by Harry Livesay, LCSW
The Mindful Prescription for Adult ADHD is a book out by Dr. Lidia Zylowska. Dr. Zylowska has put together an eight point plan to integrate mindfulness meditation to improve focus and emotional regulation. Her book is grounded in research and is full of references looking at both ADHD treatment and applications of meditation, but does not read at all like a textbook. She has structured her book in a way that the information flows easily for the reader, but the sections are so well organized that they could be read in pieces. This is ideal for persons needing ADHD treatment who might not be able to digest it all at once. The book provides data from studies that are well blended with personal examples which keep the material from being too abstract or intellectual. Though not a true workbook, it does include written exercises as well as a CD with guided exercises one can practice on his or her own.
Dr. Zylowska’s plan includes:
- Breathing techniques
- Being aware of both your body and mind
- Listening skills
- Regulating thought, actions and emotions
In each section, she spends time presenting the theory and data behind each element addressed and gives personal examples. She then moves on to teach how to apply these techniques in a step-by-step fashion. Much of the information is presented with bullet points and sections which makes the approach easily understandable. Towards the end of the book, the author provides discussion on how readers can integrate the tools presented to pull it all together.
As a provider who specializes in ADHD treatment for adults, primarily with medications, this book, and this approach to treatment, seems a great complement to the field. The author does not discourage people from using medications if they decide that this might be helpful, but sees her mindfulness exercises as something one could do as an alternative or additive approach. This book succeeds in achieving this goal by showing persons needing ADHD treatment the vital benefit of incorporating new behavioral health tools to enhance one’s self care. I welcome more research into this area for many of our mental health conditions.