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As an ADDer, ADD Coach, founder of the company that trained the world's first ADD Coaches, and co-founder of the ADD Coaching field itself, I not only recommend "Lazy/Crazy" to almost anyone who requests an ADD book recommendation, it was required reading for OFI's 2-to-3-year ADD Coach Training program since the first classes in 1994.
To answer the unasked questions: NO, I don't make a cent from this book, and NO, it was required reading for OFI's training long before I became good friends with the authors (and several years and many trainings before we began working together). Our friendship and working relationship was A RESULT of my high opinion of their excellent book, not the other way around!!!!
Kate joined the OFI staff several years after its inception, first as a TeleClass Leader, eventually became President; Peggy joined us in 1999, heading up OFI's Sliding-Scale Coaching Clinic until she became Director of Training --knowing the authors so well is all the more reason I can recommend their book WITHOUT reservation!
Revision, January 3, 2013 - to add content, note the fact that my dear friend and colleague, Kate Kelly, co-author of this book, left this earth in October, 2012, and disclose the fact that Peggy, the book's other co-author and I are currently business partners
It is important that you keep in mind, as you read the "behind the scenes" information below, that even though I became extremely close to both authors, this remains a *professional* recommendation for an excellent resource, and is in NO way a make-nice-as-a-favor review for my friends' book.
My original review began with the following sentence, and I wouldn't change of word of it in 2013:
"You Mean I'm Not Lazy, Stupid or Crazy!" belongs on the bedside table of every ADDer and of every parent, spouse or teacher who is trying to understand the ADDers in their lives. It was cutting edge when it was written, and its information is still right on target years later.
In my May 2011 update I added: "My original review of this book was written many years ago for the first edition (link to hard cover version inserted: You Mean I'm Not Lazy, Stupid or Crazy?!: A Self-Help Book for Adults with Attention Deficit Disorder 1st Scribner edition by Kelly, Kate; Ramundo, Peggy published by Scribner Hardcover ) - and I still stand strongly by my high praise for the book, years later."
"Lazy/Crazy" was SO cutting edge when written, it has aged amazingly well.
By the time of my May 2011 update, however, Kate and Peggy had founded their own coaching company, and mine was just coming out of hiatus in the midst of its fourth redesign consistent with my new, brain-based focus in response to the current understanding of neuroplasticity. I had formally joined forces with the two of them as one of the coaches in The ADDed Dimension Coaching Group, and was also training ADD Coaches with their ADD in the Spirit Coach Training.
The content of their book had also been refreshed in a major revision in 2006.
The newer edition is an easier read, I'm told (hard for me to tell, since I know the material so well), there are a few totally new topics, and recent discoveries of medical science have been incorporated (correcting, for example, the ADD field's original thinking that more boys than girls were diagnosable, simply because more boys than girls were *diagnosed.*)
I went on to say that I owned both editions, referred to them both repeatedly, and (still, in 2013), recommend this title regularly and often. Reader response remained overwhelmingly positive.
I will now admit to my own preference for the first edition, not only because it is most familiar to me, but because it includes a more detailed look at a number of topics (medication and neuroscience in particular) - but many prefer the update for exactly the same reason.
More than a few ADDers have commented that, to them, the update seems more "human," warmly reflecting, especially, Kate's post-ordination preference for the spirituality underlying the ADD experience to the more scientific approach that characterized her earlier years, coming out of her experience as a psych nurse.
Whatever your preference, you simply MUST have SOME version of this book in your personal library if you have (or suspect you have) Attention Deficit Disorder (now officially named ADHD until they change it again for DSM-V!)
A Bit of Background:
When I stumbled across the book originally, on the "New Books" table only a few steps from the entrance doors of the large Manhattan Barnes and Noble (BEFORE I had met either of these authors), I started reading immediately, from the strength of the title alone.
It was several hours, lost in time, still standing right in front of that book table, before I finally forced myself to close the book, pay for it, and take it home. My original copy is more than well-worn and multi-colored from all the highlighting I do to focus my attention.
An extremely readable book, obviously written from an "insiders" viewpoint by two very ADD-knowledgeable authors, Lazy/Crazy immediately made me feel deeply understood. It described (and validated) my own experience of attempting to coordinate my holographic ADD-styled efforts with the linear, non-ADD world I had to live in, attempting to "drive" my ADD brain in what I came to call a "vanilla" fashion (meaning "unflavored by any mix-ins," like the ice cream that forms the base of many other flavors in an ice cream shop).
From the moment I picked up this book, it read like great advice from good friends who really "got" what was going on with me and all of the ADDers in my coaching/training experience. Not only that, they had suggestions that would be helpful! This I knew from finding my own path to similar discoveries, through that difficult trial and error process that many still were experiencing.
This was a book that could change lives!
Many don't realize that, while its splashy public debut coincided with Hallowell and Ratey's Driven to Distraction, the Kelly/Ramundo book actually pre-dated the book by the good doctors, the very first edition having been self-published through "Tyrell and Jerem Press." The name was coined to honor Kate's young ADD daughter Tyrell and Peggy's young ADD son Jeremy, both now grown and trained ADD Coaches themselves. (BOTH books were on OFI's original Required Reading List, by the way, along with others)
Another fun, little known, factoid is that the title of this book came right out the mouth of a recently diagnosed ADDer, uttered by a patient of a colleague, upon hearing his ADD diagnosis for the first time. Kate and Peggy were in the process of culling through a long list of potential titles prior to publication when they got a phone call saying, effectively, "Stop the presses, I've got your title!" You have to admit, its one of the best titles for a book about ADD anyone could come up with!
None of which I knew when I began my quest to contact the authors of this amazing book immediately following my discovery at Barnes and Noble. I was able to locate Kate's home phone number after a few phone calls to colleagues, and placed a call to introduce myself and to rave, practically immediately. I also informed her that her book would be on the Required Reading List for the first ADD-specific Coach Training about to debut, which amused and delighted her to no end. I can still hear her wicked laugh.
We hit it off famously from the first words of that phone call, got to know each other better on the conference circuit, and the rest is history. I share these insights with you to underscore the fact that this is a book, while extremely informative, that was written from the trenches TO the trenches -- by two perfectly human ADDers who struggled with ADD themselves.
That's why they wrote the book!
If you locate a copy of the hot pink version (the first one), DO take the time, as the authors advise, to carefully read the first chapter (deleted in the rewrite). Although the original Chapter One is a little "heavier" reading than the rest of the book, the ADD information it provides will prove well worth the concentration it may take to go through one small chapter.
Helpful Hint: If your dominant modality is visual you will either LOVE the graphics - either version - or hate them. For my clients in the latter group, a sticky-note covering the graphics allowed them to focus more easily on the text.
Feedback on this book is universally excellent still. It is a classic for a reason. Bottom line: you simply must buy it and read it.
Madelyn Griffith-Haynie, CMC, MCC, SCAC -- founder & CEO of The Optimal Functioning Institute(tm) & ADDCoach.com(tm), blogging at ADDandSoMuchMore and ADDerWorld - dot com!