Motivational and inspirational writer, Bryan Hutchinson is the author of several books about life with ADHD including the highly acclaimed, best selling "One Boy′s Struggle: A Memoir" and the author of the hilarious eBook that went viral "10 Things I Hate about ADHD"

The benefit of ADHD – Right Braininess?

The benefit of ADHD – is there such a thing? To a degree, I believe there is. It’s hotly contested and some are very upset when the word benefit is even remotely used in conjunction with ADHD. I am not going to try and reinvent the wheel here, let’s push forward. The most obvious difficulties for ADDers have to do with standards. People with ADHD have difficulties coloring within the lines or complying with routine, predictable standards. Today’s world is all about standards and since those who have ADHD find such difficulty living within the rules of standards, they often suffer and some suffer extraordinarily. It is devastating for too many. There are Laws are in place to protect people with ADHD in certain situations, it’s gone that far.

A couple hundred years ago ADHD doesn’t seem to have existed. The first story written about a child with ADHD was only 150 or so years ago. Why? It may be that standards were not so far reaching back then and most children were not taught in large groups with standardized text books. It was more about apprenticeships and taking advantage of talents back then. In other words the world seems to have had its natural place for those who we designate as having ADHD now. That place could be returning…

Rules and standards seem to be the most common denominator as impairment for someone with ADHD. However, this seems to be changing. Rules and standards are a serious problem for the majority of people in today’s world, well, not quite there yet, but, it is coming. The problem is that Rules and standards can be taught to the majority and many of them can be automated. Why is that a problem for the majority of today’s society? Well, if what you have learned in school and what you do for a job is based mainly on using specific standards then it can probably be automated, or, if enough people learn how to do it then the earnings for such become less and less, or, off shored for even less until a computer of some sort can automate it. Therefore, rules and standards may be the Bane of an ADDer’s existence right now, but, they will soon become the bane of non-ADDers existence. Many are already feeling it.

On the other hand, certain things simply cannot be taught and creativity is one of those things. It’s fairly common knowledge that the majority of ADDers are creative and unorthodox thinkers. Steve Jobs’ position at Apple is a replaceable position. Steve Jobs’ creativity and revolutionary ideas are not replaceable. That why there has been so much concern over Steve’s health lately (besides the fact that some sincerly care about him). The concern has nothing to do with any standard or rule Steve fulfills repeatedly (not following the rules and standards had a hand in him losing his job the first time, from what I have read), it has to do with the irreplaceables that he brings to the table – the stuff that can’t be copied or taught.    

In today’s world we have so much of everything and now people are looking for uniqueness, things which are not standardized, that way they can be unique themselves. That’s where ADDers step right back into the picture of society. The logical, replicable thinkers are now in need of the unique, non-replicable thinkers. The left brain is now in need of the right brain. Recently we had a little fun on our ADDer World interactive community to test which side of the brain we used the most. It’s been said that ADDers tend to be right brained and in our little fun our testing confirmed that we are for the most part right brain dominant. The most important part of being a right brain thinker is that what we bring to the table cannot be automated, standardized or completely taught. Take Seth Godin, the marketing guru, for example, he teaches marketing, but, he is the only Seth Godin, nobody has been able to replicate him or come up with his ideas yet, like Steve Jobs seemingly proving that some things that people create and do just can’t be copied or automated. And we know there are many who are trying to copy and even if copied to a degree, who’s going to bring the next idea? Yeah, you guessed it, not the copiers. These are the people who are becoming priceless in a standardized and rules oriented world – they defy the rules and cannot be standardized.

Don’t want to take my word for it? May I then suggest the New York Times and Business Week’s Bestseller: A Whole New Mind – Why Right Brainers Will Rule The Future, by Daniel H. Pink. It’s a great and deeply compelling book which I just finished reading. Daniel’s book clearly explains how standards have become, or, will become automated in today’s technological world and why, since education is abundant, that being well educated in left-brained logic and articulation could cause you to earn less, or, have your job off shored cheaper to India, China or somewhere else. It’s the things which simply can’t be taught or reproduced that will once again become sought after to make the difference.


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