Imagination: Friend or Foe?
Those of us with ADHD have vivid imaginations. We have a crazy amount of ideas and are prone to thinking differently. Our imaginations are powerful, but is this power good or bad? That is a question worth exploring.
People believe Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Edison had ADHD. One of the reasons for this belief is that they were incredibly inventive. They thought outside of the box. Their imaginations enabled them to be innovative. The inventions they created have created a lasting impact. The world of today benefits from their creativity and ingenuity.
This is the power an ADHDer’s imagination can have. Our imaginations can help us think outside the box and find new ways of doing things. We can be the ones who impact future generations because of our brilliant ideas.
Because we can imagine so much, ADHDers can imagine too much. We can imagine a lot of negative things. When faced with uncertainty, we can catastrophize, imagining the worst possible outcomes. This can lead to overthinking and rumination. Even when we do not ruminate, we can simply just imagine too many possibilities. We get stuck thinking about all of the things that might happen that we do not do anything.
So, is your imagination your friend or your enemy? That depends. How you use your imagination will determine if your imagination is your friend or your enemy. It takes some discipline to learn how to use your powerful imagination properly. (This is one area in which coaching can be helpful.) We ADHDers want to take full advantage of the imagination’s power, but we need to ensure we are using it for good, not for our own detriment.