Hallowell Center: Unwrapping the Gifts in All Minds

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April 13, 2007

Tips for the Crazy Busy

       Welcome to the club!  Being crazy busy is a modern epidemic.  I wrote a book about it, called Crazy Busy: Overbooked, Overstretched, and About to Snap.  I am going to post in my blog now and then tips that I have come across in how to deal with being crazy busy.

        My tip for today came from an executive in New York City.  She found that she was spending too much time doing email.  To remedy the situation she did something so simple that anyone could do it.  She put her computer on a table behind her.  Now, in order to do email, she has to swivel around in her chair.  This means that she much make a conscious decision to do so, instead of just mindlessly clicking on her email.  She told me this simple step has saved her oodles of time!

       I welcome hearing tips from all of you!!


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Ray Belanger

Are the mental exercise sheets and instructions on page 186 to 190 available in PDF format?

What about the form and instructions for recording time allocation on pages 155 to 160?

If so please email them or point me to a link. I have to return book to library and would like to print these out rather than photocopying.

Will talk to dr. to see if chemical imbalance and Adult AD are linked.


I'm a new ADD adult. Still looking at things others write and thinking, oh my goodness, that all happened or is happening to me. But I do have one new trick, which is doing little stuff as I see it. I try not to get distracted by the big jobs, since that usually ends up with me getting confused by too many things to do and then achieving nothing. But I find, if I see a piece of clothing on the floor or a bill to be paid, that if I just do it right then, it's more efficient. I pay bills in my car, as they come in. I don't have enough in my checking account to automate things, because they could overdraw it and that would be a disaster. But I can usually call and pay whatever bill it is over the phone or do it on the computer. Works for me. At the moment, I'm spinning a bit out of control in other ways, but I have a few bright spots. D

Kathy Sena

Hi Dr. Hallowell,

So glad to discover your blog! I'm a journalist covering family and parenting topics and I also blog over at www.parenttalktoday.com. I plan to mention your blog over there and I'll provide a link.

I just started reading Crazy Busy, and I love it. I keep picturing you with that black rotary-dial phone, and it makes me stop and take a breath. :) I highly recommend your book!


Kathy Sena

Penny Papanikolopoulos

Hi Dr. Hallowell,
During a summer week at Cape Code Institute, I came accross your cd's on ADHD. I must tell you that I have never heard a more "human" professional. I am interested in learning more.... I live in Greece and I am a psychologist and clinical director of a center for children and young adults. I have had difficulty with your site and receiving info. How can I get more info about working with your "system" in Greece?
Penny Papanikolopoulos

Susan Walton

Wow! I have been thinking how to present information to others and I remembered your presentation at the AFT in Boston. I was so surprised that day to see only under 100 people with our large teacher membership. But I do realize teachers are always attending some professional growth opportunity. I, for one, was so happy to attend and take home salient points to share with friends and colleagues. I a sure I thanked you at the small gathering and I wish to say well over 10 years the lectures still has an impact. If, you are in the Oakland area- I am sure you will be well received-

David Hallowell

This is the strangest thing I've experienced in many years. The name Hallowell spelt this way is fairly uncomon, and I just came upon your advert in Nightingale Conant magazine. What is especially strange is that having qualified as a Podiatrist I got side tracked into the psychology of stress. I've been teaching people how to deal with stress using a system based on a combination of psychology and philosophy for ten years. Strange that two people with such a rare Sir name should have such similar areas of interest.

Regards David Hallowell
Belfast Northern Ireland

Krystal Sumner

Hi, I would like to send an email to Dr. Hallowell but I can't seem to find it anywhere on the website. Can some one help me out here!? I am tired of scrolling up and down looking and clicking just to find a dead end. Besides, all the info on the website is too interesting for me to stay on track!

Steve Brunn

Hello Dr. Hallowell

I'm currently reading Crazy Busy and practicing some of the concentration exercises. Some of the exercises include hand and arm movements. The descriptions are a bit confusing. Do you know of any graphical demonstrations of these exercises?

Thanks for writing this excellent book for our modern pandemic!



Dear Dr. Hallowel,

I loved your book, "Delivered from Distraction". I didn't read "Driven to distraction" as I already knew something was wrong with me. When I read "Delivered", I said "wow, this description fits me to a T".

So many people ask me, did you have these problems earlier, I said "well, I think so, but I just could't put a finger on exactly what was wrong, besides that back in the 60's when I went to school, I think teachers just dealt with problems, but since I had trouble at work focusing and finishing all my work, I figured something had to be wrong somewhere, and started reading books like crazy.

I took a shortened version of a psychological evaluation, (I think the Dr. was just lazy). But to get to the end here, the diagnoses was major depression, but with a chance of ADD., problem is since I went thru this already, I hate to bill another one to the insurance company for proof that it's ADD, what do I do now? I am sort of self-employed, and can't really afford the cost of anther "psychological exam" and I wouldn't go back to the place I went to before, that really disappointed me a lot. However everything I read in "Delivered" hit it right on the head. I had to laugh when you said it was okay to skip around in the book to find what we are most interested in, because nine times out of ten, I find it so hard to stay on track to read a whole book from cover to cover. By far, I think my worst problems are that I am a chronically disorganized and have issues with time-management.

Does either Ritalin or Aderall raise blood pressure? I am tempted to try one of them, but since my blood pressure is already getting high, I hate to raise it up any higher. I heard that there may be cardiovascular problems wtih these drugs. My one Dr. told me to wait until I am on a new insurance before he prescribes me anything so that I am not turned down because of pre-existing conditions. I think ADD is why I am so miserable and depresssed most of the time anyway. I am already on Zoloft and Welbutrin, which one of the Dr.'s said is supposed to help ADD, but it doesn't help mine at all.

I don't think I have the hyperactive type, but sometimes I do, as it seems to me I do everything standing up, and it's hard for me to sit down to watch TV or even eat. Sometimes I even eat standing up! One of my jobs that I had, I felt it was so sedentary and boring, it drove me nuts. I think I have to have a physically active job, and a job that gives me instant gratification, as I like to see instant results, like in cleaning or snow shoveling.

I am 55, and I still don't know what type or what kind of job is best for me. I am a caregiver right now, but to me that is very boring, somewhat satisfying, but very boring!

Do a lot of people with ADD feel that they are misunderstood or is it just me? I said boring to someone once, and they took it that I meant demeaning, which I didn't mean at all. I am always feeling misunderstood, and that in itself is so frustrating! Also, when I am criticized, it almost makes me want to cry or I do cry, it almost always makes me feel so depressed, I just want to give up sometimes, but I know I can't. I hardly ever feel any sense of worth. Anybody else out there that feels like I do? I almost always feel like I'm in a state of frustration and overwhelmed.

I am looking forward to reading "Crazy Busy".

One more question, is it okay or good to tell an employer that you may have ADD or that you do? I felt that I was let go from my last position, because people didn't understand my issues, and that it took me longer to accomplish some tasks because I couldn't stay on track or oculdn't focus, and sometimes it just took me longer than they had felt it should be. I was so frustrated!

Thank you for writing such excellant material for ADD! I wish moer people would read and understand the problems that people with ADD have.



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