Attention Deficit Disorder: A Myth

“Attention Deficit Disorder: A Myth”

By Donna Vail

Labels and prescription medications are so quickly applied to a child who may be considered as hyperactive or have learning difficulties. Could we be missing a different way to deal with learning difficulties? Is it a lack of ability to communicate with children? During my interview with Dr. John Demartini he shared several stories showing how children can be helped and how we all may experience ADD.

John Demartini’s work is largely practiced in South Africa as he runs programmes for teenagers and young college students on value determination and how to link curriculum, goals and jobs to values. They have successfully incorporated in the school curriculum the entire value driven system. And they are seeing positive results with increased attendance, more interests in academics as well as rising retention rates.

Demartini noted how it’s interesting you can be labeled Attention Deficit Disorder at school and then go home and for six hours be in front of a video game with a photographic memory, undistracted and present. His question is to the parents and teachers, whether they are communicating on terms of the child’s values and honoring them. Instead they project onto  them in boring classes that don’t relate to the child’s life.

It’s been Demartini’s experience with thousands of children, when academics are linked to values the children are not attention deficit. When you work with these children and find out what’s really important to them, let them focus on that by linking it to what they need to know in their life, the children participate, they are focused and able to excel.

He says, “Everyone has a selected biased attention for what is most valued to them. We just need to honor it and communicate in it.”

He told a story about being in front of 200 educators, principles, counselors, and working with a 12-year-old boy from the audience who had been labeled and diagnosed with ADD and learning difficulties, was uninspired, unmotivated, low-self-esteem and can’t stay focused. Immediately Dr. Demartini told them there was no such thing and that it was a false truth about the child. John spoke with the boy about his strengths and what he loves doing and had the boy stand in front of the audience to tell what he knew about ice hockey and the boy came out of his shyness and started sharing.

At this point Dr. Demartini turned to the audience of educators and told them it was time for their pop-quiz on ice hockey. No one could answer the pop-quiz questions so he asked the audience if they had attention deficit, making the point. As he asked the boy what classes he was having difficulty in Dr. Demartini showed the boy specifically how by doing his academics it would increase his skill in his passion. The boy was immediately transformed and asked for the math book he needed to proceed in. Everyone applauded. For 15 minutes the boy was completely attentive, totally present and asked for a math book.

He said, “You’ve got to care about them to find out what their world is and how their world serves your world to be able to teach them.”

“I’m absolutely certain, I watch this week after week working with young people that they want to learn. They love learning. They just want to learn what’s important to them and if the parent and the teacher and the counselor does not know how to communicate the curriculum and the classes in terms of the student’s values, they are going to frustrate themselves. They are going to end up putting labels on them. They are going to end up putting pharmaceuticals in them and end up putting all this stuff in there because they don’t care enough to respect the values of the child and learn how to communicate the curriculum in those values. And what’s interesting is that they are willing to change the child instead of finding out what the child is inspired by. And the child’s values are going to shift over the next years as they go along but the way you awaken their genius is by finding out what’s important to them and then to keep linking it back to what’s important to them as it changes. And amazing things happen with this and I watch this. So by watching what they fill their space with, how they spend their time, how they spend their energy, how they spend their money, where they’re most organized, where they are most disciplined, what they think about, visualize, affirm, talk about, what they’re inspired about and what their most significant goals are, finding out what that is and determining what their highest value is and linking the curriculum and everything you want them to do in terms of that makes a genius out of these children and it changes the whole picture. It’s amazing.”

“Everyone has attention, intention and retention deficit disorder for the things that don’t particularly interest them, and a surplus condition for the things that do.” -Dr. John Demartini

If you’re inspired as a teacher you will care enough to find out about your students and be able to teach them anything that you link to their values. It’s your responsibility as a parent, teacher, principle or counselor to make sure time is taken to consider the child’s values. If you don’t care enough to find out what’s important to them, do the linking then you’re not going anywhere.

Within An Inspired Education we have also seen positive results by assisting families with children who have been diagnosed with ADD/ADHD. Creating a supportive environment, honoring the child and his values, they are able to live successfully and fulfill their genius abilities. Every child deserves a chance to shine his genius.

Let us not forget that most people with ADD/ADHD are highly successful at what they do and have been known to be famous scientists, inventors, CEO’s, salespeople, artists and doctors. They are real problem solvers we must all value for they have been great contributors to our everyday life. Here’s just a few who either showed signs or were diagnosed, you may recognize: Bill Cosby, James Stuart, Pablo Picasso, Vincent Van Gogh, Bruce Jenner, Greg Louganis, Babe Ruth, Leonardo DaVinci, Benjamin Franklin, Albert Einstein, Galileo, Sir Isaac Newton, Abraham Lincoln, John F. Kennedy, Walt Disney, Henry Ford and just to name a few.

Let’s put away our labels and authentically communicate. Dr. Demartini says, “Communication is honoring and respecting the person your communicating with enough to find out what their highest value is and what’s most important to them and finding how it serves you and how what’s most important to you and how it serves them.”

Listen to my complete interview with Dr. John Demartini at

For a wealth of information to transform your life connect with Dr. Demartini at

You might be wondering what kind of systems you can incorporate to get the results you’re looking for in your own homeschool and life. What are the daily details to bring this altogether? Trial and error can take a lot of time. Successful people always incorporate the help of mentors and coaches so they don’t have to re-invent the wheel. If you would like a more systematic approach that includes all of the details to help you produce real change fast, I recommend joining the Mentor Mastery Inner Circle. It keeps you inspired and gives you the most important things for setting up simple, effective systems giving your children an education in excellence while creating family harmony. It’s easy. It’s affordable. Get started today at

Inspired Education Mentor Donna Vail publishes the all inspiring ‘Living an Inspired Education’ e-newsletter. Every issue reveals tips, tools, and secrets to simply and confidently home school with inspiration! Start living a lifestyle of true freedom and inspire the best in your child.  Get your free weekly education and success mindset tips now at

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