High functioning ADHD

Highly performing people with ADHD can be workaholics while also being procrastinators when it comes to completing assignments that they don't care about. They are known for delivering top-notch results in difficult projects, but they struggle with inadequate planning and a lack of organizational and time-management abilities.

Is it feasible that the impulsivity and quick-thinking that come with ADHD can also help people be more creative? And what part in the creative process does drugs play? Is it true that stimulant medicine inhibits or enhances creativity?

Constraints on thinking may not hold the ADHD brain back as much. Adolescents with ADHD, adolescents with conduct disorder, and a control group were all examined with creative measures in a study by Abraham et al. (2006). The ADHD group had a greater rate of being able to overcome restrictive instances ("thinking outside the box"), but they struggled to create an invention from an imagery exercise.

People with ADHD scored higher than those without ADHD in a test of diverse thinking in a research by White and Shah (2006). (ie. coming up with creative solutions to a problem). On a test of convergent thinking, however, people with ADHD did not perform as well as those without the disorder (ie. giving the "correct" answer to a test question).

People with ADHD scored higher in original innovation and creative achievement than those without ADHD, according to a later study by White and Shah (2011). It was also discovered that those with ADHD favoured generating ideas over clarifying difficulties and developing ideas, while those without ADHD preferred the opposite.

Stimulant medicine, contrary to popular belief, may not directly hinder creativity. Farah et al. (2009) tested sixteen young individuals on four measures of creativity in a double-blind placebo-controlled study. Two of the tests demanded divergent thinking, while the other two demanded convergent thinking. Adderall was proven to improve convergent thinking in the study. On convergent and divergent thought measures, no negative impacts were discovered.

While more research on ADHD and creativity is needed, it appears that there is a link between ADHD and increased creativity.