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Because I'm shameless...

Mar 27, 2018

Because I’m a little bit vain and really proud of myself I’ll post what my workout calendar would look like so far this month if I still did it on a paper calendar. As a side note, I’m currently battling some depression and some really stressful circumstances. So, I’m really doubling down on self care like exercising, meditation, eating well (if not a reasonable amount,) not drinking, getting enough sleep etc. If only I could not “stress eat” the exercise might do even more good. Under normal circumstances I don’t regularly to do two-a-days. I should probably do a post on the self-care double down...



Standard Disclaimer:  In an effort to foil my own perfectionist tendencies, I do not edit my posts much… if at all. Please and typos, mistakes, grammatical errors, or awkward phrasing. I focus on getting my content down. An imperfect post completed is better than a perfect post that goes unposted.


Because I'm shameless...

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The PLANNING is the hardest part!

Mar 23, 2018

One might think that as an ADHDer I would agree with Tom Petty that “Waiting is the hardest part.” I certainly won’t make the argument that waiting is easy. It is probably in the top five hardest parts. But I would argue that the planning is actually the hardest part.


Planning requires extensive executive function. It requires attention, follow through, initiation, and is particularly heavy on working memory. Bottom line: it’s really hard for us. So, mostly we try to avoid it. We might…

  • Try to pack at the last minute without a packing list,

  • Write a long paper without making any sort of outline,

  • Go to the grocery store without a shopping list,

  • Start a home improvement project without figuring out time, materials, and tools,

  • Or promise an outcome without thinking about how we’ll achieve it.


But, even though it is hard for us to do the planning, it can be done. And it usually results in better results and lower stress. I suggest taking a deep breath and sitting down and making a detailed written plan well enough in advance that there isn’t substantial pressure. Identify action steps. Estimate how long they will take. Plan when and how those steps will be achieved to build toward the desired result.


As one example in my life, I’ve built a huge suburban garden over the past 4 years that consists of 13 raised bed of various sized, a fence row of sunflowers, 12 fruit and nut trees, 4 window boxes, grape trellises, and several herb planters. Sounds overwhelming, right. At times it was. But every time I got overwhelmed, I’d (take an ativan, work out, or meditate, and…) make a plan!


I don’t have any big building or improvement projects for the garden this year. But, I’ve got to get my seeds planted at the right times so that everything is ready to go outside at the optimal time of year to optimize my harvest. Check out the pics of my seeds that I planted today and the detailed map and list that I generated first so I know what and how much to plant.


By the way, the planning doesn’t always yield perfection. I planned the crap out of last year, including a color-coded spreadsheet. And, it was not a good year. But, some of that was out of my hands. Lots of it constituted learning opportunities. However, I can promise that it would not have gone as well as it did without the plan. And, my planning “muscle” is stronger this year. No spreadsheet. Less time. Better plan. If the weather and the animals cooperate, I’m anticipating a wonderful year.


Whatever it is you sew, happy planting... and planning.



Standard Disclaimer:  In an effort to foil my own perfectionist tendencies, I do not edit my posts much… if at all. Please and typos, mistakes, grammatical errors, or awkward phrasing. I focus on getting my content down. An imperfect post completed is better than a perfect post that goes unposted.


The PLANNING is the hardest part!
The PLANNING is the hardest part!

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How I got my first tattoo at 38

Mar 16, 2018

I was and am a punk rock kid at heart. Well, really a 3rd Wave Ska-Punk kid. (But that's probably a bit esoteric for most folks.) I am also a bundle contradictions. More about that in another post tentatively titled “owning it.” But my style has always been a blend of establishment hipster and anti-establishment punk. At one point, I had my ear, tongue, eyebrow, and labret pierced. Not to mention the orange hair twisted up in spikes with old-school flat top wax. Needless to say, I’ve always wanted a tattoo. But, I also know my own limitations. So I instituted a rule. If I loved something enough to put on my body, I had to wait five years. If I still loved it that much after five years I would get it.

But through my twenties everything seemed fleeting. I didn’t want to end up with a sports logo, or a band, or an ultimate frisbee related tattoo that I would outgrow. Which was a good idea because I’ve more or less outgrown most of those things.


But I had an idea when my son was born in 2009. I loved him. I would alway love him. So I set to thinking about what I wanted the tattoo to be… and took five years doing it. By the time he turned five I had the idea nailed down. I wanted:

  • His name in a cursive script that reminded my of my grandmother, who he was partly named after,

  • In the form of a punk rock patch (that looks like real stitching) that is an ode my my punk rock ethos and esthetic

  • In blue and white that also reminds me of my grandmothers wedgewood china

  • On my left forearm, where I’ve always wanted it so it can be my white guy shaolin dragon… thanks Kung Fu, The Legend Continues.


After five years, I was a master of patience and it took me a while to find the right artist. I found Neil England at Empire Tattoo in Somerville through a client. Neil's profile. Then he had a waiting list. So I really didn’t get the tattoo until Elliot was eight and I was 38. But it was more than worth the wait. It is exactly what I want. If suits me and represents his personality, as I’ve seen it develop over the years. And, I love it. I can’t think of a scenario where I would regret anything about it. A major ADHD victory if you ask me.


My daughter turns 4 in a few weeks. That gives me a year to finalize the design, the colors, and the theme. By the summer of 2019 my will be decorated in a way that honors her, thus completing my own Kung Fu dragons.


Standard Disclaimer:  In an effort to foil my own perfectionist tendencies, I do not edit my posts much… if at all. Please and typos, mistakes, grammatical errors, or awkward phrasing. I focus on getting my content down. An imperfect post completed is better than a perfect post that goes unposted.


How I got my first tattoo at 38

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Knowing if the medication works

Jan 4, 2018

I just read an article from ADDitude's Research Digest:


It relates the results of a small study of teens. They were given different amounts of medication, including placebo and asked to rate their effectiveness everyday. Even though their efficacy was clearly influenced by the medication, they reported not feeling a difference. The conclusion was that teens have difficulty telling if the medication works. 

The first question that came to my mind was, "compared to whom?" I would argue that teens, kids, and adults all vary widely in their ability to be able to tell if the meds are working. As a coach, my impression is that self awareness is one key to treatment. Some of us are born with more of it than others. But it is important to cultivate self awareness in regards to any treatment plan. I'm just not sure it it is an age related thing. 

I've know eight-year olds who can clearly articulate that the medication helps. I know that I could feel its effects very clearly at age 10 or 11 when I first started. In fact my doctor trusted me enough to allow me to decide how much I needed for a given activity at a very young age. School, baseball, and homework were 20 mg Ritalin tasks. Playing with friends or going to a birthday party might be 10 or 15 mg Ritalin activities. I knew what I needed. 

On the flip side, I also have adult clients who have no idea that the meds are working. I had one client who started over the weekend and we talked on Monday. He said that he couldn't tell if it was working. I asked him what his weekend was like. He told me that he finally did that project around the house that he'd been trying to get to, and that he actually put all of his tools away afterwards for the first time in his life. Coincidence? I think not. That's the medication doing its job.

Of course, the modern delivery systems of things like Concerta and Vyvanse are designed to be gentler on the system. I alway say that the best case scenario is that you are more focused and productive but don't "feel" any different. That's a good thing. So, if you or your teen are having trouble telling if the meds are working, take a look at what you are able to accomplish and how challenging it was to get it done. Is there a difference with the meds?

Another piece to consider is the dosage. Some people need more than others. Many times doctors aren't aggressive enough with the dosing to get their patients to the level where the meds will work. I particularly see this issue in teens because, often, doctors forget to reevaluate the dosing of stimulants that a kids has been taking for many years. A 150 lb. high school freshman full of hormones is not going to be effectively medicated on the same dose he/she took as a 50 lb. 3rd grader. There was actually another article in the Research Digest about undermedication. 


Lastly, teens are by their very nature, difficult. I very much believe in the conclusion of the first article. "The best way to sell medication is with honest." I would also add that honesty depends on education. Teach your teen about ADHD and what the medication does. They are much more likely to choose to take it in that scenario. 



Standard Disclaimer:  In an effort to foil my own perfectionist tendencies, I do not edit my posts much… if at all. Please and typos, mistakes, grammatical errors, or awkward phrasing. I focus on getting my content down. An imperfect post completed is better than a perfect post that goes unposted.



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Great learning opportunity

Feb 9, 2018

Check out this flyer:
Great learning opportunity

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New ADHD medication trial

Feb 2, 2018

Check out the attached flyer. Kids 6-12. Great opportunity.
New ADHD medication trial

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