Ari Tuckman, PsyD, MBA
There was a time, not long ago, that treatment for ADHD pretty much ended at the prescription pad. Take your pills and hope for the best. This was especially true for adults with ADHD—in my five years of graduate school in the nineties, I don’t think I ever heard the words “adult” and “ADHD” in the same sentence. I am a strong proponent of medication for ADHD, when appropriate, but there is an old saying that pills don’t teach skills.
Medication will help someone focus better, but that doesn’t mean they suddenly know which calendar system will work best for them or even what goals they would like to pursue now that they’re keeping better track of the various moving parts in their life. Over the last few decades, therapists have created more refined approaches to working with individuals, couples, and families with ADHD and have become less of a rare specialty. This is a positive development for the field and a knowledgeable therapist can make a big difference for those impacted by ADHD. Medication, plus therapy is even better, but doesn’t necessarily meet all of these clients’ needs.
Enter ADHD coaching, the next piece of the puzzle. Fortunately, around the time I was in graduate school, a small group of folks began trickling into that gap in services and giving these clients what they weren’t getting from their prescribers and therapists. The depth and breadth of this book shows how far the field of ADHD coaching has come since those early days. The field has become increasingly professionalized, with solid training programs that give graduates the foundation of knowledge and skills they need and credentials that mean something. This way consumers can more easily find coaches who really know their stuff. ADHD coaching is a serious endeavor and clients deserve skilled professionals. Being good at their job also makes it much more rewarding for the coach.
We know well that ADHD doesn’t go away at the end of the school day, nor at graduation, nor on the evening commute home from work. ADHD potentially impacts every part of a person’s life—and also their romantic partners’ and family members’ lives. The range of topics covered in this book shows how the field of ADHD coaching has responded so that clients can be more effective and fulfilled in all parts of their lives.
Current and prospective coaching clients will find this book not only interesting and helpful unto itself, but also that it enables them to make better use of their coaching sessions by better understanding the process and how coaches can potentially be helpful. Bringing your best to your coaching sessions will enable you to get the most from it.
All coaches, both established and aspiring, have a lot to learn from the rich and diverse offerings in this book. There will be chapters that apply directly to the daily work that you are doing and there are chapters that you will refer to, perhaps years later, as your practice grows and evolves. Beyond the direct learning, my hope is that you will be inspired by these authors to think about new ways to help your clients. Learn from the experts assembled here—not only from their wisdom, but also by their example.