3 Myths About ADD Entrepreneurs

Jun 27, 2012

I was talking to some of the other ADD Entrepreneurs, and we swapped some stories of our childhoods.  It’s amazing how so many of these things, are what shapes us as adult entrepreneurs.  So we decided to post this, so others can see how we get our reputations by writing “3 Myths About ADD Entrepreneurs”.  We’re not so bad, people just assume we are because we get that reputation at such an early age.

ADD Entrepreneurs Were Bad Kids

You know, everyone assumes that entrepreneurs with ADD or other “learning disabilities” were rebels.  The bad & rude kids growing up.  That’s not so, and let me use this example from my own childhood to kind of help explain how we get this reputation…

Back in school, I think I was in the first grade.  We were taking a test, and you had to put up folders around your test so no one could look at each other’s tests because the desks were so close together.  It was the teachers way of making sure no one cheated.  So the girl sitting next to me, had these really bright folders with patterns on them.  I started to take my test, and just started thinking about something else.  Her folders were bright, so I was sitting there starring at them, thinking.

Next thing I know, the teacher grabs my test out from under my hand, and yells “cheater! you get an F”, and rips it up.  I just looked up thinking “WTF is going on?”.  Apparently everyone else & the teacher had been starring at me.  They thought I was trying to copy the other girls test.  So I tried to explain and I said “oh…I wasn’t cheating.  I was thinking, and her folder was bright”.  And I remember everyone started laughing, and the teacher looks at me and says “you’re a horrible liar”.  So I had to get up in front of the classroom, and admit I was a liar and a cheater.  I just think to myself “lady…if I had really been cheating, or lying, you wouldn’t have known….and I sure wouldn’t have made it that obvious”.  In my mind, this is what logic would’ve said.  But no….

It’s amazing how these things stick with you, and they seemed to occur over and over again in my life.  So it’s just easier to shrug your shoulders, and say “sure…I’m a liar and a cheater”.  Really, people just don’t understand you, or even seek to understand you in the first place.  Mostly because they’re not that way, so they aren’t able to see how you could be different.

ADD Entrepreneurs Don’t Listen

One of my early mentors didn’t have ADD, and I heard him say the same thing: “you don’t listen”.  I just kind of smiled and said “that’s the tattoo”.  What I would like to know…is instead of everyone saying “you don’t listen”, how come no one has ever stopped to ask “do you listen?”.  Because what I’ve noticed, not only with myself but with other entrepreneurs, is they do listen.  It’s just a matter of three things:

  • Either they listened, but they just don’t acknowledge it like a normal person would.
  • We’ve already evaluated it, and rejected your information.
  • Or…we’re already too stimulated to hear it.  Don’t tell us something important when there’s lots going on around us.

ADD Entrepreneurs Don’t Care

This is a really big misconception.  You know, alot of ADD Entrepreneurs are often labeled as being immature.  Or acting out, rude, or whatever.  But these people, are incredibly compassionate & empathetic.  Even as kids.  I was visiting an ADD school for kids the other day, and let me tell you….it’s amazing when a bunch of ADD people get together, and they know they all have ADD.  There’s a kind of comfort and understanding that comes along with that.  I watched as this one kid talked about someone else making fun of her because she was different.  And the other kid, who was a 6 year old boy, put his arm around his little friend and says “You’re too good for that.  Don’t listen to them, they only say that because they don’t understand what’s inside of you”.  And he points at his friend’s heart.  At 6 years old.

Yes, how sweet.  But the point isn’t that it’s “sweet”.  The point is, is that ADD people may not spell correctly, or speak correctly, but even at the earliest age….they actually have a deeper understanding of life, then most adults do.  Maybe that’s why they don’t listen.  These kids, actually grow up to be some of our greatest entrepreneurs…

Bill Gates, Richard Branson, Malcolm Forbes, Jim Carrey, Thomas Edison, we could go on for hours.