I have always been prone to ADHD, even before that became a thing in the 90s. I remember when Oprah first talked about ADHD on a program in the early 90s, when I was in my 20s, and several family friends called my wife and I – “I just saw Rob on the TV show.” The inability to sit still, the occassional impulse control, the quick feeling of restlessness in a current activity – those tendencies created an interesting childhood and even more interesting report cards (As one year and Ds the next, then As, then Ds, etc.).
In my late 20s and through my 30s I learned to control it, and to focus on a thing at a time. Suddenly, I could read contracts end to end, would read one book at a time (instead of 5 or 10), would finish something I started. Then lung disease hit…
The lung disease was stabilized, but some fibro and other issues linger, and a key component of those issues is brain fog. I have good days and bad days, but the brain fog has restored my ADHD tendencies, and I often tend to rush to the next thing before finishing the first thing. This is especially dangerous in my profession, sales, where following up on a meeting is so important versus rushing on to the next sales call before following up. Follow up builds trust.
So my tendency right now is to cold call a new prospect rather than follow up with a previous one. ALthough a balance of this is good, not at the expense of good follow up. So I’ve had to learn these past few years to remind myself – constantly — to slow down, follow up and follow through. Before I pick up the phone, I look at my list – who should I follow up with first? Who do I owe things to? It cuts a little bit into my productivity, but it helps, and honestly an 80% me is more productive than 99% of sales people.
It will probably be an ongoing battle, but luckily I am becoming disciplined enough to remind myself early and often.