ingenious ideas coming out of the mouths of babes. That’s part of the awesomeness of ADD. It’s creative and see things in a different light.

Let’s hear from you. Next week’s blog with cover the second major Attribute of ADD: The Ability and Need to Know the Function of Whatever We Wish to Do in Order to Make it Our Own.

Live from your True Self,

lynn weiss phd signature

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4 Responses to Seeing the Big Picture Living with ADD

  1. cary stillwell says:

    Big pictures, yes! I’m excited to read the post that explains the path from having the vision to having patience while the details catch up. Much of my life experiences go like this:
    1. Have an idea.
    2. Visualize the pig picture completely – (let’s call the Big Picture “10”….).
    3. Contemplate details 1 thru 9 that are necessary for achieving “10”.
    4. Decide to start at detail 8 because 1 thru 7 are far too tedious for me.
    5. But realize quickly that detail 9 is very difficult to complete without the completion of 1 thru 7.
    6. Get people involved that are capable of doing details 1 thru 7.
    7. Am immediately frustrated that detail people are going about details 1 thru 7 without any concept of “10,” which I, of course, am incapable of explaining in a way detail people understand.
    8. Impatience getting the best of me, I fire all the detail to people.
    9. Decide to forge ahead on my own with detail 9 because it’s the fastest way to “10.”
    10. Alone, and immersed in the seriously convoluted details of 9 (as a result of bypassing 1 thru 7), I loose site of “10” and start asking the detail people what the original idea was.
    11. Nobody knows, and if they do, they won’t talk to me. Why would they? I fired them because they were clearly useful…HA!

    I write with lightheartedness and humor, now. Not that I’ve mastered the process, for that couldn’t be farther from the truth, but because I’ve learned that this Big Picture person can’t take herself too seriously. We are still human, after all.

  2. cary stillwell says:

    Would have been more funny had I not forgotten the word not.

    11. Nobody knows, and if they do, they won’t talk to me. Why would they? I fired them because they were clearly NOT useful…HA!

  3. Lynn Weiss says:

    Thanks for your humorous response! As long as you know that with a short A.D.D. apprenticeship (hands on learning) workshop in “Building the Big Picture Project” you’d become an efficient designer and person who completes her projects.

  4. Tilly Baity says:

    This completely describes the way I try to accomplish goals! I become frustrated that others cannot see the concept, but I, too, cannot explain the concept. When I do try to explain, I start with wherever my mind is on the task (most likely step 7 or 8), then I have to go back and explain a “stepping” detail. So when I return to where I was before I just confuse people.
    Thank you Cary for the post.

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