Methods we use now

1) Deep relaxation exercises combining hypnotic and meditative ideas which we call “the nirvana sandwich”.

2) Personality integration using guided visualization which helps in resolving internal or self conflict that is almost always at the core of procrastination.

3) Spacial time mapping helps with developing a healthy practice of setting and managing one’s own internal clock and the approach our own unique minds take to time and task management.

We have updated our approach to fit the landscape of today’s needs with today’s understanding, scope and ability. Click here to see how we have evolved our practices over the last decade – the article is from 2015 and details our older clinical methodology.

The methods laid out below and the materials that accompany them were developed during 30 years of private practice in psychiatric medicine.The methods laid out below and the materials that accompany them were developed during 30 years of private practice in psychiatric medicine. The methods laid out below and the materials that accompany them were developed during 30 years of private practice in psychiatric medicine. Our approach integrates hypnotic and meditative practices to address emotional dysregulation and executive functioning.

The telling and practice of these methods is voiced in several different ways all throughout the various “formats” of study provided by the Attention Doctor, there’s something for every brain and the same lessons said in many different ways – Parts of this material will speak directly to you as a neurodiverse adult with ADD, much of the methodology focuses on reaching the unique inner individual, which is accomplished by providing and presenting these ideas in the different ways or flavors they are palatable to our brains in. Our materials include Getting unstuck the Book, a video series, past presentations, articles, meditative trances, audio guided visualization sessions and a growing list of new pieces being added to our media archive.

These concise and comprehensive publications are available for download without registration, commitment to mailing list or payment. Our methods are genuine and based on the years of experience gained working one on one with patients for the purpose of the best outcome. The methods within are meant to be used alongside whatever regime of medication an adult with ADD might be taking and they directly address the largest issues that confront neurodiverse adults; mood control (emotional dysregulation) and executive functioning. They can work very well for anyone with these issues; they will likely work even better alongside skillfully prescribed stimulants and antidepressants.

It is entirely possible to master this material all by yourself or with the support of your other helpers and other providers whom you share it with. The Attention Doctor is working to create a group dedicated to peer specialist coaching who have been trained in this material at affordable rates. If you are interested in inquiring further about receiving support or coaching services, Don Kerson is now directly taking a limited number of new clients again – Please click here for more info about talking with Don or with a Coach –  Please click here for our archives and to begin studying.

Topic One: Attention

This program is built upon some assumptions about ADD and its relationship to depression anxiety and executive functioning.

  • ADD is not an illness; it’s one end of a spectrum of normal, a mismatch between some of us and the rest of us
  • ADD is poorly named; there is no deficit, the problem is the modulation of attention, not the absence of it OR the quality of it once it is applied
  • ADD can be seen as a need for a higher level of stimulation, and as a difference in the relationship between motivation and attention
  • Impulsivity and distractability naturally improve through young adulthood; the need for high levels of stimulation not so much
  • Procrastination and disorganization, thought of as problems with executive functioning, are not a primary or necessary part of ADD, they are secondary complications and can be addressed with or without medication
  • ADD has a multitude of “looks”: social or withdrawn, unrestrained or inhibited, workaholic or slacker, rigid or chaotic, very impeded or completely transcendent, and contrary to some, it is much UNDER-diagnosed and  grossly UNDER-treated
Topic Two: Depression and Anxiety

Depression and Anxiety originate in the area of the brain and are co-symptomatic.

  • ADD is often complicated by depression, and this depression interferes with the very natural process of compensating for attentional issues through determination, maturity and experience, and makes any program, including ours, harder to employ
  • There are  two easily acquired and easily treatable depressions that are common in ADD adults; Norepinephrine/Stress  depressions and Dopamine/Pleasure depression.Both of these depressions interfere with concentration. if they are  properly addressed stimulants work better at lower doses
  • Stress depressions occur in ADDers because they overuse fear and adrenaline, our natural stimulant, to boost attention. This creates 5 issues; sleep appetite, panic, tension, and irritability, as well as worsening concentration
  • Dopamine pleasure depressions occur when we overuse will power and determination, and we lose interest, pleasure, energy and motivation
  • There are two inherited depressions: serotonin/seasonal/obsessive and bipolar depressions, perhaps better thought of as multi-polar. These two are not selected for by ADD, but can certainly coexist. If a bipolar illness is present it must be identified because medicines for ADD or depression can stimulate a range of dormant bipolar symptoms
  • Both of the inherited types are quite complex and variable with many subtypes each which are primarily unified by the medications that they respond to. If ADD and depression are both present there are preferred ways to sequence the addition of antidepressants and stimulants.
  • I like to describe depression and attention as a car with four tires (depression) and a drive shaft (ADD). Medicines can be used to fill all the tires that are flat and then to reconnect the drive shaft once the tires are inflated.
Topic Three: Stimulant medication & our biases

Medication alters brain chemistry not learned responses

  • All over this nation hundreds of thousands of adults with ADD are being prescribed stimulants, without any guidance about how to use their increased focus to master a lifetime of executive functioning issues.
  • Our program believes that stimulants are useful powerful tools that are best used intermittently at small doses Short acting > long acting
  • The more often the use and the higher the dose the faster tolerance will be developed.
  • In adults it is important to have clear intentions about how the medicine will be used, for what purpose.
  • One creates habit patterns and routines to address repetitive responsibilities and career choices should reflect genuine interests, both as to be able to use stimulants as little as possible.
Topic Four: Hypnotically Assisted Meditation

Methods of meditative practice with or with out the assistance of a prescription.

  • The entry point for our method is the introduction of a simple deep relaxation exercise called the “Nirvana Sandwich”, which uses a combination of meditation and self hypnosis to create a clear mind and a calm body. This “experiential” state then allows for an infinite range of vivid internal experiences, some of which we will use to address procrastination and time management.
  • This technique can be seen directly on video at theattentiondoctor.com. Newer versions will be appearing online in spring 24.
  • This method involves setting up alternating pulsation in one’s hands, which should then be paired with one pointed breath, (picking a point on your body to notice the sensations of breathing) thus two pieces of bread for the “Nirvana”sandwich.
  • This technique involves the understanding that the left logical thinking brain can only hold three things in mind without defaulting to the more experiential right brain.
  • Once you hands are pulsing and you are also noticing your breath, any third stimuli will create a “more” experiential absorbed  deeply relaxed state, which can be used as discussed in the next few sections.

These four topics can rather easily be presented in 2-3 hours. Many of our patients are already familiar with some of this material; people with any sort of previous trance experience such as musicians, artists, athletes and writers all seem to get a great deal out of this material very quickly. We have found that viewing adults with ADD though the lens of these four interventions addresses the overwhelming majority of present concerns in an effective, efficient and comprehensive manner.

If our approach appeals to you please get in touch. We are working towards presenting this material live in the summer of 2024. If you would be interested please sign up to our mailing list, and please spread this article to others who might be interested as well.

Thanks.

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