The Creative Gifts of ADHD

Recent work in cognitive neuroscience also suggests a connection between ADHD and creativity (see here and here). Both creative thinkers and people with ADHD show difficulty suppressing brain activity coming from the “Imagination Network”:

The Imagination Network

Of course, whether this is a positive thing or a negative thing depends on the context. The ability to control your attention is most certainly a valuable asset; difficulty inhibiting your inner mind can get in the way of paying attention to a boring classroom lecture or concentrating on a challenging problem. But the ability to keep your inner stream of fantasies, imagination, and daydreams on call can be immensely conducive to creativity. By automatically treating ADHD characteristics as a disability– as we so often do in an educational context– we are unnecessarily letting too many competent and creative kids fall through the cracks.

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