I am a wife whose husband has ADHD. I am a mom whose daughter has ADHD. I am a daughter whose father has ADHD. I am a sister whose brother has ADHD. I am an aunt whose nephew has ADHD..... Hmmm. What is this ADHD thing anyway? But I'll get to that!
My personal life experience has been rich and vast. My undergraduate and graduate degrees are in art and psychology. The creative process is much like coaching. It's a process of self-observation, trial and error, and forward momentum.
Ultimately, I joined my family's business. Transitioning from the abstract, cerebral world of the arts into a business dictated by sales performance, financial quotas, customer relations, and family dynamics was quite a shock to my system. But truly an important piece of my personal development. I learned that not only do I have a keen understanding of the mechanics of business, but I also actually enjoy the strategic challenges that it presents.
So how does this all lead to becoming an ADHD coach? While living in Boston, I met my current husband. We had our challenges, as do many couples. After working with our third or fourth "couple's" therapist, I finally learned that he had been diagnosed with ADHD... as a kid. But I thought that ADHD was just an issue of whether or not you could sit still and focus. I had no idea that it contributed to his warm sense of humor, his insatiable quest for information, his uniquely insightful opinions, and his ability to be the best travel partner that I had ever experienced. However, some of his traits that perplexed me were also a result of his ADHD. That's when I started to learn about "executive functions".
So began my quest...what can I learn about ADHD that will strengthen my marriage? I registered for advanced training and certification at ADDCA, an ICF and PAAC certified coaching program dedicated exclusively to training ADHD coaches. I had already earned a degree in psychology which served as a good foundation for the ADDCA program. And an MFA which comes in handy with my creative types. Years later, much has changed.
I no longer experience the same level of frustration and resentment that I previously felt with my husband. I have learned to appreciate him for his awesome qualities, and have developed compassion and appreciation for the ways in which we are different. I am not saying that our relationship is without challenges. But I will say that it's much more loving, supportive and kind.
Simultaneous to discovering the impact that ADHD was having on my marriage, I noticed that my third-grade daughter was an ethereal dreamer. Not the most focused kid in the class. Many years after receiving an ADHD diagnosis in fourth grade, she is flourishing in college. When she was younger, we established some rituals around homework which included scheduled breaks, a body double and audio books. We have also encouraged her passion for drama and ballet, which provide an arduous physical outlet, keeping her balanced emotionally and energetically. Adolescence and young adulthood is such a tough time and adolescence with ADHD is that much harder. But knowing the emotional predilections of ADHD can help ease the pain of parenting.
So, who am I? I am as comfortable in an art studio as I am in a board room. Whether you are an artist, an entrepreneur, a parent looking for answers, a totally stressed-out mom, or someone recently diagnosed looking for support, I understand the challenges that you face. I am an active listener who cares deeply about my clients. I live with ADHD on a daily basis and intimately understand the challenges that can impact one's life. Through my own work, I have witnessed first-hand the tremendous benefit that comes from working with a trained and certified coach. With the support of coaching, my clients live with greater intention, increased productivity, more satisfying relationships, and higher self-esteem. You can't change your chemistry, but you can certainly learn how to manage it, and coaching is a great place to start!
Sharon is a joy of a coach. She is accepting of all of me - the cranky bits and the awesome bits - and
encourages me to work to my strengths, my creativity and my entrepreneurial predisposition.
I was attracted to Sharon's coaching because of her MFA, hoping that she would be expansive in her thinking
and open to me as a fellow creative type. I have not been disappointed.