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ADHD THERAPY FOR ADULTS PROFESSIONALS

Can Online ADHD Therapy for Adults Help You Excel in Your Career?

Tell me if this story sounds like you…

You are an executive, entrepreneur, or another adult professional.

You’ve heard that ADHD can be a superpower to leverage to think outside the box and enhance creativity.

Although you’ve seen those upsides, you’ve also felt the downsides.

You’re tired of running full throttle 24/7. It seems like sometimes you’re accomplishing less, by doing more.

You have so many ideas, yet you can’t find the time to turn them into action.

To-do lists have become the bane of your existence.

You think big-picture and love to build and create, but the devil is in the details. And you definitely hate them. Meetings, project management, inefficiency, and administrative tasks drag you down and make staying motivated in your career or business difficult.

You tell yourself that you have to work hard to play so hard. Yet, if you’re honest, you realize that what matters to you including - time with friends and family - ends up in last place.

APPROXIMATELY 5% OF ADULTS REPORT HAVING ADHD,
WHILE ABOUT 30% OF ENTREPRENEURS DO.

WHAT IS ADHD?

Attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder or ADHD is one of the most common neurodevelopmental disorders in childhood. ADHD can persist through adulthood. However, for some people, their symptoms will lessen through development and successful intervention. Many children will not meet the criteria for ADHD in adulthood.

We don’t yet fully understand the causes and risk factors for ADHD. Yet genetics do play a role. Studies link ADHD to deficits in certain neurotransmitters. Specifically neurotransmitters critical to focus and self-regulatio

WHAT IS EXECUTIVE FUNCTIONING?

Individuals with ADHD may also have difficulty with executive functioning – a key factor in academic and career success. Executive functioning includes many different skills yet generally relates to the brain’s ability to prioritize and manage thoughts and actions, plan and strategize for the future, and self-monitor behavior over time. Individuals with ADHD also often have issues with cognitive flexibility or set-shifting, working memory, processing speed, and sustaining and switching attention.

For adults, ADHD can cause a wide variety of difficulties at school and in the workplace. It can also complicate relationships with family and friends. However, recent research suggests that for certain individuals, capable of functioning at higher levels, some symptoms of ADHD may actually contribute to success.

ADULT ADHD PRESENTATIONS

The DSM-5 considers ADHD a clinically diagnosed condition. ADHD typically presents in three different ways: predominantly inattentive, predominantly hyperactive, and combined.

In adults, an ADHD diagnosis requires the following:

  1. Five or more of the required symptoms listed below

  2. Several symptoms present before the age of 12

  3. Several symptoms present in two or more settings, (such as at home, school, or work; with friends or relatives; in other activities)

  4. Clear evidence that the symptoms interfere with, or reduce the quality of, social, school, or work functioning.

ADHD Types

The DSM-5 considers ADHD a clinically diagnosed condition. ADHD typically presents in three different ways: predominantly inattentive, predominantly hyperactive, and combined.

Predominantly Inattentive Type ADHD

Five or more of the following symptoms for at least 6 months (with less than five hyperactive symptoms):

  • Often fails to give close attention to details or makes careless mistakes in work at home, at work, or in recreational or other activities

  • Often has trouble holding attention on tasks or recreational activities

  • Often does not seem to listen when spoken to directly

  • Often does not follow through on instructions and fails to finish work, chores, or duties in the workplace (e.g., loses focus, side-tracked).

  • Often has trouble organizing tasks and activities

  • Often avoids, dislikes, or seems reluctant to do tasks that require mental effort over a long period of time (e.g., detailed and/or long reports).

  • Often loses things necessary for tasks and activities (e.g. eyeglasses, keys, wallet, phone, etc.).

  • Is often easily distracted

  • Is often forgetful in daily activities and when completing routine tasks (e.g., paying bills, making appointments, returning phone calls)

*Although this is the correct term for this presentation, many people use the non-technical term Attention-deficit disorder or ADD

Predominantly Hyperactive Type ADHD

Five or more of the following symptoms for at least 6 months (with less than 5 inattentive symptoms):

  • Often fidgets with or taps hands or feet, or fidgets in seat (may also see nail biting or other similar symptoms)

  • Often leaves seat or stands in situations when remaining seated is expected

  • Often feels restless

  • Often is unable to play or take part in leisure or recreational activities without talking

  • Is often “on the go” acting as if “driven by a motor”

  • Often talks excessively

  • Often blurts out an answer before a question has been completed.

  • Often has difficulty waiting on others (e.g., taking turns to speak, waiting in lines, etc.)

  • Often interrupts or intrudes on others (e.g., butts into conversations or games)

Combined ADHD Presentation

This presentation requires all of the basic symptom requirements with FIVE or more of the INATTENTIVE symptoms & FIVE or more of the HYPERACTIVE symptoms continuing for at least six months.

OK, please tell me there’s a silver lining . . . .
Other common difficulties that adults with ADHD face:
  • Chronic lateness and forgetfulness (often others mistakenly think this is due to laziness or lack of concern)

  • Impulsiveness and risk-taking

  • Difficulty managing emotions – especially anger

  • Sensation-seeking

  • Increased risk of anxiety and depression

  • Difficulties with organization and detail-oriented work (especially when tasks is boring or tedious)

  • Employment problems

  • Problems with substance use and behavioral addictions (e.g., gambling, spending, etc.)

 
 
OK, please tell me there’s a silver lining . . . .

Oh yes, big time.

CURRENT RESEARCH SHOWS THAT ADULTS WITH ADHD ARE MORE LIKELY TO MAKE ENTREPRENEURIAL PLANS AND ACT ON THEM THAN OTHERS.

Although ADHD remains a clinical disorder that has very real problems associated that interfere substantially with people’s day-to-day life and activities, solid research positively links ADHD to entrepreneurial intent and action.

Some have theorized a connection with ADHD and positive benefits for entrepreneurs. Although research cannot currently tell us how this actually holds up in real life, the body of research in this area continues to grow.

Here are some currently theorized connections:

  • Hyperfocus. Those with ADHD have higher levels of energy and focus than others when they are passionate about a project or activity. (Of course, this can also have a more difficult side of struggling to let go when the desired choice isn’t working out).

  • High energy level. Often people with ADHD have higher levels of energy than others. People with ADHD will often say that they hate being bored more than anything. If they can set their schedule and leverage peak energy times, they can get a lot done. (Often, for people with ADHD it’s figuring out WHAT to put all that energy behind. Making decisions and problem-solving can be more difficult).

  • Higher risk tolerance and intuition. People with ADHD are often impulsive and take risks. In many industries, it can be very important for entrepreneurs to act fast and be first. Those with ADHD are more comfortable making decisions on intuition and without all the facts and taking risks that can pay off more than playing it safe.

  • Not afraid of new things and change. Because they get bored easily and tend towards sensation-seeking, those with ADHD are more likely to pursue novel ideas and products and embrace change.

CBT THERAPY FOR ADHD IN NORTH CAROLINA AND OTHER PSYPACT STATES CAN HELP YOU LIVE THE LIFE YOU WANT AND DO MORE OF WHAT MATTERS TO YOU

According to CHADD, the most effective interventions for managing ADHD include:

  • Medication management

  • Organizational skills training

  • Behavioral coaching

  • Cognitive-behavioral therapy (more appropriate if other mental health diagnoses are involved such as anxiety or depression and if the person is having more severe difficulties at work, school, or home)

SOME OF THE BENEFITS OF COACHING AND THERAPY FOR ADHD

  • Learning how to handle difficult thoughts and feelings effectively and strategically

  • Leveraging your stress response to pivot toward meaningful action

  • Practicing techniques to handle your mind instead of letting it handle you

  • Troubleshoot and break self-destructive habits

  • Increase your sense of confidence and competence

  • Improving your attention and focus. This lets you target what matters most to you and push through those worries we all have

  • Motivation and focus to pursue activities, hobbies, situations, and/or relationships you’ve always wanted

WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A CBT PSYCHOLOGIST AND AN ADHD COACH FOR ADHD?

Our therapists have helped many highly successful and high-achieving students and professionals manage their ADHD in therapy. But is Therapy for ADHD right for you?

  • CBT is a short-term, goal-oriented form of therapy that helps you change your relationship with your thoughts, emotions, and behavior. Once you understand these connections, you can identify what your internal barriers to attention are. After you identify those, then you can start working on the external barriers. Finally, you are then using more advanced skills to address behavior and habit changed for ADHD.

    CBT is supported by clinical evidence for adults with ADHD. In general, CBT can be most helpful for individuals experiencing more moderate to severe difficulties at work, school, or home and/or also experiencing other problems including anxiety-related disorders, major depressive disorder, trauma-related disorders, etc.

  • ADHD COACHING is most appropriate for people with ADHD who are looking to optimize or enhance their performance at work or school and enhance their relationships but ARE NOT experiencing marked or severe problems and do not have another mental or behavioral health disorder (such as anxiety, phobia, trauma, or burnout).

It is also helpful for people who need more frequent support from a provider.

Many psychologists are also very experienced in the techniques used in ADHD coaching, but may not be an affordable choice if coaching needs to include a great deal of work between sessions (e.g., checking in with you daily on your time blocking progress) or in-person work (e.g., helping you organize your workspace).

If you opt for an ADHD coach, make sure that they are accredited through an organization like the Professional Association for ADHD Coaches or another organization.

Read ADDitude magazine’s article on the diffference between CBT and ADHD coaching.

CBT THERAPY FOR ADHD AT MOMENTUM PSYCHOLOGY

When working with clients in therapy, our adult ADHD psychologists often use Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) or a more modern version of CBT, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT). Our licensed therapists are clinical psychologists are more often trained in advanced behavioral techniques, unlike other therapists. Other techniques such as exposure and response prevention (ERP) may be used. Habit reversal training (HRT) is frequently used for body-focused repetitive behaviors (BFRBs) and tic disorder, which are often comorbid with ADHD.

We believe that these approaches offer our clients the best opportunity to work through ADHD. In therapy, your ADHD therapist will evaluate your specific situation, and we will decide on the therapeutic approach that works best for you.

With ADHD, we often work with psychiatrists and physicians who prescribe medications. Medications are often the first-line treatment for ADHD. For ADHD, we may also recommend neurofeedback from another provider in your area (these services would need to be face-to-face). We can work with clients using some forms of biofeedback (e.g., the Emwave 2 heart rate variability device).

Ultimately, we believe you will be able to manage and leverage your ADHD. This will allow you to be more present in your day-to-day life and do more of what matters to you!

TYPICAL STEPS FOR ADHD CBT THERAPY

  1. Verify ADHD diagnosis with client including past history of therapy, coaching, and medication management. Obtain releases from all other providers.

  2. Administer behavioral screeners and assessment measures to client, family, and other third parties to verify current functioning with ADHD

  3. Work with client to create a functional assessment of main target behaviors including internal and external triggers or barriers, target behaviors, and consequences that are being maintained.

  4. Work with client to set initial behavioral goals for treatment.

  5. Work with client to address all internal barriers and external barriers.

  6. Help client learn to build and break new habits and high-performance routines using behavioral science principles.

  7. Monitor client’s progress throughout.

EXECUTIVE COACHING FOR ADHD

Executive coaching for ADHD is evidence-based coaching using ACT coaching techniques along with behavioral coaching. It is different than “ADHD Coaching”.

If you are interested in executive coaching, please check out Dr. Newman’s executive coaching page. Executive coaching for executives with ADHD is typically more comprehensive and includes a broader scope that’s focused on delivering results in your career. It usually involves a big focus on more complex skills acquisition in areas like decision-making, problem-solving, negotiation, assertiveness, etc.

Time management and organizational strategies can be added, but if that’s all you need, a general executive functioning coach would likely be a better fit.

Executive coaching services are more expensive than therapy given that there is frequent communication outside of sessions through text, Slack, or sometimes Voxer, which is not done in therapy. Coaching is an entirely different profession and uses different methods. Coaching is typically purchased in 3- to 6-month packages.

Harness the Power of Your ADHD!

Begin Therapy for ADHD in North Carolina and Beyond Today!

ADHD does not have to be a negative diagnosis. Our team of skilled ADHD Therapists at Momentum Psychology is here to help you harness the hidden powers of ADHD and work towards reaching your full potential professionally and personally. We utilize evidence-based treatment methods that include ACT, DBT, CBT, and Trauma-Informed Practices.

We currently offer online ADHD Therapy in North Carolina and all PSYPACT states, including, but not limited to North Carolina, Florida, Texas, Tennessee, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Virginia, and Georgia.

If you are ready to take control of your life and build Momentum moving forward to a bright future, follow the steps below to get started.

ADHD THERAPY TESTIMONIALS

OTHER SERVICES OFFERED BY MOMENTUM PSYCHOLOGY

As well as having extensive training and experience in the treatment of burnout and stress-related issues, our team of therapists also offers a wide variety of online therapy services in North Carolina and all Psypact States. We work with lawyers, entrepreneurs, students, parents, and teens who are dealing with ADHD, trauma and loss, anxiety and panic, depression, and life transitions. We also offer SPACE, Supportive Parenting for Anxious Childhood Emotions. Our goal is to help you find success both professionally and personally so you can gain Momentum to excel in a bright future.

RESOURCES OFFERED BY MOMENTUM PSYCHOLOGY IN NORTH CAROLINA AND OTHER PSYPACT STATES

For more free resources please check out the rest of our blog and other resources including books, apps, talks, and recent press. You can also follow us on Facebook or Instagram where you can find more information on psychology, human behavior, and neuroscience. For even more helpful resources, please subscribe to our newsletter! 

References

ADDitude Magazine – Adult ADHD Section

CDC, ADHD

CHADD, Overview of Adult ADHD

Professional Association for ADHD Coaches

Momentum Psychology’s resources are for informational purposes only and are not intended to assess, diagnose, or treat any medical and/or mental health disease or condition. Our resources do not imply nor establish any type of therapist-client relationship. The information should not be considered a substitute for consultation with qualified mental health or medical provider who could best evaluate and advise based on a careful evaluation.