The Life of Lisa Ling – Telling the Stories that Matter


Lisa Ling is an award-winning journalist who discovered she had ADHD while reporting on an episode, “The ADHD Explosion,” for her docuseries Our America with Lisa Ling. After recognizing aspects of herself in the stories told by  the parents and kids in the series, she decided to get herself tested. The tests confirmed she had ADHD. She had the form of ADHD more common to women and girls – distraction and difficulty focusing without the hyperactivity.

She recalled that when in school, her teachers would report to  her parents about her inability to focus. But one area she was very passionate about was journalism. Her career began at age 18 when she was recruited to be a reporter on The Channel One News. Her stories included assignments to Iraq and Afghanistan. She dropped out of the University of Southern California to focus on her reporting. In her journalism career, her ADHD turned out to be an asset. As she later related, “When I’m immersed in a story, then I feel like I can laser focus, but if I’m not working, my mind goes in every direction but where it’s supposed to go, and I’ve been like that since I was a kid.”

During her career, she has worked on many important and dangerous stories, including: the drug war in Colombia, bride burning in India, child trafficking in Ghana, and elephant poaching in Chad. She has worked on ABC’s The View, at National Geographic, the Oprah Winfrey Network and now CNN. Her latest program is This is Life with Lisa Ling.

She earned her success as an Asian woman in an industry where her ethnicity was a rarity, and has been able to tap into her ADHD “super powers” to build a career as one of today’s top journalists.

#IAm Lisa Ling Story

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