Your home for intelligent conversation on the web
The Living Room General Hyper-activity
THINQon is a platform for a more intelligent web. It aims to replace the ruling paradigm of the web – that of sharing and gathering information – with a sharing and achieving of understanding. Instead of the Q&A model it offers an experience. A platform for discovery of ideas, people, and yourself.     Continue >
I was wondering if any of you here had any idea on how to deal with hyper-activity?
For me, hyper-activity is the constant need to be busy with something, and the inability to accept that at one point, it is natural and even important to reach the point of rest, of non-action. I know a few hyper-active people, and I find it tiring for them (and to be with), not to mention an unhealthy way of living.
I might be wrong, but I also feel that they are afraid of stopping, as if the rest- the moment they will be confronted to just being, is a dangerous place for them.
Do you think it is possible to help others in that, or to change oneself (if one realizes)?
Hyperactivity - from a medical view - is a pathology. There is a tremendous and frighening increase of medical treatments of hyperacitivty with Ritalin, causing long-time risks especially for kids who are medicated early in their life.

From my own experience, instead of directly going to medical treatments it makes sense to look for additional behavioral offers. I know a Karate-group with kids, where some of these kids are diagnosed of being hypeactive. However, the training in Karate was like a good treatment. The changes between tension and hard work with meditation and concentration had some effect. It took more than half a year, but now many of those kids integrate much better in keeping the queit and mditative phases in the training.

Another example is a biography of a pianist I already mentioned in another contribution: Helene Grimaud. She also was very nervous and unconcentrated, and teachers suggested to her parents that she should play a musical instrument. She began to learn to play piano with nine years, and now she is one of the very first-class pianists in the world. The piano gave her a possiblity to  to put her inner tension into a productive creative process. My hunch is that this is why she has - from my point of view - a very special and convincing way in interpreting Robert Schumann's work.
I used to think that hyper-activity was a side effect of living in this century where we are overwhelmed by the hight speed of things, by the quantity and endless possibilities surrounding us. Reading Montaigne made me realize it is an old problem. Here is an interesting quote on the subject from book III chapter X on managing the will:

“Men let themselves out to hire; their faculties are not for themselves, but for those to whom they have enslaved themselves; 'tis their tenants occupy them, not themselves. This common humour pleases not me. We must husband the freedom of our soul and mortgage it only on the right occasions; which are in very small numbers, if we judge sanely.

“They thrust themselves in indifferently wherever there is work to do and obligation, and are without life when not in tumultuous bustle: "They are in business for business' sake."- Seneca. They seek business only for busyness.

“It is not so much that they will go, as it is that they cannot stand still: like a rolling stone that cannot stop till it can go no further. Occupation, with a certain sort of men, is a mark of understanding and dignity: their souls seek repose in agitation, as children do by being rocked in a cradle; they may pronounce themselves as serviceable to their friends, as they are troublesome to themselves.”

In response to Edna Stern
Dear Edna, thank you for these valuable source (although I did not understand them completely)  - indeed, as with any "disease" of the brain, we have a philosophical problem between the free will and the causal structure of our brain.

But I would also like to stick to the point that hyperactivity is rather modern. Formerly, it seemed to be more symptomatic than a disease in itself, as it is grasped today. This shift in the perception of many professional medical doctors (and in medical classification systems like the ICD) lead to an incredible increase of medical treatments. I think, that this has a high price  to be paid by the children under such treatments, because they have a high risk in suffering adverse effects on the long run.
Join the Community
Full Name:
Your Email:
New Password:
I Am:
By registering at, you agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.
Discussion info
Latest Post: March 7, 2010 at 1:23 PM
Number of posts: 4
Spans 4 days
People participating

No results found.