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Faster Than Normal - The ADHD Podcast

Having ADD or ADHD is a gift, not a curse. Hear from people all around the globe, from every walk of life, in every profession, from Rock Stars to CEOs, from Teachers to Politicians, who have learned how to unlock the gifts of their ADD and ADHD diagnosis, and use it to their personal and professional advantage, to build businesses, become millionaires, or simply better their lives.
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Now displaying: October, 2021
Oct 20, 2021

Sally Willbanks, Founder of ND Renegade, a contemporary apparel brand that shines a light on neurodiversity. She is an award-winning Australian artist who made a career change when she decided to start this clothing brand, with the intention of instilling pride in the neurodivergent population, including her two children.  Sally is the creator of all of ND Renegade's designs. Sally is also a neurodiversity advocate and speaker, presenting at schools in NSW with to educate faculty in ways to help neurodivergent students. Today we learn her story. This is awesome- enjoy!

In this episode Peter and Sally Willbanks discuss:  

 

1:47 - Intro and welcome Sally!  

2:42 - So what prompted the start of your fashion brand ND Renegade?

3:42 - The concept of starting a company is not foreign to those of us with ADHD. Did this seem natural and usual to you and your children?

5:08 - These are so smart and AWESOME!!! Ref:  Designs at https://www.ndrenegade.com

5:37 - What have your reactions been to the messaging? 

7:26 - When and with what were your children diagnosed?

8:00 - What are the conversations you are having with your young children about it all?

8:56 - How are you children involved in the business?

9:92 - What makes an item “sensory friendly” -what goes into making those?

10:15 - Pardon my American-ness, what is “Takiwatanga” and what does it mean?

11:28 - How old is the company now?

11:45 - What do you want people to know about the reasons you’ve done this and what are your goals?

12:56 - How can people find you? https://www.ndrenegade.com and @ndrenegade on INSTA and @ @NDRneurotribe on Facebook

13:25 - Thank you Sally Willbanks! Guys, as always, we are here for you and we love the responses and the notes that we get from you; so please continue to do that! Tell us who you want to hear on the podcast, anything at all; we’d love to know.  Leave us a review on any of the places you get your podcasts, and if you ever need our help I'm www.petershankman.com and you can reach out anytime via peter@shankman.com or @petershankman on all of the socials. You can also find us at @FasterNormal on all of the socials. It really helps when you drop us a review on iTunes and of course, subscribe to the podcast if you haven’t already! As you know, the more reviews we get, the more people we can reach. Help us to show the world that ADHD is a gift, not a curse! 

14:00 - Faster Than Normal Podcast info & credits

TRANSCRIPT: 

I want to thank you for listening and for subscribing to Faster Than Normal! I also want to tell you that if you’re listening to this one, you probably listened to other episodes as well. Because of you all, we are the number one ADHD podcast on the internet!! And if you like us, you can sponsor an episode! Head over to https://rally.io/creator/SHANK/ It is a lot cheaper than you think. You'll reach... about 25k to 30,000 people in an episode and get your name out there, get your brand out there, your company out there, or just say thanks for all the interviews! We’ve brought you over 230 interviews of CEOs, celebrities, musicians, all kinds of rock stars all around the world from Tony Robbins, Seth Godin, Keith Krach from DocuSign, Danny Meyer, we've had Rachel Cotton, we've had  the band Shinedown, right? Tons and tons of interviews, and we keep bringing in new ones every week so head over to https://rally.io/creator/SHANK/ make it yours, we'd love to have you, thanks so much for listening!  Now to this week's episode, we hope you enjoy it!

What's up guys, Peter Shankman at Faster Than Normal. We’ve got an extra special 10 minute episode this morning with Sally Willbanks. So most people, when they have ADHD this, you know, at ADHD and. Maybe I'll I'll I'll get some help, but I'll figure out what I'm doing. I'll I'll adjust some things. No. Sally decides to start a renegade contemporary apparel company called ND Renegade because that's what people with ADHD do. So we write books, we start clothing companies, we started other companies it's just who we are. So she's the founder. She's an award winning Australian artist who made a career change, which she decided to start this clothing brand with the intention of instilling pride into the neurodivergent population, including her two children. So there's the creator of all of the ND renegades designs. She's a neurodiversity new university advocate and speaker. She presents at schools in New South Wales with the ability and the desire to educate faculty in ways to help neuro diversion students. I love everything about that. Sally, welcome to Faster Than Normal.

Thank you very much. Thank you for having me. 

So you decided out of the blue, I mean, it wasn't as much out of the blue, but what made you make that change? You said, okay. I have two children who are neurodivergent; I'm just going to start a fashion. 

Yeah. Um, well, I'm a, I'm an artist, I'm a painter and that requires long, long hours in the studio And, uh, I was just not spending too much time with my family and we homeschool and I wanted to show the kids how to run a business, but I needed them to be more involved. So. Um, I put down my brushes cause that's, it's really solitary. It didn't involve them very much. Um, I had the thought of doing a clothing brand that just for neurodivergent people, just to bring pride to themselves And once I had the idea, I couldn't let it go. So I literally wrapped up my show, uh, within a couple of weeks and designed a website, uh, designed the logo, got the name and, uh, we'd sold a first item within a month of me having the idea. 

I love it. And, you know, the concept of, um, uh, sort of starting a company, or doing something like that it's not that foreign to people with ADHD because that's what sort of we do. We sit there and we say, okay, I have this idea. And 30 minutes later, you know, we've sketched it out and we have a website up. All right. We don't, we don't do focus groups. We don't do a panel testing. We just sort of go for it. So did you find that it was sort of the same thing? Like, okay, we're just going to go for this and, and, you know, you're teaching your kids sort of, sort of, this is how we do things and it's a faster sort of lifestyle as it were.

Yeah. You know, basically if I, if I'd known how big it was going to get. And I, I, I wouldn't have done it like a, like if I'd seen the big picture, I don't know how I would've gotten there, but just taking one step at a time is what made it work. So I just thought, okay, I've got to get a logo, got to get a name, got to get a website, got to start designing. And it just kind of grew. So if I had, if I had seen what it was going to be and all the steps that took, I D I think I would have backed out to be honest. Um, so it was really about. Not thinking too far in advance and breaking it down into small doable steps. And, um, yeah, it just, it just clicked. It just worked. There was nothing else out there with this idea. There's other, there are other clothing lines out there that do, neurodiversity stuff, but it's more like to let people know that there, their kids are autistic but it's nothing about pride. So I wanted to change that. 

I love what I'm seeing here on the spectrum and off the hook. Um, these are, these are, these are amazing. I love it. The nerd, my favorite is a neurodiversity, uh, shirt with like 15 different, uh, different types of, um, uh, chords, accessory chords, the Aux cord, the USB cord, the,\, this is so smart. I mean, this stuff is, I think that what I, what I like about this is the premise that, that.  You know, we're in a time right now where, you know, 50 years ago, obviously no one talked to well forger about neurodivergency, we didn’t talk about anything having to do with mental health. Mental health was a secret. We didn't share it. We didn't talk about it. If you remember, I'm always affected that, that scene in madman where, um, where Don sends Betty to a psychiatrist and, you know, she. The psychiatrist sends him the bills and the updates and the status reports. And doesn't share it with her know, even though she's the one in treatment. It doesn't share it with her. And that's changed the point where today we actually, you know, we, we represent this as pride. I mean, I have my t-shirts, I have countless ADHD t-shirts and, and, and I wear a wristband that says faster than normal and, and all of these things. And, you know, so you're in a, sort of a good place at the right time. Right. Um, we're trying to change that conversation from one of shame to one of pride. And what has been sort of the reaction that, that you've received have, have you had, I'm assuming it's mostly positive. Have there been any negative reactions? Have people told you this is something we shouldn't talk about or how, how, what what's talk about that? 

Um, it's actually been really positive reaction. There were a few designs that I had, I've had a few issues with, um, as far as like, like an asby design, um, we've been asked to take that down, but then I got. So many people are asking me to keep it up. So I've got a disclaimer on the website and, um, you know, an educate yourself page as to why some people don't like the term Asperger's. Um, but other than that, it has been overwhelmingly fantastic. I get emails from people thanking me. I get emails from people telling me that they're using their clothing to come out to their family as neurodivergent. Um, it's just been, it's been overwhelmingly positive and it keeps me going. So, I mean, pretty much every other day I'd have something in my inbox. Saying, you know, thank you so much for doing what you're doing. Which is great. 

This really is good stuff. And, and I think that, that, so, so when your children were diagnosed with, it goes to the ADHD or?

Ok, so my son was diagnosed first as autistic, and then my daughter was diagnosed as ADHD, and then she was diagnosed as autistic and my son has since been diagnosed with ADHD. Um, so it's just that. Yeah, yeah, yeah. I mean, there’s,??you know what I mean? 

How are old are they?

My son is eight and my daughter is 10. Tell us about what you tell them. Tell us about how, I mean, obviously they, they, they understand that there are benefits to this as well. Um, what are the conversations you're having with them? Are they having, you know, do they, they, they ever look at it as, as a, as a, as a curse, as opposed to a gift or how. 

Right. Um, my son does, sometimes, he is a tough cookie. He's got anxiety disorder as well. So he gets quite angry a lot and he feels shame, uh, with his anger, but he still tells me he loves his brain because he wouldn't get to do the things that he can do. Like he can spell any word, he's been reading fluently since he was three, he can type like you would not believe on a computer. Um, and my daughter is nothing but positive. She is so stoked to be neurodivergent. She loves being Autistic. She loves being ADHD, and I just hope it stays that way. You know, she seems invincible at the moment and I know she'll have some setbacks, but I just, I love that she's so positive and she's becoming a great role model for other kids in the community as well.

Um, How are your children involved in the business?

Sure. They both have a couple of designs, believe it or not, on the store. Yeah, it is. I'm really thrilled with it actually. Uh, so I just took the drawings and turned them into t-shirts and they sell really well, which is great. And they actually partake in the giveaway videos that we do. And my son doesn't love being interviewed, so he hasn't yet, but my daughter and I do interviews with her about the different diagnoses and we do Instagram Live’s and things like that. So she's really quite involved in the advocating side of things on Instagram. 

Um, I'm looking on the website. I see sensory friendly hoodies. Talk about what makes an item sensory friendly?

Uh, basically the tag fray and as soft as we could find. So, um, the tag is the big issue. You know, people, people with ADHD and autism have sensory issues and particularly that scratch irritating tag. And even if you cut the tag off, you still have that little nub of, you know, the seem where the tag is. So we've made sure that our clothes, um, uh, tag fray and a soft and comfortable as we could find. So we just did a lot of testing on products and found the best one. So I have a whole slew of my own clothes because they're the most comfortable ones that I own. So I'm always walking around with brand and branded clothing on. 

I can tell there's definitely the artist's flare in here because the website is just stunningly beautiful. It's just so, so simple. And so, so clearly designed, um, tell me, uh, you know, this is, I think the American in me, what is “Takiwatanga” and what does it mean?

Uh, that is one that we've actually come under a bit of fire with lately. That is, um, it's the Maori word for Autism and it means “in his home, my own space and time”, and it was coined by a man called a PI who basically wrote the, the mental health, like medical dictionary for the Maori language. And, um, I'm actually, I've got Maori ancestry, so my great-grandparents were Maori. Um, And I just think it's a really, really beautiful word. And I, I think that it is a way of looking at Autism that needs to be shared. So I've got that on a t-shirt so that people ask, what does it mean? Um, because the definition is just amazing. I mean, how, how, um, perfect. As it, in, in his, her my own space and time, it kind of encapsulates everything may, that autism is. 

Oh, it really does. I love that. Oh, it obviously works. Cause I asked, you know, these are, these are really, really beautiful there. The website is ND renegade.com.  [[https://www.ndrenegade.com ]]And how old is the company now? 

It is, it started in January of last year. So what's that about? 20 18, 20 months old, something like that. 

Phenomenal. It's great to see. It's great to see that that taking sort of your, your talent and your putting it to such a use like this. Um, what do you want people to know about the reasons you've done this and what do you want people to know about, you know, what you're goals are? 

Yeah, well, our goals are to spread neurodiversity pride into every part of the world. So we want people who have these differences to stand tall and know that that people are proud of them and that they don't need to hide because the more these people kind of hide and feel shame and mask their differences, they're going to, they're going to just disappear. Their lives are going to be, you know, spend at home, not, not being in society, not making the changes that they can make because they've got amazing brains. They have fantastic ideas that neurotypical people don't have. Um, the innovation that they can, that they can create in the workspace is incredible. And we need these brains. And if we don't show them that they, that they should feel pride and that they are loved and respected, they won’t be using those incredible brains to help our planet. So we just want them to, we want me to know that they should stand tall. Differences are awesome. 

I love it. Talking to [Sally] Willbanks NDRenegade is the website.[https://www.ndrenegade.com] I love it. I just signed up for your Instagram. I'm on the whole thing. Um, yes, we'll definitely have you back. Definitely keep in touch. And when you do new, new, um, items, you have dropped your drop notifications and you let people know and everything?

Yup. Yup. I do. I usually, uh, run a few test, uh, stories on Instagram first and, you know, make sure people like what I'm doing and give them a couple of options and, uh, yeah, drop em on Instagram. 

Very cool. Well, we'll definitely have you back. 

Thank you so much for taking the time you thank you for having me. 

Of course, you're listening to Faster Than Normal. If you're wondering why my voice is a little lower today. It's cause it's just about four in the morning here. And her being in a, uh, on the other hemisphere, I decided to get up even earlier than normal to get my workout in before or right after we interviewed. So this is me before my workout. If I'm a little calmer now, you know why guys as always you’ve been listening to Faster Than Normal. We love you for being here and we will see you next week. ADHD is a gift, not a curse. As is all neurodiversity. Stay tuned. See you again soon.

Credits: You've been listening to the Faster Than Normal podcast. We're available on iTunes, Stitcher and Google play and of course at www.FasterThanNormal.com I'm your host, Peter Shankman and you can find me at petershankman.com and @petershankman on all of the socials. If you like what you've heard, why not head over to your favorite podcast platform of choice and leave us a review, come more people who leave positive reviews, the more the podcast has shown, and the more people we can help understand that ADHD is a gift, not a curse. Opening and closing themes were composed and produced by Steven Byrom who also produces this podcast, and the opening introduction was recorded by Bernie Wagenblast. Thank you so much for listening. We'll see you next week. 

Oct 13, 2021

I want to thank you for listening and for subscribing to Faster Than Normal! I also want to tell you that if you’re listening to this one, you probably listened to other episodes as well. Because of you all, we are the number one ADHD podcast on the internet!! And if you like us, you can sponsor an episode! Head over to https://rally.io/creator/SHANK/ It is a lot cheaper than you think. You'll reach... about 25k to 30,000 people in an episode and get your name out there, get your brand out there, your company out there, or just say thanks for all the interviews! We’ve brought you over 230 interviews of CEOs, celebrities, musicians, all kinds of rock stars all around the world from Tony Robbins, Seth Godin, Keith Krach from DocuSign, Danny Meyer, we've had Rachel Cotton, we've had  the band Shinedown, right? Tons and tons of interviews, and we keep bringing in new ones every week so head over to https://rally.io/creator/SHANK/ make it yours, we'd love to have you, thanks so much for listening!  Now to this week's episode, we hope you enjoy it!

——

E. J. Wenstrom believes in complicated heroes, horrifying monsters, purple hair dye and standing to the right on escalators so the left side can walk. She writes dark speculative fiction for adults and teens, including the young adult dystopian novel Departures and the award-winning Chronicles of the Third Realm War series (start with Mud). When she isn’t writing fiction, E. J. Wenstrom is a regular contributor to DIY MFA and BookRiot, and co-hosts the Fantasy+Girl Podcast. Start the Chronicles of the Third Realm War series for free with the prequel novella when you join E.J.’s newsletter. Today we learn the specific techniques with which she wields her ADHD superpowers, maintaining a career as a multi-genre creative author! This is awesome- enjoy!

In this episode Peter and EJ Wenstrom discuss:  

2:17 - Intro and welcome EJ!  Ref: Start “The Chronicles of The Third Realm War” for free with a link HERE

3:42 - Thank you Lori for introducing us!

4:00 - So you are ADHD yourself, when did you get diagnosed & what was life like before it?

6:56 - As a professional writer; how are you managing your deadlines, especially working on your own?  Ref: @5amWritersClub on Twitter

10:56 - So tell me about how you're getting your dopamine, especially when you get up at 5am and get pretty much straight to writing?

12:08 - How do you switch roles from say..writing for a PR firm, then for Fantasy Fiction. What’s the switch in your brain’s mindset?

13:56 - Tell us about your novel Departures! And what was/is your process!?

17:35 - How can people find you? https://www.ejwenstrom.com or at @EJWenstrom on Twitter  INSTA  Facebook and newly on TikTok And links to all of her books are here

19:00 - Thank you EJ Wenstrom!  Guys, as always, we are here for you and we love the responses and the notes that we get from you; so please continue to do that! Tell us who you want to hear on the podcast, anything at all; we’d love to know.  Leave us a review on any of the places you get your podcasts, and if you ever need our help I'm www.petershankman.com and you can reach out anytime via peter@shankman.com or @petershankman on all of the socials. You can also find us at @FasterNormal on all of the socials. It really helps when you drop us a review on iTunes and of course, subscribe to the podcast if you haven’t already! As you know, the more reviews we get, the more people we can reach. Help us to show the world that ADHD is a gift, not a curse! 

19:55 - Faster Than Normal Podcast info & credits

TRANSCRIPT: 

I want to thank you for listening and for subscribing to Faster Than Normal! I also want to tell you that if you’re listening to this one, you probably listened to other episodes as well. Because of you all, we are the number one ADHD podcast on the internet!! And if you like us, you can sponsor an episode! Head over to https://rally.io/creator/SHANK/ It is a lot cheaper than you think. You'll reach... about 25k to 30,000 people in an episode and get your name out there, get your brand out there, your company out there, or just say thanks for all the interviews! We’ve brought you over 230 interviews of CEOs, celebrities, musicians, all kinds of rock stars all around the world from Tony Robbins, Seth Godin, Keith Krach from DocuSign, Danny Meyer, we've had Rachel Cotton, we've had  the band Shinedown, right? Tons and tons of interviews, and we keep bringing in new ones every week so head over to https://rally.io/creator/SHANK/ make it yours, we'd love to have you, thanks so much for listening!  Now to this week's episode, we hope you enjoy it!

Okay. Everybody, Zoom's little computer woman just told me that recording is in progress, which means that we are here for another episode of Faster Than Normal. Thank you so much for joining me. I am in a super hyped up mood today. Uh, what wound up me being like starting, just to take my daughter to school this morning, we somehow wound up walking the three miles to school, uh, with the dog, and then I dropped the dog off at doggy daycare.. or storage as I call it, and I walked back. So I'm six miles in this morning and a high as a kite from that. So enjoy this dopamine fueled episode of Faster Than Normal!

We have an amazing guest today, I know I said it all the time but this person, this is really cool. EJ Wenstrom is here. She's an award winning author. Why is she an award winning Author? We’ll we'll talk about that but Listen to this: “One, girl, one angel three, God's determined to keep them apart! A stormy and seductive novella that will draw you into an elaborate fantasy world.. and it's a series. This shit is awesome. Reviewers love her: “Mimicking the brutal and strange of ancient mythology alongside the high fantasy and gut wrenching actions”, says Reader’s Lane, while Literary Hill says: “In the third realm, perils await, but anything is possible and readers who venture, there will find a rewarding escape into a very creative and fully imagined world.” EJ believes in complicated heroes, horrifying monsters, Purple hair dye and standing to the right on escalators so that the left side can walk. God bless you for that. Yes. She writes dark speculative fiction for adults and teens, including the young dystopian novel Departures where the lead character or one of the characters has ADHD. I think it just gave something away. And the award winning Chronicles, a third realm series, starting with Mud when she isn't writing fiction. Ed wants some, she’s just regular contributor to DIY MFA and book riot. She co-hosts the fantasy girl podcast. Start “The Chronicles of The Third Realm War” for free with a link HERE:  We're going to put down below with her prequel novella, but holy cow, it is exciting to talk to you. EJ, welcome to Faster Than Normal! 

Thanks so much. I'm excited to be here! 

It was awesome- we got connected to our friend, our mutual friend, Laurie, who I've known for like 25 years has known me through the good and the bad of the last 25 years of my life, pre-diagnosis and post-diagnosis so I assume at some point she looked at you and said, holy shit, you're a female Peter! You guys should really meet. So it is wonderful to have you on the podcast. You are ADHD yourself. When did you get diagnosed and what was life like before it? 

Yeah. Yeah. I was diagnosed in high school, which is pretty typical, I think, especially for girls because we… differently.

Typical nowadays- when I was in HS it was called sit down you’re disturbing the class disease. 

Well, yeah, this was, this was late nineties, early two thousands. So, yeah. Yeah. But, um, but yeah, so before my diagnosis, I had gotten through most things perfectly fine because I was that quiet kid who was just not a problem. And, you know, To myself, in the corner. While other people were maybe going crazy over there. And, uh, so teachers loved that. You know, I got pretty good grades for the most part. Um, until about middle school when I switched, you know, where I was going to school and the format changed and everything else. And all of a sudden, some of the grades that I was getting in my best subjects, like Math, were just plummeting. They were just disastrous. And then around the same time I was getting like migraines. Cause you know, like your hormones are all changing. And so for a while there, we thought that the two were linked and it was kind of scary. Weird stuff going on, you get kicked around from doctor to doctor, to doctor. No one could quite figure it out until one person finally, the doctor said, have you gotten tested for any learning disorders? And it was a huge game changer. So that took place. I think it was my sophomore year of high school. And then all of a sudden we started looking at these symptoms for ADHD after my diagnosis. And it was like, uh, uh, like it was just, it was comforting honestly, to suddenly understand what was going on because the problem was never that I didn't know the material; the problem was.. turning in homework assignments and remembering what chapter I was supposed to read for class and just things like that. And, you know, look at my planner at the assignments were there was everything written out crystal clear, I just got mixed up somehow and did the wrong one. And it's, there was no explanation for it, but it just kept happening. And so it just made everything make so much more sense. Uh, we tried a few medications, which I stuck with through high school. And then since then I've actually gone without, and just found other ways to cope with my strengths and weaknesses and, uh, you know, kind of cover myself. But I, you know, I also did a little bit of ADHD coaching around that time. Did the whole section 508, all that, all that. And so, yeah, it's just. You know, crucial to understanding myself and then also a big part of my identity, honestly. 

Now let's talk about. Okay, so you're ADHD and you, you, you found ways to manage it. You're also a writer. Okay. And when you're writing these books, you have deadlines. So let's just dive right into it. Tell our listeners who are dying to know this; How are you managing your deadlines especially working on your own? 

Sure. You know, it's funny because with the Fiction I've actually lucked out so far in that my publishers have been very kind to me. I've not actually had to work on a hard deadline for a Fiction publisher, but, you know, I work in a public relations firm. I work, you know, I've done freelance writing before I've done all sorts of writing across the gamut, and yeah, stuff has deadlines and. You can't change those deadlines. You know, you've made commitments to clients. You've made commitments to, you know, people on your team, you can't change that. And, uh, you know, I think that really the, the ADHD and the way that my brain works with that has helped with deadlines or maybe the deadlines helped me and then, you know, having multiple plates spinning at once can be easier for me than just having one, uh, something about the pressure of it. As long as it's not too much, you know, there's always an edge to things, but having a little bit of pressure helps with the focus and it helps to be able to have a few things, to give attention to it once deadlines.

Deadlines, themselves help. Because if you don't give me a deadline, I don't feel the same way. If you don't give me a deadline, I'll start working on whatever you want immediately until the next big thing comes along. And then that becomes the most important thing. 

Yup. Yup. And sometimes it's easy if there's not a deadline to just keep going deeper and deeper and deeper and never reach an end point because you just get lost in the, you know, like the exploration itself.

So I've been working on something since 1987, but yeah, sure. 

Yeah. But, um, but the deadlines can really just help kind of lend that focus, but I've also learned a lot over the years about how to best use how my brain works. So I wake up at 5:00 AM in the morning, it's called 5:00 AM writer's club. You can check it out on Twitter.  It's an amazing community of authors who are all up together writing before they do absolutely anything else in their day. 

And so you're, you're you're .. you're writing before you say exercise and before you anything else?? 

Yeah. Yeah. I, I wake up, I walk my dog quickly and then I opened my computer and I start reading whatever manuscript I'm on. And I check in with my author buddies on Twitter. There's a little bit of support and accountability to that. Also very helpful. And then I just get to work and I, I write for about probably an hour and a half most mornings, um, around that time. And it's really nice because I know that my brain is a little bit slower when I've just woken up. So it's easier to have just one thing that I'm trying to do. And especially when it's something that's a really long tail goal, like writing a novel, uh, that tends to take me about a year, maybe year and a half to do so it's not like you get that instant hit of gratification of checking something off of your list. It's, it's a nice time to be able to just sink into something as opposed to jumping task to task like I do, you know, later in the day and it gets me thinking creatively before my brain is tired from having been at work all day or going for a run or whatever else it might be. 

How are you getting? So tell me about how you're getting your dopamine when you're, when you're.. for me, if I'm writing, if I'm doing long periods, writing has to be in a confined space, like I'm on an airplane for 14 hours on my way to Asia, or I've just worked out, or I've just done a long run or a ride or whatever, and then, or a skydive. And then I have the dopamine in my system to, to, to go to town on writings, but you're doing it at 5:00 AM the second you wake up, that's amazing. 

Uh, yeah. Yeah. And I definitely do things to manage my energy. Like I, I hear what you're saying with that, but I do it in the evening. So I'll usually go for my run at the end of the day when my brain's tapped out. But I'm starting to feel like physically a little fidgety, so I'll eat dinner and then I'll head out.

And, you're able to get your. My thing is if I don't, if I wake up and have to think about working out, I'm going to come up with a reason not to. So I, you know, I sleep in my running shorts. I wake up I'm on the bike or I'm on the I'm on the train or whatever. So I don’t have to think about it. So you actually have the ability to, to think about it all day. No, you have to do it and still manage to do it. That's actually pretty impressive. 

I mean, I got to tell you, I don't even think about it until I shut my computer at the end of the Workday. And then. Yeah, and I mean, it's not perfect. It's not perfect, but it's so important to me to make writing the priority, to make sure that I do it every single day. You know, I used to run in the morning and decided I had to make a choice. And so that's the choice I made. Um, but yeah, I do a pretty good job with running all the same. So I usually get out the door and go for a run three to four days a week on, on weekdays and then once or twice more on the weekends. So it adds up to a pretty reliable routine. 

Awesome. Tell me about switching roles. So, you know, at. during the day your at a PR firm or advertising, whatever and then you come home and you're writing Fantasy Fiction. How what’s..[???] And then you go to PR [..ah, here is is..} What's the switch in the brain’s mindset to go from one to the other?

That's a good question. Um, you know, I think there's maybe a difference between like when I'm writing Fiction I'm letting my brain wander. So it kind of taps into a lot of what, you know, especially having Inattentive ADHD. It’s what my brain wants to do anyway. Whereas when I'm at work, I think it taps into some similar creative things, you know, working in PR a lot of it really does come down to what's going to be a compelling story to tell, but it's a much faster turnaround. So I'm hopping from one thing to the next, the next to the next, you know, often, many times an hour even, and so. It hits. I think there's a way to tap into that ADHD thing- where you want to just jump on everything at once. And it works really well for what I do at a firm. Uh, basically everything is happening all the time at once anyway. And so it becomes a real strength to be able to exist in that and be comfortable with it. Um, and so that's kind of where I get that. I mean, you talked about dopamine before. That adrenaline hit almost of like checking multiple things off your list and then kind of jumping around and getting that fresh project to tackle, uh, every half hour or so. 

Let's change topics. Tell me about Departures, because let me, I want to guys, I want to read you. I want to read you the, uh, the sort of, um, the, the blurb here for her for her novel Departures: “to get along in the directorate, just seek control, track your metrics and die when scheduled. That's where Evie went wrong”.  

So, okay. Number one, I'm going to go out and get this immediately cause this looks really pretty good, but tell me about the book.

Sure. So I, the books started with the idea of a girl who just as the description, sounds like she wakes up in the morning and she's in a total panic because she was not supposed to wake up again. This was her departure date, the day she was scheduled to die. And so many of my book ideas come from that initial seed. So it's either like a character voice or like this was kind of like that initial hook for the that you, uh, start out with and then everything else has to be built out from there. And so I kind of tackle that sort of project very slowly over time and then layer things in. So at first I thought that was going to be that opening scene where the book would go and then I started to slowly. I wrote that scene, figuring it out the best I could. So like a skeleton version of the scene. And then from there, it's, it's called like a zero draft where you kind of write out the beats, capture what you can, as you go. Cause you kind of hit that creative flow. So you might hit full sections of dialogue or description or something where you get really deep into it. And then other sections are still just like, I don't know, I'll come back and figure this out later, something happens here where they make this discovery and.. you kinda get what you can out on the page, because then it's out in front of you and your brain space starts to open up for more. And so through that sort of process, I started to get into this world where it wasn't just about death dates, but everything about it was very carefully optimized, very carefully structured, so that everyone lived their best possible life by this particular government's definition. And so for them, that meant removing all pain, you know, kind of putting optimal, optimal levels around, you know, when people sleep, what people eat, uh, how much stress they allow into their lives, providing everybody with a fitness routine that helps them optimize their lives. And so over time that started to create a system where people live extremely long lives. And everything is very, very carefully managed on their behalf. And I, so when something goes wrong within this world, it's catastrophic. Um, and Evie, even though this meant for her that she was now able to live a longer life. You know, one of the really interesting points that came up over and over again is I was sharing this manuscripts with different, uh, critique partners with different editors and agents, was that people were struggling because Evie at first was more panicked about being alive than she was relieved. But I it's something I examined over and over again. And he really came to the conclusion that when this is kind of the doctrine that's embedded within you, your entire life, I think that rings true. You know, everyone's relying on the system to work all of the time and be, have their best interests in mind. And so if that doesn't work out, then what's going to happen to everyone. Uh, and it, it made for a really fun world to create and an even more fun world to break. 

It's very, very cool. Where can people find you and follow you? Cause this was, this is fascinating. I wanna have you back at some point, but we do keep the podcasts at 20 minutes, because you know, ADHD, um, so how do people find you? 

EJWenstrom.com or @EJWenstrom on Twitter  INSTA  TikTok and you can sign up for the first novel of the Fantasy series Departures here! 

So you can find me at. 

[ https://www.ejwenstrom.com or at @EJWenstrom on Twitter  INSTA  Facebook and newly on TikTok] and links to all of her books are here

Or at AEJ Wenstrom on Twitter, on Instagram. Uh, I've just started playing around with TikTOK. So you can find me there too. Uh, and yeah, you can sign up, like you mentioned at the beginning and get the, uh, the first novel in the fantasy series I wrote before Departures, you can also find a purchase in that whole other series on Amazon and, uh, other major books.

Love love, love. We will throw the link into the show notes guys. This was.. God.. this is awesome. We do thank you so much. I'm totally going to.. EJ what's the age on the books? I feel like my daughter would love it, but she's only eight. Would she love it or should I wait a few years? 

Uh, you know, you might, it's kind of a parental discretion thing. Uh, for Departures, it's definitely written for you, a young adult audience. There's maybe some romantic themes that are a little bit advanced for an eight year old, but she also may not pick up on it. That would be your judgment call to make, but I would say it's written for like a 12 to 16 year old audience. 

Well, she came home yesterday and told me the three boys in the class asked to marry her so we’re there!! 

Awesome, guys. This was phenomenal. EJ, thank you so much EJ Wenstrom everyone on Faster Than Normal today. Great, great interview. Thank you so much for your time. 

Guys, as always, we love that you're here. It means the world to me, we are close to 300 episodes and I can't even believe that that's almost as, as weird to me as thinking they haven't, I've almost had a dog for a year. So things get crazy up in this, up in this, uh, uh, pandemic bitch. It's just, it's been an insane year. We've had this podcast running since 2000… god since late 2016 or 2017, I think, so we are going on strong, our 300th episode is coming up. It's gonna be pretty amazing. Stick around for that. Thank you for listening. I'm at @petershankman on all the socials, the website, is FasterThanNormal.com the on Twitter and all the, all the socials there. Anything we can do for you. If you have any guests that you think were as cool as EJ Wenstrom or have the same color hair, let us know. We would love to have them on the podcast as well. We will see you next week with a new interview. My name is Peter Shankman. You've been listening to the Faster Than Normal, where we understand that ADHD is a gift, not a curse. I want you to understand that too. Talk to you guys soon.

Credits: You've been listening to the Faster Than Normal podcast. We're available on iTunes, Stitcher and Google play and of course at www.FasterThanNormal.com I'm your host, Peter Shankman and you can find me at petershankman.com and @petershankman on all of the socials. If you like what you've heard, why not head over to your favorite podcast platform of choice and leave us a review, come more people who leave positive reviews, the more the podcast has shown, and the more people we can help understand that ADHD is a gift, not a curse. Opening and closing themes were composed and produced by Steven Byrom who also produces this podcast, and the opening introduction was recorded by Bernie Wagenblast. Thank you so much for listening. We'll see you next week. 

Oct 6, 2021

Aron Croft appeared to have it all when he got into Harvard. But that was the beginning of his demise. He struggled nonstop for 15 years until he was broke, divorced, and earning minimum wage, failing out of his first 7 jobs and businesses. But after getting a Master's degree in Coaching Psychology and a diagnosis of Inattentive ADHD, his life changed. He built a successful Fortune 500 career consulting to companies such as Marriott, Deloitte, Johnson & Johnson, McDonald's, KPMG, and United Healthcare. He also got remarried, and most importantly, discovered how to get sh*t done with a neurodivergent brain. Now he’s on a mission to raise awareness about Inattentive ADHD, how it goes under the radar, and how to rebuild your life post-diagnosis.  Today we learn how his ADHD diagnosis at 34 led him to recover from being broke, divorced, and earning minimum wage to a successful Fortune 500 career, and turned this Influencer’s side hustle into his full-time job… Enjoy!

In this episode Peter and Aron Croft discuss:  

2:00 - Intro and welcome Aron! 

3:14 - So you got into Harvard and things were going great- what happened?

4:28 - Ref: FTN “The One with the ADHD PhD, Featuring Rachel Cotton 

5:15 - How did you feel when things started going off the rails and you didn’t know why?

6:24 - What was it like when you finally got diagnosed; and the year prior when you rented half of a bed?

8:32 - And just when things were turning around with Aron’s new job… 

9:42 - So how did you pull out of that situation?  Ref:  At the time of publishing Seinfeld is now on Netflix  

11:25 - Aron on Adderall akin to the scene in Limitless with Bradley Cooper on NZT 

13:58 - On those ‘waking up’ moments and for the first time realizing you’re not a total loser!

15:40 - So you get diagnosed and things begin changing- then what happened?

16:52 - When did you give up the Sweet Tarts and come to the epiphany that you were unfulfilled?

17:49 - On finding Dopamine via other sources

18:48 - See, podcasts ARE fun! 

19:22 - How can people find you? https://hiddenadhd.com  @aroncroft on Twitter  @HiddenADHD on Facebook  INSTA  YouTube and hidden_adhd on TikTok

20:33 - What is it with TikTok anyway?!

21:03 - Thank you Aron!  Guys, as always, we are here for you and we love what the responses and the notes that we get from you. So please continue to do that, tell us who you want to hear on the podcast, anything at all, we’d love to know.  Leave us a review on any of the places you get your podcasts, and if you can ever, if you ever need our help, I'm www.petershankman.com and you can reach out anytime via peter@shankman.com or @petershankman on all of the socials. You can also find us at @FasterNormal on all of the socials. It really helps when you drop us a review on iTunes and of course, subscribe to the podcast if you haven’t already! As you know, the more reviews we get, the more people we can reach. Help us to show the world that ADHD is a gift, not a curse! 

21:28 - Faster Than Normal Podcast info & credits

TRANSCRIPT: 

I want to thank you for listening and for subscribing to Faster Than Normal! I also want to tell you that if you’re listening to this one, you probably listened to other episodes as well. Because of you all, we are the number one ADHD podcast on the internet!! And if you like us, you can sponsor an episode! Head over to https://rally.io/creator/SHANK/ It is a lot cheaper than you think. You'll reach... about 25k to 30,000 people in an episode and get your name out there, get your brand out there, your company out there, or just say thanks for all the interviews! We’ve brought you over 230 interviews of CEOs, celebrities, musicians, all kinds of rock stars all around the world from Tony Robbins, Seth Godin, Keith Krach from DocuSign, Danny Meyer, we've had Rachel Cotton, we've had  the band Shinedown, right? Tons and tons of interviews, and we keep bringing in new ones every week so head over to https://rally.io/creator/SHANK/ make it yours, we'd love to have you, thanks so much for listening!  Now to this week's episode, we hope you enjoy it!

My name is Peter Shankman. You are listening to Faster Than Normal. I am thrilled that you're here. It is a great day outside, probably one of the last warm days we're going to have this year until like, I don't know, sometime in 2022, but it is a good day, there is good news on the horizon. Life is good. Everyone is happy. I'm happy. I hope you're happy. 

So who do we have today? We have someone who was pretty happy. He got into Harvard and he's like, holy crap. I got into Harvard. I'm pretty sure he was happy then. But as he told me, when I talked to him about coming on the podcast, he said that was the beginning of his demise. After getting into Harvard, he proceeded the struggle nonstop for 15 years until he was broke, divorced, earning minimum wage bailing out of his first seven jobs and businesses. I'm talking about Aaron Croft. It is great to have him on the podcast because- after he got a master's degree in coaching psychology and a diagnosis of inattentive ADHD, his life changed.

He a built successful fortune 500 career consulting to companies such as Marriott, Deloitte Johnson, Johnson, McDonald's KPMG and healthcare. He got remarried. Most importantly, he discovered how to get shit done with a neurodivergent brain and now he's on a mission to raise awareness about Inattentive ADHD, how it goes under the radar and how to rebuild your life if you get a diagnosis of the same. 

Peter. Thank you. It's so awesome to be here. And I do have to say that it's actually a really shitty day in Chicago. It's just been raining and everything. 

So, uh, probably that means it'll hit us probably in about 24 hours, 20, 36 hours. That's usually how it happens so we will enjoy it while we have it. But I have no doubt that later in the week, we'll be crap on a stick, anyway. Good to have you here, man. It is great to finally talk to you. I know your story. Um, so you grew up, you weren't diagnosed and you're just like, Hey, going through life and you wind up getting into Harvard and you're like, man, I'm the shit. And then you, in fact, as the announcer would say, in fact he was not the shit. Tell us what happened. 

Yeah. I mean, I had, I was a really just naturally good test taker. I had this great support structure growing up. Like, I mean, I had parents that were pushing me. I had older sisters who paved the way for me in school and built a good reputation with teachers and I just had really smart, ambitious friends that would invite me to study with them and that sort of thing. And you know, all those factors converged and I pulled off, you know, an amazing heist of sorts and somehow managed to graduate number one in my high school class, get into Harvard like woo hoo! My life is set like que que the trumpets and, uh, yeah, it turned, it turns out it wasn't. When I got to Harvard, the wheels just fell off. Lack of structure. And honestly Peter, you know, what I used to get through high school was just massive amounts of procrastination followed by minor heart attacks, followed by getting my work done. And by the time I got to Harvard, you know, I had freedom for the first time in my life. I was like, I don't, I'm done with that. I don't want to do that. 

What I find interesting is that you're not the first person. Uh, on this podcast, who's gotten into Harvard and realized holy crap, nothing is working. Um, we actually had someone, uh, several years ago named Rachel Cotton. Uh, she was doing her PhD at Harvard and, uh, she had been, she got through undergrad and her graduate degree by uh, mainlining Adderall and no.. no not Adderall, NoDoze and mainlining, uh, uh, caffeine pills. And, you know, she finally had good healthcare at Harvard and she went to it for physical induction and the doctor asked if there’s anything else there's anything else they should know and she goes, yeah. I drink about, you know, 14 cups of coffee a day, and take about nine, nine NoDoze. Um, and she just said it nonchalantly and the doctor goes to that's that's, that's, that's probably not normal. And that was the beginning of her diagnosis. So there's something about Harvard, but, um, you know, so you get into it and, and shit starts going off the rails and talk to us about how you must've felt, because I'm assuming much like I did when things would go off the rails for me, you know, it's obviously 100% entirely my fault. I'm the fuck up. It's obviously there's nothing else that could be wrong with it. It's totally me. Um, how could I be such a horrible. 

100%. Yeah. I mean, I feel like you just put my brain on loud speaker there, Peter, so thank you for that. Yeah, no, I completely, I mean, so I didn't get diagnosed until my mid thirties. And so this is all like under the radar, undiagnosed and you know, the only explanation that I had was the one that my mom had, which was Aron thinks you better than everyone, that he doesn't have to play by the rules. And he's just lazy and, you know, it's sorta like, well, I'm cutting all these corners and I'm getting away with these last minute saves, like, I guess she's right. And I mean, you know, to this day, I'm still piecing back together my self image and self confidence from all those years of misinformation. 

What was it like when, tell us about the, the, sort of the great reveal moment when you finally got diagnosed and, you know, you'd been gone for 15 years how, and if I get diagnosed, like, holy shit, there's a name for this and it starts to make sense.

Yeah, totally. Um, let me, let me tell you that. And let me just tell you, uh, what happened about a few months before that, just to get an idea of kinda where, how we got here, because when we go from Harvard we sort of have to paint the real picture. So, uh, A year before I'm diagnosed. Uh, I, I've got all of my possessions, all my belongings in a few suitcases and my wife's just basically kicked me out of the house. So we're getting divorced and I'm broke and I'm earning minimum wage. So anyway, so I'm carrying my two suitcases up the stairs of this shared house, uh, that I'm now going to share with four other acquaintances and I'm in, I'm in the room and I'm unpacking my stuff in the closet. And then Billy this 26 year old tech support agent from Vietnam comes and flops down on my king size bed. Kind of starteling me and I'm like, Hey, Billy, what's up, you know, but he looks really comfortable and that's when it hits me. He hasn't flopped down on his, on my king size bed. 

Oh no. 

He's flopped down on his half of OUR king size bed because renting half of a bed was all that I could afford at that point in my life. 

Wow. 

That's that's, that's only a bump. It was, it was such a wake-up call, right. 

Did he at least smell good? 

I mean, you know, I mean, I think it was, uh, I think it was, uh, Obsession, you know by CK, it was pretty, pretty delightful, you know, it's kinda musky. Uh, and yeah, so anyway, so of course the, the heart attack of that experience got me into action. I got a better job. And then. And then from that better job, which I only was at for seven months, I was able to move into a new company and get a raise. And I'm like, oh, this is great. Like I've, you know, I've rebuilt my life, blah, blah, blah. And anyway, so I'm three months into that job and it's all like high fives and backslaps everyone loves Aron and, uh, then history repeats itself. All of a sudden I got a call from my manager saying the client doesn't like your work. They think that it's subpar and you need to stay late for every night this week and maybe every night next week, if you don't get it done and redo all the work you've done the last few months. And you know, it doesn't mean you can't get done everything else you have to get done this week and you can't charge, you know, bill the time to the client more or anything. And like, Peter, I literally just freak out. Like, I mean, I'm thinking like I'm already, I mean, I'm already taking NoDoz and you know, I'm already at the edge of, at the edge of my bandwidth. Like I don't have another gear to stay late, you know, and redo work that I've already done in addition to a full day job. Like no way. 

And, uh, yeah, go ahead. No, this is what happens. So, so you're sitting there in the, you know, probably like deer in the headlights type thing. W what was the next step? 

Total, total deer in the headlights. And like, you know, like people say, like, when you die, like your whole life flashes in front of your eyes, there's something in slow motion. Like for me, It was kind of flashing in front of my eyes at that point, because what I was seeing was this whole image of rebuilding my life was going to be gone. At that point I was effectively a 34 year old divorce, a living with my mom. It wasn't technically living with my mom because it was living with my mom's sister, but it’s basically the same thing. 

And I'm reminded of the Seinfeld episode where, uh, you know, George, is that when we look to you should go talk to her. Yeah. Because balding middle-aged men with no job who live with their parents have a really good success rate there, 

Love it, love it. Right. And those, and you can't see this at home, but Peter and I are chatting and I've got the nice bald round dome. And, but what he said is totally true. I'll, uh, George Costanza. And so anyway, like I see my life, I see my life just falling apart for my eyes. I freak out and a friend had mentioned his ADHD and Adderall. He mentioned that socially, like going out drinking, but all I knew because I'd never tried Adderall even really paid any attention to it. But. He said it helped him stay up late to go out drinking. So I'm like, dude, I need to stay up late for this like thing! Or I'm going to get fired and live in my mom's sister's house. 

That's how Pfizer originally marketed Adderall is. “Hey, here's the stay up late going out, drinking a drug, right?” Yeah. I totally can imagine. I can totally imagine him saying that. And that's what, what you glom on. So I totally get. 

Yeah. And like, exactly. And, uh, and then, yeah, so, so anyway, so I get to work that Monday and like, I go through the day and then kind of midday, cause that was sort of the, the advice that I got like that I could take it and it would get me through the night or through like, you know, staying until 9:00 PM or 8:00 PM. So about mid day I take it anyway, I walk around like I walk around and just kill some time and I come back and I sit down at my laptop. And, you know, it's like in a conference room because I'm a consultant. There's like other people and distractions. And I'm like, of course, working on some super boring shit, like PowerPoint slides and Excel spreadsheets. And, uh, I sit down, I do some work like for a few minutes and then I look off and I look back at my boring stuff and I keep working on it. And then I look away for a little bit. Like, a minute. And then I look back and I keep working. I was like, holy crap. I'm working on this thing without stopping, even though it's not exciting and interesting, like.. is this book people have been talking about this whole time when they've said, Aron, just sit down and work on it!?!

You had the Bradley Cooper NZT moment in Limitless, where he sits, where he takes the pill. He sits down, everything becomes clear and in color. 

Like, it was literally as if like you'd given a blind person site and it was like, it was like, oh, this is what purple looks like. Like I didn't realize whatever I was everyone was talking about. 

That is spectacular, but it's entirely true. Everyone who's been there has had that. I call it that Limitless moment. If you haven't seen this film, dude, go out this afternoon, stop what you're doing and go see this film. He literally, he takes his pill of NZT, which gives him quote, unquote access to the other 90% of his brain. And, and he there's the scene. It's a stairway scene. He walks in the stairway and it goes from black and white drab to super high Def color where every single sound like the ticking of a bicycle, he hears the ticking of the wheel of greatness every day. And he's like, I get it. Right. And, and, and the, the landlord lady who is like, who's like on his ass to pay the rent, you know, five minutes later, he's sleeping with her. Right. It's just. That thing where he's just like, everything makes sense now. Yeah. We've all had that! 

Right. Exactly. And if you, if you take Peter's suggestion and you go and see the movie, uh, I also look like Bradley Cooper- so that's like a bonus as well. 

Hey, I'll, I'll, I'll sure, why not? 

Don't don't look at the show notes! [And you’re totally reading the show notes now aren’t you- Aron’s picture is on the main page ;)]

But you know, it's, it's funny because those moments, everyone talks about this one, right. And he talks about the sort of those, those Zen moments, those wake up moments. I think the thing that people don't mention the most about those moments is that it's the wake up call is not only, wow- look at all this shit I can DO, but also holy crap, I'm not the complete loser that I thought I was. 

Wow. So, you know, what's amazing about that, Peter, um, is.. I only came to that realization like a week or two ago, because I was putting together this like nine minute TED talk that ADDA is putting out, uh, next month as part of ADHD awareness month. And that literally is the theme of my talk, but I didn't make that connection until I wrote it. And you just like, I should have been just talking to you because you just said it so perfectly clearly.

We've all been there man. That's, you know, that literally comes from years of, I remember, you know, back in high school, I remember back in college, like my fourth day of my freshman year, I said something stupid. And I, you know, my, my social acuity didn't kick in and I said something stupid. And I know that's it, I just fucked up 4 years. I remember, I remember screwing up four years ago. I think I was just stood up for his college and it, it, it, why am I just so different? Why am I such a loser? Why am I, and, and. It's amazing how you, how you see that. Um, in people who haven't been diagnosed and they get diagnosed, they under, it's not even so much the diagnosis, you break your leg, you have a, you have a bone sticking on your leg. You pretty much know you've broken your leg. This isn't, this is a secret, this is a secret disease. Right? And so you, you get diagnosed for the first time. You understand it, right. You didn't have a bone sticking out of your brain. You couldn't tell that there was something wrong with you. That could be fixed. So that's it's yeah, it's a massive wake up call. So, all right. So you're diagnosed things, start changing. Now what. 

Uh, yeah, so then, then I live happily ever after, and shit just works perfectly. Um, no. So then, then I get medication and it's like a game changer, right? Right, so I go and get diagnosed. The week, like as soon as after, as I could, and then I get medications, it’s a game-changer and I go from being an under performer where to like an average and then an above average performer a nd I was like, this is great. Um, and it was really the first time in my adult life that I performed in any meaningful capacity, because as you said, I failed out of my first seven jobs in businesses and it was just like shit show after shit show. And, uh, so I then did what any responsible 34 year old does that's living on his own? I got home from work every day, broke out the weed, played video games and ate freaking sour patch, kids and sweet tarts like every effing day. 

I love it. How'd you come out of that? 

Uh, well, it was about a few years later and I was like, crap. This, this like hedonic pleasure of doing all that isn’t fulfilling. Like, yes, I enjoy it in the moment, but it's also, it's also not making me happy, deep down and you know, my social relationships weren't thriving because of it. Um, and. You know, I also wasn't achieving my fullest potential, you know, like Abraham Maslow, ‘what one can be one must be’. And that was creating like an internal lack of fulfillment and dissonance. So I finally just said that, Hey, maybe holding down a job, isn't my biggest achievement that I can have in life. Maybe I could have something bigger and do something more and make a bigger impact. And so that for me, I finally said, okay, I stopped finding dopamine in those artificial pleasures, if you will. And I started discovering, I could find dopamine through achieving personally meaningful goals and striving to be better, and to constantly improve myself. 

What happens when, uh, how many times have you had that moment where you're like, I can't believe I'm getting paid to get this high, essentially the high, the high being, what you love to do. Cause I come off the stage every day and I'd have to shake whenever I speak, as it was to shake my head and be like still, they still don't know. They still think that I'm, you know, I'm still getting paid for this crap. Unbelievable. I still get that. 

I think, I think about that. I mean, I think of that in my coaching sessions with clients, like, I love to talk about this shit. Like, you want to talk about how to like improve your life and be productive or like strategy!? Like that is candy, even podcasts, right? Like, like, I mean, obviously I’m not getting paid directly on this, but, this is like the most fun thing in the world. I get to hang out with someone awesome, we get to talk about the shared interests, which, you know, we're both so passionate about and we had to make a difference, like, yeah, same. Yeah. Like you hit it. I love, I love how clearly, uh, and I don't mean this as a knock against anyone else I've talked to, but I feel like there's a clarity of not purpose, but a clarity of thinking, and how you've processed so much of this stuff. That is just a level above. 

Thank you. I think a lot of it comes to comes to the point where you're just like, you know what? I know what works. I know what doesn't. I know how I got here. Fuck it. I'm just gonna, I'm gonna say how I feel. Um, tell us, I want to keep it to 20 minutes, I wanna be respectful of your time and the audience's time; cause it's been 20 minutes, you know, ADHD and all that. Um, how can people find more of you? Because there's a lot more that we will discuss next time I have you on but where can they find you? Where can they, where can they learn more about you? Because you have some interesting backstory and some interesting future story. And I think that our audience will want more of that. Tell us. 

Yeah, absolutely. So, um, the future story stuff that Peter's referring to, just so we don't leave people with a complete view of me as a fuck up. 

No, obviously I told you in the very beginning, you know, you're doing, you're doing fortune 500 coaching now you're doing tons of stuff, you know? So obviously you, you figured it out. 

[19:22 - How can people find you? https://hiddenadhd.com  @aroncroft on Twitter  @HiddenADHD on Facebook  INSTA  YouTube and also at hidden_adhd on TikTok]

Okay. So then we don't, we don't need to go into it. So I would say then just, uh, just Google hidden ADHD. Uh, so the “hidden” is kind of like a nod to a bit of the inattentive going under the radar and you'll be able to find my TikTok with over a hundred thousand people and you'll be able to find my free downloads and stuff. I’ve got some cool ADHD one-on-one and productivity guides and stuff. Uh, so you can get all that. And, uh, I would love to connect with you. 

Awesome Aron Croft yeah, his TikTok’s pretty off the charts you should definitely follow that. I'll give you that. I, you know, it's funny. I've been trying desperately. I tried to get into it, I just, I couldn't, I couldn't fall in love with it. I, I, I fell in love with Twitter. I fell in love with Facebook. I fell in love with Instagram. I couldn't, I still can't fall in love with TikTok, maybe because I know the company in China and I've been to their headquarters in China and it just scares me, but I just, I still can't fall in love with TikTok. I'm trying. I just can't make them a, B, 

Maybe you can't. Maybe you can't have more than three loves, like maybe. Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, like, you know, your heart's full. 

My girlfriend would argue. I can have more than one, but no, I see where you're going with that. Um, all right, cool guys, you’ve been listening to Aron Croft! I love this guy who's shit is awesome. Definitely check him out. You've also been listening to Faster Than Normal. That's me. You know how to find me. I'm not going to waste your time. I'll be back next week with a new episode. My name is Peter Shankman.  I appreciate you listening. I appreciate you taking 20 minutes of your day. I know that's a lot. And for those who actually listened to this on anything less than 1.25 times speed; you're my people. I thank you for that! See ya soon!

Credits: You've been listening to the Faster Than Normal podcast. We're available on iTunes, Stitcher and Google play and of course at www.FasterThanNormal.com I'm your host, Peter Shankman and you can find me at petershankman.com and @petershankman on all of the socials. If you like what you've heard, why not head over to your favorite podcast platform of choice and leave us a review, come more people who leave positive reviews, the more the podcast has shown, and the more people we can help understand that ADHD is a gift, not a curse. Opening and closing themes were composed and produced by Steven Byrom who also produces this podcast, and the opening introduction was recorded by Bernie Wagenblast. Thank you so much for listening. We'll see you next week. 

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