I have a wicked case of ADD, have ever since I was a kid. I’ve been to therapists, tried some ‘scripts (and quickly discontinued their use due to side effects) and eventually landed on the solution that has helped me become more productive, focused and on-target (the ADD sufferer’s dream!).
I helped my ADD by leveraging human capital – call it collaborative consumption, outsourcing or just plain delegation. This system has helped me, and it could possibly help you too. Though, to be fair, I am not a doctor and I do not play one on TV – though I would, if given the opportunity.
The problem with ADD
You may know the frustration. The feeling of having a thousand things you need to do, or could do, but not being able to focus on just one for more than a few minutes. When you have ADD or ADHD (to be honest I’m fuzzy on the difference between the two) it can be incredibly difficult to do one thing and do it well.
The benefit of ADD
Hyper-focus on tasks and projects that you find immensely interesting, high-energy, the ability to constantly come up with new ideas – these are some of the benefits that people with ADD get to enjoy (go us!). And, the fact that our brains are constantly seeking stimuli means that we learn at a faster clip & seek a wider array of knowledge, experience and interactions than our normal cohort.
How outsourcing and delegation can alleviate ADD
But, whether you think ADD is a blessing or a curse, to be successful you’ll eventually have to confront it head on. I did so a few years back when I started hiring my first virtual assistants. First off, the knowledge that I was paying someone to help me out forced me to become more organized and focus my thoughts in one direction so I could effectively delegate to them. The second reason outsourcing really helped my ADD was that I was able to throw out ideas, have someone else execute on them and then measure the success.
I only fed the champions and let the 99% of my other crap ideas die out. If I had tried to keep control (classic rookie move) and done everything by myself I’d still be wallowing through paperwork for idea number #147 – instead I was able to take my passion for delegation and my desire to help others and harnessed it into Zirtual.
Someone once said about Richard Branson (who himself has ADD) that 99% of the time he’s just like you or me – but then 1% of the time he absolutely knocks it out of the park. I believe that that’s exactly why building a team around you (whether outsourced or in-house) can greatly increase your odds of harnessing ADD for good & succeeding when it comes to your career or business.