Attention Deficit Disorder and laziness

Hi there,

about 3 months ago somebody mentioned ADD to me, I read about it and discovered I had every trait associated with it except for one: often being too late at appointments. It still does happen to me that I forget about one, but it's rare. Here are the other traits:

-concentration problems

-motivation problems

-being dreamy or thinking a lot

-(therefore) being more passive

-trouble making choices

All these things are related more or less and have to do with the brain. It has to do with a shortage of dopamine which is an important motivator that drives people . The problem is not easily solved with pills because of side effects and decreased response by adding stimuli.

Often, by teachers, my father or bosses, I have been critiziced for not having enough drive. "You don't seem to care".  For over 10 years I had a computer job at a bank that paid very well and it was pretty laid back. My ADD didn't get into the way too much because mostly there was not too much stress, not tons of work to be done most of the time. And whenever there was I usually found it easier to focus. I was however not particularly passionate about my job. After a reorganization I received a pretty good severance package which gave me more freedom to spend my time,  for about a year, the way however I want. I has been an interesting half year so far. I decided to pursue creativity more. To be precise, I have a passion for card games and want to bring out my own card game. Also, more recently, I picked up learning IOS app development, with the same goal in mind eventually: make card games.

I thought that, if I would pick something I enjoy, I would start working very hard and be very enthusiastic all the time. That, after I made my mind up, with tough choices about my future, I would run like a train. But this is the part where my ADD gets in the way. As of right now, I should be busy with my studies. But I am too distracted. I feel I want to lay down and drown myself in a pool of laziness for a while. Even when I do work it's not enough and I get critiziced by my councillor: "you don't seem to make enough miles" and "I don't see the enthusiasm". Being an introvert that doesn't really like to tell about himself much, ultimately I have accepted my disability to squeeze out an enthusiastic, spontaneous sales pitch and have recognized the need to explain this disability to others, as the majority of western society simply sees extraverted behavior as the norm.

Now, save some snack attacks I mostly eat healthy (fruit, vegetables), am not overweight, go to the gym twice a week, walk in nature for some fresh air, have some good friendships and social activities. I am however single and sex is something that only happens (and often happens) in my fantasy life. My energy level is low despite everything I do to keep it up.  There are always distractions, one click away. Surfing the web I can be distracted by many things, hungry for information or visual stimuli. But according to what I read about depression I am not depressed.

I am not looking for a solution but wonder if this desire for laziness is recognized. And if it comes from something deeper that I haven't identified. Personally I have accepted that due to my lack of dopamine I simply have to put much more energy in starting something (study, chores). Once I am busy it's not so bad until I get distracted by something that strongly seizes my attention (which can simply be a mere thought I have). But this desire to escape, into laziness, music, sexual fantasies, tv shows and what not...it's too strong to handle. It's often misunderstood that discipline is harder for someone with ADD and costs much more energy. Structure and regularity are as much needed as they are against my own nature as I tend to stay up late for too long. All I want to do now is relax, go to bed earlier and sleep a long night. But I know that tomorrow will be a struggle just like any other day.

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Comment by Floris on January 29, 2015 at 12:45am

Thank you Ivy, I don't expect advice, but simply recognition. There is no cure, no quick fix and no slow one either. It's just something I have to deal with every day, having to manually push the car instead of starting the engine with a spark.

Comment by Ivy White on January 29, 2015 at 12:39am

I could have written this. Down to the type of DD  (he :p  ) I have been diagnosed with ADD, and cyclothymia, got some meds for it and some worked but I had severe side-effects. I do get moments in my life where I am super invested into something and hyper-energized, basically when I start a new hobby or job, and I always imagine that one day I'll find "the" thing. That I'll be happy to wake up and go ahead, work, and be satisfied at the end of the day. What helps me a tiiiiny bit is meditation. But I don't always get started when I should. Don't have much advice to offer, but you're not alone in what you feel.

Comment by Floris on January 28, 2015 at 10:23am

Other people will think that you are not really motivated and enthusiastic. And lazy. But reality is that focus can even drift away easily from those things that you love. Key is to start in time with what you should do. Have enough sleep, so no snack eating in the evening which will distort structure. And variety in work is great because it is more stimulating. Hyperfocus is something you cannot have all day but for things you love it comes more naturally.

Comment by Amanda Lewone on January 28, 2015 at 7:21am
I have the same issues. I really don't understand it. I've actually managed to stop living in my fantasy world, but I tend to be lazy and distracted in the real world ( even on things I want to accomplish ).

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