Miss Pelican's Perch

Looking at my World from a Different Place

Acquired ADD

7 Comments

gramaphone Today I had a brain blip, a mind fart, a single misfiring neuron — whatever you want to call it, I had one today.

Here’s what happened:  This morning I could not sign on to WordPress.  The WordPress genie said I was using the wrong login/password information.  I tried and tried to get in, and finally worked myself into a panic thinking that someone had hacked my account and changed my password.  However, after about twenty minutes, I figured out what I was doing wrong.  I was attempting to use a login name that I use for another purpose.

This would not bother me so much except I could have sworn — in fact I did swear to some of my FB buddies — that I was absolutely using the right login information.

I usually don’t do stuff like this.  Well, I used to not usually do it.  It seems like more and more I am doing dippy things like this.

At first I thought I was just getting old and my memory was going, but one of my FB buddies suggested that it may be that I am more distracted these days.    I think she may be right.

I remember in my younger years that I could sit down and read a book for hour after hour.  Now my mind wanders after reading about a paragraph and a half.   I used to be able to sit still and work on an art project for long periods of time.  Now I am jumping up and fooling around with others things.  I meditate and even that lately has been difficult to do.  I cannot even stay focused on my breath for more than about ten seconds.

Can one acquire Attention Deficit Disorder as an older adult?

I think my problem has a lot to do with being surrounded by too many opportunities for artificial engagement.  Before we had television and radio, people sat around and talked and told stories.  We engaged with small handfuls of real people.   When we acquired television, we only had three or four channels.  We were not driven by a hand remote to derive companionship from  eleven hundred cable channels of talking heads like we do now.   In our leisure time, we did not jump up from listening to music on an ipod to flipping through a library of books on our Kindles.    We might have sat quietly and read a real book to the sounds of a crackling fire and a record player playing.

I could certainly blame the technology, but the truth is that the damage is happening because I refuse to unplug myself every once in a while.  By not doing so, I am losing my ability to sit and focus.  It is a kind of self-inflicted brain damage, I think…..

Huh?  What?   Sorry, I got distracted.

ljg (c) 2013

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7 thoughts on “Acquired ADD

  1. I have blamed my kids for my decreased ability to concentrate on one thing at a time. (After reading your take on it, it occurs to me that this may be unjust.) But having kids, you learn to keep one ear on what is going on around you, and stay ready to answer that call of “Mom!”, or, even more ominous, investigate utter silence.
    But yes, I think the constant stimulus may indeed be at least part of the problem. This morning, I was answering phones, putting up some information on the website, and chatting via Facebook. Maybe a bit much all together, and my brain is way too used to being abused that way.
    Nice thinking, Lori!

  2. Agreed. You do need to switch off and live in the moment. I have gotten back into the habit of reading books every day, and trying to sit without fidgeting – I found this wonderful meditation site on the net where you can just stare a Zen scene for ages…no, just kidding (but these sites do exist lol.

  3. I agree. I’ve been turning things off lately. I managed to spend 5 minutes yesterday with no media on, no book, no pen in my hand, no meditation mantra filling my brain. I managed not to fill the blank with food and looked out the trees and sky. I wish I could manage more than 5 minutes but I guess it will take time to relearn how to do it.

  4. Reblogged this on cftc10.

  5. so true, I think we are encouraged to be multi-taskers but I don’t think it does any of us any good in the long run. I also find that my memory is frequently not what I think it ought to be so that it’s difficult to read a book because I can’t remember what I read the previous day. Am I going senile at 58?

  6. We are being bombarded from all directions with information, a lot of which we don’t need. Our minds jump from one thing to another while completing nothing of substance. I’m trying to get myself back on some kind of a reasonable schedule. I have started an on-line photography course, the exercises of which get me away from the TV which is good and from aimlessly messing around on the computer. I’m making time to read and to just relax and think, to allow the mind to slow down and wander. Day dreaming is not a bad thing, allowing some time for that can be most productive. It’s not easy pulling back but I think we all need to do so in order to preserve our sanity.

    Vi

  7. I think I am suffering from acquired ADD too. I find my mind going in all sorts of directions. It’s very hard to finish a book in a month now–I used to read a book a week. I had a very good memory once upon a time, now it’s gone to pot. I used to have more patience for things, now I’m finding I take short cuts to achieve the outcomes I want. I would love to get back to where I was before this…affliction hit.

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