Intervention Fatigue in The Complex: Navigating the New ADHD Diagnosis with James & Jules Ochoa

James and Jules Ochoa are back to teach us how to navigate a brand new ADHD diagnosis without crashing into the wall of overwhelm. Plus, they bring a sneak preview of the new season of their own ADHD podcast, ‘The Complex’!

Episode Hosts: ,

Subscribe to Taking Control: The ADHD Podcast in Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or anywhere else you find your favorite podcasts!

Support The ADHD Podcast and get great perks by becoming a Patron • Learn More and Join Now!

We’re wrapping up ADHD awareness month with just one more message dedicated to everyone puzzling their way through a brand new diagnosis of ADHD. You know who you are. You now have words to describe what you’ve been living through all these years and you’re eagerly downloading every journal article and book about ADHD. You’re listening to podcasts just like ours and you’re drinking from the proverbial fire hose every chance you get.

Here’s a secret: that actually gets tiring. It gets overwhelming, too. You might not think it right now, but at some point, you’re going to wear out, get distracted, and move on to something else. And the person that’s going to impact first is you.

This week on the show, frequent guest James Ochoa is back with us to help us figure out how to build the team. Who do you need to look to for direct support and what do you need to beware of so that you don’t crash into intervention fatigue? James is author of Focused Forward: Navigating the Storms of Adult ADHD and knows a thing or two about all this.

But what’s better than one Ochoa? TWO OCHOAS! James bring his son Jules back to the show, fresh out of grad school and diligently producing season two of their own ADHD podcast, The Complex. We’ve talked about the complex before on the show and we’re big fans of the first season. We’re thrilled to head back into the building to learn more about the ADHD residents and their confused non-ADHD landlord, just trying to do his best for the building.

Patrons get access to episode one of The Complex in their member podcast feed now. Want to hear it? Join up today!

Episode Transcript

Brought to you by The ADHD Podcast Community on Patreon Pete Wright: Hello everybody, and welcome to Taking Control: The ADHD Podcast on True Story FM. I’m Pete Wright, and right over there is Nikki Kinzer.

Nikki Kinzer: Hello everyone, Hello Pete Wright.

Pete Wright: Did you get your car?

Nikki Kinzer: I did.

Pete Wright: Okay. Good.

Nikki Kinzer: I’m doing a happy dance.

Pete Wright: I feel like, we had the story last week, we’ve got to follow up, and just know, Nikki’s got new wheels. That’s pretty cool.

Nikki Kinzer: Yeah, I did. I got it.

Pete Wright: That’s pretty exciting, yeah.

Nikki Kinzer: And I was so happy because my husband was so supportive, and I’m like, "Thank you so much for not giving me a hard time about this." And he’s like, "Well, I pretty much just gave in." I’m like, "That’s great. I don’t care. That’s wonderful. Thank you for being so supportive." Because I think he kind of knew, that regardless, I was going to get this car. So, compromise in marriage, right?

Pete Wright: It’s all about communication and compromise. We have such a great show. It has been too long since we got the band back together, and I’m pretty excited about our guests. Before we jump in, though, before we get started, head over to Take Control ADHD and get to know us a little bit better. You can listen to the show right there on the website. I didn’t even give the right website. It’s takecontroladhd.com, there’s a dot com you’ve got to use. And you can subscribe to the mailing list, we’ll send you an email when a new episode is released, you can find us on Twitter and Facebook at Take Control ADHD, and I don’t know, maybe Tik Tok, Nikki’s got some dance videos she’s queuing up, and we are ready for ADHD Tik Tok.

Nikki Kinzer: Okay, you are totally jumping the gun on that. I have to interrupt.

Pete Wright: Did I oversell that?

Nikki Kinzer: Yes, totally you oversold that. That’s not even a thing yet. So yeah. Oh boy. Now it’s in the universe. I’m a little scared.

Pete Wright: Tik Tok, it’s the new Instagram. Yeah, we’re already on the new Instagram. Can you believe it? Hey, if you’ve ever found that this show has changed the way you think about ADHD, or approached your life with ADHD for the better, we hope you’ll consider jumping over to patreon.com/theadhdpodcast. Patreon is listener supported podcasting, with a few bucks a month you can help guarantee that we can continue to grow the show, add new features, and invest more heavily in our community. Again, patreon.com/theadhdpodcast. A very special thanks to Colette and Kim and Sarah and Laura and Marianne for choosing to become new members of the show this week, and to Micah and Amy for upgrading your pledges. Those upgrades count just as much as new memberships. Thank you so much, all of you, for continuing to pledge your support to what we are doing here. We could not do it without you.

Pete Wright: And as a result, I am officially working on the trailer for Placeholder, the new Pete podcast, which I hope to be able to drop the moment we hit our magic goal of 250 members. I cannot wait. I’m so excited about the show, and for nerds, I might have to pick one of our guests, we’ll see if you can figure out which one, to come back and talk technology with me on Placeholder, coming soon. We’ll see. We’ll see. And now let’s get to the show.

Pete Wright: The Ochoa boys are back, James and Jules Ochoa are back to help us continue our celebration of ADHD awareness month. And this week we’re talking all about how to find an ADHD pro to support you, to build the team, once you have received your diagnosis, plus they’ve got a sneak preview of their podcast, The Complex, which is essentially only murders in the building, but with a lot more ADHD. James and Jules, welcome to the show.

Jules Ochoa: Thank you.

James Ochoa: Oh, yes.

Jules Ochoa: Thanks for having us.

Nikki Kinzer: You’re welcome.

Jules Ochoa: Back again.

Nikki Kinzer: Yes.

Pete Wright: This is very exciting.

Jules Ochoa: Still as storied as ever, lots of changes. Lots of fun stuff.

Pete Wright: James, that was a kind of exhaustive sigh. Are you okay? Are you doing all right?

James Ochoa: I’m really okay. I’m okay. I’m just one of those rollercoaster rides that I created, once again.

Jules Ochoa: He had some trouble, some tech trouble, and I wasn’t there to fix it for him.

Pete Wright: Oh no. Oh no. Do we? Now, okay, so if you haven’t heard the episode the last time, I think it was just the last time you were here, you told us about this incredible ADHD storm that you had that has become one of my favorite go-to stories to describe what an ADHD storm is, the story of your audible narration. James, you are the stuff of legend and you’re such an amazing sport about all of this.

James Ochoa: Yes. Yes, yes.

Pete Wright: What’s going on? Do we have another story to tell?

James Ochoa: There’s always plenty of stories to tell. That’s the issue, is what’s the story of the week, right? Yeah, so a lot of this was technology, the fun storm this morning, which was just a minor startle, in my opinion, was me calling Jules at 8:00 AM, after he sent me the first episode, I’m like, "Jules, Jules, you forgot something in the podcast." And he’s like, "Dad, slow down. Just keep listening. It’s all there."

Jules Ochoa: Yeah. He thought I forgot a line because we went to a certain part of the episode and he was like, "Oh my God, it’s not there." I was like, "Give it, literally, 30 more seconds."

James Ochoa: And my wife’s walking in calling the guy, "It’s there. It’s there. Just chill out."

Pete Wright: You know what? That is such a testament, though, to what this whole experience is, because once you’re triggered through the emotional experience of, you’re in a storm, it’s hard to wait, literally, 30 more seconds.

James Ochoa: Oh yeah. Oh yeah, it is. It is. I had to know right now, and even then I was a little nervous and I had to listen to the podcast. I’m like, "Oh yeah, it is there. Okay. I’m not crazy."

Pete Wright: But by then, you’re up here already.

James Ochoa: Yes, yes. But I’m telling you, what I’ve been creating, certainly since Focus Forward, and certainly within the last with all the pandemic, is an enormous number of resources, internally, on the things that we need to do when having ADHD. So yes, I’m still on shiny object chasing syndrome for lots of resourcing inside, so I’m happy to talk about those as well.

Jules Ochoa: I do also want to say, that referencing back to the storm of the narration that he had had, we did poke fun at that in the podcast that we’re releasing.

James Ochoa: You’ve got to be [crosstalk 00:06:28].

Jules Ochoa: We didn’t quite get his permission before we wrote that into the script, and we just wanted to just see how he reacted.

James Ochoa: And I was reading it going, "Oh, it’s there."

Nikki Kinzer: Oh, that’s about me.

James Ochoa: Okay, I guess.

Jules Ochoa: It’s me. It’s me, doing that again.

Pete Wright: We have a dear friend, and a frequent guest on the show, who is fond of saying, "I am the grateful recipient of life’s unfairness." And that is one of my favorite little mantras on these kinds of updates, so thank you for that. [crosstalk 00:06:58]. Nikki, you set this up, so you have ideas here?

Nikki Kinzer: Well, I want to ask, because it has been a few months since James has been on the show, and it’s been even longer with James and Jules talking about The Complex. So why don’t we start, James, with telling us a little bit about what these resources are. What have you been doing in the last week? Last week? What have you been doing in the last seven days?

James Ochoa: What have I been doing? Yes, well, there’s been a lot, that’s for sure.

Nikki Kinzer: Within the last years, whatever, [inaudible 00:07:28].

James Ochoa: Well, I think, as I continue to dive into the conundrums on ADHD spectrum, they’re just, they never stop, they just fold into themselves and make new strange stories and storms we go through. And a lot of the resourcing, to me, has to do with what I’m calling going forward, intervention fatigue syndrome, where people are just tired of reaching for help all the time. And so you have to constantly evolve your resources, is really what we’re talking about.

James Ochoa: So one of my current ones, is I’m obsessed with, and I can easily use the words obsessed now, in a normal conversation, it’s not a problem, I’m obsessed with breathing, and learning how to breathe in different ways, and using that as a huge meditative mantra space for me in the morning, continue to use, pretty dynamically, my emotional safe place, mental support group inside my own head, but really using environment around me to customize my resources. So whether it’s art, I moved my office home in the last year, it was a huge shift in going all online, but I probably have, at least, I have about a 10 by 11 office room at home and I probably have a hundred pieces of art on the wall.

Nikki Kinzer: I see some behind you.

James Ochoa: Yes, and those are, that’s, actually, one over there is the original from the Focus Forward.

Nikki Kinzer: I thought that looked familiar. Okay.

James Ochoa: But the resourcing has a lot to do with what, you’re going to hear words like customizing. You really have to personalize and customize your resources that are very unique to you. And so you can take the ones that you currently use, and I’m fascinated by watching the patterns roll, on which ones I use when. So I’m also swimming at Barton Springs, which is 71 degrees cold water, so I’m very much into cold water therapy now. Anything to shock our systems, or to really help us to pay attention and resource. But I still think at the end of the day, some of my newer stuff is really going to be the simplicity of, I think we’re doing meditation wrong in teaching it in the ADHD world. Not to call anyone out in that space, I just don’t think we start with five, 10, 20 minutes of timing, you start with pauses, you start with micro-meditations, you start with these little bitty meditations that are breaths that you take deliberately, on purpose, to recenter and reset yourself.

James Ochoa: So, that might give you a little bit of my thinking, Nikki, does that help as far as ideas for resources?

Nikki Kinzer: Oh absolutely, yeah. Well, so, as you guys know, and what we’ve been doing in the last few weeks, is celebrating ADHD awareness month. And so you bring up, actually, my next question, one of the things that we do want to talk about is what to look for with an ADHD professional. But what I’m really interested in, with what you just said, is if somebody’s newly diagnosed and they’re not really sure what resources to look at or where to go, because as I have experienced with some of my clients, they get the diagnosis, and then they get a medication, and then they’re sent out the door. So any thoughts around that newly diagnosed person, of what they might be able to, or where they might be able to go? Or whatever I’m trying to say here?

James Ochoa: Yes. Well, no, and immediately what happens there is, when you’re newly diagnosed, it’s just an enormous plethora of information coming at you. And in some ways it’s impossible to stop what I call the emotional tidal wave of the what if, the grief response of like, "I should have known this 20 years ago." Or, "What happened 10 years ago?" But, to begin to customize what really works for you, for your support team, I’ll first tell you what not to do. Okay, you won’t go and spend an enormous amount of money on too many support people. This is one of the major issues, my wife could probably calculate the amount of money I’ve lost in the last 20 years on attempting support systems that weren’t effective. And so the effectiveness of your support systems would look like, okay, talk it out with a friend, talk it out with the person who diagnosed you, potentially your therapist, come up with the three to five major areas in your life that are really disrupted by the diagnosis.

James Ochoa: So is this parenting? Is it my own self care? Is it my organization? And you begin to experiment in those areas with what’s going to work for you. So, you don’t necessarily go hire an organizational coach for six months and just try to run in it. You might meet with them once or twice and begin to be curious about, "Well, how do I organize naturally? What really works for me?" But be careful not to break the bank because it’s so easy to do, in the support, in reaching for help with ADHD. So it’s really stopping to say, "Okay, what areas are really being disrupted? Which ones would really make a difference to me, in my life, and make a change?" And sometimes that can be asked by those around you, so spouses and other folks can say, "Oh, well, if you had X, Y, and Z, and dear, that would sure be helpful to me, or to the family system." And those are the things you go after.

James Ochoa: And so my work is still incredibly customized and directed and action oriented. And really, my favorite clients are the newly diagnosed who are learning new information. I have several of those in my practice right now. And we talk about, "Okay, let’s not run ahead too fast." But one of the first things you want to include in that new support system piece is a level of mindfulness, or meditation, or being able to pause your mind and slow down. There’s just no substitute for that. So I think that has to be a part of the plan to begin with. Education has to be part of the plan. So you’re customizing the areas that are really disruptive, make sure you include mindfulness, and education about what this really is. Certainly I’m biased toward my book, Focus Forward, it’s telling the story of what I believe ADHD is, but you want stories that feel real, that feel pragmatic, that don’t feel staged, that don’t feel cookie cutter. You want to really be able to understand your own condition. Does that help some?

Nikki Kinzer: Oh, absolutely. Absolutely. Well, and it’s interesting because when you first started talking about it, you mentioned the what if. And what I see a lot with my clients is, they’re hopeful because they want to try something different or they want to try to customize something, but the thing that’s holding them back is still this emotional piece of, "I’ve tried it before, it didn’t work. Here I am. Why do I want to set myself up for this again?" So where does the mindfulness come into that play?

James Ochoa: Well, the mindfulness would come in on, if you have that what if that comes up, and it stops you, or you feel like you’re frozen or you can’t take that step. Okay? So this may be almost an opposite sometimes what people say to do with that, I tell people to look right at that freeze or that survival response, and start breathing slowly. You can use breathing four in, and breathing four out. I use a five breath pressure technique, where you breathe five breaths in and out deeply, you hold your last breath out, and you take a full breath in and hold it. Any of those are going to begin to calm the limbic system and the response to the body.

James Ochoa: And then interestingly enough, as you’re staring at that freeze response of what if, I just can’t do this, I really can’t get to that, then you start asking yourself, very simply, open-ended questions. "I wonder how I could call that person?" Or "I wonder how I could just take one step toward in a way I’ve never thought about before?" See, the key element which you’re going to hear more about, I do believe there’s a second book in me, probably in a year, year and a half.

Nikki Kinzer: Okay, that’s out in the universe as well.

Pete Wright: And it will be written entirely on Tik Tok.

Jules Ochoa: That’s exactly right. Yeah.

James Ochoa: And do you want to believe we already have the name for it? That’s the weirdest part of this book. I think that I’m going to go ahead and say it, because it’s in stone, and it is not moving. At the beginning, at least in the title, it’s going to be, when the shiny wears off.

Nikki Kinzer: Oh I love that. I love it.

James Ochoa: Because when you’ve done everything you need do to and can do for ADHD, and you’re still trying and it’s hard, what do you do when you’re just exhausted? Okay, because the shinies do wear off. So if you go back to that space of looking at a freeze response and being curious, the key is, it’s such a simple key. When you’re curious, you start asking open-ended questions, not analytical questions or intellectual questions of what do I already know? It’s like, "How can I see this in a way I haven’t thought about before?" It is the simplest neuroscience process to get into creativity and exploration, and then you have these little insights that pop up, and you go, "Oh my God, I never thought about doing this or that."

Jules Ochoa: I think a really key component of that, that might not be explicit for people, is that a lot of times people will ask why or what. They’ll say, "Why is this happening?" Or not even what, "Why is this happening?" And just getting into that emotional space of it. What they need to be asking instead is what or how. What can I do to get to this place? How can I get around this roadblock? Because that space, for one, keeps them in an action oriented space. But it also brings about this curiosity that James is talking about in trying to use that ADHD mind, that hyper curiosity, or that hyper intellectual wisdom, to be able to get around these roadblocks that you keep hitting.

James Ochoa: So it’s "What could I do about this in a way I’ve never thought about before?" Put the open-ended-ness at the end of it, and that engages the mind into a place of exploration. Otherwise, the limbic system survival instinct just can shut you down so fast, but I really liked what Jules has just talked about there.

Nikki Kinzer: I do too, because it actually puts a different spin on when you hear somebody say, "Oh, I’d really love to do research." I have a lot of clients who say, "I love to do research. I love to learn new things." Well, what a great way to say, "Okay, let’s take that love and passion into your ADHD, and be more curious about where these freezes are." Yeah, that’s great.

Pete Wright: I think that’s really important too. I just keep reflecting on that first experience, that post-diagnosis experience, and reflect on my own experience. When I found out, I went just bonkers. I mean, bananas, collecting resources and articles and journals I never read. And I just, I collected, collected, collected. And so when you said earlier, James, that you’re focused on that sort of fatigue, that exactly mirrors my experience. It mirrors my experience to the point where I frustrated myself with overwhelm, and the ADHD kicked in, on overdrive. And then I simply, I tossed it for a couple of years. I just lived in frustration again, because I was just so tired of, I wasn’t able to approach it from that perspective of curiosity. It felt like a job. It felt like I would be doing a disservice to future Pete by not putting everything I have into collecting and understanding the world.

James Ochoa: And Pete, the challenge with that is right, we’re coming at it with the underactive executive functioning, so the planning, prioritizing, evaluating, of how much information, when, is off gear, and we just dive in and we overwhelm ourselves. So the statements I use are, "I have all the time I need for this." One of my favorite ones, when I’m rushing, is "I hurry slowly." So it’s just this being able to hold myself in gear, and I go, "Okay, this is a really important diagnosis." Because with the newly diagnosed, you’re right, Pete, it’s just like, overwhelm. It’s a new shiny object, in an incredibly important way, but also can be enormously overwhelming and intriguing and enlightening, but overwhelming.

Jules Ochoa: I want to point something, so I always love analyzing my dad, James, and figuring out how he’s saying-

James Ochoa: In motion here. Internationally, across the world. Go ahead, Jules.

Jules Ochoa: Well, something that’s so interesting with what you said, when you’re saying something like, "I hurry slowly." You’re accepting the fact that you’re willing to hurry, or that you’re wanting to hurry. You’re not denying yourself that, almost desire of wanting to hurry.

James Ochoa: Oh no, that I have no choice. I’m procrastinating. I’m at the last minute.

Jules Ochoa: But you’re doing it in a different way. You’re very carefully spinning that to where you’re not taking it away from yourself so that you go into this whole denial, kind of combative phase, but you’re also changing your perspective so that you can keep doing that.

James Ochoa: So, reverse analysis now, from dad to son, it’s only fair game. So if anyone’s noticed, my son has a few more analytical skills because he’s just completed his Masters in Behavior Analysis.

Nikki Kinzer: Congratulations.

Pete Wright: Congratulations.

James Ochoa: I just have to pull that out, it’s like, I can see that in him and now with our conversation-

Jules Ochoa: Thank you, thank you very much.

Pete Wright: I feel like we’ve watched him blossom, like he was just starting two years ago or something. Like, he was just, the last time he was on the show, it was just the beginning.

James Ochoa: Yeah. See what your show does for people, it’s so incredible. [crosstalk 00:21:54].

Pete Wright: I guess I’ll just say it, you’re welcome.

Nikki Kinzer: Right. Yeah.

James Ochoa: Sounds good to me.

Nikki Kinzer: Well.

James Ochoa: It’s amazing, right? So no, I think Jules, you’re absolutely right, that whole aspect, and that goes to customizing again, personalizing it, and yeah, you could wear out those words and I’ll probably find new ones in two weeks, don’t worry. But I think it’s incredibly important for people who are newly diagnosed.

Nikki Kinzer: All right. So I am just dying to find out what this new Complex Season Two is going to be all about. So let’s move on to this exciting new thing, but before we do that, we have talked to you guys about the Complex way back when you first did that, but not everybody may have heard that podcast, and they may not even know that Complex One is there. So let’s talk about Season One, briefly, give us a recap of what you guys did there. And then, oh, please let us know what’s happening in Season Two, I’m so excited.

Jules Ochoa: The Complex is a narrative fiction podcast. So instead of the typical talking, like we’re doing here, it’s a story. You are immersed in an entire world. That world is a newly developed complex apartment building, in Austin, Texas, it’s eco-friendly, whatever, and I am the owner and manager of that apartment complex. To my dismay, and my unknowing dismay, I guess, all of my tenants are ADHD, all six of them, and I have no idea. So I go to James, who is James the therapist in the episode, not James my dad, for counseling. And I start telling him about all these people, and in the episodes when I’m telling him about these people, we’ll have little flashbacks into the complex and see these scenes actually played out with voice actors and all that kind of stuff.

Jules Ochoa: So, that’s very much the same format that’s happening in Season Two. However, Season One was much more of getting to know the different kinds of ADHD, and the different quirks and mannerisms that come with those different things, or that could come with it, it can be all kinds of different things. So that was Season One, Season Two is much more aligned with the book that James was kind of teasing, of what happens when the shiny wears off. How do we continue to deal with ADHD and prioritize the customization of all of our strategies in our everyday lives? So that’s kind of how Season Two goes, but we take it more into a group therapy context, which is a very fun little quirk about Season Two.

Pete Wright: At what point is the episode, which one’s the episode where the landlord goes into a white hot rage because nobody’s paid their rent? In six months? At what point do we get those sorts of confrontations? Conflict [crosstalk 00:25:26].

James Ochoa: Oh, there’s a little bit of that in there. [crosstalk 00:25:31]. Season Two is as much fun to me as Season One. We take on some really accelerated issues around ADHD that have to do with developmental generational issues that people go through connected to ADHD. I’m not going to give away what those things are, but they’re really a lot of fun, and I was just thrilled to do the group therapy aspect of it this time. And Pete, you would have been very proud of Jules and how he recorded this in his jerry-rigged studio. I wanted to send you pictures to put up.

Pete Wright: Oh, yes.

Jules Ochoa: Oh, man.

Pete Wright: Because you guys were doing all of this remote, right?

Jules Ochoa: So we had thought about doing remotely, initially, but it was going to be too hard to, for one, ensure the fidelity of recording was high enough to be good. But two, since it is a lot of group therapy discussions, that’s super hard to do remotely or not-

James Ochoa: When it’s not real time.

Nikki Kinzer: Oh, right.

Jules Ochoa: And the timing of that would just take either a lot of post-production to try and get right, or it just wouldn’t work.

James Ochoa: So, what we wound up doing was going to my writing coach and editor Robin’s compound, is what she calls it, where she’s got three or four living places on her acre of land in East Austin. And we overtook one of her bedrooms and we set up a recording studio in there on a day, and everyone had been vaccinated, we were cautious about COVID issues and things like that. But it was, but I mean, you can, Jules, we have some footage and stuff we’ll have to send you of some of the recording and things from that day. It was just beautiful, it went off really well.

Pete Wright: Oh, that’s fantastic. Did you come bearing a clip?

Jules Ochoa: I did, yes. Yeah, I have a clip for us to listen to.

Nikki Kinzer: Are they the same characters? Are they the same people?

James Ochoa: Yeah, same people.

Jules Ochoa: It’s the same people, same characters. There were two actors that had to get switched out, because either they were not living in Austin anymore and couldn’t make it, or they just didn’t have time to do the part anymore.

Pete Wright: Recasting in between seasons, you guys are crazy.

Jules Ochoa: All the big Hollywood problems right now.

James Ochoa: I know. I know. And just to think, [crosstalk 00:27:59] a Hollywood budget either. [crosstalk 00:28:00].

Jules Ochoa: Okay, so here is a clip from Episode One.

Speaker 6: I’m here. I’m ready. We can start.

Speaker 7: T minus 38 seconds, fall in everyone.

Speaker 8: I’m more of a faller-outer. Let me just set this lounge chair up.

Speaker 7: Fall in I said, we don’t have much time.

Speaker 9: Mongolian Power Fist, Focus, Achieve, Focus, Achieve. Previously on-

Speaker 8: Jules, call an electrician, stat. Oh, a problem with the circuit breaker. You really should’ve seen this coming.

Speaker 7: I think we need more than an electrician. Let me just catch you up here. Genius boy, in his world famous tech guru wisdom, ordered six sensory deprivation tanks, one for each of us as a gift to the complex. But when he plugged six 220 volt plugs into a daisy chained, dollar store power strip, well, suddenly it became my problem.

Speaker 10: Sorry. I know it’s not funny, but Ramon Berkowitz, the influential tech mogul, doesn’t know how to plug it in appliance? I love it.

Speaker 7: Yeah. Right. The point is things are still disruptive. Something always happens to throw the complex for a spin, doesn’t ADHD ever go away?

Speaker 10: No, it’s a developmental issue. It looks different at different ages. It can be managed, but it never goes away. ADHD can be very bizarre and difficult to follow at times.

Speaker 7: Well, it’s not exactly easy living with these people. I’m starting to wonder why I’m still sitting here complaining to you about them. I mean, if you could just be there.

Speaker 10: Wait, oh my God, that would be a wild group therapy session. I love doing groups.

Speaker 7: That’s not a bad idea, but you’re going to have to come to us, preferably right after Mongolian Power Fist, that way I don’t have to worry about keeping everyone on schedule.

Speaker 10: That’s a brilliant idea actually, because otherwise, trying to get a bunch of people with ADHD together in the same place, at the same time, is worse than herding cats.

Nikki Kinzer: And there it begins.

James Ochoa: Okay.

Jules Ochoa: All right. So that’s a quick little sneak peek of what we have set up for Season Two.

Pete Wright: When can I order the T-shirt for Mongolian Power Fist? Right, right? Yeah. Yeah, I mean, if you’re down to set up some fighting monks, we can-

James Ochoa: We’re going to need to take that to the pilot, immediately.

Jules Ochoa: Right now.

Nikki Kinzer: What a great idea. So I’m curious how the group therapy, where did that come up?

Jules Ochoa: So it kind of came out of, when we were first writing it, we, Robin and myself, James’ writing coach, we were trying to figure, we didn’t want to do the same format as Season One. And we were trying to figure out a new way to do it, and we started it to where maybe one or two people would be together, like brainstorming ideas about strategies they could have or whatever. And we were like, "Why don’t we just throw everybody in the mix?" That would just be so much more fun to have everyone throwing out crazy ideas of things that you could do to make something work. So it really came out of that, and then later talking with James about whether group therapy actually works for ADHD, he has a lot of experience with that actually working and how that can actually be facilitated, so we were able to take some pointers from that.

Nikki Kinzer: I was just going to ask you a question. Yeah, because I do a lot of coaching groups, and I know that one of the things that is the most value is not even the strategies, it’s the connection with other people who get them, and just having that community. Is that something that is also portrayed in The Complex? Do you see that connection piece?

James Ochoa: You do. Absolutely. And we pull that in because there’s an element of, not only validation and witnessing, but a sense of safety that, "Oh my gosh, other people go through what I go through? You’re kidding me." And you start seeing that and you start believing, "Okay, well maybe I can talk about my crazy storms that have gone on if all these other people are having them too." And I think you’re right, and so we really pull that directly in, and I love what Jules and Robin did with the writing. They then pulled it into genres or areas of development in life that ADHD interrupts, but that are very normal and natural for all of us. And so, because we, with ADHD, we’re still living our lives, but it just affects all of it, and that’s what we’re trying to get across, again, is that this is a lifelong, learn how to manage it, issue.

James Ochoa: Y’all may have talked about in other podcasts, some of the very difficult research about the nine risk factors that Russell Barclay has put out about how disruptive those can be to your life, of course, to your life history. It’s tragic. So we really wanted to bring in the element that says, yes, groups work well, it’s the validation witnessing piece. You’re absolutely right, Nikki, but it’s also a brainstorming piece. It’s a great way to customize and think about, "Oh, I could do something really quirky that no one ever thought of before, and that’s okay." It’s such a validating piece of how you can get help.

Nikki Kinzer: Well, and I think that Austin clients, my clients, will forget what works for them, and so it’s really helpful too, to talk to other people and hear them say something and be like, "Oh, I remember trying that too, and it actually did work. Oh, maybe I should do that again." Just that it helps with just that memory too, of what does work for people.

James Ochoa: So, hey, here’s a funny idea for clients who are either working with you in group, or even in what I would call pods of support. You get two, three, four, five, people with attention issues around you, that can support you, but you start keeping track of the strategies in a strategy book. So it’s like people can comb through this because it’s a good way to spark interest or ideas or remember things. But a lot of times, I actually used this in elementary schools, working with ADHD in kids, who would come up with strategies that, if your strategy is used over and over, that just means it’s really, really powerful. Because people worried about their strategies being taken, I’m like, "Oh no, someone else using your strategy is like validation, that you were really smart about this." So those are great ways for people to play with each other, and what strategies have you come up with.

Nikki Kinzer: So when is this season coming out?

James Ochoa: So we are set to release it on the first week of December, so you will also be the first to know that it is, I am slating this and putting this out as my gift to the holiday season for people with ADHD. We have been through, I’ll just go ahead and say it, hell and back, with the pandemic and everything else. And it’s like, I couldn’t think of a better thing to give back to people with ADHD than some fun resource to play with. And so the holiday season, it’ll start in December and go for 12 weeks from there, and then I’ve got some fun events planned next year in February and March as well, beyond the podcast, that I’m really excited about.

Pete Wright: Am I crazy, or is that double the number of episodes last time around?

Jules Ochoa: It’s the same number of episodes, but you have to factor in the afterthoughts that we’re going to be doing. So every other week, James and I will be having a quick little debrief of what happened, yeah.

James Ochoa: Yeah, yeah, yeah. That would be nice to have 12 episodes.

Pete Wright: [crosstalk 00:36:26] barely gets out of grad school, and you really put him to work. [crosstalk 00:36:34].

Nikki Kinzer: Oh, well I can’t wait, so excited to listen to it. And thank you guys so much for being on the show, sharing your knowledge, sharing this great idea of a podcast too, it’s so unique, and just a pleasure to have you guys here. Thank you so much.

Pete Wright: Well, and also so nice, you can go subscribe to the thing right now. So search in your favorite podcast app and subscribe to it. You’ve got a landing page set up for it somewhere?

Jules Ochoa: Yeah. You can go find it at jamesochoa.com. You’re able to get to it from there. But if you just search The Complex on any streaming service that you have, it’ll come up with James Ochoa as the author of it, and you’ll see like a little cityscape at the bottom of the icon.

Pete Wright: Excellent. Well, we’ll definitely put direct links in the show notes for people.

James Ochoa: Oh yeah, for sure, and I will tell you I’ll throw out some foreshadows. I do have some things coming forward, national webinars and some professional trainings, but on my second book, at some point, I think y’all need to meet Robin, my writing coach and editor, because she is just as creative as can be. And so, as my second book comes around, I think it’s probably a year to 18 months out at least, she would be a hoot to have and talk about because she’s just like us, and has a lot of fun writing with me. She could tell a lot of stories.

Nikki Kinzer: Yeah.

Pete Wright: Then we will look forward to that as well.

Nikki Kinzer: We will definitely do that, but we want to see you before 18 months.

James Ochoa: Okay, well I’ll just say I want to see you, so y’all just let me know. We’d love to come back sometime.

Nikki Kinzer: Great. All right. Thank you.

Pete Wright: Thank you so much guys, for hanging out. We sure appreciate you being here, sharing your wisdom with us. Again, everybody go subscribe now to The Complex, new episodes we’ll be dropping, but you have a whole Season One to listen to. Go to it, it’ll be good for you. And we appreciate all of you downloading and listening to this show. Thank you for your time and your attention. On behalf of the good James and Jules Ochoa, and Nikki Kinzer, I’m Pete Wright, we’ll catch you next week right here on Taking Control: The ADHD Podcast.

Through Taking Control: The ADHD Podcast, Nikki Kinzer and Pete Wright strive to help listeners with support, life management strategies, and time and technology tips, dedicated to anyone looking to take control of their lives in the face ADHD.