As I write this, I am on a plane that is experiencing terrible turbulence. This is the second plane I have been on today, and the second flight with turbulence. What I don’t like about turbulence is that lightness you feel in your stomach, similar to being on a roller coaster. Have I mentioned I don’t like roller coasters?
So as you can imagine, I am a bit fearful. Tomorrow, however, I will feel a different type of fear. I will spend the next two days in training, in a room with many successful people, and I do not feel very successful right now. In groups like these, it is important to make a good impression and to soak up as much information as possible in a short amount of time.
I often come to these events wondering how I may contribute to the group, thinking that I had better not say anything because I won’t sound as intelligent as the others. Then, I remember what my clients would say if they could hear my brain talking now. Probably, hypocrite!
As an ADHD coach, I constantly work with people regarding the big “J” word – Judging. We judge ourselves against others and against our own impossible standards. Along with judging comes the big “S” word – Shoulding, as in “I should be doing this” or “I should have done that.” And the final word, the big A word – Assuming, assuming that in all likelihood when things could go any which way for people like us, things will go down. We assume that for us, things always go badly or wrong.
How does this relate to fear? Judging, Shoulding and Assuming are all about fear. That light feeling in our stomachs is survivable partly because we know it is not a permanent feeling. That distressing feeling will diminish until it’s gone. But, while it’s happening, it’s unpleasant and makes us fearful.
ADHD causes us to have a lot of fear deep down inside, and we make it even worse by judging ourselves, berating ourselves about what we should have done and assuming we are less than. The greatest gift you can give yourself is to drop the J, S and A words and be self-aware enough to notice when JSA thoughts are beginning to creep back.
That lightness in the bottom of your stomach from turbulence, and the fear that goes with it, is real. Just as the judgment, shoulding and assuming are real traps we fall into.
One of my solutions to overcome J, S and/or A is to close my eyes and work on relaxing everything in my body so I can calmly question what I am experiencing. That is one of my solutions, what is one of yours? How do you overcome the turbulence in your life regarding J, S and/or A? Leave a comment with your tips and solutions.