How do people have the energy to like, work a whole bunch of hours every day (I usually assume 8 cause that's what most people work I guess) and also do side projects and *also* manage to like, read books and play video games and stuff.

If I work like, one to three hours in a day I just feel completely drained for the rest of the day, and if I manage to work multiple days in a row and have responsibilities and stuff I just kinda... shut down.

Serious question. I want to know how people do this because I have no energy for anything but so many things I want to do.

@hazelnot There's a reason most of them drink so much coffee, and also usually end up with multiple medical conditions of the 'stress induced' or 'if you had taken the time to address this properly 2 years ago you'd be fine but you didn't so now it's a chronic condition' type.

(I lasted 20 months before my acid reflux was back at pre-ADHD diagnosis levels and my GP was actively refusing to do further investigation for my fatigue until I reduced my work hours. My workplace wouldn't let me do that, and then didn't renew my contract 🙃)


@dartigen Does this mean I'm fucked and forever doomed to be broke 🥲

@hazelnot If you're also neurodivergent, yes, unless you happen to get ridiculously lucky and find an employer who will actually do anything to accommodate you 🙃

My current psychologist did also say that I should always ask in job interviews if they have a psychological safety policy or a specific policy to address employee burnout, and to refuse the position if the employer doesn't. But given my past experiences with policies on accommodating disabilities and accommodating diversity, I'm pretty skeptical in general of employer policies being worth more than the paper they're written on.

(I'm looking for permanent part time or casual now, and also noticing how a lot of neurodivergent people I see or follow online run their own businesses, or are freelancers, if they're employed at all.)

@hazelnot (And hell, even if you're not neurodivergent, disabled or chronically ill, it can be the same. Basically, it seems to be luck of the draw as to whether you get an employer who's even remotely supportive of you being a human being with needs and a life outside of work, or not. My advice? If they won't support you when you're just tired and stressed, they'll fire you when that turns into chronic illness. If you have the chance, leave unsupportive employers before they can do any long-term damage.)

@hazelnot @dartigen I disagree. Path to improvement is a somewhat lengthy process, but it's a path required to endeavor to get better. Head doctors charge a hefty fee but sometimes it is necessary to see someone else if it doesn't feel, um, professional or helpful.
Rather than going to the appointment on a gut feeling that I might have this or that, try the "golden trio" (sleep, exercise, vitamins) for a time you set. Reasoning being [1/n]

@hazelnot @dartigen that docs or any other professional likes to see what you've tried. Those three things are prolly the stuff doc recommends anyway. If still tired, then meds can be prescribed.
Also it takes about 5 visits (as I've heard) and a test to get "certified". [2/]

@salakala @dartigen Not in Romania. Here there's no such thing as getting a certificate or a formal diagnosis. You go in, talk to a doctor, and they prescribe you something and just write the diagnosis directly on the prescription

@hazelnot @dartigen getting certified was more of a joke. Every time I need a prescription I need to call up or write to doc.

I did not even know I had ADD before I tried my friend's medication for recreational purposes out of curiosity. That might have explained some things I was complaining about to the doc.

My best bet is still to try out the 3 things (8h sleep daily, exercise & vitamins) and document the experience to have proof so to speak and then go to the doc.

@salakala @hazelnot This is true, and even if you have meds for ADHD, it's not a fix for everything. Even pretty minor nutritional deficiencies can have a big impact on symptoms.

Never hurts to get the usual suspects (iron, vitamin D, magnesium, immune activity, kidney function, etc) checked out just in case. (And if you have any family history or suspicion of absorption issues, pushing the doc to re-check after 1-2 weeks of consistently taking a supplement. There's usually options for people who have trouble absorbing some nutrients.)

@salakala @hazelnot For me, it took around 6-7 years of trying a dozen or more things, getting no relief, and having no explanation at all for my symptoms. I got tested for everything from myasthenia gravis (a rare metabolic disorder which has many and far more dramatic symptoms than just fatigue, sleepiness and executive dysfunction) to narcolepsy (a sleep disorder, also has other symptoms) to cancer. Nothing matched, nothing worked. I had three GPs, two specialists and a sleep clinic team completely stumped.

Then my university demanded an adult learning assessment to give me any accommodations at all on that front (because I had no diagnosis for my symptoms - a completely inappropriate use of a learning assessment, but I went with it because I hoped I might get some answers). I couldn't be given a proper WAIS-IV score because my working memory was so poor, a symptom that only fitted ADHD (because I had no history of stroke or serious head injury).

Still took almost a year to get a referral to a psychiatrist, who wasn't in the least bit surprised that it had taken that long to get to that stage (but admitted it was the first time he'd seen an overnight sleep study report in someone's records). He has enough information just from my doctor's records, school records, and 20 minutes worth of questionnaires to make a diagnosis.

@salakala @hazelnot But, the diagnosis ended up meaning absolutely nothing to my last workplace - I repeatedly had to explain to actual HR reps how it affected me in my role, and ended up keeping a stack of pamphlets from various mental health organisations to hand to them because I got sick of repeating myself.

Disclosure of diagnosis isn't required here, so I had the option to lie and claim that I didn't know the cause and my GP had been unable to find one, but I thought that was more likely to be ignored (and if they spoke to my GP they'd catch me out - not that they ever did). I tried repeatedly to get them to speak to my GP or my therapist, but they weren't in the least bit interested, and ignored formal letters from both trying to explain my situation and that their finding was that I needed to cut my with hours or leave the role. (That was the point where my GP started telling me to quit.)

But, discrimination is rife here, because all an employer has to do is claim that the adjustment you're requesting would impact the business too much and they can say they're not being discriminatory. They don't have to prove it even if you get them into court (and that can take years, if you can even get that far). Particularly in casual or temp contract jobs as well, they can let you go at any time and they're not obligated to give you a reason. Better to find an employer whose attitude to supporting employees isn't 'too expensive, go away'.

@salakala @hazelnot Supportive employers do exist, allegedly, but they seem to be far between, and I don't know if anyone knows any good ways to gauge an employer's attitude towards workplace adjustments before you take the role (short of talking to other people who work there and had to ask for adjustments, and getting honest answers from them).

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