Michael Phelps and the Power of a Mom's Love
I recently saw Michael Phelps on the Oprah Winfrey show and could not help but think about another part of his story that is getting lost in the shuffle of all his Olympic gold medals and world records.
I believe it is a story with a powerful message that all individuals with ADHD need to take wind of and integrate into their lives. It is the power of Love. It is the power of one person, his Mom, to see only the good in her son, when everyone else saw the problems. It is the power of one mother to see possibilities by virtue of her belief; love and knowing that her son can do it, even when people in other areas of his life said he couldn't.
I believe it was the power of one Mom persevering relentlessly and always saying to her child, even as an adult:" You can and you will if you want to. Don't let what you can't do get in the way of what you already brilliantly can. Just because you struggled in school you are not a loser. Just because the teachers didn't understand how you are wired does not make you bad. I know how you are wired and your brain has trillions of different ways of processing the world. If you can find the one you love then I will love it also. I will always let you know about your love for swimming if it ignites both your head and your heart."
Michael Phelps has a mom who has always believed in his ability to do something well. Not everything but one thing. She never let up in letting him know that you don't get satisfaction from working on making your weaknesses stronger. You make the most out of your life by doing what you love especially when you already do it well. Think of all the swimmers, musicians, artists, writers, web designers, who may have ADHD and do something well but are directed to spend their time, focus & energy on tasks that play to their weaknesses. Their brains are not getting the nourishment they need. You don't gain any kind of momentum, or positive self-esteem, when you have ADHD, by focusing, on what you don't do well. You get ahead in life by focusing on what you already do well and doing it better.
Through the power of his Mom's love and support, and Michael's unrelenting, determination and ADHD hyper focus to transform his natural swimming talents, into super-human strengths, we were all given the gift of witnessing the greatest swimmer in Olympic history. Thanks Mom!!!!!
David Giwerc, MCC, Past President of ADDA, Founder & President, ADD Coach Academy
Would you like to ask Debbie Phelps a question? Later this month expert Eileen Bailey will be interviewing the mother of Olympic gold medal winner Michael Phelps. Click here to see how you can submit a question!