ADHD reWired

This week, Eric talks with his guest, Henry Holman, about how some of the lessons he's learned through gaming can also apply to real life, the impact of discovering when you're not alone with your ADHD, and dive into a quick coaching session for tips and strategies to managing your to-do's. 

About Henry:

Henry is going to be a senior at DePaul University, studying computer science and is working towards a career in game programming. Although he was diagnosed at 9 years old, he didn’t start learning about ADHD until he was 19, and remains fascinated with the “why” behind his ADHD-ness. He has loved video games for as long as he can remember, and in recent years, he has learned a lot about himself as he strives to improve at competitive Super Smash Brothers™. His long term career goal is to create a game that makes players feel like they have ADHD, to increase awareness and understanding surrounding the disorder. 

This is one of the first episodes in a while where Eric gets to have a guest in-studio


[00:02:48] - Eric asks how Henry got into video games. It all started with a Game Boy Color and a McDonalds toy. Henry and his siblings also split a game console.Then Eric and Henry hash out their virtual tennis accomplishments, and why a lamp-timer is helpful.

[00:04:39] - Henry talks about a video game he wants to create that will make people feel like they have ADHD. His brother recommends a game to play, where the underlying theme of the game is a metaphor for overcoming the character’s anxiety, and why it resonated with Henry. He also talks about a game he’s played where the character in the game suffers from psychosis, which also gave him inspiration. 


Fun fact: The game Henry mentions in the timestamp above was, indeed, made in collaboration with neuroscientists and mental health professionals. Henry says, “They didn’t want to do [the game] a disservice” and wanted to break a misrepresentation of mental health in games. Read more:


[00:08:31] - Eric asks where Henry is at [with his game]. Henry has already made some prototype levels, designed after Dr. Russell Barkley’s theory of executive deficits, and how the levels represent these deficits. 

[00:11:00] - Eric and Henry talk about enthusiasm vs. pursuing a passion professionally. Henry reflects on an episode of ADHD reWired he’s listened to. “We don’t have the luxury [with ADHD] of doing things we don’t like to do for a living” is a phrase that resonates with how he felt about school. 

[00:12:44] - Henry really wanted to do game design as a career, but got a “C” in a game-design class, but didn’t quite know what it was he truly wanted to do. Later on, Henry discovers a love for programming, problem-solving, and playing with Lego and K’nex. 

[00:15:31] - A moment of ADHD happens right before the break. 

[00:22:26] - Henry started educating himself after getting stuck on breaking his skill-ceiling, and talks about the game he dove into to learn how to play competitively. Eric and Henry nerd out about their “mains” in Super Smash Brothers™. Henry explains how picking up a new character in the game was a perfect metaphor for living life with ADHD. 

[00:27:13] - “Autopilot” isn’t effective. Henry talks about how his skill-ceiling led to frustration, and coming up with new strategies after losing another set. When he realizes his ADHD may have something to do with his struggles, he talks about diving into ADDitude magazine articles, watching HowToADHD videos on YouTube, and going down the ADHD Reddit rabbit-hole. 

[00:30:48] - Henry learns about tournament-nerves, staying calm under pressure, and being able to control impulses, and how in Super Smash Brothers™ was helpful to apply the principles he learned to the real world. 

[00:33:20] - Henry recommends taking a drink of water to knock your body out of fight-flight-freeze mode, and how it became his pause-mechanism. 

[00:34:33] - Henry’s passion about games “speaks to if we’re going to problem-solve around any area of life, if we can figure out a way to put it through the lens of what we are passionate about, it gives our brain a fighting chance.” - Eric 

[00:40:55] - Eric and Henry go through some coaching about a consistent system to keep track of his to-do’s. From a digital-assignment notebook and a whiteboard. 

[00:44:46] - Eric and Henry talk about the assignment books they received in school, and dive into some of the tools Henry used to use, and how what has worked before never lasted for him, aside from Google Calendar. Then, Eric asks, “What if we can… shift to the mindset from ‘I want to find a consistent tool’ to being quick to pivot when we realize we are no longer paying attention to this tool?” 

[00:47.01] - Eric talks about the different places his to-do’s live, and what Eric found helpful for him. Eric also recommends setting a reminder that asks, “Am I using this tool?” Then, Henry reflects on how this could work for him. Eric also recommends using an erasable pen when using a paper-calendar. 

[00:49.07] - Henry shares his issue with communication, how he stores the information he’s been given, and how shorthand isn’t always the best way to store that information.

[00:52:14] - Eric goes over keeping track of to-do’s, then checking-in with the to-do’s. Mentioned here: Book - Change Your Questions, Change Your Life (affiliate link) 

[00:54:52] - The thing that I think is most important to be cognizant of is, ‘What are you doing now, what are you doing next?' ...because knowing what’s next makes transitions easier. Everything else is a distraction.” - Eric

[00:56:39] - Henry shares his takeaways and the systems he wants to try, which include implementing the reminders about his systems in his calendar, and keeping an “encyclopedia” or an “owner's manual” of strategies of what he has done in the past. Eric also encourages rotating through the tools we have. 


Get to know Henry here from his  @HankDeTank05

Other Honorable Mentions:
Check out the Other Podcasts on the ADHD reWired Podcast Network:
Don't Forget These, Too!
  • — Support the show by becoming a Patron!
  • — Get your name on the waitlist to join the fall season of ADHD reWired's Coaching and Accountability Groups
  • — Join your ADHD-friendly co-working space!
  • — Join Eric, Brendan, Will, MJ, Moira, Roxie, and Barb for an hour of Live Q&A on Zoom, every 2nd Tuesday of the month at 12:30pm Central (10:30am Pacific / 1:30pm Eastern)
Direct download: 391_-_Does_a_Passion_for_Video_Games_Help_with_Henry_Holman_2.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:10pm CST

This is an episode you won’t want to miss. Listen in as Eric - and his guest, Aron Croft - talk about the coping mechanisms Aron went through before he was diagnosed, the lessons he learned from his failures, and how he rose like the pheonix from Procrastinator in Chief to developing an ADHD-friendly productivity system you can't not hear about!

About Aron:

Aron appeared to have it all together when he got into Harvard. But that was the beginning of his demise. He struggled non-stop for 15 years until he was broke, divorced, and earning minimum wage, failing out of his first seven jobs and businesses. But after getting a masters degree in coaching psychology and a diagnosis of inattentive ADHD, his life changed. He built a successful fortune 500 career, got married, and discovered how to get shit done with a neurodivergent brain. 

RIght before Eric and Aron hit record, Aron also adds another skill in pillow fort building for reducing slap-back audio in a not-perfectly-acoustic room! 

[00:02:26] - Eric and Aron start at the “bottom” of Aron’s story. Aron gets into Harvard and explains how he dropped out twice before graduating, hating school, being outmatched and outclassed. He lost the structure he had around him, moving from south Florida to Boston, and was sick of the pain to get things done by waiting until the last minute until fear motivated him to get things done, studying computer science. Eric affirms that activation energy can be amazing, but comes at a price.

[00:05:10] - Aron talks about the ways he got through high school, building relationships with teachers that felt inauthentic, feeling like he needed to be studying subjects that had “right” answers, such as math and science. He goes into how it was easier to bounce back from dropping out of school the first time. 

[00:07:11] - Aron shares how he moved his life to an island off the coast of New Zealand, his plan to retire early, and what came out of these decisions he made in his early 20’s, navigating with some minor inconvenient factors he’d overlooked. Even though Aron and his then-fiance quickly discovered boredom, he doesn’t regret his decisions. 

[00:10:00] - Eric and Aron agree on the idea of boredom and “retirement”. Then, they discuss the “drug” of self-improvement. Then, Eric asks Aron how they got off the island.

[00:11:55] - Aron teaches Eric and the listeners about “The Harvard Curse” and being heavily influenced by his environment. 

[00:13:32] - “It’s applying it that’s challenging for me.” - Aron

[00:22:16] - Eric asks Aron about the next 15 years. Aron talks about his first job out of school and a decision he wasn’t proud of in that chapter of his life. He then talks about the other jobs he had, but repeated a pattern of letting things pile up until the last minute to get things done. Aron explains how this affected his relationship - navigating without yet being diagnosed with ADHD. After a year and some at his second job, he takes his ambitious 25-year-old-self to start a business in real-estate. Then, queue a slight tangent about their handyman skills!

[00:25:41] - Aron shares a realization about being his own boss, moving to Australia, and going into sales. He then discovers a world-renowned program at the University of Sydney in Executive Coaching, seeing a Master’s Program in Coaching Psychology, changing the trajectory of his life for the better. His passion shines here, and tells the story about how a gag-gift from a friend sparked his relationship with personal development. 

[00:30:50] - Eric and Aron fast forward to when he moved back from Australia to Chicago and landing a new job. Receiving some feedback and realizing his position is now at risk, Aron shares his story about the measures he took to keep himself employed. 

Mentioned here:
If you are struggling with addiction, here are some resources available in the United States & Canada:

In the United States:

In Canada:

[00:38:14] - Eric has Aron dive into his “holy shit” moment of only having two weeks to redo his work while under probation. Aron talks about his “swiss-cheese” resume and the drastic measure (which is NOT endorsed by ADHD reWired and its team or Aron Croft). He [Aron] then realized what it meant when people told him to “just focus.” Eric also affirms the Oh-moment, while Aron explains how these actions led to scheduling an appointment to getting an ADHD diagnosis. Then, Eric and Aron share the experience when they were asked how they managed to “survive” and “get this far”  before getting diagnosed. 

[00:42:55] - Aron not only finishes his work after getting thrown under the bus, his environment changes and starts ADHD medication, and starts crushing it - getting promoted four times in six years. Then, Eric throws Aron a tough question, as he recounts working 9 hour days in a job he didn’t love, leading to some isolation. Aron shares his realization when ADHD medication wasn’t enough and needed to see the bigger picture and using specific strategies. 

[00:46:17] - Eric reflects on his past successes and how he would do things differently.

[00:47:50] - Aron shares the process of how he went from “Procrastinator in Chief” to developing the SMASH productivity System, his thoughts and feelings as he dug into the process while looking into his future, and what happened after his “fit of freaking out”. He talks about 30-minute productivity blocks, then mastering those principles in a 30-minute block that he could replicate. 

[00:50:56] -  “I’m not going to outwork neurotypicals, so I need to outsmart them.” - Aron

[00:51:01] - Select High-Leverage Actions

[00:52:13] - Minimize Distractions

[00:52:42] - Add Accountability

[00:55:30] - Schedule it First!

[00:56:51] - Hone Your Process

[00:58:03] - Aron mentions using the Staircase Method and layering small improvements overtime.

[00:58:57] - Aron & Eric share their closing thoughts… and it’s definitely worth a listen. 

Connect with Aron: 

Honorable Mentions:

Check out the Other Podcasts on the ADHD reWired Podcast Network:
Don't Forget These, Too!
  • — Support the show by becoming a Patron!
  • — Get your name on the waitlist to join the fall season of ADHD reWired's Coaching and Accountability Groups
  • — Join your ADHD-friendly co-working space!
  • — Join Eric, Brendan, Will, MJ, Moira, Roxie, and Barb for an hour of Live Q&A on Zoom, every 2nd Tuesday of the month at 12:30pm Central (10:30am Pacific / 1:30pm Eastern)
Direct download: 390_-_How_to_Recover_from_Years_of_Failure_-_with_Aron_Croft.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:00am CST

If you’ve wanted to hear more about ADHD reWired Coach, Roxie Martin, then this is the show you need to listen to. In this episode, Eric and Roxie get vulnerable and  dive into tackling fear, facing joy, and what it means for them to show up. 

About Roxie:

Roxie Martin is a certified life-coach, currently coaching her second season of ADHD reWired’s Coaching and Accountability Groups. She has 35 years of research experience in what it’s like to be an adult with ADHD, and a lifetime of hard-won wisdom to share. She has a colorful and diverse background that allows her to deeply relate and connect with almost anyone. She has been a ministry leader, a wife, a mom, a hair stylist, and a mentor. She is compassionate, encouraging, and has a finely-tuned bullshit-meter that helps cut quickly through the fluff and get right to the good stuff.

[00:02:17] - Eric and Roxie go into the timeline of how she became one of the ADHD reWired Coaches. From ArC member to peer mentor, Eric wanted Roxie to become a coach for the groups. 


[00:03:57] - Eric asks Roxie if she’s always innately had [her bullshit-meter] - her answer feels like an honest yes and explains why it feels weird to say it. They talk about intuition, as Eric feels like grad school beat the intuition out of [them] and learned not to trust the intuition, but has learned to listen to and amplify his intuition through coaching.


[00:05:31] - Eric talks about the vision of how things were “supposed” to go, have a laugh about how things went out-of-order, and how Roxie is coaching her second season and starting up a podcast with Will Curb called, “Wait, What was the Question?”


[00:06:40] - Eric and Roxie dive into who Roxie is, and the vulnerabilities Roxie has been exploring in her own life. Roxie goes more into “counterfeit” vulnerability through her own exploration and self-awareness. She talks about things that hadn’t changed over the years, and what she did when she was put into situations she had to be vulnerable in. Roxie goes more into what her actions used to be and verbalizes the feelings that came up for her when faced with a choice to take the easy or vulnerable way through. 


[00:09:16] - Roxie answers Eric’s question about what it is she was numbing from. She talks about where she noticed it [the feelings] came up the most, such as events or parties or being in settings where she’s not comfortable - particularly social things, and where she knew she would have to have a hard conversation.  


[00:10:27] - Roxie talks about what got her more curious, with Eric’s impression that she looks through a lens of curiosity. Roxie says she wishes she had a bullshit meter for herself but can feel it when she’s justifying, compromising, or playing small. She then talks about why she’s played small. She acknowledges she’s not able to change it, but is not able to ignore it. Hear more here about her beginning when she first joined ArC and talks about being dumb on purpose. She also talks about creating a safe space for the members of her groups. 


[00:13:22] - Eric asks what her training has taught her about showing up in group. She says she’s learned a lot more about coaching from being part of the ArC seasons, with her classes still being valuable. She then dives into compassion being great, but you need compassion and strength in order to feel safe and secure. Roxie dives into why the strength-piece is important, talks about the ways we communicate information, and trusting the intuition and gut with the knowledge and strength.


[00:22:41] - Roxie and Eric shine a light on what Roxie has seen in her coaching sessions, what stands out for her, and what she’s learned from the members. She talks about impulse control, the excitement of witnessing growth and self-realized epiphanies, and reframing self-talk, reiterating that it’s a hard place to make progress without curiosity and compassion. Roxie also reveals some of the tips and tricks she’s learned from members. 


[00:27:04] - Roxie explains more about picking up tools and how it’s helped her teach what she’s learned. Eric also talks about feeling clueless, being on time for class in grad-school, and explains why it’s important to dig into this stuff [as coaches.] He also talks about giving space as such an important skill, recognizing that Roxie does that really well. 


[00:29:35] - Eric dives more into what Roxie mentioned earlier about “impulse control” and allowing members to make their own discoveries. Roxie dives into what she feels when she notices when she’s only giving advice, and how the impulse of giving advice comes from being in some kind of fear. Eric talks about the foggy mirror, as Roxie explains setting up her environment to show up mentally, emotionally, physically. 


[00:32:33] - Roxie revisits Eric’s earlier question about her favorite types of people to work with. Roxie loves the diversity of folks she gets to work with, and instead shares the types of people she is most intimidated by. Then, they dive deep into the different types of vulnerability, and how different people will see vulnerability differently based on their own vulnerabilities. Roxie then verbalizes about adapting her approach to the different types of vulnerability that will come up in the coaching groups, and meeting people where they’re at. Roxie truly believes everyone has value and something to offer, and emphasizes why she works to set up the groups to be the safest place it can be. 


[00:36:11] - “Vulnerability will look really similar to certain personality types.” - Roxie


[00:37:12] - “What is intuition’s […] thinking mind, and that’s curiosity.” - Eric


[00:42:57] - Roxie gets really vulnerable about how scary it is to acknowledge how much she loves what she’s doing. She dives even more into playing small, and how it was a strategy she adopted early on. She then goes in head first about joy and maintaining control around her own emotions. 


[00:45:53] - The biggest obstacle for really taking [the coaching group content in] is all the bullshit in our heads. Roxie explains being curious, trusting the process, and how great things happen when we can trust the process. 


[00:46:29] - “You’re not defective, there’s nothing wrong… We will be here. It’s an ongoing thing…” Roxie verbalizes what she wants for the coaching group members, and how this really is a community on the same path. Here, you really hear the joy in her voice of how much love she has for doing what she does with and in these groups.  


[00:47:20] - Eric “outs” Roxie (and himself) about how “none of us” have [their] shit together, and how they set the record straight during group, as Eric reflects on his past-self compared to where he is now. 


[00:49:16] - Roxie is amazed at how exciting things are on the other side of fear, and talks about the anxiety and fear from her first season when she started coaching. Then, when she was able to do it anyway, she realized the fear didn’t last and went through the whole process to where she is now, all with a growth mindset. 


[00:53:07] - Go to to register for Season 26 of the ADHD reWired Coaching and Accountability groups!

Check out the Other Podcasts on the ADHD reWired Podcast Network:
Don't Forget These, Too!
  • — Get your name on the waitlist to join the fall season of ADHD reWired's Coaching and Accountability Groups
  • — Join your ADHD-friendly co-working space!
  • — Support the show by becoming a Patron!
  • — Join Eric, Brendan, Will, MJ, Moira, Roxie, and Barb for an hour of Live Q&A on Zoom, every 2nd Tuesday of the month at 12:30pm Central (10:30am Pacific / 1:30pm Eastern)
Direct download: 389_-_Fear_Joy_and_Showing_Up_with_Coach_Roxie_Martin.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:00am CST

This week, we have the full panel of the ADHD reWired Podcast Family joining in for this month’s Q&A Session, recorded on July 13th 2021. Find all the good stuff below!


[00:03:56] Maria, a mom and former teacher, asks about subtypes of ADHD. She also asks about structure and looks for tools to strategize while jump-starting a teaching career online and plan better. 

  • Eric explains how ADHD “subtypes” shifted to “presentations” because over time, the presentation of ADHD can change. He also goes in depth about the diagnostic criteria, and the differences between children and adults. Most adults are the “combined” type of ADHD, along with Eric himself. When looking for strategies, he goes on to explain how it’s important to look at the functional impairments. Any kind of diagnosis is a starting point, but isn’t prescriptive.
  • Moira explains how as people age, the more we internalize symptoms, so the hyperactivity may be more in thought rather than physically hyperactive. Women are also more likely to be inattentive, in the inattentive type. As Maria put it: “Meta inattentiveness!”


[00:09:24] Malika asks about menopause and how she’s observed that her symptoms have become much worse since it came on full time. 

  • Moira talks about estrogen, and once someone goes through menopause, the body doesn’t make any more. Estrogen reduces ADHD symptoms, which is why when women are pregnant, they present with fewer ADHD symptoms. And, while women are in perimenopause, the estrogen levels are more erratic than in puberty. She talks about how hormone replacement therapy can be used to replace estrogen, and it also depends on someone’s own health profile and family history,  and hormone replacement therapy may not be for everyone. Another suggestion was increasing medication during that time, and a lot of things around lifestyle become important.
  • Resource mentioned here:  The Menopause Manifesto by Dr. Jen Gunter


[0:14:31] Sandra asks, “How can I help my 14-year-old son become more organized for high school, and writing notes for his classes to study from for tests?”

  • Brendan asks parents of ADHD kids: What’s going on with the IEP and the 504? What are the supports happening at school to help him get to where he needs to be?
  • Brendan says the best option is to have someone take notes or provide them for him so that he has good notes to study from, whether it’s a teacher or a peer, so he can study notes that are useful. He explains that someone giving a model can help Sandra’s son understand how he should be taking notes so he can do a better job with moving forward. Brendan also explains to be patient as he practices his new [note-taking] skill, and to leverage IEPs, 504s, and talking to teachers, guidance counsellors, special education teachers, etc. 
  • Roxie talks about how she’s had to work really hard to take better notes and that models are helpful. She acknowledges that it’s about incremental changes, because the template or the model doesn’t automatically mean we become amazing at it right away. 
  • Resource mentioned here: About Marydee Sklar
  • Eric mentions a course on how to draw your notes. He also explains that sometimes we don’t know what’s important, so we might take notes on everything, then we try to distill what’s important and what’s not. 
  • Brendan also suggests taking notes in two different colors, and to switch colors when a concept changes. 
  • Will reiterates the sketchnote idea and is great to help create that organization. Will also mentions the Cornell-style of taking notes, then Brendan goes in depth with how they work and how he makes that style work for him. It can be good for [taking notes during] business meetings, too!
  • Moira found how-to books, and suggests that note taking is a life-long skill. As a teacher, she actively tried to teach these tips to her students, not realizing it was because of her own struggle with it. She also recommends having conversations with educators who are going to be more helpful with things like this, so that it can be looked at as building a lifelong skill. It’s also okay for students to rely on their peer groups for good notes, share each other's strengths, and can make studying easier, too. 
  • MJ looks at note-taking from the student-perspective and how she would have liked to have been a part of the conversation to explain what works [for her], what doesn’t, and why. She explains that allowing kids to have the voice to explain what does work versus being told how it’s “supposed” to be done could be really helpful. 
  • Roxie brings up how it can be difficult to prioritize what’s important. She finds it helpful if she is really specific and succinct about what is going into the note-taking experience and writes a little road map.
  • Eric emphasizes that, with all things ADHD, they require experimentation until we find out what works.


[00:30:30] Ryan, who is in her mid-20’s, talks about struggling in the workplace with event planning and asks about a good system and starting place for planning, looking for tools on one hand and methods on the other.

  • Eric says she gets to try a bunch of different tools to find the ones that work. Then, once they “stop working”, it’s likely because it got boring to use. He explains that there isn’t one “right” way to manage “all the things.” One rule, Eric explains, is to, “Get things out of your head. Don’t keep things in your head ever, it’s one of the most reliable places where things get lost.” In other words: Externalize as much information as possible using things like a calendar or a to-do list. He goes on to say that the issue may not be the tool, but how often we are interacting with the tools we have. Eric then explains how to “cue” ourselves when things are coming up, and to write in more information we need on our to-do lists and in our calendars than we think we need.
  • Brendan shares the way he used to consistently screw up his own calendar, and shares what he does now so that others don’t make the same mistakes. He emphasizes writing down a “point-person” when a task or calendar event involves reaching out to someone. Brendan also talks about segmenting the to-do list in “today”, “this week”, and “this month/later”, depending on the individual’s ability to hold information and organize, how breaking it down could reduce overwhelm, and to write specific dates so we know when things are coming up and when they are due. 
  • Eric gets really specific: “What you’re doing NOW, what you’re doing NEXT. Everything else is just noise.” 
  • Will says the biggest part about using planners is consistency in getting used to that system and how there’s no perfect planner. Using one that’s “good enough” often really helps, and that it’s “okay it’s not perfect.” 
  • Roxie finds that when she’s having a hard time getting things done on her to-do list, it’s a good idea for her to check her boundaries if she is saying yes to too many things.
  • Eric-ism: “Just because it got put on your to do list doesn’t mean it has squatter rights to stay there.” 


[00:39:43] Kim asks about food and diet, and how they went on a whole-food plant-based vegan diet. They’ve found it has helped with their energy and ADHD symptoms, and wonders if that is the experience of others who have gone on a whole-food plan-based vegan diet.  

  • MJ talks about how she experimented with pescatarian, vegan, then raw vegan diets in the past. For her, it depended on her activity levels and continues practicing with what her body feels like when she eats certain foods because it’s not always the same. She goes on to explain how it [a diet] depends on a person’s tolerances, allergies, and that it can take some experimentation, and learning and observing what feels good when we eat certain foods.
  • Will says when we switch to diets like that, we tend to “up” the quality of foods we’re eating vs. eating foods detrimental to our ADHD. He also explains that there aren’t any specific studies [with data to back up] on diets that are good for ADHD.
  • Roxie talks about inflammation, and how certain foods can cause inflammation, which causes brain-fog. For her, highly refined foods cause her to feel foggy. 
  • Eric talks about how corn is in a ton of things, and when there’s inflammation, it causes brain-fog, which affects quality of life. On an individual basis, he also encourages paying attention to the foods that do make us feel good, and the ones that don’t make us feel good. Experiment, and drink lots of water!
  • Brendan circles back to what Will spoke to - we feel good when we replace “the crap” with broccoli and lettuce and apples and stuff. It’s important to recognize what makes us feel better because extreme diets are hard to maintain, and instead look at the fine-tuning. 
  • Moira works with a dietician who gave her an analogy: “When we have a sore throat, we’re not going to eat scratchy foods because it’s going to irritate our throats…. So if we’re eating smooth, cold things, it’s going to feel better. But it doesn’t necessarily mean that we should [always] eat that way.” And if we take something out of our diet like a whole food group but aren’t replacing it with something, we may become nutritionally deficient. 


[00:48:34] Gina is in the middle of getting assessed for ADHD and wonders about medication to bridge the gap between her strategies and her brain. She asks what it felt like if any of the panelists began taking ADHD medication as an adult. She wonders if medication may have a placebo effect or if it’s actually working.

  • Eric talks about a WOW-effect when taking ADHD meds/stimulant medication. He vividly remembers taking his ADHD medication and, for the first time, he got through a chapter and actually remembered what he just read. For Eric, when the meds are working, it’s a profoundly noticeable difference and shifts him out of neutral. 
  • For Brendan, taking ADHD medication was subtle - more of a “heh!” than a “wow”. He noticed he would pick things up and put them away instead of just walking by them, thinking “Oh this must be what neurotypical people do.” Then, Eric and Brendan emphasize that their ADHD medication helps them do the things that normal people make look easy. 
  • Moira found that, as she was driving, she wasn’t strategizing while driving. ADHD medication also gave her more peace because she didn’t have as many thoughts. She explains that folks who have ovaries and a cycle, hormones will impact how medication works throughout the cycle. Moira and Eric also explain that a general rule is to increase medication dosage until the side-effects outweigh the benefits. 
  • Will is similar to Brendan with how the medication works for him, and finds it really noticeable when he’s not on medication. He notices it takes a long time to form thoughts, has long pauses, and answers things slowly. For Will, medication makes him feel “back to normal”. 
  • MJ is also in the “heh” camp like Will and Brendan. The “wow” came later when she noticed that she was able to catch up on two weeks of paperwork when she started medication. Her house got really clean, too.
  • Roxie, while talking with her accountability team, explained how she’s had a hard time activating on some things, and lost sight of the medication piece when it came to activation. She wanted to err on the side of caution and spoke with her doctor about her dosage. She was happy to discover she has options. 
  • Eric explains how ADHD medication is a very efficacious medication, which does sometimes require trial and error. 


Jaclyn asks for advice or resources for ADHD parents of ADHD toddlers, especially regarding discipline. 

  • Brendan reframes “discipline”, which feels like having to let the kid “know” they’re in trouble. He likes to think more about boundaries, especially with toddlers. If they cross the boundary, they can be redirected and reign them in, instead of yelling at them. Gentle boundaries > Yelling. Brendan explains having a relationship with and being on the same team as our kids to reduce conflict, even in their teenage years.
  • Moira explains how her and a friend wish, for their past selves, that there was more education about ADHD, being able to talk about people who had been there before as parents with ADHD and toddlers with ADHD. Moira also emphasizes taking care of ourselves, supporting ourselves, finding community, and doing everything we can to be a good parent. 
  • Will has a 6-year-old who is diagnosed. As a parent, it calms him down to assume that they are trying their best and don’t know any better. 
  • Eric quotes an adage: “[Your kid is] ...not giving you a hard time, they’re having a hard time.” Eric explains how ADHD is a developmental delay, and encourages taking the oxygen mask as much as we need to, especially if - as a parent - we also have ADHD. It’s okay for the adult in the family to take a time-out, too.
  • Brendan and Roxie wrap up the final thoughts about parenting with ADHD.


[01:06:08] Will closes the show with a groan-worthy dad-joke. 

Check out the Other Podcasts on the ADHD reWired Podcast Network:
Don't Forget These, Too!
  • — Get your name on the waitlist to join the fall season of ADHD reWired's Coaching and Accountability Groups
  • — Join your ADHD-friendly co-working space!
  • — Support the show by becoming a Patron!
  • — Join Eric, Brendan, Will, MJ, Moira, Roxie, and Barb for an hour of Live Q&A on Zoom, every 2nd Tuesday of the month at 12:30pm Central (10:30am Pacific / 1:30pm Eastern)

Other Noteworthy Mentions on the Show:


Direct download: 388_-_Live_QA_-_Recorded_on_July_13th_2021.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:00am CST

Give a warm welcome to the human extraordinaire who helps Eric behind-the-scenes as the executive assistant of ADHD reWired - Barb McDonagh! Not only is Barb the biggest fan of her 13-year-old son (who also has ADHD), she also got her B.A. from Columbia College in Chicago majoring in poetry, and a Masters degree in teaching from National Louis University. 

As of this episode, Barb has been with ADHD reWired for two years. Listen to Eric and Barb as they talk about her journey to discovering her ADHD, how curiosity led to setting healthier boundaries, and how trying something different led to a community of people who you too, just might relate to! 

What will you find in this episode?

  • [00:01:23] - Eric introduces the one and only Barb McDonagh and talks about how the last two eye-opening years working for ADHD reWired helped her discover her own ADHD and how it’s changed the way she looks at her past.
  • [00:03:17] - Barb talks about the reasons why she was interested in ADHD, and how being encouraged to try something different led to where she is now with ADHD reWired. She realizes that all the stories she’s read in the spheres of ADHD reWired sounded far too relatable. 
  • [00:05:21] - Eric talks about self-examination and growth, while Barb talks about the books she’s read and the process of what some of the growth and being curious meant to her. Barb also talks about what kicked her journey off, the process of gaining self-awareness, and how she was diagnosed with inattentive ADHD.
  • [00:08:14] - Barb answers Eric’s question, wondering how some of the personal work she’s done has affected her family life, and how it’s had a positive impact to reduce overwhelm, frustration, and setting healthier boundaries. Barb also mentions how she began asking for help. 
  • [00:09:48] - Eric and Barb talk more about boundaries, self-advocating, and what more healthy boundary setting can look like when you feel like you’re always on the go. 
  • [00:11:07] - If anyone knows what an old transistor radio sounds like when you’re trying to find the channel (…) That’s how I feel and I can’t tune in.”
  • [00:12:05] - Mentioned here: Crucial Conversations ; Barb talks about how didn’t know how to talk about what she needed, and discovers how she can ask for what she needed. 
  • [00:12:53] - Barb and Eric talk about how, in the past, Barb had not really felt seen and how that has evolved. Barb speaks about looking “normal” and getting through a day, and what it was like to be able to talk and share her story and gain new friendships. 
  • [00:21:56] - Eric isn’t used to doing ad-copy in real-time, but get back on track talking about being seen and what kind of impact that’s had on Barb. 
  • [00:22:21] - Eric and Barb talk about the things that helped her recognize the things that were going on for her. Barb also went through the coaching groups and talks about how she wasn’t yet at the point to be open to sharing and open. She discovers the power of sharing our stories and sharing the wins. She jokes about how the boss knows how hard she is on herself. 
  • [00:24:26] - Eric and Barb talk about productivity and prioritization when feeling overwhelmed and getting defensive. They also talk about how their working discussions have evolved, and how it can be hard to pull away from a task. They also discuss ways to make their roles more efficient as the business grows, and how those efficiencies and changes also need to be ADHD friendly since both Barb and Eric have ADHD, too!
  • [00:29:03] - A discussion about executive function (EF) burnout is something that cannot be easily ignored, and how both Eric and Barb can still get distracted with “one more thing”. Barb makes a point that you “can’t set [self-care] aside.”  
  • [00:30.01] - Barb and Eric talk about Pickleball - Eric’s favorite sport!
  • [00:37:00] - After the Time Timer falls again, Eric and Barb jump into a quick round of coaching around having “all this stuff to do”, and different ways to curb distraction and get into deep focus. Quick mentions of dedicated time and setting boundaries come up again, and to remember to write down the things that do work!
Check out the Other Podcasts on the ADHD reWired Podcast Network:
Don't Forget These, Too!
  • — Get your name on the waitlist to join the fall season of ADHD reWired's Coaching and Accountability Groups
  • — Join your ADHD-friendly co-working space!
  • — Support the show by becoming a Patron!
  • — Join Eric, Brendan, Will, MJ, Moira, Roxie, and Barb for an hour of Live Q&A on Zoom, every 2nd Tuesday of the month at 12:30pm Central (10:30am Pacific / 1:30pm Eastern)
Direct download: 387_-_Healthy_Curiosity_and_Self_Discovery_with_Barb_from_ADHD_reWired.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:00am CST