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Running a Small Business with ADHD

I don't know why the subject of ADHD is on my mind. I am informally diagnosed as an Inattentive type (my mom was a school psychologist and agrees with my self-diagnosis). Both my sisters had formal diagnoses, but because I was a good student and reasonably quiet, I never stuck out for diagnosis. My mom definitely has it, too. My niece is diagnosed. So yes, it runs in the family. In 10th grade at debate camp my nickname was "Space Case". That is hilarious if you know anything about high school debate. But also telling about where my mind tends to wander. For example: My husband tells me I constantly leave drawers and cupboard doors open. I have no idea I do it and swear he is making it up. I can't stop, because I don't know I am doing it even when I try to pay attention. I also honestly cannot remember the exact day or year we got married. It doesn't mean I don't care.


"Inattentive" means I don't experience hyperactivity. I can sit still for hours- many, many hours if I am in hyperfocus mode. Like when I am making jewelry- six hours will disappear like nothing. I will even forget to eat, which is truly incredible if you know me. I just can't remember what the date is, how long it REALLY takes me to get ready to leave the house (instantaneous, right?), where I left any number of things, or the fact that I created a blog nearly a month ago. Blog? What blog? Completely left my mind after the first post. But for some reason this morning I sat straight up in bed and went, "Crap! I forgot about the blog!". Morning seems to be the time my brain wakes up and reminds me of everything I need to do. But then I usually forget half of it before I actually get out of bed. So I decided to write about forgetting to write in my blog.


So what makes me think I can run a business? The thing is, I have run one all by myself in the past. I had a really cute retail store for five years. I did a decent job. If there had not be a giant global recession I might still be in business and not writing this blog.


Fortunately I am also smart and have compensated well for my atypical brain. I have systems. My organizational systems may not look like everyone else's, but they work for me. A lot of them are spacial- as in, the keys always go in (or near) the bowl. It is amazing what putting a bowl on the front table did for my key-finding abilities. I almost never misplace my keys now. Electronic planners, or if I am honest, any type of planners, are a non-starter. I use paper for my day to day tasks, though I don't have what anyone else might recognize as a planner. I also keep a giant dated list (though ironically, I do keep this on my phone). And no, it does not stress me out. I can easily tell you my next haircut or dental appointment. I pay my bills on time. I do my own business taxes. I keep decent records. When I care a lot about what I am doing, I am very good at follow through and paying attention. I care a lot about making jewelry. Even if I sometimes forget about the existence of a blog.



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