New here: Physical Therapist with ADHD with job performance struggles.

Hi all, I’m so glad I found this forum from what I have seen so far it looks really great! I have really enjoyed Jessica’s videos on How To ADHD youtube channel and was excited to learn there is a forum also. ADHD is relatively new to me (though I’ve been struggling with it for a long time without knowing what it was).

I started counseling to help me with work performance deficits before I had any clue I could have ADHD. I just couldn’t meet productivity quota’s with any consistency despite wanting to be a good worker… (the consistency was not meeting them). My bosses were very patient for a long time but finally my boss had to start pressuring me about it and having difficult meetings with me about my performance and I didn’t know how to fix it. I work in a hospital setting and often get good feedback from my patients - my boss even points out my good qualities and tries to stand up for me with HR telling them I am a good worker - but productivity is an issue the organization is concerned with as it is a for profit hospital.

Finally my boss wrote me up for failing to meet productivity - it seemed so unfair as getting “written up” seems like something that happens when you do something super bad or deliberate not something you don’t know how to fix and can’t promise never to do again because you don’t know how… My boss tried many things to help me, observed me work, gave me tips but I still fall short and have trouble implementing her advice consistently. Anyway - she and her assistant recommended counseling which has helped me a lot as far as understanding myself and beginning to understand some of the reasons I struggle but I am still struggling at work and feel like I haven’t made much improvement there. I guess I grew up thinking if you show up and work steady/do your best you should automatically be successful… I guess that isn’t always true…

My counselor suggested ADHD early on but I didn’t think it fit me (didn’t think I fit what I had heard about ADHD which was not super informed) and she didn’t push the idea. But a few months ago I asked her if something was wrong with me or if I had some sort of syndrome or problem no one ever told me about as it seemed unreasonable I could be “the worst” at productivity among my peers when I excelled in school… and she suggested I go get tested for ADHD. She has since told me she is certain I have ADHD and could diagnose me herself but she feels it would be more helpful to have the official diagnosis from a doctor or psychiatrist as they could prescribe meds if needed and she thinks a diagnosis from a doctor will carry more weight talking to HR etc. I drug my feet getting the appointment set up (due to overthinking/indecisiveness about who to go to etc) but have finally gotten one scheduled for February 15 so I don’t have the official diagnosis yet. But as I have read and researched ADHD I am seeing more and more how it fits me and my struggles and it is validating to have a reason for my struggles other than “moral failings” or not trying hard enough or not being good enough…

Some of the issues I have at work are related to time management, decision making, confidence (lack of it), getting overtime and still not meeting quotas. I also have trouble with “overthinking”, and finally realize I have trouble concentrating. I didn’t even realize that… but I am seeing it a lot more now that I am aware of it… I used to work off the clock on my notes to try to make up for my inefficiency and get more “units” in the day - but I was told that is absolutely not allowed so I can’t even use that “crutch” - and I wasn’t meeting productivity consistently even staying 1-2 hours off the clock when I was doing that.

I’m blessed my boss values me and wants to help me and has not fired me yet…I’ve been at this job for over 6 years - the excess stress has been more the last 2-3 years when they have increased the pressure on productivity - but I went into this job after losing my last job due to productivity and lack of confidence issues so I never really felt fully secure in this job knowing I wasn’t meeting the goal…and fearing it was only a matter of time until I lost my job again…

I’ve wondered if I had the “right fit” for my job - but some things I feel are a really good fit - if they would just not pressure me on time and productivity I could feel I was doing well… but they need me to be faster. Productivity is a “big thing” in most PT jobs and my boss from the first job that fired me recommended working in a hospital as my best option. I am scared to look for another job as how can my boss recommend me if I can’t meet productivity? I’m also afraid if I got another job they wouldn’t be as patient with me as this job has been. I don’t want to get fired - I need to be able to continue to support myself and I need to work at PT or something that pays well enough to meet my student loan payments. I want to be a good work and not be “getting in trouble” all the time - and to feel that my work is good and acceptable where I can relax and not worry about losing my job for performance deficit reasons. Even if I can’t “excel” I wish I could at least be average and not be “the worst” one… I wish productivity wasn’t the measuring stick…

Does anyone have suggestions or things that helped them improve productivity and job performance issues or performance reviews? We are about to have our yearly performance reviews and my productivity problem is a broken record on those every year…

I’ve rambled on long enough… if you got this far thanks for reading!

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Hi

firstly i would say that you are absolutely correct, productivity is an extremely strange way of measuring your ability to treat somebody, sounds more like sales targets to be honest.

Have you ever considered starting your own business?
I qualified as an acuncture therapist just before covid, but now things seem to be settling down, i will be starting my business this year :slightly_smiling_face:

if starting your own business is something you feel could work for you, then maybe we could go on this journey together?
:grin:

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Thanks for the suggestion :slight_smile: I’m kind of scared of starting my own business - all the details involved are very overwhelming to me… I do better with structure… I also struggle with details - I worry about them too much to the point of procrastination - so dealing with insurance, business taxes, legal stuff, etc would be a big stressor…

The benefits of having your own business are not having someone else tell you what productivity you have to meet to be “successful”. My boss does recognize my other qualities in working with patients and after my counselor told me she thought I had ADHD I told my boss and she was supportive and understanding and said she knew my struggles were “not my fault”… but she is in a tough spot - she has to talk to me about productivity when the higher ups get onto her about the department productivity and my personal productivity. She says they have even asked her “why is she still here?”…she tries to stand up for me…it is frustrating for her as she has tried so many things to help me and I’m still not getting it… it also isn’t fair to my coworkers to hold me to a lower standard of productivity… my counselor says if I get the diagnosis it is possible to get accommodations and then they can’t fire you for it because of ADA rules… I would like to have a job that doesn’t rely so heavily on my weaknesses and ideally where accommodation wouldn’t be necessary - but where my strengths are the area that is important for the job. In some ways I feel my strengths do help me in my job a lot but the measuring stick is in an area of my weakness…

Thanks for your reply :slight_smile:

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welcome!! i am glad you are getting counseling and seeking an ADHD diagnosis.

not a PT so no specific advice. you mention overthinking/lack of confidence. are there any areas in which you are doing more work than you need to be? for example, are your notes much more involved than other people’s?

i wonder if you might not be working too hard.

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Yes, there are probably times I overwork - I do get to detailed with my notes sometimes. I also sometimes stay longer with patients to “be sure I got enough time for it to count” (we bill by units of time) - and productivity is based on billable units which I kind of hate because I also have fears about overcharging patients (and I think I worry about it to an excessive degree more than other people - they aren’t trying to cheat - I just am hypervigilent/hyper worried about it sometimes. But if I under-charge then I am cheating the hospital because they are paying me for my time… so it is a catch 22… But sometimes it is hard for me to change for fear of doing “wrong”/moral compunctions about honesty (and my boss doesn’t want me to cheat as I said above but I worry about details that others don’t think about or consider important sometimes. As far as notes I guess I have trouble being concise - want to put the details or tell the story. My writing is sometimes too wordy…

I think my notes take me too long also… sometimes from being too detailed - sometimes for difficulty focusing/concentrating. I notice sometimes I blank out and forget what I was about to write or something… I didn’t used to think I had trouble focusing - it is hard to know how much of it was there all along (from ADHD I guess) that I didn’t notice because it was my normal vs whether it is worse now - maybe from stress and from having a lot on my mind - the counseling is making me think a lot more than I used to. Interestingly earlier on when my boss was trying to help me/figure out what the problem was she thought I must daydream (not intentionally)… I didn’t think I did but… maybe this focusing problem was there and I didn’t recognize it.

Thanks for your response :slight_smile:

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Hi there @Chickadee . Welcome to the HowToADHD forums!

I’ve had similar struggles. I work in Information Technology, currently at a hospital, but originally at a university computer help desk. At that first job, I had to help customers with computer issues. Some would email us, some would call, and some would walk in. The walk-ins usually got helped first, because it was usually the fastest way to help people and they were often the most urgent problems. Then phonecalls, then answering emails (which were typically the least urgent).

When a new director was hired over the department, our staffing went down because he cut the budget. Then, we had less people to answer phones, and the metric became about how many missed calls there were. I saw the problem and saw that the solution was to increase staffing again (but in the 6 years I was there, that never occurred, we just got knocked about not answering calls enough).

There was one thing we did at the help desk that might help you. For regular, everyday kinds of work (like a password reset, or connecting a computer to the network), we had templates for our documentation. Then, we could document a standard type of issue in seconds, rather than several minutes. Sometimes, we had to fill in the particulars, like the customer’s name, and the time spent on the work for them.

  • If that helps, I’m glad. Think of how you can generalize the documentation that you do, so that maybe only a couple of sentences to note the specifics is needed.
  • My work at the hospital is much more varied. Even two issues of the same type might have completely different needs to solve the problem. Different environment, different needs.

I also prefer to give quality service, rather than quantity. I’m grateful that I don’t have to charge for my services. I’m encouraged to do whatever I’m capable of at my level, to save on support calls that we would have to pay for.

My coworker and I both missed our goal to end last calendar year with only 10 open work requests in our queues. I had about 30, he had about 40. The sad thing is, a lot of the work had been done, but the documentation wasn’t updated, because we jump on the next issue before closing the case on the last one.

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Sorry if that was confusing. Completely different line of work.

The only suggestion I had was to write templates, so that you don’t have to write the same documentation again and again. (That is, if you can use a computer and save templates. If you have to write longhand, that probably wouldn’t work.)

Have a think about it and of course do what is best for you.

you may want to look into adhd and self employment, you may be suprised at what you find, people with adhd actually have a higher success rate in starting businesses because of the strengths we have.

I have run my own small business previously before ieven knew i had adhd and honestly it’s really not that difficult, i had to change career because of a physical injury, but before that it was going just fine.

It’s really not as scary as you think, even neurotypical people can do it :grin:

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yes to templates. also, have you looked at other people’s documentation? maybe that’ll give you a sense of where you’re doing too much or how to be more efficient.

do you chart during the appointment? i am not a PT but i’ve been through PT approx 10 million times and they nearly all write up documentation while i’m doing the exercises. obviously that doesn’t work with every patient and every appointment.

i’ll tell you that i never minded PTs working on the computer and i liked the break from feeling like i needed to talk to them.

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@Chickadee

Can you clarify?

Are you taking too much time with a client going through the various PT exercises?

Is it the paper work?

I have been through several series of PT for my back, hip, and knees (arthritis) and have some ideas if the issue re: performance . . . relates to “hands-on” time Vs. paper work!

So I’d be interested so that maybe, from a clients perspective I might be helpful.

Will wait to hear back from you!

:sunglasses:

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@j_d_aengus thanks for your responses. One of my senior coworkers suggested templates - she used them herself - but my frustration with that is that it seemed like the way to “save” my templates was if I always used the same computer (my work laptop) - but I usually do my documenation on the computers on the hospital units rather than in the office. I could take my laptop with me but I already have enough to carry (I carry around a walker, oxygen tank and clipboard that has various handouts I like to give patients - I don’t want to have to go back to the office to get things like that so I actually carry more stuff than many of my coworkers - most of them don’t take the O2 tank or clipboard thing… and now we recently (last September) started using a whole new charting/medical record system - since you work in the hospital with IT perhaps you are familiar - we switched from Cerner to EPIC. The change has actually slowed our whole department down so most people get less productivity than before but I am still (usually) the “worst”. EPIC does have a helpful feature that might make the template thing work better - you can create “smart” phrases where you type a short code and it pulls up your smart phrase - they have made a few smart phrases for the group to use if desired but we can also create our own personal ones and they are on your EPIC account rather than a specific computer so it would work regardless of what computer I’m using. I really don’t like using my laptop now for an additional reason because the screen is too small - you can make it work but on a larger screen the EPIC stuff fits better. Another reason I don’t like charting in the office is that it feels distracting for me if people start talking (or if I am tempted to talk) and sometimes my laptop is too slow as it is an old computer. There are distractions on the nursing unit too - but somehow I feel that I am usually faster on the unit than in the office unless the office is pretty empty. I’ve (briefly) tried ear plugs - sometimes helps a little…and sometimes I get up and move if there is something especially distracting going on around me (an interesting conversation between people near me for example).

Thanks for the template suggestion - with EPIC smart phrases maybe it will work some.

I also liked your point about quality service vs quantity - I think that is part of my struggle also - I much prefer the quality thing and really wish the whole thing didn’t have to be tied to money/charges and “billable units”… Sometimes I feel like I have to stay longer with the patient to get “units” - and I wish I could just base it on patient tolerance and what seems best for them to me - but because of the productivity thing I have to think of the time and whether I have enough minutes and whether I can add something of value to get to the time needed for the unit or next unit so I don’t lose time. It’s so great you don’t have to charge for your services… that would be a dream :slight_smile: It would take a lot of stress out of it. That is another thing that slows me down a little sometimes - I sometimes struggle to decide how many units to charge and whether all my minutes are “countable” - sometimes I may undercharge due to uncertainty/fear I didn’t get enough time that counted. I like stuff very black and white - when it is unclear to me I have a terrible time deciding and feel better if I undercharge than possibly overcharge. Kind of goes back to your scrupulosity post - sometimes I see I am almost to my time or maybe even technically have it but try to stay a little longer to be sure or to make up for some interruption - and then I end up staying too long but maybe not long enough for the next additional uint - and if I spend time with a patient that doesn’t count that is time lost - which I might not care if my work didn’t care about my numbers so much or if my numbers were good and I had extra time…

Thanks again for your suggestion and responses.

@Samuelburns Thanks. it sounds pretty scary to me I think in part because I worry about details so much - I fear making mistakes and am afraid all the legal stuff would scare me and make me procrastinate etc… but it wouldn’t hurt to learn more about it… thanks for the suggestion :slight_smile:

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@papserweight thanks for your response. I would imagine your PT was in an outpatient setting - I think they do more documentation during visits - back when I did my clinical experience for school in an outpatient setting we initially had paper documentation and I do remember carrying the chart around and writing the note as we went along - it was nice to be done with it (or nearly) when the session was over - it at least worked for some sessions… Now most everything is computer based.

I work in a hospital and I think it is a lot more difficult to do documentation while with the patient in that setting because often the patients need more assistance and guarding during the session because they are sick, weak, have poor balance, might fall etc… Some of the rooms do have computers in them but not all. I have at times worked on documentation in the room when there was a delay and I had to wait to resume the session. Our sessions do have some exercises and perhaps sometimes you could chart during that maybe… though I like to focus on the patient rather than the computer when I am with them. A lot of what we do is basic stuff like helping them get out of bed, walk, etc and they need guarding to make sure they don’t fall - or we are walking in the hallways away from the computer and I need to be with them.

I’m glad to hear you didn’t mind the PT’s working on the computer during your therapy session - that is good to know. It almost feels rude to me - like I am ignoring them or something…

Thanks for your response and ideas :slight_smile:

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@Brooklyn thanks for your question and interest in helping/giving me ideas. They measure productivity by “billable units” - units of time we can charge to the patient (or insurance) - in some ways it is a little strange for a hospital setting because a large portion of the time the insurance just gives the hospital a lump sum to take care of the patient and it has to cover everything - nursing services, PT - and a bunch of other stuff - so our “units” aren’t always directly related to how much money the hospital received - sometimes it is depending on the insurance - but regardless they have to measure our productivity some how and that is the way they do it. The only time that “counts” toward productivity is the time we can bill. Documentation time does not count - unless you are documenting while you are with the patient and they are receiving therapy… it wouldn’t be legit to finish the session and then just stay in the room to do the documentation after the session is over in order to “count” it. Evaluations are a little different as they are not “timed” but we get credit for productivity for evaluations and the amount of credit we get for it depends on how “complex” it is (another area I sometimes struggle to decide on).

So for treatment sessions I have to stay a certain amount of time with the patient in order for it to “count” as a productivity unit. There is a range of time for each unit - if it falls in that time range you get that unit. There can be such a thing as staying too long for the units you charge because you can’t charge the next unit if you leave before you meet the time for it but maybe you already stayed longer the minimum for the first unit. I’m afraid this could be confusing… but for example 23 minutes is the minimum for 2 units - if I stay 35 minutes it is still 2 units because I haven’t met the 38 minute threshold for 3 units. So if I stay 35 minutes I have “lost time” because it is still only 2 units even though I stayed a good bit longer than necessary. I like to do 30 minutes or less for 2 units - if I go over 30 minutes I feel like it is “overtime” that doesn’t count. I feel like 23 minutes rounds up to 2 units whereas 37 minutes rounds down to 2 units and I don’t want to be rounding down too far because then I am not being “productive”.

My boss says I sometimes stay too long with patients - like sometimes the patient is talking and talking and she says I need to excuse myself - once when she was observing me to try to give me pointers she said I had multiple opportunities to excuse myself - but I felt like the stuff the patient was telling me was related and plus I don’t like to be rude (not that she was advocating that) - but it is hard for me to excuse myself sometimes.

The paperwork also takes too long… and that is especially a problem because though paperwork is a required part of my job it doesn’t count toward productivity - so the longer I take on it the less time I have for “productive” work (seeing patients). They do make an allowance for paperwork and don’t require the full 8 hour shift to be billable - but I take more time than is ideal.

Currently as I mentioned in response to @j_d_aengus above our whole department productivity is down due to a new computer system and the documentation taking longer - they are trying to figure out how to help us be more efficient…In someways I think the computer system change gave me some grace time because they know we are trying to figure out and adjust to the new system - but I still am usually at the bottom as far as productivity and my boss has told us that she will have to start talking to us about productivity soon.

Regarding your question - the time with patients is what “counts” for productivity and if I am with patients it is helping my productivity unless I stay “overtime” but not long enough for another unit or stay too long on an untimed evaluation which is sometimes an issue… but the documentation is also a big issue - it has to be done and the faster I can do that the more time I will have to do stuff that counts… If I could get the paperwork/computer stuff faster that would be very helpful.

I also have to spend time on the computer reading the chart or skimming for pertinent info before I see the patient at least if it is a new patient and sometimes that takes me too long - maybe I read too much…

Sometimes I think I also am a little intimidated so find it hard to move quickly to seeing a patient (I’m rather shy) - so I may drag my feet a little or look a little longer in the chart.

I sometimes have trouble concentrating and focusing when doing notes even though I am sitting there trying… I didn’t realize how much trouble I had with this for quite awhile and am still not sure if it is becoming worse or if I just didn’t notice before because it was my “normal”.

I also think I struggle with transitions - I feel like I am sometimes more productive if I am prepared to go from one patient right after another rather than documenting between patients - it sometimes helps me get “on a roll”… but my boss says this backfires on me because I get bogged down trying to catch up my documentation if I try to do too many at one sitting. She recommended to see 2 patients then do 2 notes then back to patients again.

Another thing about the hospital is that we usually do not have specific time scheduled appointments - we are given a list of patients to see (or try to see) - and it is up to us to work out when we see them - it can be at any random time that works out rather than on the hour or 1/2 hour or whatever like you would have in an outpatient clinic. In the clinic the patient (hopefully) shows up and is ready to work at the designated hour. In the hospital you may get to the patient’s room and some other professional is with the patient - the doctor could be there - or the patient could be having a test or procedure done and you have to move on to someone else and maybe come back later if you have time. Or you can be in the middle of your session and the doctor comes in and you have to step aside and let them see the patient then when they are done you can get back to your session (fortunately the doctors don’t usually take very long). Or you could get ready - go in to see the patient and they tell you they don’t feel like it, hurt too much right now, are feeling sick, don’t want to do therapy today or want you to come back later - so sometimes you can spend trying several patients in a row that don’t work out. You have to be flexible… another thing is you could have some kind of plan for how you want to do it and then a leading coworker could tell you they have assigned you a new evaluation patient which is supposed to take precedence over your other non-evaluation patients… so you have to adjust your plan.

If we have a “hard” patient that needs extra help from a 2nd person we sign up for a specific time to see them because our techs have a schedule - so we might actually have a specific time for a specific patient we need help with - the patient may or may not be available when we get there so we might have to see a different patient instead - but I have noticed that sometimes when I have several tech appointments in a row it helps me get on a roll and get more done but I hate cancelling the appointment if I am given an eval that is supposed to be prioritized because then if I do the patient I need help with later I may not have help available.

This may be a lot more detail than you wanted - but it illustrates that the hospital is a place you have to be flexible and things don’t always go according to plan - and indeed the “plan” itself has to be very flexible…

I think sometimes I do better with structure - and the hospital structure is pretty lose… but some other settings demand higher “productivity” than the hospital -I was advised by the boss that fired me from my first PT job that the hospital was my best shot… she wanted to help me but didn’t feel her place was the place for me to get up to speed on this stuff…she tried to at least give me advice. In outpatient settings they often have you seeing 2-3 patients at once for example…whereas in the hospital it is only 1 at a time.

I remember as a kid Mom would have me do dishes for chores and it would take me forever - she would catch me going round and round the dish too many times to wash it (more than necessary) - she tried various things to try to get me to be faster but it didn’t really work - so I have had this trouble being too slow for I guess most of my life…

My boss has given me a lot of tips but I have trouble implementing them successfully/consistently.

My counselor has helped by pointing out the ADHD which I had no clue I had until she mentioned it. It at least helps me understand a little better how/why it is so hard for me - perhaps after I get officially diagnosed (if the doctor agrees I have it) - if I get medicine maybe it will help - but I am scared of the medicine.

Thanks for your response and support/advice. This is a great community - glad I found it.

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Thanks for the details @Chickadee . It gives me a pretty good picture of what your work and working environment are like.

The hospital that I work at, and the affiliated clinics, use Meditech. The clinics also use Centricity. (It’s a bit confusing to me that they use both systems at the clinics. I think that they use Centricity for their patient records, and Meditech for business records.) The organization is considering going to Epic or another EMR system, probably within a year.

Using “smart phrases” certainly may help. (The help desk that I worked at called them “quick tickets”, but that’s the term used in our work management system.) Other ideas for templates would be too keep your custom ones on a flash drive that you keep with you, or in a folder in your email. If the hospital that you work at has network shared drives or online cloud" storage, you can keep your templates on that, as long as you can get to it from the computers you’re able to use.

  • You don’t have to come up with all your templates at once, but when you do come up with good wording while you’re writing your notes, save a copy (without any identifying patient info, of course… especially if using a flash drive or email). Check with your supervisor and you hospital’s IT staff for recommendations, or to check if your idea is acceptable.

It sounds like your billable hours are every 15 minutes, plus or minus 7 minutes. I’m an hourly employee, and our time clock system uses the same breakdown, but for me it’s about taking care of whatever needs doing.

  • Maybe think of your time this way: if 2 units is 30 minutes ±7, of you can work with a patient for 25 minutes and entering your notes in the chart takes 5 minutes, 25+5=30 minutes (which you might consider to be an optimum use of your time). So, you might not feel like you have to add fluff to your time with patients, if you think about it that way.
  • My apologies to anyone who doesn’t like math. It was my best subject in school because I think math is fun. I guess it makes me a Math Nerd. :nerd_face:

Maybe try coming up with treatment plans, like: work with a patient on A, then if there’s more time, do B, C, and maybe D.

  • I presume that some patients have to learn to do some PT work on their own. I know that I did, the one time I had to do PT.
  • I’m sure that you do this already, but in a session you could review with a patient what their “homework” was from before, or just do a review of what you did with the patient that day, like my physical therapist did with me. It’s a good way to draw out time, if you need to, and verbalizing the session may help you when you enter you notes later.

this is all so broken by the way.

i struggle with this kind of thing too. i’m very worried about claiming too much credit. one thing i have to remind myself is that understating the difficulty (time required, complexity) of my work also creates problems. it could result in staffing cuts or unrealistic workload expectations.

i’m assuming you intellectually understand how to code your evaluations. if not, ask all the questions you need. maybe make a decision tree or job aid with someone’s help. i’m guessing that the problem is more self-doubt.

do you have a coworker who has integrity and is also efficient? could you try to imagine how they would code things?

well, not just less time for “productive” work. would you rather be typing or treating patients? it’s less time doing to the part of the job that it sounds like you find meaningful.

right now it kind of sounds like the paperwork problem is framed as something you’re trying to solve for the hospital bureaucracy. is there a way to reframe it as something you are trying to change for your patients?

this is something i really struggle with. (but as a patient, i love when appointments go fast!) i find that giving people 5 minute warnings and telling them we can resume the conversation the next day is helpful.

another thing to consider when it comes to staying “too long”: for some people this is absolutely what they need and i hate for you and your patients that this is punished. for others, the interaction could be draining. keeping the appointments focused and only as long as they need to be, might make it easier for the person to participate more regularly.

i guess my suggestion is to look for patient-centered motivations for doing the things your hospital admins want. because it’s clear that you care a lot about your patients. this isn’t going to turn you into a billable hours machine but it might help you split the difference and keep your job so you can keep working with patients. they deserve someone who cares about them.

This is just my opinion…
Personally, I think it’s neurotypical people who need work quotas or expectations of some sort to motivate them.

  • I’ve known many coworkers, that I believe were NT, who would meet any reasonable quota that was set for them. But, if no clear expectations were set, some of them would do just as little as they could to “get by”.
  • Of the many people I’ve known to no or believed to be neurodiverse, we seem eager to do something. (Maybe it’s an internal motor that just won’t quit, or maybe it’s a need for constant stimulation, or endless curiosity/novelty-seeking, or a people-pleasing nature, or maybe just a desire to be helpful and productive.)
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this is a very interesting observation.

i was going to say that it was hard for me to imagine but i guess it’s sort of like my attitude to things like housework. my drive is to do the absolute minimum (and then figure out how to do even less).

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I’m the kind of person who works harder in order to work less. (More of an efficiency thing.)

For example, let’s say I have to move 15 stacking chairs a distance of 50 feet. Carrying 3 chairs would be easy, while carrying 5 chairs at a time would be a bit challenging. I would rather take 3 trips carrying 5 chairs at a time, than 5 trips carrying 3 at a time.

I’m fine with having some down time every day, and maybe a “lazy day” on the weekend when I don’t have anything to do (but I can’t do that every weekend). I don’t feel the need to be on the go all the time, my body certainly appreciates not having to be in constant motion, but my brain just won’t stop until I go to sleep. It’s got to be engaged in something.

I used to be kinda lazy. I changed about 10-11 years ago, because until then my favorite thing to do was veg out watching TV. It was partly intentional, because I knew I couldn’t control my attention in the presence of a TV (it didn’t even have to have sound or be playing a show I like).

But I think another part of it was that there were a number of changes in my life.

  • The change that I usually connect this breaking-the-TV-addiction to is the birth of my younger son.

Honestly, with all those changes (at least 10 notable changes in 2 years, having to do with school, family, career, church, and moving to a new house), it was like I had to upgrade my brain to “JD 3.0”. (I had already upgraded to JD 2.0 when I got married and started my family).

Now, I guess I’m on version 4.0. And I’m just too darn busy to be lazy these days.