5 top tips on how to talk to your employer about ADHD and get the right support

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Here, we share advice and guidance to ensure you get the support you need in the workplace, and can celebrate your unique strengths, as someone with ADHD

5 top tips on how to talk to your employer about ADHD and get the right support

Talking about neurodiversity in the workplace may initially feel a little daunting, however building up a successful channel of communication with your employer provides you with support and understanding to succeed in a challenging work environment. But, while it can be hard to adapt to set structures and schedules, it’s important to remember that ADHD brings numerous strengths and refreshing perspectives into your new role.

Starting the conversation about ADHD and your career can be done comprehensively and effectively by covering each of the following topics. It is important to remember that your employer will also benefit from this, as adapting certain things to work to your strengths will improve your productivity and wellbeing. Keeping someone with ADHD engaged and challenged will usually mean results above and beyond expectations.

1. Give a brief overview and bust some stereotypes

Working in customer service for a decade has highlighted to me the lack of training for direct and line managers with regards to neurodiversity and mental health. Therefore, in some cases, a brief overview of ADHD may be necessary.

Prioritise information on symptoms that will affect your day-to-day tasks. Explain the challenges your workplace presents, and what you can put in place to help you succeed. Many people will not associate ADHD with adults, and therefore may need some context and a brief explanation on how it differs from childhood symptoms. Writing a list of things that you’d like to include prior to this discussion is a great way to guarantee you don’t forget anything important, and can aid in feeling less overwhelmed.

2. Explain how your employer can help

Give a clear overview of the adjustments you need to accommodate you, and an explanation of why. Remember, under the UK Equality Act 2010, you are entitled to reasonable adjustments to your workplace.

For example, for people working in retail or customer service settings, this may be a change of task, including switching to something with less customer interaction for a shift, or even a few hours. Small changes to how you work can increase your productivity, and ensure you’re working to the best of your ability while avoiding over/under-stimulation.

Conjuring unique perspectives comes naturally with ADHD, and you may well suggest something that helps the whole team!

3. Share triggers and consequential reactions

Adult ADHD isn’t talked about enough, and is greeted with many misconceptions.

When talking to your employer give examples of common triggers, such as:

  • Loud or repetitive noises
  • Repetitive tasks over long periods of time

Explain the consequences of ignoring these, such as:

  • Anxiety attacks
  • Irritability
  • Fatigue

Giving on-the-job context like this is the best way to give people the tools to adapt tasks, play to your strengths, and help if you’re having a hard time. Rem

4 beautiful and easy outdoor craft activities you need to try this summer

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Indulge your senses and embrace the outdoors with these four, fun summer flower crafts that everyone can enjoy

4 beautiful and easy outdoor craft activities you need to try this summer

Nature bursts to life in summer, and is abundant with colour, texture, and fragrance – a sensory delight. We can harness this power to awaken all our senses through crafting with flowers, and children will love to join in!

Here, we look at four beautiful, summer flower crafts that celebrate the season, and make the most of fallen flowers.

Finding flowers to craft with

Flower crafts are a delight, but you must be mindful where you source your flowers.

If you don’t have an abundance of fallen flowers, or an excess of homegrown flowers to pick from, then you can always buy a seasonal bouquet, and when done, repurpose the flowers into a craft instead of throwing them away.

Dandelions flower from May right through to October. Picking the flower will not kill the plant as it stores up energy in the roots, enabling it to regrow. People tend to think of them as weeds, but insects love them, so do only pick where they are in plentiful supply.

Secret Messages

Did you know that you can write secret messages with dandelions? The trick is that dandelion stems contain sap. This is clear while it’s wet, but turns brown when it dries, so you can use it to write secret messages.

You will need:

  • A dandelion
  • A piece of paper


1. Pick a dandelion flower at the base of the stalk, where it meets the plant. You should be able to see sap at the end of the stem.
2. Hold the stalk like a pencil, and use the sap end to write your message on a piece of paper.
3. If your sap runs out, snap a little bit of the stem off. The new end will have more sap on it.
4. Your paper will look blank at first, but once the sap dries your message will be revealed!

Flower crowns

Flower crowns are a thing of beauty, and as lovely to wear as they are fun to make.

You will need:

  • Flowers with long stems
  • Leafy foliage, such as ivy
  • A pre-made natural willow twig wreath (optional)


1. Start with two long-stemmed flowers. Give them a dip in fresh water so they will last longer. Make a slit in the stem of one with your thumbnail, and thread the other stem through.
2. Keep threading through foliage or flowers until you have a piece that’s long enough to fit around your head, then knot or twist the ends together to make a circle.
3. Once you have your basic circle, you can weave more flowers, leaves, and treasures of nature into it.
4. For an easier flower crown, use a pre-made natural willow twig wreath, and simply tuck your flowers and foliage into it.

4 beautiful and easy outdoor craft activities you need to try this summer

Hapa Zome

Hapa Zome is a traditional Japanese art of ‘bashing’ flowers and leaves into fabric, so thei

Yoga for beginners

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Do you want to start a yoga practice, but have no idea where to begin? We ask Hannah Barrett, one of the UK’s leading online yoga and meditation teachers, some common questions

Hi Hannah, what are some of the benefits of yoga?

Yoga for beginners

Yoga has a host of benefits, including reduced stress and anxiety, increased strength, flexibility and mobility, enhanced self-awareness, and improved sleep quality and immunity.

Is yoga good for mental health?

Yoga is a holistic way of life, nurturing both physical and mental health.

It teaches us connection and gives us the opportunity to study ourselves both on and off the yoga mat. Yoga invites us to tune inwards, giving us space to reflect on our behaviours, beliefs, habits, and practices. Over time, it helps us connect with who we are, our values and what’s working and not working in our life.

What beginner yoga poses would you recommend?

One of my favourite poses when I was starting out in my yoga practice was child’s pose as it gave me a moment of calm and quiet and allowed me to really connect with my breath. I also loved warrior III and downward-facing dog. Both of these poses are excellent for creating strength, length, focus and stamina.

Starting a yoga practice:

Do I need a yoga block?

A yoga block can be really helpful for beginners, however, there are other ways to modify your practice if you don’t have access to a block, including cushions and rolled-up blankets. And if you haven't got a strap, you can use a dressing gown tie.

Do I need to be super flexible?

Yoga is about mindful movement linked to the breath. The physical postures are designed to purify the body and provide strength, flexibility, mobility and stamina. It’s completely OK if you can’t touch your toes; you’re still performing a forward fold! Flexibility comes over time as a by-product of yoga, not as a requirement.

What if I’m not strong enough?

Like with flexibility, you will build strength over time with a regular yoga practice. Pretty much every posture can be modified to suit your body and level so please don’t let a lack of strength put you off. In my new book Yoga Happy, it was really important to me that the flows within the book were accessible to all. I include a detailed appendix including ways to modify each posture to suit what you need.

Yoga for beginners
Hannah Barrett | Yoga Happy | Belle PR

Yoga Happy by Hannah Barrett (Quadrille, £20) is available in all good bookshops. Follow Hannah on Instagram, and YouTube or visit her website hannahbarrettyoga.com.

Grace Victory shares 4 simple ways to find a moment for mindfulness in your daily routine

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Taking care of yourself and finding a moment for mindfulness isn’t always easy, even for those who’ve practised it for years. Here, columnist Grace Victory shares her own struggles to refill her cup, and offers four simple ways to bring mindfulness into your everyday life – even when it’s tough

Grace Victory shares 4 simple ways to find a moment for mindfulness in your daily routine

It’s actually ironic that I’m sitting here writing this piece when my own everyday mindfulness practices are the worst they’ve been in years.

I just can’t seem to find my flow or motivation. Life is full-on right now, with big personal things (and some professional), so I know I need to find pockets of peace to benefit my overall health, but it just feels too hard.

I barely get a chance to pee by myself at the moment, and any ‘alone time’ I’m lucky enough to find, I sleep, put on some washing, or cry due to feeling stressed. It’s a vicious cycle I’ve been in for a while, and I guess potentially the result of prioritising the wrong things and giving too much of myself to everyone – except myself.

I know this, yet I’m still here?!

I know the washing can wait, the vacuuming doesn’t have to be done right now, and I can cancel dinner for the second time with my friend because my toddler is teething, but the shame and lack of control over my life takes over.

Maybe a part of me still wants to have it all. Maybe a part of me is still grieving pieces of my life before I became a parent. Maybe a part of me wants to be a little bit more selfish, but recognises just how much her tiny human needs her.

I’m mindful of my thought patterns right now. They are darker than usual, and, if I’m honest, I spend a lot of my days trying not to spiral into a black hole that I don’t have the energy to crawl back out of. Previously, I relied heavily on rituals and spiritual practices that kept me grounded and afloat at the same time, but lately… I can’t seem to grasp them (mainly due to a lack of time, and mental and physical capacity).

The healing treatments, holistic methods, and wholesome things I used to do just don’t feel like ‘me’ any more. There’s a disconnect from the way I used to practise mindfulness and, all in all, I am struggling – and I’m saying this in the hope that someone else reading this month’s column will be able to relate, and maybe feel less alone? Because writing this, I too, feel extremely alone.

Not to be a total Debbie Downer though, I have mustered up the strength to put together four small-but-mighty ways we (together) can practise mindfulness in our everyday lives. Whether you’re a tired single parent, a stressed out university student, or a person who has yet to find their way with mindfulness, I hope this list helps in some way, and can be applied to your own lives.

Grace Victory shares 4 simple ways to find a moment for mindfulness in your daily routine

1. Take 10 big, deep breaths when youȁ

Jay Blades on restoring hope in the community and the importance of human connection

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Host of The Repair Shop, Jay Blades, joins Happiful to talk about the amazing ability to mend anything, even ourselves, with the help of community, human connection, and conversation

Jay Blades on restoring hope in the community and the importance of human connection

Jay Blades is visibly buzzing with energy when he pops up on the screen from his agent’s central London office. The past month has been hectic for him, he says, but in the best way possible. He’s received an MBE for his services to craft, The Repair Shop has returned for its 10th series, and No Place Like Home, a fantastic new documentary series about his childhood home, Hackney, has recently aired.

Making It: How Love, Kindness and Community Helped Me Repair My Life, Jay’s autobiographical book, has also recently been published in paperback. It’s a warm, honest, and open account of everything that’s brought him to the point he’s at today. It charts his struggle with mental ill-health, the people and places that brought him back to a place of wellness, his relationships, and deep love of mending and making good of objects and situations that others might write off.

“I don’t like to give up on people or things,” Jay says emphatically on this subject. “I believe that everything can be repaired, and it might take a little while – I know on The Repair Shop we normally do it in 15 minutes, but in the real world it could take anything between a day and six months to repair an item. If you’re ‘repairing’ somebody, it could take their whole life.”

Jay knows this concept personally, and draws on his own experience, including actively contemplating suicide seven years ago.

“I needed repairing at 45, and I’m still repairing myself,” he says, with raw honesty. “I’m still looking around to make sure that I manage my mental health, and stay strong physically, too. I do that with the support of other people, who make sure that I eat right, I sleep enough, and so on. I listen to those people, because I’m vulnerable and I’m not as strong as I believed I used to be.”

Jay’s clear that maintaining wellbeing isn’t a lone project for anybody. “The reality is that we need people to help us repair us, because if you fall down again, who are you going to speak to? You can’t speak to yourself if you’re in a dark place. You need that community.”

The concept and impact of community fascinates Jay, and he’s explored this further in his recent documentary. Over three hour-long episodes, he learns about the history of the streets he walked as a boy, meets old friends and local heroes, and wonders at the incredible events and unbelievable injustices that took place mere minutes and miles from where he played as
a child.

Jay Blades on restoring hope in the community and the importance of human connection

Hackney, he says, has left an indelible mark on his heart, and helped him to form the unshakeable ethos he has when it comes to community support and giving back. He explains that he’s benefitted from the support of so many people at different stages in his life that it’s on