Health

Empowering Yourself With ADHD Support Groups

ADHD support groups provide valuable resources for people with the disorder. Whether in person or online, these groups offer hope and advice to people of all ages.

A strong sense of self-empowerment can help you achieve many goals in your life, from professional success to new passion projects. But this can be challenging to achieve.

Self-care

Self-care involves everything a person does to promote and maintain their mental health. This includes activities like exercising, eating a balanced diet, and getting an adequate amount of sleep. It can also include mindfulness practices and self-soothing techniques. People with ADHD often have difficulty keeping a stable mood, so building emotional self-care into their routine is essential.

A person’s mental self-care may also include activities stimulating their mind, such as puzzles or learning about a subject they find interesting. This can help them stay mentally healthy and avoid distracting thoughts that lead to impulsive behavior or a low mood. It’s also essential to keep up with emotional self-care, which may mean keeping a journal or writing regularly, or doing activities that boost their mood, such as dancing or reading.

Lastly, social self-care involves spending time with friends and family. It can be difficult for people with ADHD to maintain close relationships, so building enough time in their schedule is essential. It can also help to have a list of positive, upbeat friends to call when they’re having a rough day.

The skills learned in ADHD support groups can empower adults and parents of children with ADHD, improving their lives in many ways. They can learn to advocate for themselves, gain confidence, and feel supported by peers who understand their struggles. They can also learn practical information about managing their symptoms, such as improving organizational skills or communicating with partners and family members.

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Empathy

Empathy is a cognitive thought process that allows you to understand someone else’s thoughts and feelings. It requires detachment and focuses on understanding the other person, not necessarily agreeing with their opinions or beliefs. It can also include emotional responses, such as the ability to feel another person’s pain or happiness.

Some people are naturally more empathetic than others, but anyone can learn to empathize and improve their empathy skills. Some examples of activities that can help include becoming more sensitive to the feelings of those around you, learning how to listen with an open mind, and practicing mindfulness meditation.

A person’s empathetic abilities can influence the effectiveness of their treatment, whether it’s a doctor aware of a patient’s stress levels or a midwife supporting a woman during childbirth. Studies have shown that empathetic health professionals provide better care and have a more favorable therapeutic course for their patients.

However, it’s important to remember that a few conditions can interfere with one’s ability to empathize. For example, borderline personality disorder (BPD) involves extreme insecurity and unstable self-image. Research suggests that this condition can impact both cognitive and emotional empathy. In addition, narcissistic personality disorder is associated with difficulty expressing emotions and an overly self-focused view of the world.

Self-advocacy

Advocating for yourself is a crucial life skill to improve your mental health. This means speaking up on your behalf and navigating the healthcare system to get what you need and want. It also means learning all you can about your condition and how to manage it.

Adults with ADHD often need to advocate for themselves at work, in their relationships, and when seeking treatment for their symptoms. They might not know what to say when asking for accommodation from a boss or co-worker, and they may struggle to explain why certain behaviors are related to their ADHD. This is where support groups come in. They can teach adults how to talk about their ADHD and how it affects them confidently.

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Self-advocacy requires that you believe in yourself and know that your needs matter. Whether advocating for accommodations at work or school, negotiating a pay raise, or securing better healthcare, you must communicate clearly and assertively about what matters to you. This is a challenging skill, but it can be learned. Cambrian has many resources to help you advocate for yourself and achieve your goals. Start with assessing your strengths and barriers, develop a set of goals and plan an actionable strategy to tackle each goal.

Self-confidence

Self-confidence can be hard to cultivate when living with ADHD. The condition often makes meeting new people and trying different things harder, leading to low self-esteem. But boosting your confidence can significantly impact your feelings about yourself and your capabilities.

One way to build up your self-confidence is by challenging unhelpful negative thoughts. You can do this through journaling or understanding where these low-self-confidence thoughts come from. For example, you may have received critical feedback from authority figures earlier in life that has become ingrained in your subconscious. Try to identify these negative thoughts and transform them into positive affirmations that you can remind yourself of when the voices start to talk you down.

Another way to build self-confidence is by making progress towards personally meaningful goals. This can be anything from learning a new skill, getting in better shape, or meeting someone at a social gathering. The key is to choose a goal that’s specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound (SMART) so you can see your progress over time.

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Taking small steps towards personal goals can be extremely rewarding. As your confidence increases, you can continue to push yourself out of your comfort zone and take on more significant challenges.

 

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