Walk & Talk For Better Communication
Description: In this episode, Melissa and Maribeth (from ADD Professionals) share tools for people with ADD to communicate more effectively and listen more effectively to important topics.
Have you ever noticed that sometimes, when someone is talking to you, your mind is a million miles away and when you come back into the conversation, you have missed a big piece of what was said, but you are too embarrassed to say, “Would you repeat that please, my brain was somewhere else”
Especially when relationships are strained, better communication can help both people feel heard, understood, and cared for.
Most therapists will recommend improving communication by regularly talking and listening while sitting and looking at each other.
But this can prove to be a real challenge if you have ADHD.
The risk is that, although the conversation may be important, the topic may be boring or something you really don’t want to hear!
Remember, boredom to many people with ADHD, is like kryptonite. It shuts the brain down. So, staying engaged in the conversation can be nearly impossible.
If you have ADHD, your prefrontal cortex, or the front part of your brain, is a little sleepy and certain things help turn it on – like exercise.
An alternative to sitting quietly and listening is to walk and talk together. We can actually affect our brain by moving. We make more dopamine, serotonin and norepinephrine. These chemicals can make us feel happier, more ready to listen and more interested in the conversation.
Walking adds kinesthetic and visual stimuli and this helps us pay attention. It also decreases the pressure to “look at me when I’m talking to you.”
Try it, and see if it works for you!
If you would like to learn more about exercise and the brain, John Ratey wrote the book Spark. It is a fascinating study on our brain and exercise. Go to www.johnratey.com for more information.