ADHD Mindfulness Techniques
ADHD Mindfulness Techniques (AMT) are specifically adapted to deal with the frustrations and challenges faced by people with ADHD. Influenced by martial arts and sports psychology, AMT actively reduces the negative effects of symptoms of inattention and transform ADHD traits into positive qualities. Practical exercises presented in plain language clear confusion about mindfulness and help individuals develop useful skills.
Benefits offered by this approach are not reduced by symptoms of ADHD, such as distractibility or impulsivity. Personally compelling triggers and meaningful cues grab the attention automatically and serve as a reminder to shift our focus. Exercises are highly structured and teach participants to pause intentionally before responding to urges or uncomfortable feelings. The techniques also do not require a great deal of effort and remain effective when we are agitated, tired or overwhelmed.
AMT encourages us to actively observe life events with curiosity, and develops our ability to:
- Monitor emotions and thoughts without becoming caught up in problems or repetitive thinking.
- Discover what underlies troubling emotions, thoughts or sensations.
- Uncover personal values and passions that help us set meaningful goals.
- Quiet our self-defeating voices.
- Overcome procrastination and boredom.
About the Trainer
David Boswell, M.Sc., trains and instructs mindfulness techniques in-person and on-line through Brentwood Psychological Services in Edmonton Canada. He first learned about mindfulness through martial arts and continues to refine his understanding of contemplative traditions by practicing Rinzai Zen Meditation and Kyudo (Japanese Archery).
The framework of AMT is based on research and adaptation of the sciences of Psychology, Neurobiology and Psychiatry. The techniques are derived from practices of mindfulness, Zen meditation, Martial Arts Philosophy (Budo), Sports Psychology and the personal techniques developed by professionals in the mental health and wellness fields.
Mindfulness has been studied by the scientific community including how it affects people with ADHD. In one study Dr. Mitchell of Duke University examined the benefits of mindfulness training on people diagnosed with ADHD.
The Mitchell study found a strong effect of mindfulness training on ADHD symptom reduction in a majority of mindfulness training participants as well as improvement in overall level of functioning in a majority of mindfulness training participants. Executive functioning (EF) symptoms and emotional regulation improved.
AMT techniques have been taught to groups and individuals in person and on-line. Participants quickly learn the fundamental techniques and being to identify where AMT can benefit their every-day lives.
Actively observing with curiosity
Passive and Active Relaxation
Walking and movement meditation
Listening to the inner world
Focusing – for anxiety and worry
Gratitude and Intention practice – for self-worth and self-kindness
Mental formations the link between sensations, experience, thoughts and emotions
Self – Not Self – Our relationship with others, roles we have, possessions, status in society
How we interpret, judge and add meaning to our life experience
John T. Mitchell, Elizabeth M. McIntyre, Joseph S. English, Michelle F. Dennis, Jean C. Beckham, Scott H. Kollins
J Atten Disord. Author manuscript; available in PMC 2015 Jun 4.
Published before final editing as: J Atten Disord. 2013 Dec 4
John T. Mitchell, Lidia Zylowska, Scott H. Kollins
Cogn Behav Pract. Author manuscript; available in PMC 2015 May 1.
Published in final edited form as: Cogn Behav Pract. 2015 May; 22(2): 172–191.
The issue at hand: essays on Buddhist mindfulness practice. Fronsdal, G. (2008).