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ADHD in Dubai – Real Help with NLP

June 12th, 2013 by Tony Barlow

ADHD-in-DubaiADHD in Dubai – Help with NLP. Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) or Attention Deficit Disorder with Hyperactivity (ADHD) is a “Learning Difference” or “Learning Difficulty” that has been extensively researched and studied and is of great interest to schools, teachers and parents.

Although much of the research is conflicting and confusing as to what ADD actually is there is a widespread belief that it may be neurological in nature.

In this article I will be presenting a very different perspective on ADD from an NLP point of view. Those diagnosed with ADHD in Dubai can get a new understanding of what could be going on and what to do about it.


  • Over diagnosis of ADD and ADHD.
  • NLP and ADHD case study / Richards story
  • The internal experience that causes the ADD symptoms
  • Change the internal experience and ADD goes away
  • What does it mean to focus attention

Using NLP, myself and other NLP practitioners most notably Dr. Don Blackerby have looked at the internal experience of these students to determine if it is their internal thought process that is causing the ADD behaviors.

If this is the case then using NLP we can change the internal experience and therefore change the external ADD behaviors.

The typical symptoms of ADD are:

      • Hyperactivity – Always moving, difficulty sitting still.
      • Impulsiveness – Quickly changing from one thought or activity to another.
      • Distractibility – Can’t stay focused on one thought or task.
      • Lack of organization – Difficulty breaking down large projects into steps.
      • Forgetfulness – Forget instructions or to do things.
      • Procrastination – Have trouble starting tasks and put things off.

The above list of traits can obviously cause problems for the student & their parents in terms of their success in school but it also causes huge problems for teachers as they may have to devote to much of their time just keeping this one student focused on task.


Although there are some people with genuine neurological deficiencies, in my opinion the above list of behaviors can be caused by many different factors and there is a huge amount of over diagnosis. For those of you seeking help with ADHD in Dubai, there is another approach to consider.


The way ADD is diagnosed is in my opinion very basic to say the least as does not even consider the students internal experience, a specialist will give your child a number of tasks to do and observe the results.

In addition parents, teachers and students will be given a questionnaire.

– Does your child have trouble focusing? Yes/No

– Does your child have trouble remembering instructions ? Yes / No.

If they are showing enough of the signs you will get a diagnosis. Many students will pick up a label of ADD or ADHD purely based on this list of questions.


      • They are simply bored with what is being taught, don’t see the value of it and therefore do not pay attention.
      • They have something far more stressful going on in their lives outside of school.
      • They do not know how to study or memorize information.
      • There are foods in their diet that they are having a reaction to.
      • They are not getting enough sleep.
      • They are anxious and stressed in general.


If the above other reasons have been ruled out I will then look at the internal experience of the student to determine what is causing the behaviors and see if I can help using NLP.

The following is a case study of a 13 year old boy called Richard. I came across Richard in 1998 when I was first starting out. My experience with him inspired me to continue helping students using NLP.

Richard had been diagnosed with ADD and ADHD and was failing badly in his school. I observed him in the classroom and noticed that he was clearly un-focused. While the teacher was talking about the history lesson he appeared to be looking in all different directions and fidgeting in his seat.


I took Richard aside to try to figure out what was going on INSIDE his mind to see if that was the cause of his issues so I asked him;

“While the teacher was talking just now, what were you thinking about ?”

This was his answer pretty much word for word:

“Well I was thinking about playing on my roller blades this morning before school” (he had a mental movie of himself doing this)

“I was thinking about where I’m going to go on my bike when I get home” (he had another mental picture of this)

“There was a sound at the classroom door so I imagined who that might be”

“The teacher was talking about the history lesson and I was thinking about that”

This boy had around 6 mental pictures going in his mind, all at the same time ! !

Which by the way, is what happens inside the mind of a creative genius.

However the difference between Richard and a creative genius is that he had very little control over his mental experience, the multiple thoughts (mental pictures) just popped in and out randomly.

No wonder he can’t focus ! !

The effect of having multiple mental images popping in and out of your mind can easily cause the behaviors of Hyperactivity,Impulsiveness, Distractibility, Lack of organization, Forgetfulness and Procrastination.


Using Dr. Don Blackerbys methods I proceeded to teach Richard HOW to focus his mind.

This took place over the next 3 sessions and in a nutshell the process went like this:

– Teach Richard how to hold an image steady in his mind.

– Teach him how to block out other thoughts in his mind and just focus on one thought.

How do you do this ? Well you find a person who is able to focus there attention (perhaps yourself) and you find out what they do inside their mind and then you teach that to the ADD student.


You bring the picture / thought of what you want to focus on closer to you, and make it bigger. So big in fact, that it blocks out all of the other thoughts in your mind. This is what it means to focus your attention.

If I can achieve this with the student the ADD behaviors start to go away. Richard was able to do this after a few attempts. I then went on to teach him effective learning and memory strategies and he was off and running.

Typically these students have incredible visualization ability that just needs to be harnessed.

In the next History test Richard scored an 86% which for him, was unheard of.

The vice principle of the school asked him “Richard, how did you suddenly get an 86% on the test having previously been at around 20% in all the other tests ?”

“I just memorized it the way Mr. Barlow told me to” was his answer.


Let me be clear here, I am not claiming to be able to correct ADD / ADHD in every case. There are some students with which I have not been able to achieve the dramatic results I had with Richard.

What I am saying is that there is a huge missing piece in the way we currently diagnose ADHD and in the majority of students who come to see me with this diagnosis, I am able to help turn them around completely or at least improve their ability to focus by teaching them how to use their mind.


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Thank you for reading this article on NLP and ADHD. I really appreciate you coming to my site, I hope you are enjoying and benefiting from the information here. This site is designed to be the ultimate free resource for students / parents of struggling students.

Please leave a comment below because I’d love to hear what you think!

Thanks again, and good luck!

6 Responses to “ADHD in Dubai – Real Help with NLP”

October 17, 2013 at 2:36 pm, kunal said:

Hi Tony,
I am Kunal a Life Coach and I have been entrusted to treat a 15 year old child studying in USA who is having ADHD and is facing challenges in his academics.

I am a certified NLP Practioner and would like to use some of the NLP techniques which will make him more focused and up his grades in academice.

I would appreciate if you can share your immense knowledge with me on email or Skype,so that I can really help that deserving child.

Thank You,


October 18, 2013 at 6:41 am, Tony Barlow said:

Hi Kunal,
I’ll be happy to chat with you on Skype today and give you some brief advise to get you started. My Skype ID is the_learning_coach.
Other options would be for you to take my online training course “Coaching Students with NLP” which includes a live session with your student at the end of the course. Speak to you soon, Tony


June 23, 2014 at 1:16 am, Hayat said:

Hello Tony,

I am impressed by your article because I have been diagnosed recently of having ADD and I suffer a lot to achieve well in my grades since I am an MA student. Being so is not easy at all. I cannot prepare well for exams and I have a week memorization. I wish that you teach me some of the effective learning and memory strategies.



February 16, 2016 at 11:24 am, Julie said:

hi Mr. Tony i am mother of 5 years old boy and his having trouble in reading, writing. his KG2 now i still did not sent him for any test bust i can see to him all the symptoms of ADHD and Dyslexia. i found your website but still don’t know were to start to help my son. where staying here in UAE. hope you could help me. thanks


September 24, 2018 at 8:14 am, Kamaljit said:

When you talk of effective learning and memory strategies,are they the same for everyone. How much time and money will be required to learn these techniques.


September 27, 2018 at 9:28 am, Tony Barlow said:

Hi, in the ‘tips’ section of my website there are a number of learning and memory strategies for different areas of school. I would say the general principles of effective learning and memory are similar for everyone. In the case of memory, using all of your internal senses is a general principle, its always going to be better for memory to think in pictures, sounds, feelings, and possibly taste and smell, rather than only one type of thinking such as sound only. The real key to memory is Emotion, that would be another principle thats the same for everyone. If information is presented in a fun, or dramatic way, with more emotion its better for memory, or if you create an emotional mental movie in your mind.
So whatever information you are learning your goal is to create an emotional, internal mental ‘movie’ which is also better for understanding.
For me learning is understanding and memory.
Here is a specific example: If you read some science or history information and you do nothing but ‘say the words’ to yourself. This will take a lot of repetition for memory and your understanding will also be limited.
If you read and at the same time create a rich multi sensory mental ‘movie’ inside your mind. Obviously your memory and understanding will take a dramatic jump up, and you may only need a single repetition.
Even though these general principles are approximately the same for everyone, there are an infinite number of ways to visualize or create an internal representation of the information you are learning, so in that way everyone is different.
How much time to learn the techniques depends on your starting point. But for most people 3-5 hours is enough assuming no learning difficulties.


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