I don’t tend to talk about this much because it’s hard to describe to anyone who doesn’t deal with it, but I have long had trouble keeping my mind on task. This problem is more than simple distractedness or absentmindedness, but I am not making a to claim to any kind of condition to describe it. It’s just always been a part of me, and over the years, I’ve learned various ways to cope with it when it gets bad enough.
One of the ways I’ve learned is a process I call “stimming”. Basically described, when my brain gets most chaotic, sometimes intense investment in focused, mentally taxing activities coupled with liberal use of stimulants helps tame the noise. Yes, I realize this is likely a form of self-medication, but it works and helps things from getting worse (trust me, we don’t want worse than chaos).
The downside of this process is that it can sometimes develop its own destructiveness. Stimming was the reason I started smoking once upon a time (I’ve long since stopped), for example, and counteracting the effects of the stimulants can have its own cost (I was a functional drunk for a while, but that too is now in the past). Then again, in the balance, those sorts of things aren’t much worse than the side effects of the drugs commonly prescribed for conditions like mine, so there’s that.
I’m not bringing this subject up as a recommendation, because I would not wish this sort of thing on anyone. Rather, I bring it up because it can be mastered, and if you’re struggling with similar, I’m someone who understands.
Read more at my The Rambling Road weblog…