Most people, clinicians included, have only a vague understanding of what ADHD means. They assume it equates to hyperactivity and poor focus, mostly in children. They are wrong.
When we step back and ask, “What does everyone with ADHD have in common, that people without ADHD don’t experience?” a different set of symptoms take shape.
From this perspective, three defining features of ADHD emerge that explain every aspect of the condition:
1. an interest-based nervous system
2. emotional hyperarousal
3. rejection sensitivity
[Self-Test: Could You Have Rejection Sensitive Dysphoria?]
1. Interest-Based ADHD Nervous System
What is an interest-based nervous system?
Despite its name, ADHD doesn’t actually cause a deficit of attention. It actually causes inconsistent attention that is only activated under certain circumstances.