ADHD Paralysis: It’s A Real Thing

ADHD can make every aspect of life a struggle. There are things to do, but it’s not as easy as just getting it done. It can be overwhelming. Knowing where to start can be a challenge.

This can lead to something called ADHD paralysis. 

What Is ADHD Paralysis?

ADHD paralysis is when someone with ADHD has difficulty focusing, thinking clearly, and being able to execute tasks. They may feel overwhelmed by everything going on. This can lead their brain to “freeze”. 

ADHD paralysis isn’t a condition on its own, but is another symptom of ADHD.

This tends to happen because ADHD affects our executive functions. Those with ADHD tend to struggle with making decisions, start a task, organizing, just to name a few. 

At times, people may confuse ADHD paralysis as procrastination. However it’s important to know that they are two different things.

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Types of ADHD Paralysis

There are three different types of ADHD paralysis.

ADHD mental paralysis is when someone is overwhelmed by their thoughts, emotions or information. It makes it difficult to focus and think clearly, which is sometimes referred to as “brain fog”.

ADHD choice paralysis happens when there are too many options available and the person has a difficult time making a decision. This type is also known as analysis paralysis.

ADHD task paralysis is when someone with ADHD is unable to start and/or finish a task. They may be scared, worried, hesitant, or unmotivated.

What Does It Look Like

ADHD paralysis can present itself in different ways. It varies from person to person.

However, there are still signs, symptoms and ways to recognize ADHD paralysis. Here are some of them.

  • Difficulty making decisions
  • Time blindness
  • Brain fog (lack of focus or mental clarity
  • Overthinking and overanalyzing
  • Uncertain where to start 
  • Easily distracted 
  • Exhaustion
  • Social isolation 
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How to Overcome ADHD Paralysis

There ways to overcome ADHD paralysis and be able to get things done. Here are some tips to do this.

  • Do a brain dump. There are a lot of times when our brain is bombarded by so many ideas and thoughts. Doing a brain dump and writing down our thoughts can help think a little more clearly and make sense of what we can do.
  • Break things down. Breaking down tasks and projects into smaller and more manageable tasks can be helpful to get things done. It can make it seem less overwhelming.
  • Let go of perfection. Completing the task is more important than it being perfect.
  • Take breaks and move. Go for a walk. Have a dance party in your kitchen. Just move.

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