How I am handling being a creative with ADHD Part 1



Do you get distracted quickly? SQUIRREL!! Do you get super excited to start a new project only to lose interest shortly after? Are you a Jack of all trades because you could never settle on a “career”? SQUIRREL!! 

Hello, my name is David and I have ADHD. However, the story was hidden from view until just recently. I was an only child. In the late 70’s and into the 80’s children were still expected to be seen and not heard. Those whom have known me, know that is not me! With a working and in school single mother, I was parented, a lot of the time, by several different teachers, sitters and neighbors. Never really knowing how to behave and having to entertain myself almost exclusively. (My respect, love and admiration to my mother and all single parents out there that do what they have to do to make a life for their children)

I had issues in school, some I attribute the private schools but a lot of it had to do with the fact that I couldn’t sit still. My mind races constantly. I went through my fare share of counselors, phycologists and behavioral annalists. They prescribed Ritalin which we all know now is awful. I was also on a NO SUGAR diet, as a kid!!! Nothing seemed to really do the trick for everyone. I bounced from school to school, even having a mini “exorcism” with a principle that was determined to rule and a ping pong paddle sans rubber, at one private school. 

Boarding school seemed to make the needed adjustments and the concept desolved in my consciousness and I went on to live and struggle for the next 30 years. I couldn’t finish a majority of things I started. I would make plans, be super pumped at the time then dreading the impending event. 

I’ve spent time training to be a chef, private detective, corrections officer, sales, marketing, insurance, coaching and of course music. 

Music has been in my life the whole time. I have had to put it on the back burner to earn money but it’s been an industry I’ve always wanted to be apart of. When I started to focus on music again, about 6 years ago, I started to see some things in my music writing and my process that was really frustrating. I found it really difficult to stay focused on my own music. I like so many different styles of music that I find my writing to be all over the place. 

It was about a year ago that my current counselor started describing some of the characteristics of someone with ADHD. They were word for word and thought for thought on how I see just about everything in life and how I process. 

I was relieved and frustrated. Why was I not aware of this anymore? Why did this not get addressed sooner? Relieved now that maybe there’s a treatment and tools I can use to make my process workable. 

Once discovered this has made such a difference in my life. I am working to get the tools and discover the triggers. I’m curious how many other creative people struggle with these types of issues? 

next time: 

How I am handling being a creative with ADHD Part 2; how this effects my songwriting and workflow and tools and work arounds that I am using to push forward.

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