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Why Is ADHD Considered a Neurodivergency?

Have you heard of the term neurodivergency? If you haven’t, that’s okay. It’s used to describe normal variations in the human brain. After all, not all brains are the same.

A person who is neurotypical has a brain that behaves as expected: their neurological development is the same as most people’s. A person who is neurodivergent has a brain that behaves in a different way, and this can encompass a number of conditions. But what are those conditions? Would ADHD be one of them?


If you have ADHD, then you’ll know people with ADHD are restless in a way neurotypicals aren’t. In kids, it might be more obvious: while all kids need movement, those with ADHD will stand up and move even when they know they shouldn’t. But difficulty staying still is a key part of ADHD regardless of age.

Restlessness doesn’t have to manifest physically. It’s common for adults with ADHD to experience restless, racing thoughts. This can lead to a lot of different things, such as difficulty sleeping because it’s impossible to stop thinking.


Another key difference between you and neurotypicals is your levels of focus and attention. Someone with ADHD will struggle with paying attention, especially if the topic is not one that interests you. Your attention will wander easily and often. This means that any work that needs to be done will take much longer than necessary.

On the other hand, if you find the topic extremely interesting, you may focus on what you’re doing so much that it’ll be hard to stop. These periods of hyperfocus are not uncommon in people with ADHD but they are not something your neurotypical counterparts encounter.

abstract image representation of adhdTime Management

Unlike neurotypicals, as someone with ADHD you might struggle to understand time. This means you have trouble estimating how long tasks will take. You may think a task will take around ten minutes to complete and instead you’ll carry it out in half an hour, for example.

Trouble understanding and managing time can have a negative effect on your life. It can lead to constant bad planning, such as not giving yourself enough time to carry out all tasks on your list. It can also result in being late for everything, both in a professional setting and in your private life.


You might also struggle with organizing yourself in a way neurotypicals don’t. You struggle to figure out how to begin a task or how to carry it out. If we pair this with your time management difficulties, it also explains why you are often unable to meet deadlines, either because you underestimated how long the work would take or because you weren’t able to start working until it was too late.

You also struggle to prioritize tasks that are more important, simply because you’re not sure how to identify which ones are more important than others.

Living with ADHD

ADHD is not a bad thing, and neither is neurodiversity. The ADHD brain differs from its neurotypical counterpart in many ways, but that doesn’t mean it’s a problem. However, while an ADHD brain isn’t inherently bad, it does mean that you struggle to adapt to the society we live in.

Everyone needs help sometimes, some more than most. And there’s no shame in that. If you struggle with a lot of aspects of your everyday life because of your ADHD or other neurodivergency, then you might want to consider counseling. The struggles of a person with ADHD are many, and you shouldn’t have to deprive yourself of the help you need. Make an appointment with us, and we’ll help you with ADHD counseling.