Financial Planning

Are You an Adult with ADHD Looking for Financial Help?

By  Brian Thorp

Disclaimer: In order to make Wealthtender free for our readers, we earn money from advertisers including financial professionals and firms that pay to be featured on our platform. This creates a natural conflict of interest when we favor promotion of our clients over other professionals and firms not featured on Wealthtender. Learn how we operate with integrityย to earn your trust.

Adults who experience symptoms of ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) can find it challenging to manage their day-to-day personal finances. Whether you have ADHD or know someone who struggles to stay on top of money matters, it’s important to know financial help is available from professionals with experience serving adults with ADHD.

A financial advisor who specializes in serving adults with ADHD can offer invaluable support and guidance to help their clients make smarter money moves and feel more confident about their personal finances. But it may not be easy to find a local financial advisor who is dedicated to understanding the unique needs of ADHD clients.

Fortunately, many financial advisors offer virtual services so you can meet online no matter where you (or they) live. This means you can choose to hire a financial advisor who lives hundreds of miles away if you decide their knowledge about financial planning for adults with ADHD could help you achieve better outcomes.

๐Ÿ‘จโ€๐Ÿ’ป Smart Money Insights for Adults with ADHD

This page is organized into sections to help you quickly find the information you need and get answers to your questions:

  1. Q&A with Financial Advisors Specializing in Serving Adults with ADHD
  2. Get Answers to Your Questions about Financial Planning with ADHD
  3. Browse Financial Planning Articles

– Financial Advisors Specializing in Serving Adults with ADHD –

Three Questions with David DeWitt

We asked Philadelphia-based financial advisor and ADHD specialist David DeWitt to answer three questions helpful to adults with ADHD interested in making smarter money choices.

Q: What makes handling money matters and personal finances challenging for people with ADHD? 

David: What makes personal finance (and many things) difficult for those with ADHD is our impaired executive functions. Renowned ADHD researcher Russel Barkley, Ph.D. thinks a more proper name for ADHD is “Executive Functioning Deficit Disorder.” Your executive functions are like the control center of your brain that helps you make decisions, react to incoming stimuli, and solve problems.  

Non-verbal working memory is a critical executive function that enables us to store and recover feelings, shapes, smells, tastes, and emotions attributed to past experiences. People with ADHD may have a tough time recalling at the moment the feelings and emotions brought on by the negative consequences of past financial decisions. This makes people with ADHD prone to making the same mistakes repeatedly.

Another vital executive function is impulse control. When faced with incoming stimuli, people with ADHD may not have a well-polished automatic ability to pause and contemplate the appropriate reaction. When emergencies arise, this can be a gift but can be determinantal when online shopping and we find something irresistible.

People with ADHD are generally poor long-term planners. Effective planning employs the use of many executive functions. We need to problem solve, create goals, choose the necessary actions to reach the goals, prioritize the steps required, and then implement a plan. Not easy for an ADHD brain. We are known to categorize action items as either “now” or “not now” things. We can usually tackle “now” things, albeit in a sporadic and frenzied manner, but “not now” things are not considered until they become “now” things. 

Something like saving for retirement is very much a “not now” thing to someone with ADHD. The problem is, when this becomes a “now” thing, it could be too late. 

And because of all of this, we are not as well prepared for the future. We do not take what we learned from past events and mistakes to foresee and contemplate what could be coming around the corner. Considering this, we often bounce from crisis to crisis, which only exacerbates our situation. 

Get to Know David:

View David’s profile page on Wealthtender or visit his website to learn more.

๐ŸŽ™๏ธ Subscribe and Listen:

About the ADHD Money Talk Podcast

The ADHD Money Talk Podcast helps dynamic but distracted ADHD brains take control over money.

Money can be challenging for those of us with ADHD. I know money has been hard for me, even though I am a trained professional. That is the paradoxical nature many of us with ADHD face every day.

I want to help create clarity from the confusion that is our finances. I’ll share tips, tricks, strategies to help you take control of your money in ways that stick and make sense of the unique way we tend to process the world.

I’ll also share whatever is on my mind, talk about what I am going through, what shows I am watching, what I’m reading, and whatever else pops into my brain. Join us if you’re diagnosed with ADHD or feel like you probably have ADHD. Let’s level up our finances!

Q: What actions have you personally taken to make your ADHD diagnosis work for you – and not against you – when it comes to handling your own finances? 

David: This is a great question. The first thing was to understand my ADHD firmly, and reading books was a big part of this. The two books I recommend are “Delivered from Distraction” by Edward Hallowell, M.D. and “Taking Charge of ADHD” by Russel A. Barkley, Ph.D.  

I have done several things to make my ADHD work for me and not against me when it comes to handling my finances. The most important thing is to take as much time as is necessary to figure out what you want out of your life and connect how money is a tool to help make it a reality. This is imperative.  

From there, the name of the game is to set up systems that make it easy and practical to implement a plan that helps you reach your goals. 

For me, this has come in the form of a savings bucket strategy, an ADHD-friendly and effective budgeting system, and adding a level of gamification to my finances to keep me motivated. 

Q: How are you applying your own life experiences in your role as a financial advisor to help other people diagnosed with ADHD achieve their financial goals? 

David: Sometimes it feels as though I have already made a lifetime of financial blunders. I used to be ashamed of this because I was a financial planner who could not keep his finances in order. While I do not use my ADHD as an excuse, I now have developed an understanding and an explanation which enables me to go easier on myself.  

 Nearly everyone with ADHD will tell you how they do not think anyone truly understands what it is like to have ADHD. When we hear things like “everyone has a little ADHD” or “just put in a little more effort,” we feel minimalized and isolated.  

So, the biggest thing I can offer to those with ADHD is understanding and empathy. From there, I have tailored my services to be ADHD-friendly. I use my past experiences and tactics to help coach and teach clients what they need to know to implement plans successfully.  

I help others with ADHD figure out why money is important to them and help them develop goals. I will then work alongside them to create and implement the plan and systems to help keep them on track. I know that I had performed my best in the past when I had someone holding me accountable. That is why I offer my clients monthly accountability check-in calls. I take a “do whatever it takes” approach to working with ADHD clients because everyone is different and will need unique systems and support to get on the path to financial independence. 

๐Ÿ™‹โ€โ™€๏ธ Have Questions About Financial Planning for Adults with ADHD?

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About the Author
Brian Thorp, Founder and CEO of Wealthtender profile picture

Brian Thorp

Founder and CEO, Wealthtender

Brian and his wife live in Texas, enjoying the diversity of Houston and the vibrancy of Austin.

With over 25 years in the financial services industry, Brian is applying his experience and passion at Wealthtender to help more people enjoy life with less money stress.

Connect with Brian on LinkedIn

Disclaimer: In order to make Wealthtender free for our readers, we earn money from advertisers including financial professionals and firms that pay to be featured on our platform. This creates a natural conflict of interest when we favor promotion of our clients over other professionals and firms not featured on Wealthtender. Learn how we operate with integrityย to earn your trust.

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