How I (ADD) decided to go to New Zealand, indefinitely

How I (ADD) decided to go to New Zealand, indefinitely

Is impulsiveness a symptom of ADHD/ADD? The people who know me well, might have the answer to that question 😉
The issue that I’m contemplating over the last year is, is it a bad symptom, or a gift? And how did I decided to go to New Zealand?

Let’s find out…


ADD on the mountainbike

One day, a little over a year ago, I was mountainbiking in Meijendel, The Hague and Katwijk (The Netherlands) with my friend Barbara. We did an awesome trail through woods, dunes and the beach. I just got my GoPro and I was excited to take some good cycling shots. (unfortunately those shots are missing at the moment, due to another symptom of ADD: losing stuff all the time).

And of course, we got lost

Barbara and I were discussing which way to go, because we were kinda lost (like we always are, both in life and on the road). We were driving on the road, not on the mountainbike track we were supposed to be on. At one point, she said: ‘I have to tell you something’.

Okay, that sounded kind of exciting but scary at the same time. Is she pregnant? Moving back to Rotterdam? Is she quitting her job? No.. she said:

‘I’ve decided to go to New Zealand next year.’

Working Holiday Visa in New Zealand (Our clock was ticking, nope, not the biological one)

‘Whaat? Thats awesooomeeee!’, was my response of course. But it sucked at the same time, because then I’ll have to miss her, I thought. I had millions of questions and she was explaining me her plan. She was about to go there with a Working Holiday Visa (which you’re able to get until you are 30, and yes, we were almost 30.. so our travel-to-New-Zealand-clock was ticking).

Her mission was to stay forever. That was the plan. She wasn’t lost anymore. She had a direction.

Me, impulsive? ADD? No way!

We were talking and cycling, and getting lost, and finding the road again. After a while I said, impulsively like always: ‘I wanna go too! YES, I’ll go!’. As soon as the words came out of my mouth, I thought.. ‘Oh boy, my family and some of my friends are not going to like this. I didn’t think this through’, but at the same time it felt so right.

I thought Barbara’s response would be: ‘okay, but are you sure? because I’m going alone and I want to do my own thing’, instead of that she said: ‘ARE YOU SERIOUS? OMG? JOOS? REALLY? YOU’RE COMING? YAYYYYYYYY’. She was so happy. And I was happy. And she said ‘but you’re not making me happy now and making up your mind later, aren’t you?’

I didn’t.

And that was that..

I decided that I was going to New Zealand.

My ADD-coach

At that time I was still in therapy for ADD. I had a session with my coach and she was so exciting for me. ‘This will be a great ending to your therapy and an awesome new beginning for you’.


Almost a year later.. I was on the plane.

And that’s the way the cookie crumbles.

Impulsiveness… a bad ADD-symptom or a gift?

I’m totally happy with the decision I made. It was the best thing for me to do. After a period in my life that has not always been easy, I feel like I live again. I’m learning, I’m developing. But the most important thing.. I feel happy. Here and now.

I wouldn’t state that my impulsiveness is always a good thing, but in my opinion, 90% of the time it is. Like many other people ‘with ADD/ADHD’, I have a strong intuition. A strong connection to my intuition, or however you want to call it. I’m learning now, to listen to that intuition, instead of doubting it, like I did before. Because I’ve been called crazy and impulsive many many times.

No, I don’t have a fulltime job in a fancy office. I don’t have a big carreer. I didn’t buy a house. I don’t earn a lot of money. But there’s a lot of stuff that I do have, thanks to my impulsiveness, and that I value way more than a house, a job and those other things.

How do you feel about this? Are you impulsive as well, and how does this work for you? I would love to hear about your experience in a comment!



  1. jooppaul van den Berg says:

    Beautifully spoken Jose,
    To lots of people my life is like a crushed package of cookies but I really do feel alive 🙂 thx for your blog and looking forward to your next post.

  2. Danni says:

    I have ADD as well and I’m super impulsive. In my case it’s not always a good thing cause I spent money on things that I regret the next day. I been wanting to move to NZ for about 7 years now even though I haven’t been there yet. It’s just a very strong feeling and it feels right to me. People never understand when I explain. My boyfriend and I are going on a holiday feb/mar 2018 and if he likes it there as well then we’ll try our best to eventually move to NZ.

    • José Schrijver says:

      Thanks for sharing Danni, awesome that you are going to NZ! You won’t regret the money you spend on your travels here :). Let me know if you need tips.
      I know all about buying stuff and regretting it. And of course you cannot find the receipt the next day to bring it back, or you just forget. I’ve been in therapy for a year and it really helped me deal with that. Are you using medication?

  3. Gusta says:

    Door te luisteren naar je innerlijke ik en je intuitie te volgen maak je altijd de goede beslissing! Het kan inderdaad weleens anders uitpakken dan je verwacht! Maar niet geschoten is altijd mis! Tegen je gevoel ingaan is geen optie, daar wordt je niet gelukkig van. Soms moet je dealen met dat gevoel, maar het hele leven is een deal. Als klein meisje was je al eigenwijs, maar je deed het op je eigen wijze! Blijf dicht bij jezelf lieve Jose!

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