What is ADHD Impulsivity?

According to Medical News Today, impulsivity is a core ADHD symptom. It can appear in a variety of ways, such as talking out of turn, reckless spending, and risk-taking behaviors. ADHD impulsivity can be very dangerous if not under control.

This is something I often talk to parents and kids with ADHD about. I want to help them mitigate these issues. I deal with ADHD impulsivity daily, but I’ve learned to control it. In this episode, I share some of the things that have helped me mitigate ADHD impulsive behaviors.

What You’ll Hear in This Episode

  • Maintaining a holistic lifestyle
  • ADHD impulsivity in kids
  • ADHD impulsive behavior examples
  • Having an accountability partner

Maintaining a Holistic Lifestyle

Holistic can mean a lot of different things. Yes, paying attention to your diet can help mitigate impulsive ADHD symptoms by supporting your brain receptors. But I want to emphasize the importance of your environment. 

Your environment can greatly impact how your ADHD brain functions. If you have clutter everywhere, it’s really hard to focus because you’re thinking, “I need to clean that up right now before I start cooking.” But once you start cooking, you realize you have to clean the dishes first. But once you start cleaning the dishes, you need to start a load of laundry with the kitchen towels.

We spiral and jump from one task to the next out of impulse. ADHD brains are easily distracted. A clean and tidy home can help reduce distractions and the need to abandon one task for another. Learn my best decluttering tips for ADHD in episode 19

ADHD Impulsivity in Kids

Kids with ADHD thrive off discipline, deadlines, structure, and boundaries. Help your child understand the consequences of making impulsive decisions. Implementing consequences in the house makes the child understand that if they do something, there’s a consequence. If parents write off impulsive behaviors as an excuse for having ADHD, the child will make more impulsive decisions because they’re seeking attention and love in the wrong way. That’s why kids with ADHD make impulsive decisions. 

To show your child love, focus on words of affirmation and acts of service. Make your child feel seen and heard so they don’t feel the need to act out impulsively. Learning this now will help them mitigate ADHD impulsivity in the future when they’re on their own.

Teach your child cognitive decision-making skills to help them reduce impulse buying. This is a huge issue with people with ADHD. Providing structure with financial responsibility leads to discipline on impulsive spending. Invite your kids to make big purchases with you and show them how you thought through the purchase before making it. You’re teaching them the thought process it takes to make important financial decisions.

ADHD Impulsive Behavior Examples

Sometimes, ADHD impulsivity and irritation happen when there’s a lack of a parasympathetic state. The parasympathetic nervous system reacts when you’re stressed or calm. When I’m stressed or agitated, I’m more likely to make impulsive decisions to feel that sense of calm afterward. Create a calming environment so you don’t feel the need to be impulsive.

Here are some examples of ADHD impulsive behaviors:

  • Yelling in the house
  • Interrupting others
  • Emotional outbursts
  • Engaging in multiple tasks at the same time
  • Risky behavior
  • Unnecessary spending

Have an Accountability Partner

It’s been so helpful for me to have my husband be my accountability partner. He helps me control my impulsivity and spending by keeping me in check. Have someone to report to – not in a controlling way, but someone who understands when you’re being impulsive and how to help you lovingly. Before you make a decision (especially the financial ones!), talk to your accountability partner and get their opinion. Let them be your conscience! 

I hope this episode helps you control your ADHD impulsivity or better understand someone else’s impulsive behaviors. It’s not something we can help, but it is something we can get better at. Send me a DM on Instagram if you have other questions about ADHD impulsivity!

If you liked this episode, check out…

Episode 4: How I Manage my ADHD Without Medication

Episode 7: Finding Balance with Compassion and Discipline

Episode 19: Declutter Your Mind: Decluttering Tips for ADHD Management in Adults

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To inquire about being a guest on the podcast, submit a topic, or ask a question for a future episode, please email Laila.

Laila is a Holistic Nutrition Coach and Math Tutor. She is goal driven and mission oriented and is here to support, encourage, and push you towards the results you want, ready to help people of all ages become mission-fit to explore their full potential. As someone with ADHD and dyslexia, she deeply understands the intricate challenges related to creating a new habit and sticking with it. Her online nutrition programs and online math tutoring cater to those with similar difficulties.

To learn more about Laila, or to inquire about working with her, visit www.LailaAlieh.com.

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