ADHD Tendencies

ADHD and Making Waves: How To Speak Up Without Rocking The Boat

Day 6: Speak Up


There are so many times in my life that I’ve opted to keep my mouth shut, rather then speak up.


Because I didn’t want to rock the boat.

A calm lake was my cup of tea. Smooth sailing, no ripples. I didn’t want to make waves.

I often chose to stay quiet…

if a meal came out and it wasn’t how I ordered it.

when I disagreed with my husband about something

if a boss asked me to do something that I really didn’t have the bandwith to do

at one of many home parties that I attended when I really didn’t want to buy anything but felt obligated to

when I didn’t like the way my nails were done

if I disagreed with a popular opinion

during a discussion when the other person’s energy was stronger than mine

In all of these instances the action that I chose was INaction. I chose to do nothing. (Which by the way is still doing something.)

The feeling that drove my inaction was typically fear.

Fear of what the other person may think. Fear of appearing rude. Fear of losing status in the other person’s eyes. Fear of being perceived a certain way. Fear of seeming unreasonable. Fear of appearing ridiculous. Fear of rejection. Fear of sounding dumb. Fear of where the conversation may end up (Not sure where, but for sure somewhere bad!).

So much fear.

I’d often tell myself I was taking “the higher road”. Like there is such a thing.

What if there is just truth or untruth?

We’re either telling the truth or we’re not. We’re either lying or we’re not.

When we lie to ourselves so that it’s easier to lie to others, the price is high. We stop respecting ourselves.

We compromise our integrity. We hold others in higher regard than we hold ourselves. The problem with that is that it’s often a lie too.

The only way to authentically love others is to authentically love ourselves.

When we love ourselves flaws and all, and are willing to listen to what we have to say and think, and hold the space for our opinion to be one of many valuable opinions…we then open up to loving others, flaws and all, listening to what they have to say and think, and then holding the space for their thoughts to also be one of many valuable opinions in the world.

The exchange can then become honest and true and loving vs fake and false and manipulative.

It will take a bit of bravery on our part. Are you up for it? ~Shaun

Oh and ps…about that title…there’s no way to speak up and guarantee that you won’t rock someone’s boat. How someone feels is completely on them. You can’t control it at all. So speak up and trust that they will be able to take care of themselves.

If you consider yourself a people pleaser and would like to learn another way to interact with others I’d love to talke with you. When you discover who it is you want to be, how to show up and be that person, a weight is lifted. So much time and energy is wasted when we overthink how to respond, what others might think, and why they might think it. Jump on a call with me by clicking the button below and booking a free consultation. If you’re ready for change in your life let’s do it! Coaching can help get you from where you are to where you want to be. It gets you looking at what’s possible for your future vs what’s probable based on your past.

ADHD and Money: Why Mindset Matters

Day 5: Money Mindset


In my experience there is a direct correlation between having adhd tendencies and money challenges. It’s not always that there’s not enough money, or that there’s not money available, or that there are problems doing the math of managing money, but rather there are issues around the topics of value, judgements, earning, saving, beliefs and what we make it all mean.

There are challenges with the mindset of money, which then makes money challenging.

To start with, I’m a “helper” by nature. I love to help others. I’m sure some of you can relate.

I was drawn to Major in Child Development in College (which by the way is an extremely fulfilling yet inherently underpaid profession). So out the gate I was a professional underearner, and remained one for about 10 years. I moved up the ranks (eventually to become the Program Director for a large school district) and still made less than $30k per year, often working 60 hours per week.

My next venture was a dance studio. I owned a dance studio.

As the parent of a dancer, I had always wondered about the high cost of costumes and recital tickets. It seemed so disproportionate for the level of dance (my daughter was 5 at the time). My vision was to do it differently, offering families a high-quality experience for a reasonable price. My program grew and grew, eventually hiring 13 instructors that I managed. Well over 2k children went through my studio in the span of 3 years. I poured my heart and soul into it, and while it was extremely rewarding I never actually drew a salary. Again, underearning.

My question was why?

It came down to a belief that I’d had for a very long time. It was buried so deep, I didn’t even realize it was there.

It sounds like this “I have to work twice as hard for half the pay as everyone else.”

I know, nice thought hunh?

How did I ever get that thought?

I believe it was because of where and when I was raised. It was meant to be protective and a gentle reminder to work hard and always do my best.

It was during the 1960’s and 1970’s and we lived in an all Caucasian neighborhood in Northern Ca. My dad was employed by the largest transit system in the Bay Area and there were a lot of things happening with affirmative action. At the time, there was a lot of inequality in the workforce if you were a minority. My dad saw and experienced much of it first hand and he wanted to instill a strong work ethic in us. It was honorable and came from a place of love. He wanted what was best for us and for us to succeed in society.

It was said in the vein of “remember you’re always going to have to put your best foot forward, make a good first impression, you only get one chance to make a first impression, you’ll have to work twice as hard, for half as much, but you can do it".

The problem was I already had a strong work ethic. I had an example of it in both of my parents. I was wired to want to please people. I wanted to do a good job.

This belief that my dad instilled in me took hold and my brain ran with it. And as brains often do, it ran down a path of it’s own, taking it to a whole new level.

My brain grasped hold of it and took it as literal truth. In some ways I was always operating from a fearful place of not being good enough, needing to work twice as hard for half as much.

My brain used it as a way to show me I was not good enough and not deserving of more pay. That to ask for more would be presumptuous, bold, out of line, unreasonable.

What I know now is negative thought = negative feeling = negative result.

My negative result was underearning.

The good news is that once I became aware of that thought, I noticed it. Saw it for what it was. A thought that I didn’t have to think anymore.

Instead I started to think “I work hard because I love to” “I overdeliver because I want to”.

Just this week I’ve landed on a new money thought that I love.

“It’s possible to make more than I’ve ever made this month.”

That thought creates excitement for me. It’s open to possibility. I work hard no matter what. I’m open to all of the value that comes with that.

It’s also a thought that can compound over time. So no matter the amount, it’s always open to grow.

If you’re reading this and you have adhd or adhd tendencies, chances are you have a belief about yourself, your ability or capability to earn more. Your story of how it got there may not be the same as mine. It doesn’t matter. If there’s a hidden belief that’s holding you back, it’s worth uncovering.

There was an episode last week shared on one of my favorite podcasts, The Life Coach School podcast with Brooke Castillo, called Underearning. She describes underearning as someone who is earning less then they’re capabale of, and they want to earn more. As I listened to this episode, it really resonated with me. It is the space that I lived in for most of my life. If this post resonated with you I’d encourage you to listen in. If you want to explore your money mindset, or just find out what that even means, book a 45-minute session via the button below. ~Shaun

Sensitivity Tuning Dial

Day 3: Sensitivity


Most of the time I consider my sensitivity to be my super power.

It’s something that I was born with.

I care deeply. I feel deeply.

As a child I remember with my close friendships, the closeness I felt was all encompassing. I was either having the best time ever playing with a friend, or I was crushed because they were upset with me.

As I look at how it serves me today, I believe that it makes me an amazing coach. I care deeply about my clients. I spend time outside of our sessions considering how to coach in a way that will be most helpful for them.

I show up for my friends and family because I care.

I have a deep appreciation for nature and animals because of my sensitivity.

High quality doesn’t miss me. I appreciate quality time spent, nice quality fabrics, good quality food. I believe my sensitivity is a part of the reason why. I am sensitive to quality. I notice it.

With all this good there for sure come some challenges.

I can’t watch a scary movie with my family if I tried. Too intense.

I hate the feeling of conflict. It is an almost instant physical reaction for me. I know it’s necessary and even helpful, but I have to work really hard at not reacting to things as a way to prevent conflict. (Hello fellow #peoplepleasers of the world!)

Because of being sensitive to conflict, I tend to avoid having tough conversations. Or I sensor myself before speaking because it feels like I can unknowingly and unmeaningly (is that a word?) make people close to me upset.

It can be an exhausting way to live. I’m working on it. I’m working on being ok with me being me, and allowing others to react however they want to without thinking I should have, could have said something differently so they could feel better.

I’m sensitive to loud, unexpected noises.

I’m sensitive to clothing. Especially the tags! I tend to tear them out.

What I’ve been practicing is turning my sensitivity dial up and down.

When I want more sensitivity, really focusing on creating more by thinking thoughts like.

“I want to give them 100% of my attention.”

“All that matters right now is being present.”

“I wonder what they’re thinking.”

“What if there was nothing to defend?” (when I feel defensive).

When I want to be a little less sensitive in a situation, I’m practicing dialing down my sensitivity and speaking up. Thinking things like,

“I get to choose how I want to feel about this.”

“How do I want to show up right now?”

“Speak up and stop sugar coating the truth.”

I’m also going to start picturing a giant sensitivity dial in my mind that I can tune to the exact setting that I’d like it to be at in any given circumstance.

In my mind, it’s a type of muscle, or skill really, that I can build up.

Do you consider yourself a highly sensitive person (HSP)? How does it show up for you? Reply in the comments. ~