Peaks and Troughs - the Bigger the Pe... - CHADD's Adult ADH...

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Peaks and Troughs - the Bigger the Peak, the Bigger the Trough that Follows?



Does anybody have any tips for 'smoothing' out the peaks and troughs in ADHD? I would say this for me is one of the most exhausting parts of the condition. It sits in the background and seems to direct the good(?) ship ADHD. Whenever I'm having a good day/week/hour, my ability to flick into the negative is increased, and obviously when we are looking for improvements in our condition it gets quite depressing to think that after a good achievement (ran a half-marathon, climbed a mountain, tidied your desk, paid a bill or just remembered to brush your teeth) a trough is very near. How does anybody else deal with this - do you tend to find your own hyper-focus and positivity, then this sustains you? Or do you pick a middle ground and try and keeps things on a level where it's not over-stimulating/exciting? Hoping that everybody if doing well and looking forward to hearing any advice you may have.

Best Regards,


7 Replies

Hi Mark, I was sorry not to have seen any replies, it is only since seeing your post that I am looking at the peaks and troughs I have and looking at them in a different way. I didn’t realise it was a feature, and I thought mine was caused by hormonal factors.

I am not long diagnosed, and when I was my sisters reaction was, “oh good, I thought you had bi-polar”. My son notes the peaks and troughs like you describe and he also thought he was bi-polar, we are only just looking at seeking a DX for him as to date he has said, well I doing ok so far....... he is early 20s. But it is after he has just been down or very up that he recognises that he might need a little help.

With me I tend to harness the peaks and therefore sometimes cause a crash, I use hyperfocus just to get by. I have found since being diagnosed and medicated that the crashes are not so bad. The current change in “normal” life is mucking around with this as I had prioritised the wrong things.

I buried my head in the sand about my DX, accepting it as the reason for all my failings, but haven’t done much research or investigation. I think I need to do this soon. But it’s a little overwhelming as along with the ADHD I have underlying ASD which to my brain seems illogical! But actually fits!

So I would be really interested to hear if peaks and troughs are a feature of ADHD and others experience!

Thank you Fizzybubble - it's good to hear the Meds have calmed things a bit for you, as I am waiting to access Meds here, but the process is slow. It's a good thing to get to know ADHD (and your own version of it) and also for others around you to understand it too, as it can also help them see how they can help you and themselves. I am also at the beginning of this journey and have a daughter that looks to have similar issues. Wishing you all the best.

From my experience the one thing that always helps smooth and lessen the peaks/troughs cycle is exercise. When I consistently exercise my ADHD symptoms are much more manageable. This is just my personal experience but I’ve gone periods without exercise and have documented how I feel and there is a very significant difference. Good luck on your journey ❤️

Thanks RCJH, I have tried various exercise regimes. Its finding the one that fits. Though I find more that I need exercise outside (lots of stimuli) and in other ways yoga has been good also. I will say that non-competitive is better for me personally, as competing (either against others or against the clock/myself, the bathroom scales) starts to setup up 'goals', which become 'peaks'. Have you picked one activity or several,, do you find one better? Wishing you all the best.

Yoga, elliptical trainer, and weights are my favorites. I agree that competitive activities are not beneficial. I love the outdoors but because of my allergies and asthma I do mostly indoor workouts. Thank you for sharing what works for you ❤️

Yes , this has happened to me a lot in the past but recently “the last two months” a woman I know told me to try and listen to a few audiobooks because she new I would forget to read them 🙃 anywho have helped me so much

With mindset I still have it happen but I’ve been catching myself and correcting myself

Ok so the books are 5 second rule Mel robins , Tony Robbins unleash the power within , and atomic habits I’m still listening to and can only listen to them while I clean my house and I love these so I’ve been cleaning organizing oh and clutterbug on youtube or podcast she has adhd

And is a organizier who was just filming a show for Netflix if it helps try to listen to tony Robinson for self love 5 second rule too

Hope it helps

Hi Adhddisneydork, that's a great tip, us ADHD'ers aren't always the best readers. I'll give them a try. I'm listening to 13 Minutes to the Moon, about 12 hrs of interviews/recordings and technical info about the Apollo 11 and 13 missions - it's definitely one way to 'escape' the earth for a while! Wishing you all the best.

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