Overcoming ADHD, gaining patience

Hi all
from Leonid

When I started, I was total and complete disaster. I had no
discipline and no patience. If something took longer than an hour,
I would screw it up for sure. 

Way ahead of me there Leonid.

When I started making jewellery in copper (in my Dad’s shed) at age
16, I could not focus for more than a few minutes.

But I really wanted to make jewellery. In the end gave up.

A few years later I had the chance to work at Beadco. I learnt to
make bead earrings. Two minutes to make a basic pair.

That was my attention span. Then went on to make necklaces,
lengthening attention span.

Learnt to make moulds and cast resin. Impatience led me to
experiment. Can set RTV 24 hour setting time silicon in one hour.

Can get 2 hour setting time resin set in 10 minutes. Hint pushed it
till it exploded and then backed off.

First project at the School for Silversmiths, making a sphere,
nearly sent me crazy, friends would say I was already way past that. I
asked Wal why we had to make this he told me to see if I had what it

Well all my life I was told you will never do that, but I always
did. Wal got me really going, I wanted to make jewellery, it was a
burning desire.

I finished that project and could not believe it. Instead of making
a sphere I made a container took longer.

Now I can sit at the bench and time is not part of the equation. I
get totally absorbed by what I am doing.

As I usually make one piece at a time when it is in the pickle I
tidy my bench. Make a coffee or have a drink of water.

Design or prep the next piece or read the paper.

The point of this is that no matter what type of obstacle, mental or
physical, you can overcome it and make jewellery.

It does not matter if you make $5 dollar earrings or work in
platinum and diamonds there is a place for all levels of maker in
this trade.

So newbies next time you think it is all too hard. Do not give up,
take a break re-think and re-try.


…thank you Richard… I needed to read this today… your words
showed up at the right time.


If my case of having a Dyslexic ‘learning ability’ I think positive.
Some of the greatest minds and actors are in this league. Einstein &
Tom Cruise. even the creator of FedEx! Remember no is perfect, we all
have a few hurdles we all have to cross.

Life would be too boring if we were all the same.

Relish the ‘abilities’ you were given and make the best of them.
Enjoy them, use them to your fullest! They are a ‘gift’!.:>) Gerry

...thank you Richard. I needed to read this today. your words
showed up at the right time. 

Something happened to all my postings up to the entry for the Saul
Bellows awards, and I got blanks or computer language that I can’t
read, so I don’t know what Richard wrote. Having ADDHD and having had
to live with it all my life, I can use any helpful words I can find,
so even if I lose the rest of the postings, I would like to see this
one. If Orchid can help, I would appreciate it. Thanks Thomas III

Hi RER makes some very good points.

I had a student that was fairly healthy but after sitting for 6 hours
and longer his ankles would swell terribly. After a week it was a
concern. This is pretty common and gender has zero to do with it-
both are affected by immobility and a period of time with a chair’s
edge at the back of one’s leg or knee area. It takes about 10 minutes
for the lymph to flow correctly again, better results if you can walk
for a short time around a yard or the building, etc. Adjusting your
chair up or down may help too. Pay attention to your body at the
bench and make adjustments or furnishings when you get recurring
pains in the same area day after day. Chances are it’s not going to
go away with time.

This is why I have multiple work stations, sitting for length at the
bench is one of the worst things you can do.

At the School for Silversmiths we had multiple workstations. Guess I
was trained this way.

Also when I did dressage and was at university my instructor began
to comment the “bookwork” was ruining my dressage posture.

Break your work time into units of half an hour maximum and then
move. Your body will love you for it. We mammals are not designed for
stationary positions. Even when we sleep we move.

I have posted this before but perhaps it is worth repeating.

I have a bench for filing, sawing and gem setting x two one is for
my daughter

I have a work station for hammering on mandrils
I have a soldering work bench
I have a sanding and flexi work bench
I have a polishing work bench.

This set up also allows for both of us to work without interruption.
Simply one of us makes the coffee while the other starts at the

Then we are never at the same work station at the same time.

I am moving around my shop and not sitting in one position all day.
Never get aches and pains.

Teaching newbies to make ring bands the other day, hold the metal
strip and cut here.

“How could you hold it still?” They wanted to know. Practise builds
physical strength and this does not come without some pain.


Taking Breaks is healthy


I agree that taking occasional breaks is healthy in the studio. We
do get so focused on our work that hours can go by without standing
up and walking around, unless we intentionally do so.

Many of my work stations are within a u-shaped area: design, sawing,
filing, stone setting, belt sander, mini-drill press, flex shafts,
some forming.

Other stations, for which I have to get up: rolling mill (of
course), forming, drawing, disc cutting, metal clay, magnetic

Other stations where I have to get up and walk around a bench to the
other side of the studio: kilns, soldering, hydrau-press, large
drill press, larger vise, stone selection, Sparkie.

Further around the room is my jewelry and design library.

This arrangement forces me to get up and give the muscles and
vascular systems of my back, hips, knees and ankles (not to mention
my eyes) a chance to do what they’re supposed to do. work!

Hope this is useful,
Linda Kaye-Moses