Looking on the Bright Side of ADHD with Dr. HallowellDisney Dads Editors
Dr. Edward Hallowell, M.D. is a child and adult psychiatrist, New York Times bestselling author, and a leading authority in the field of ADHD. You’ve likely seen him on the Dr. Oz show or in other media on the subjects of not only ADHD, but also the power of human connection, the childhood roots of happiness, forgiveness, and managing “crazy busy” lives. Hallowell is quickly becoming the next big thing in the world of empowerment and mental health.
His approach to these subjects is always the same: positive, celebratory, empowering, and uplifting. When it comes to ADHD, Hallowell’s message is clear: he feels the words “deficit” and “disorder” are unfortunate. Hallowell admits ADHD inherently comes with some difficulties, but feels it should be considered a trait, even an asset — not a sickness, a disease, or an unfortunate fault. As Hallowell told Disney Dads, he helps his patients to focus on their strengths rather than their weaknesses. The positives in terms of what people with ADHD have include, according to Hallowell, “creativity, intuition, and a pioneering spirit. They tend to be entrepreneurs, and have great generosity and warmth. These are all positives that you can’t buy and you can’t teach.”
Further, on his website, Dr. Hallowell says this: “In dealing with children, I urge you first and foremost to enjoy them. Preserve and protect childhood. If you wonder why you should take this seriously, I ask you simply to remember your childhood and what made it different from adulthood. Remember that time of life, that state of mind, when you were lord of all the fields and king or queen of all the stars and feel now how much your will to love and dream and risk and create depends on your having had that once, having had that time when everything was new and possible and impossible all at once.”
Dr. Hallowell’s message is good medicine for those dealing with ADHD and for anyone else who just needs to stop and remember how precious our children’s happiness is. It’s pretty easy to believe him when he says promoting a person’s strengths rather than looking for limitations is the key to having a successful life: he himself has both ADHD and dyslexia. That hasn’t stopped him from being a beacon of light and inspiration and productivity.
To learn more about Dr. Hallowell, his books or the Hallowell Centers in New York City and Boston, visit his website.