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Being open about how my Neurodivergent brain works

I’m Neurodivergent.  

That is a term you will hear a lot these days in certain circles.  It’s something that I had no idea about really, or worse so, I would poke fun at. 

Turning 39 would be a life altering year for me.  Not because I was close to 40 though, it was more because I would find out about myself and the way I approached life was very different, very frustrating, very raw, and very… me.

39 is when I was diagnosed with ADHD and stepped into a new world.  A world of understanding and a world of being confused by the whole idea of how exactly my brain works. 

I learned what it was like to have a neurodivergent mind. A mind that would be easily distracted, a mind that would go off on tangents nearly constant and instantaneously. Surrounded by static and noise, unable to remember or hear what people are talking to me about. Fighting to get upstream and to get towards a goal that “Neurotypical” people could easily reach.

Do the dishes.

Wash the laundry.

Remember to Take a Shower and Brush your Teeth.

Garbage goes out on tuesdays.

Keys, phone, wallet… keys, phone, wallet.

Why are they so mad at me?

Seemingly simple tasks halted by things like Executive Dysfunction, Emotional dysregulation, Rejection Sensitivity Dysphoria.  These are all terms I learned after my diagnosis.

Life with ADHD wasn’t about, “Being Lazy” or “LOL SQUIRREL”.  It was about navigating these pitfalls that I had no idea about.

But struggled with constantly.

Every.  Single.  Day.

For my entire life.

The worst words a neurodivergent mind can hear

I would always be told that I was so intelligent, but just never applied myself.  Which was worse than my fourth grade teacher calling me stupid.  (Yes that happened, yes I made peace with that and forgave her). 

Being Told that I wasn’t applying myself was so frustrating, because behind the scenes was me, trying extra hard to pay attention, to focus on things that were mundane or uninteresting.  I forced myself to learn as much as I could, developing little tools along the way to help me get there.

I wish I figured some of those tools out in school though and not later in life when I was in the real world.  But, I digress. 

I applied myself so much growing up that I gave myself anxiety, depression, insomnia, and countless self destructive nights of negative self talk. 

I want to be clear, those nights, because of the way neurochemistry is formed, are still loud, clear, and hurt just as much.  But, the tools I’ve formed along the way have helped me navigate them. I think that is one of the harder things in life I’ve dealt with until figuring out and getting on the path of mindfulness and meditation to navigate through and around those thoughts and feelings.  Because, let me tell you, before that, you try to get some sleep when you’re replaying an embarrassing moment you had, over and over, each time feeling the same trauma cycle over and over… 

It would be enough to make you go mad.

And

To be honest, I did.

When I was 38. I was spinning my wheels in the mud, trying a million and one different self help and motivational tools to get me going and dropping the ball after a day or two of trying them.  It would cause me infinite shame and frustration that I just couldn’t do it.

I finally broke down

I couldn’t do it anymore, no matter what I was doing, I was failing and there was no stopping the tidal waves of emotions that kept crushing me.

Thankfully my wife being the incredible support she is, said, “Why not talk to your doctor about this?”

That was the catalyst that got me to a diagnosis eventually. 

However, it was that diagnosis that led me into so many different fields of self help and so many different ideas of how to help get through this.

I, once again, began to try them all and began to cherry pick small things that worked and applied what I had developed over my entire life, to move toward a goal that was, for once, obtainable. I am neurodivergent, so I made tools to help me navigate my neurodivergent mind.

Tools to help someone with my type of mind to form habits, create new patterns, and succeed in life where others without some form of neurodivergency couldn’t.

I helped myself and now I am setting out to help others Navigate Neruodivergency.

I want others with their beautiful minds to thrive, them to create things, I want them to succeed, I want them to have all the opportunities that neurotypical minds have.  

Being of service to other neurodivergent people

So, I did something that a few people with some form of neurodivergent mind have done.  I started writing a book. 

Actually, I started writing a book series.  

Navigating Neurodivergency.

I want to help those out there, no, I WILL help those out there learn how to make habits of seemingly impossible tasks.

Meditation? Journaling? Breathwork? How to use sticky notes? Starting a Business? Becoming a Photographer? Learning a new skill? Having a hyperfixation stay for longer than a couple weeks? Creating dopamine with a list?

I have endless knowledge, insight and tools to help those that walk the same paths I’ve walked.  I may have learned about my diagnosis at 39, and at the time of writing this, I’m 42.  However, in 39 years I learned a lot of tips and tricks, and in the last 3, I have learned how to solidify and hone those tips and tricks into routines and habits that make me a productive and infinitely more involved person. 

The Book

So, this is the big announcement that my first book is not just in the works, it’s nearing completion and will be on its way to an editor’s desk.  It’s not going to be too long, because that is a cruel joke for someone who is inattentive and has to read hundreds and hundreds of pages.  However, it will have a small breadth of knowledge to help navigate daily life and create routines and reinforce routines without giant gimmicky processes and rules.  

I can’t wait to bring this to the world and to continue writing and helping people that struggle like I had, and still do from time to time.  However, I have the tools to combat those struggles now.

Before you go, “Great, another hyperfixation that will be gone in a couple weeks.”

I started writing this book in early January 2023, it’s about to be April 2023.  Creating a habit only takes a little over 60 days on average (don’t let the myth of 21 days screw with your head) and writing isn’t just a habit now, it’s a necessary outlet for me to express and help others.

So, buckle up world, because I am here to help those out there with a Neurodivergent mind to “Navigate Neurodivergency”

Stefan Glazer
Stefan Glazer

Author, Photographer, Artist, Pug Dad, Podcast Host, Teacher, Friend

Articles: 210

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