Friday, May 1, 2015

ADHD... and Sluggish Cognitive Tempo

In recent months, I have increasingly been considering the issue of "Sluggish Cognitive Tempo" as it relates to my life, and as it relates (or not) to the "Inattentive" variant of ADHD.

Feeling like I am a "slow thinker" has plagued me since I was quite young. I use the word "plagued" because my world changed around age nine when psych evaluations and IQ tests revealed that a seemingly "slow and dreamy" kid turned out to have an IQ in the 157-163 range... by most measures considered "genuis" level.

Science isn't quite sure where SCT "fits," as of now. The medical field leanings are that it is a separate "concentration deficit disorder."

For me, it makes sense... from the "sleepiness" and "brain fog" perspective I have experienced since I was quite small. And continue to experience, as an adult. As I have written many times here, I was never HYPERactive... if anything, I was HYPOactive... which is a core characteristic of SCT.

And it certainly helps explain the slowness vs. intelligence factor. I can manage and solve incredibly complex "systems thinking" problems, but only IF there is no time pressure.

In my case, the "brain soup" is further complicated by the fact that I am an HSP (Highly Sensitive Person), which means factors like "easily overstimulated" and "immobilized by stressful situations" also become relevant.

What originally led me to looking at SCT was researching my strange "reflexes" and slow cognitive reactions.

Put in very ordinary terms... I arrive at a 4-stop intersection, and the part of "reaction time" that concerns itself with "seeing the scene" is super fast in me. However, the part of "reaction time" that concerns itself with "interpreting" what I am seeing (OK, this is a 4-way intersection. OK, no cars are coming. No cars means I can go. OK, go.) is extraordinarily slow (lowest 5%) in me.

That doesn't really "fit" any of the ADHD criteria... it's "something else." But I am not-- to use a blunt and socially incorrect word-- "stupid,"

These are just lines of thinking I am exploring,.. more to come.

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