ADHD at Work
I was diagnosed with ADD when I was a child. The doctors told me I would outgrow it and would not notice any of the symptoms once I reached adulthood.
This was a very large load of garbage. I have had numerous jobs over the years. I found a job I loved and kind of lucked my way into management. This is when the symptoms of my ADD started becoming noticeable again. I couldn’t meet deadlines, I was late for meetings, I couldn’t focus on the many things I was responsible for. I determined that I needed help. I approached my employer to see what they could do to help me. My boss’s only response was that he had it too and I was just going to have to deal with it. I asked if HR had knowledge of any programs that could help me overcome it. He told me not to go to them and to let him bring it to their attention. 3 months later I was told that I was not a good fit for the company and that I was going to be let go.
I was pretty devastated by this. When I spoke to friends and family, I was told there was nothing I could do about it. So I pushed past it and within a month found another management job. Similar pay and benefits as the previous one and few extra perks. I was excited…for about week.
I had to travel to Indianapolis to get started and train for the job. One week of training in person and then start managing the office when I get back. Seems simple.
This is when ADD decided to take a starring role in my life again. The night before I was supposed to get on the plane, I lost my wallet with my ID and SS card (stupid to have those together, I know. But I was keeping them close so I wouldn’t forget them.). I had to scramble and find alternate ID, rearrange my flight, contact my new employers, and I hadn’t even packed yet. I wound up arriving in Indianapolis with no sleep and no driver’s license. My new employers were very understanding. We did what we could, but my training was scheduled at the end of the month. This is the busiest time for my company. I was also being hired into an industry I knew absolutely NOTHING about. I was completely lost and out of my comfort zone (a huge problem for people with ADD). I explained this to my employers and they told me to just take it one step at a time and relax. I didn’t tell them about my ADD because I had just lost one job due to it, I wasn’t about to lose another.
When I returned to Kansas City, I was put into a ADDer’s nightmare. The “office” I was taking over was a room full of product. Nothing was organized or structured and I had no idea how to use any of it. I was also told that I would be moving the office and had one month to do it. I was terrified, but I took it on and was prepared to accept this challenge. On my second day officially in charge, my one and only employee quit. Now I was in charge of running an office that would soon be moving, handling deliveries (which meant driving all over the state), learning a new job, handling deadlines, processing paperwork, and so much more that made it all seem very impossible. But I needed the job, so I stuck with it.
I eventually hired a driver, we got the office moved, I even kind of developed a bit of a routine. Then it started. The comfort. Every person who suffers with inattentive ADD should be familiar with “the comfort”. Deadlines weren’t being met, errors were being made, inventory was not getting processed properly, as long as I got to it by the end of the day, I was fine. My driver is the exact opposite. He has a task, nothing else matters until it’s completed. So I delegated some of my responsibility to him. Then errors started happening.
3 months ago I decided to get proactive about my ADD. Unfortunately I had to find a new physician and then get referred to a psychiatrist. I just started using Adderall 2 weeks ago and it was upsetting my anxiety. I found myself curled up in my office crying through an anxiety attack.
The doctor’s response was to take me off of Adderall and put me on Xanax. This just made things worse. I found myself not being able to focus AND not caring about it. I sat and stared into space for an hour.
How do I get control of this. I’ve tried structure, diet, exercise, meditation, and now medication. Does anyone have any advice?
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