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ADHD and Feeling Overwhelmed

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Do you ever just feel like you are stuck? You’re going through the motions of day to day life, but you are only taking care of the minimum to get by?

Things are sliding, and you find yourself exhausted for no good reason and instead of doing the things you should be doing (in my case, working on my book revisions, second draft of another manuscript, freelance articles, my blog, or cleaning out the garage, getting the yard mowed…yeah, you get the picture) you find yourself instead watching mindless television or even playing some dumb game on your phone.

It’s hard to move forward and you just feel claustrophobic and disinterested.

I’ve been feeling like that for a while, and I’m trying to force myself to sit with these feelings and figure them out. I have a strong suspicion that my disinterest and general feelings of blah-ness (can we pretend that’s a word?) are probably more closely related to being overwhelmed than anything else.

What is this ADHD girl good at? Shutting down when I get overwhelmed, that’s what.

Is it good for me? Of course not. Does it happen before I realize it? You bet. Is it hard to then break out of the vicious cycle? Absolutely.

So here I sit. At least I’m blogging about it, right? That’s something. A step in the right direction maybe?

What I hate the most are the feelings of guilt that come along with it. My manuscript has been sitting on my coffee table for two weeks. I moved it there from the study because I was going to work on it. Sitting on top of that manuscript is a box of photos I just got back of our summer vacation, a paper with a list of Spanish speaking soap operas because my daughter was supposed to watch them for Spanish class, and an order form for sheet music. Next to that is four notebooks, all open, stacked on top of one another. Each for a different purpose, such as note taking for my freelance articles.

The point is that it is all just sitting there. Doing nothing. Collecting dust. Because I haven’t had the energy to look at any of it.

I have some major changes coming my way and I have to figure out some extremely important stuff. And yet here I just sit.

My daughter is in tenth grade, just turned fifteen, and suddenly there is extra car insurance to think about, the fact that I need a new car altogether to think about, college application and funding to think about, and yet here I just sit.

In the back of my mind I am thinking about the steps I need to take to expand my freelance writing. Yet I’m not doing any of those things. I’m thinking about the novel I’m working on, my desire to find an agent, but again, it’s like I’m just blocking it all out and riding some wave to my doom.

I recognize the overwhelm. Things are changing, I have huge decisions to make about my own future as well as oversee my daughter’s future – and I just don’t know where to start.

Overwhelm.

I know what it is. I just need to figure out a way to crawl out of it now that I’ve gotten myself down into it.

I tried to blame it on the chaos that always comes with going back to school and getting back into routine, but school has been in session for a month. I’m so far behind now I’m not sure if I will ever catch up.

My writing has just come to a standstill. I don’t work on anything at all. How can that be? I have too many plans to let each day slip through my fingers without writing.

It’s the disinterest. Which I don’t think is disinterest at all.

ADHD can have its good points, but it can also have it’s difficulties. Like my brain tuning out when I need it the most.

I just want to feel like me again. I just want to feel some excitement at the thought of a blank page or the next round of re-writes.

I want to care that there is a cat hair tumbleweed floating across my living room floor.

I want to know that when the times comes, I’m going to have a plan for my future.

I want to open a new book and be excited to read it, instead of mindlessly binge watching NCIS on Netflix.

I wish I had some lighthearted, funny remarks to make about all of this, but I just don’t.

A’s battling the depression right now and I know part of it is also being worried about her. Cold little bugger, depression is. No big triggers – comes along and slaps her in the face when outwardly things are going pretty well. Lots of friends. Youth group activities. School going well. Enjoying school clubs.

Overwhelmed. That’s what I am. But I’m taking care of my girl and that’s all that matters right now. I’ll figure the rest out later. I always do.

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14 Comments

  1. Reading this made me feel like I was reading my own thoughts. I do not have ADHD, my son does. I am a HSP,INFJ and empathic. So I understand the overwhelmed feeling very well.

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    • Thank you for your comment. Sometimes it helps to know we aren’t alone in the feelings we experience such as overwhelm.
      Are there any coping strategies you find particularly helpful?

      Liked by 1 person

      • No ma’am, you’re not alone. My son is ADHD, I see he gets overwhelmed and at times I don’t know what to do for him.

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      • Thank you for commenting. I think it’s one of our pretty common ADHD traits, this mental shut down in response to being overwhelmed. Of all the tips and tricks I have learned for coping and pushing through, it seems this is the most elusive trait for me to find a “fix” for. Sometimes it feels a lot like spiraling down the rabbit hole so to speak.

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  2. dmyinspires says:

    You’re not alone. I have ADHD and still try to be the best me I can be ๐Ÿ™‚

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  3. ADHDgifted says:

    Wow your words are so relatable! I myself have never been diagnosed with adhd although its been up for debate. I do how ever have a son with adhd and his brother may have it also. My adhd boy is only 6 but he is very aware and explains to me what its like for him when he gets overwhelmed and sometimes how easy it happens. I really do empathise

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  4. lovinglyodd says:

    Wow, I know the feeling. I have noticed that when I reach out to someone else that is near me a lot, it helps me to recenter myself. Take a mental health day if you can, or take your daughter out for a smoothie or something. Just do something to relax for about an hour, and then make a priority list. Tell yourself “I’m going to check this off first, and then I can take a break.” etc. It’s really hard, and being overwhelmed by ADHD is something that I feel on a regular basis. But the hardest step is the first one. Once you start checking things off, it will help. Good Luck!!!!

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    • That first step does tend to be the hardest to take – thanks for the motivation! Definitely need to work on making that priority list – and then following through!!

      Liked by 1 person

      • lovinglyodd says:

        Yeah, that’s the other hard part. But the good news is, you’re tough. You can keep trying until you get through it. (I’m just giving you all of the advice that I wish I would get when I’m feeling that way. )

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      • Thanks! Know what? We ARE tough! Having ADHD makes us resilient if nothing else. We are experts at dusting off and carrying on and I guess that’s not a bad thing. When you are having a rough day remember there are many members in this mixed up, amazing tribe of ours and support is always close by!

        Liked by 1 person

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