Professional Life With ADD/ADHD

ADD, A curse or a gift?

I am posting the article in hopes that it will help someone else make sense of their situation.

Early Life:

A quick overview: I was diagnosed with ADD when I was in first grade; at a time when doctors were handing out medications like candy. For better or worse, the decision was made for me to be on medication until I was in Highschool. My last year of Highschool, I was taken off the medication in order to meet specific set of job requirements of the time; this was a change for everyone who knew me. My entire personality changed, it was a night and day difference.

A radio on Seek:

Everyone has a different thought process; it has taken me a while to figure mine out. It was not until recently that I figured out my mind is a like a radio that is on seek. I jump topics based on key word triggers, obtain the information I need, then switch to a different channel. What appears as a chaotic disarray of topic jumping to other people is actually storing information based on references.


There are specific tools that help me throughout the day:

  • Outlook Tasks – This allows me to keep track of random tasks people request during the day. I can drag an e-mail over and it becomes a task with a checkbox.
  • Interruptions – Such as manager requests and the old fashioned cube visit, I write things down and transfer it to outlook. (In some cases, I let them know I was not listening, as in the last item.)
  • A Journal – I keep a journal, but not in the sense you would think. It is a key word and highlights of information related to the key word. It is not full sentences or anything that is really meaningful to other people; just enough to tune into the channel I was on when I wrote it down.
  • Time Chunking – This is a method of time management where you define blocks of time to work specific items. To keep my schedule fluid and keep my mind engaged, I use 15 to 30 minute increments. This allows me to switch topics quickly.
  • Break Up Large Tasks – I break most of my large tasks into small ones, which allow me to switch between them rapidly. Some people work a single large task until completion, I work multiple small tasks associated with a larger project.
  • Multiple Tasks At Once – This one takes some planning to do, but the basic concept is, you start something that requires minimal attention and work something that requires focus, checking on the other item with time chunks. This is the same as starting the washing machine and going to sweep the floor of your apartment.
  • Recap The Conversation – This one I picked up from conference calls, I actually recap my key words with an action item. For example, “Alright, I will fix – X, Y, Z and you need it by Close of Business.” This allows the other person to change their mind, but assures them I understood their request.
  • Let People Know You Were Not Listening – This last one is probably the weirdest one. Sometimes you get distracted with thoughts or you are right in the middle of something and people interrupt you but the interruption is not started with some kind of greeting or you thought the conversation was over and you moved to a different task. It is awkward at times, but it is ok, people understand that you are busy and know when they are interrupting. I politely say something like, “I am sorry, I was distracted with <task I was doing>, could you repeat that?”; in some cases it is just, “I was not listening, can you repeat that?”.

Work Life:

A long time friend of mine told me recently, “You are a dabbler, accept it.” His comment was in reference to starting a side business and focusing on a single thing. Focusing on a single thing for a long period of time is probably one of the hardest things for me, but with the tools above, it is doable. It just takes more planning before I can start. A previous co-worker of mine who I admire for her drive mentioned to me, “You go from C to Z in order to get from A to B and arrive at B when everything is said and done. You get stuff done quickly, I just do not understand how.” It caught me off-guard and I did not fully understand what she meant at the time, but it was a compliment. Her comment made me stop and think, I process things different, but I am still efficient at what I do. Recently, I had someone from a different department thank me for being able to pivot between tasks and teams. This person brought it all together for me; the tools I employed to improve a shortcoming actually worked in a high stress, highly volatile environment.

HALO: The Fall of Reach (Book 1)

Shortly after the release of Halo: Master Chief Collection I purchased the audio book HALO:The Fall of Reach. I purchased this book for two reasons, 1. I am huge fan of the series and 2. The game I purchased was a FLOP on steam (different topic).

When I first listened to the audio sample, I was a little put off by it. The sample did not seem to have zazz I was expecting and just did not capture my attention. I made the final decision to purchase the audiobook because I owned the physical book and already finished the first four chapters.

I was definitely glad I made the purchase, before I finished this audiobook, I used the rest of my Audiable credits and purchased the next three books. The book actually had some good action in it with very good descriptions and it pieced together a lot of stuff from the game Halo Combat Evolved.

Raleigh Little Theater

This Fall I made it to the Raleigh Little Theater in Cameron Village. I honestly was not sure what to expect as the last theater I went to was in Orlando Florida and seemed like a large venue.

The play I saw was Cinderella; the staff and cast did an awesome job! This opening night of the play and it was sold out. I will say that I was very impressed with how put together everything was. The thespians even put some modern twists in the play, I was laughing five minutes into the play.

If you have not had a chance to check it out, it is definitely worth the time.

Android Archive User Files without root

NOTICE: This is for educational purposes only, be aware that publishing archives with proprietary firmware can get you into some trouble.

You do not need to use fastboot.exe unless you plan to unlock the bootloader to push a temporary kernel. If you are doing digital forensics and use fastboot.exe, you run the risk of formatting the device, be-careful!

Unlock bootloader with fastboot.exe; this can be done with platform-tools provided by google. There is no need for third party tools.

Connect your device, install the drivers.
Open a command prompt and navigate to where platform tools was installed.
Kick off your adb shell.

$adb shell

Run the mount command to see what partitions are mounted; this will tell you where to dump your archive to.


My external storage is symlinked to /storage/external_SD; this directory is writable from within adb! Perfect!

Create an archive on the phone from / and exclude the directory you are placing the archive on. This will prevent data corruption. This
process will take a few minutes, get a coffe or take a nap.

$tar -czvfO /storage/external_SD/root.tar.gz / –exclude=/storage/external_SD

If you want to know what commands are available on your phone with adb out of the box, run:

$ls /system/bin

This will list all the commands that can be used and by default they usually all have execute permissions.

Pull the file to a location on your hard drive:

adb pull /storage/external_SD/root.tar.gz C:\Temp

Remember, this is a large file and it will take time!

Now that the transfer is complete, you have a copy of all items that the adb shell was able to read. This should be everything but
files that require root permissions to read (/root, /sbin/); all of these directories should be replaced during a rebuild anyway.
In theory, this content could be used to build a new image that contains the respective drivers for your phone.
This means you can remove APKs, install python3 and do tons of other cool things off the phone.
After making the customizations, you can push all the content back to your phone as a bootable image and tell the bootloader to boot from
the new image.

This content is also considered a snapshot of the phone, which is what is needed for digital forensics. If you plan to use this for forensics,
be sure to make a SHA256 hash of the file and a copy before you start your investigation.

Note that user files are stored in /storage/emulated/legacy and all symlinks that reference this directory will show up 0kb unless you
tell tar to exclude symlinks; this is not recommended.

Be Personable

This rule in the business handbook is the same as the last rule; be personable. Be charasmaric.

What does this mean? Whenever you enter a room, you should smile and when you leave the room, smile.

What if you just got ripped apart by your manager or a client? Thank them for the constructive criticism and smile. Let them know you will get the things done and make those corrections.

Take 5 seconds to say good morning to room.

A Positive Attitude

I was hanging with some friends after a long day at work. One of my friends always seemed chiper and was really good with people. I asked her, “how are you so good with people?”

Her initial reply was, “It just comes natural to me.” Mind you, this woman seemed like she could never have a bad day, ever.

She read the look on my face that said, “wow, I guess I am not a natural at talking to people. Hm.” She stopped for a moment and thought…

Her next reply was, “Always have a positive attitude. It will automatically make you more approachable.”

Yes! This was something I could do, for sure! Since that day, I have learned that a positive attitude is contagious.

I will eventually write her a letter and thank her, her advice has helped me not only professionally but personally. Keeping a positive attitude changes your thinking from “I cannot do this” to “how can I accomplish this?”

Keep the Receipt

Business travel is probably one of the more complicated aspects of an accountant job; fortunately as a traveler, it is not complex.

When traveling, be sure to keep all of your receipts when on your adventure. After your trip, you can itemize a number of the expenses.

Things to consider itemizing:

Food; drinks; air faire; hotel room; anything that is required for traveling

For food, there is usually a per diem rate for the area you are visiting. You can check this rate on the IRS website. This is a daily expense allotted for meals and a hotel room.

If you work for a larger firm, there could be a chance that your firm uses a travel agency. Always consult your manager or HR to verify how to document expenses.

Shell Island Resort

There are many places to visit in North Carolina. Today was one one of the few days I decided to take a trip; a mini-vacation so to speak. My destination was Wrightsville Beach four hours away.

The hotel I booked was clean and the staff was friendly.

I was able to walk over to beach peer from the hotel and Uber into town to visit a roof top bar. The trip was short, but enough to break the daily grind and well worth the time.

Suite Paws Pet Resort & Spa

My dogs are spoiled rotten and are very particular about who (dogs and people) they interact with; this was their first experience at a kennel with other dogs. I was willing to give this place a shot as it came highly recommended through the grape vine.

I was able to get the last reservation the week I left town for a weekend; dropped them off on Saturday night and picked them up Sunday afternoon. The pet resort was clean and the staff was friendly. I gave the leashes to a staff member and my dogs jumped on me and wrapped their doggy paws around my leg; I gave them a hug and they were gone.

There was a bit of paperwork, but it was done in about 10 minutes. I thought of them while I was away; were they alright?

When I arrived on Sunday, there was a line, when I finally got my boys, they almost did not want to leave. I feel they got a lot of attention for the day I was away.

I would definitely recommend this place for a short stay.

The Architect

In Raleigh, clubs and pubs are a dime a dozen, there so many that it can be overwhelming. One spot that I stumbled across is The Architect. It had a laid back atmosphere with some pretty good music. When I say good music, I do not mean mashups, I mean something that held a beat where it was possible to dance.

The crowd was tasteful and if you catch it early enough, you can skip the cover.

One more thing, there is a link to a secret room on their website. Definitely worth finding and checking out.