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“How to Find Your Passion? Follow Your Hyperfocus”

“When a subject grabs our attention by the throat and won’t let go, we have found a jewel in the haystack. We should never let it slip through our hands because passion brings more than excitement; it brings meaning.”

Young woman winking while holding paintbrush against wall during home renovation

“Never give up on something that you can’t go a day without thinking about.” — Sir Winston Churchill

This Churchill quote is particularly apt for people with ADHD. Why? Because we function best when we’re passionate, engaged, and able to hyperfocus. When we think about something all the time, it’s probably because that thing is deeply meaningful and important to us.

When a subject grabs our attention and won’t let go, we have found a jewel in the metaphorical ocean. We should never let it slip through our fingers because passion brings more than excitement; it brings meaning. I pity the person without passions because that means everything in their life is something to tolerate, nothing more. A life of toleration — how boring is that?

[Need Help Finding Your Passion? Use This ADHD “Brain Blueprint”]

In my presentation for the 12th annual virtual ADHD Awareness Expo in October 2021, my take-home point to parents, educators and physicians was this: Your vital function for children with ADHD is to help them find their passions and strengths, the areas in their lives where they can feel good about themselves.  We need these children, who often struggle to shine, to know they have passions and skills where their brilliance is overwhelming.

I have interviewed men with inattentive ADHD, diagnosed in their mid-30s or even later. One interviewee told me he did poorly in school but desperately wanted to be a physician. As a medical student, he was the best student in his class. He couldn’t understand this. How did he do it?  Years later, after his diagnosis, he asked his therapist, “Why was I successful in medical school?”  She replied, “You found your passion. You hyperfocused and excelled at something you love.”

[Read:The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly of Hyperfocus]

Now I run a non-profit (Inattentive ADHD Coalition) to spread awareness about inattentive ADHD. Everyday, I ask, What more can I do? Who else can I contact? What else can I write? I am living Sir Winston’s quote, unable to let a day go by that I don’t think about inattentive ADHD and changing the world’s understanding of and attitude toward it. I hope you find your passion soon, and if you’ve found it already, I hope you’ll share it with us in the Comments below.

How to Find Your Passion with ADHD: Next Steps

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