ADHD & Difficulties to Relax: Do You Struggle to Relax Too 😬 ?

Some people with ADHD struggle to relax and calm down. One might think that it’s just a “side effect” of having Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, but it seems like it can be considered a symptom, too. Here’s what you need to know about ADHD and relaxation. 

Table of Contents

ADHD & Difficulties to Relax: Do You Struggle to Relax Too?

1. Adult ADHD May Trigger Anxiety Due To Minor Problems

2. Adult ADHD Symptoms, The Quest For Relaxation, And Our Environment

3. Adult ADHD And Being Prone To Traffic Accidents

4. Mental Health and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

5. My Own Experience In Being Unable To Relax

6. Tips That Help You Relax Even With Adult ADHD

7. Adult ADHD Shouldn’t Stop You From Relaxing and Having Fun

ADHD & Difficulties to Relax FAQs

Struggling To Relax Can Be ADHD Symptom Too

Do you know someone who experiences even subtle symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder? Have you tried observing how people with adult ADHD achieve relaxation compared to those who do not have this condition? 

You see, there are reports regarding another symptom of adult ADHD: inability to relax. 🤔

One paper, for instance, noted that ADHD is associated with a weaker structure and function of the part of the brain called the prefrontal cortex (PFC). Now, PFC is essential for our executive functions, which help us organize, plan, and inhibit our responses to distractions to be able to achieve a goal. The effects of problems with executive functions can contribute to a person’s inability to relax

Some people with ADHD may have trouble relaxing because of different factors, such as difficulty in controlling emotions or thoughts, hyperactivity, and the need to constantly move. Adult ADHD may also result in poor concentration, especially when it comes to relaxation, because of the excess energy that the condition might cause.

having difficulties to reax is an ADHD symptom that many people don't know about...

Adult ADHD May Trigger Anxiety Due To Minor Problems

One of the ADHD symptoms that we might experience is overthinking. This can make us feel worried and anxious about things that might not even be that big of a deal. 

Restlessness might trigger us to go into panic mode, which can lead to problems, like insomnia, muscle tension, and headaches. 😭 Random thoughts that may or may not happen in real life may drive us crazy, causing further problems in our lives.

Sometimes, simple phone calls or notification alerts make us worry about things that are not currently on our minds. Just the thought of these things might make us anxious all day long. 🥺

it can be hard to relax because of physical hyperactivity...

Adult ADHD Symptoms, The Quest For Relaxation, And Our Environment

Have you felt distracted by the things going about in your surroundings when you’re trying to focus on a task? Please keep in mind that getting distracted is another common problem for some people with adult ADHD. Our environment can serve as a huge distraction, making it difficult for us to concentrate on our tasks.

This might be because some people with ADHD are easily stimulated. Our brains can be constantly active, and we may struggle with paying attention and staying focused on what is assigned to us at hand. Some people even use the term “extremely distractible ADHD.”

For this reason, noisy or busy offices are sometimes not conducive for an ADHD brain to perform at its best. Important tasks are often disregarded and forgotten because of the distractions.😅

Distractions often play an essential role in our quest for relaxation. Even though we plan on relaxing and loosening up a bit, if our environment won't let us be calm, there's no way to relax and enjoy what we are doing.

but it can also be difficult to relax because of mental hyperactivity...

Adult ADHD And Being Prone To Traffic Accidents

Speaking of our environment, did you know that some people with ADHD are more likely to get into car accidents

This can be due to the impulsiveness and hyperactivity typical in people with this condition. The need to move and be constantly active might cause us to drive recklessly, which can lead to dangerous situations. Also, ADHD might make us more prone to traffic accidents because of our inability to focus on the task. Reckless driving and road rage is also a possibility with adult ADHD. The emotions and angry outbursts ADHD can cause can trigger these incidents.

Some adults with ADHD find relaxation in long drives and spending countless hours traveling, but there are others that find them stressful and troublesome. The key is to find what relaxes you and stick to that. Remember that everything appears differently between individuals. What might be useful and helpful to me, might not be to you.

sometimes it's hard for other people to understand that people with ADHD can struggle to relax...

Mental Health and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

What is the connection between adult ADHD, mental health, and relaxation? For some adults with ADHD, it may be harder to focus and relax. This may be because of the inherent difficulty in shutting down the brain's central executive network. The environment can also be a huge distraction for us, which might prevent us from relaxing. 

And without proper relaxation and a good handle on emotions, our mental and overall health might be affected. In some instances, altered mental health can cause depression or substance abuse that can trigger unruly behaviors or accentuate existing ones.

It is essential to keep these three in harmony to prevent any untoward incidents that may happen in the future. 🙌 This way, we can lead an accomplished life and have the opportunity to experience fulfillment. Though some ADHD adults struggle to keep them in balance, there is still hope for us to enjoy and have a sound ADHD brain.

feeling tense all the time can be exhausting for your body...

My Own Experience In Being Unable To Relax

I have been under the statistics of undiagnosed ADHD for many years. I noticed myself experiencing difficulty relaxing even before I was diagnosed. 

One time, I became too agitated because of my poor listening skills, and I started lashing out at the people around me. However, when my anger faded, I realized that what I did was wrong and there's something off with me. I shouldn't have let my emotions get the better of me, but I let them. That's why when I had the same situation a couple of weeks later, I tried harder to control my emotions and divert them into a physical activity that had a relaxing effect on me.

I realized that I developed techniques that are unique to my ADHD experience, which helped me stay calm and collected. If you have similar symptoms, it's best to search and develop techniques that can help you relax and focus. There are many helpful ADHD techniques, but it depends on what will work best for you. What's important is that you find something that can help you ease your ADHD brain and let go of all the distractions, so you can focus on the task at hand.

Tips That Help You Relax Even With Adult ADHD

Sure, there are many problems and hardships some adults with ADHD might experience. There are matters like workplace issues, missed appointments, long business meetings, or even marital trouble that may prevent us from thoroughly relaxing. But it's not impossible! Here are some tips that have helped my ADHD brain. I’m hoping they can help you, too. 

  • Make a to-do list and try as much as you can to abide by them. Organization and planning are critical parts of an ADHD brain, and they can help us avoid feeling overwhelmed. To-do lists also lessen surprises that may cause us to panic or freak out.
  • Remove - or minimize - distractions from your environment. Set up or try to find a quiet place to work or study. Turn off the TV and mute your phone. If you cannot control your setting, buy noise-canceling headphones that can help you maintain your focus and keep your ADHD symptoms below level. 
  • Solve marital disagreements, relationship problems, or workplace issues as soon as possible to prevent them from building up. Communication is a great way to keep any relationship healthy, and it can help avoid any misunderstandings that might lead to anger, resentment, and frustration.
  • Take breaks when needed! Don't overwork yourself, and remember to take a breather now and then. This will help you recharge and come back stronger.
  • Find an activity that suits your ADHD personality. It can be jogging on regular routes or attending a baseball practice. When we do something that is in line with our interests, it becomes easier for us to stick to it and eventually relax.
  • Congratulate yourself on completing tasks. This way, you acknowledge your hardships, and you will be less stressed because you recognize your accomplishments.
  • In treating ADHD, only consult a professional. Ask them to provide medical advice on relaxing properly with an ADHD brain. This way, seeking professional help regarding your ADHD can prevent dangerous results, like substance abuse, depression, and anxiety. For mental health concerns, get in touch with a mental health professional. 
  • At the same time, have a solid support system that you can trust. Family members or friends might help you with your existing problems with ADHD.
so try to find your own ways to relax

Adult ADHD Shouldn’t Stop You From Relaxing and Having Fun

Many adults with ADHD may have trouble staying focused and paying attention. But, even though they have possible symptoms of ADHD, they still can enjoy life and relax. 

A common misconception about ADHD is that adults who have it cannot relax at all. It might be hard to control your ADHD brain's energy, but that doesn't mean you can't go out with your friends or family members and just relax and enjoy their company.

ADHD isn't an incurable disease or mental illness. It won't be the end of the world, and we can still enjoy life like everyone else. Just make sure you try to relax as much as possible and do something that will help you de-stress and feel good about yourself. You may have trouble starting, but when you find your ground and keep track of what relaxes you, relaxation can come easily for you. You just have to minimize distractions around you and you'll find that simple task or activity that can help your ADHD brain to relax.

we need to talk about ADHD and fight misconceptions

ADHD and Difficulties to Relax: FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

 

1.  Is it true that ADHD makes it difficult for the person to relax?


In some instances, yes, restlessness is a symptom of ADHD. The condition can also affect the ability to focus and pay attention. These can lead to unaccomplished tasks, mistakes, or emotional outbursts that can then trigger anxiety, restlessness, or the general feeling of being unable to relax. 


2. Can people with ADHD ever relax?


For some people, it may be difficult at first. But, it’s not impossible. By developing habits, such as making a to-do list, minimizing or eliminating distractions, being gentle with yourself, and building a support system, finding relaxation is not far fetched. 

3. What’s a good trick to help an ADHD brain relax?


One “trick” is to do an activity that you find relaxing. This can be anything from walking a block to playing the piano. The activity need not be complicated and doesn’t have to be the same as what the others are doing. 

Table of Contents

ADHD & Difficulties to Relax: Do You Struggle to Relax Too?

1. Adult ADHD May Trigger Anxiety Due To Minor Problems

2. Adult ADHD Symptoms, The Quest For Relaxation, And Our Environment

3. Adult ADHD And Being Prone To Traffic Accidents

4. Mental Health and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

5. My Own Experience In Being Unable To Relax

6. Tips That Help You Relax Even With Adult ADHD

7. Adult ADHD Shouldn’t Stop You From Relaxing and Having Fun

ADHD & Difficulties to Relax FAQs

Disclaimer: This article is for educational purposes only. If you are experiencing symptoms of ADHD, it’s best to see a professional for a diagnosis.

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I created The Mini ADHD Coach in august 2020 when I was just diagnosed with ADHD at 29. After years of questioning, therapy, burnouts and chaotic career path changes I finally understood why I was struggling with so many things. So I decided to share what I learned to raise awareness around ADHD and help the ADHD community thrive.

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