Thriving at Work With ADHD


The biggest and most obvious challenge
when you transition into the workforce is that, you are expected to perform and
be on, be focused. I am not able to do my job from 9 to 5 at a desk.
Like, the way I managed to always make sure I was performing was, putting
myself in these environments where there’s fire, fire, fire. In the community that I grew up in, which
is a Latin American immigrant community, ADHD and any number of things like it
were always stigmatized. I think the stigma around the time was definitely,
not just for the child, but, “Oh, you’re just not being a strict enough parent,” or
that sort of thing. So in my mind, if I could do well in one area, then there was
no way I could have it easier. Any sort of learning difference. Needless to
say, I got into my swing. And people kind of let me do my thing. And I did well
academically. And I was calm. It kind of went under the radar for a long time. The
big realization happened later on where, doing well academically did not translate
to entering the workforce. I compared myself, when I started to realize, “All right,
I’m not doing as well as my best friends.” Or, “I’m not exactly on the same path I
expected to be on, that they’re all definitely on. What’s up?” There’s so much
pressure to perform, that I then started to accommodate a different type of work
environment. So instead of the corporate, I thought, “Let me try the startups.” I can
react really well, because I care. I want to do well. If you put yourself in these
startup environments, where it’s fire, fire, fire, you’re gonna do it. But then, I
started developing a ton of anxiety. And it’s like, the accommodation for one
thing became, “Oops, well, that’s not really great for your mental health either.” I
just figured, that at least will impact me outside of work. And not necessarily
hamper what I wanted to feel, which was, “I can do things. I can achieve. I am good
enough.” The game-changer came when I started at Understood, and I started to
read and learn more about the, what it is, what it isn’t, what those myths were.
Finding a lot of parallels, like, “Oh yeah, that’s not true, got it.” I finally took
the leap of faith. I decided, “Hold up. Let me go talk to an expert.” I got it
validated. My mind just opened up to possibilities again where, “All right.
There’s nothing wrong with me, per se. I just have to approach things differently,
understand where my strengths are.” There are ways to not let it hold me
back. Finally being comfortable with being more self-aware, everything took
off. It was kind of like a J curve where I’m now fully catching up with my
friends. I understood how I worked. I see a specialist every month and got it
under control. I won’t say fully, because every day is different. What that’s
meant for me personally is that, I’ve gotten my confidence back. I am not
afraid to follow my ambitions. And I’m daydreaming more than ever. And I can’t wait to see what the next five years looks like now.

4 thoughts on “Thriving at Work With ADHD

  1. Thank you so much for sharing this. Very eye opening and encouraging.

  2. I wonder if daydreaming more than ever is actually a good thing. You can definitely fall into a trap of daydreaming too much.

  3. There is no objective falsifiable test to show that 'ADHD' exists. Its subjective diagnosis is flawed, and its presence in the human frame is presupposed, making all supporting 'evidence' invalid. Don't take my word for it – just follow the scientific method.

  4. Realizing there’s a reason and name to what you’re experiencing is such a life changing moment. When I was diagnosed with adhd I finally knew why everything seemed so much harder for me than everyone else

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