ADD/ADHD & Executive Functioning Coaching Moment…The Brilliant & Scattered Client

Image courtesy of imagerymajestic/ FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of imagerymajestic/ FreeDigitalPhotos.net

I actually told the client yesterday I was going to write about him or her in my blog. I’ve worked with George (name is changed of course) for around two years now, and he’s awesome. Not only does he appreciate the help, he’s engaging.

But as George knows, despite his brilliance and charm, he has needs…

When I first met George, I was blown away by his thinking. For a young man that just finished middle school, he is like talking to an adult. His whole process of thinking goes WAY beyond his years. But, George struggles with the small things in life. If given a small task to do for school or home, he will forget to complete it. It is not that he doesn’t remember to do it, he just doesn’t do it. So why does this kid do all this? It is a two-fold problem.

Let’s start with George’s life. He comes from an amazing and supportive family. He has two older sisters and parents that are very protective of his needs. When George has slipped in the past, there’s always a lifeline for him. So if he forgets to do something, there is someone reminding him to do it. I’ve worked extensively with his family to force George towards independence. The more George has been enabled (and this is only for minor things), the less he’s had to rely on his own executive functioning skills. His family has decided to let him touch the hot stove of failure, and it really paid off. This has been his best school year and it is because George was forced to become much more independent.

The other issue with George is that he is very ADHD. Sitting still and focusing can be difficult for him. He is actually so smart, however, that he is able to compensate for his deficits. But, as he has gotten older and the work is more difficult, George is beginning to feel the pressure. We’ve worked on coping strategies and focusing on what will make him more successful. For example, he now carries a smart phone (which he hasn’t lost, which was a concern) and is using a calendar to track long-term assignments. This is quite a change for the kid that would just “figure it out” as he went along.

As we move forward, I’ve become more of a mentor for George. If he has an issue, he loves to come in and work through it. George isn’t a guy that trusts everyone, but once you’ve earned his trust, he’s all about it. A key to success in my job is able to identify how a client will react to a certain situation and staying consistent. George knows what to expect and it makes it comfortable for him.

Please follow me on Twitter at ADHDEFCoachFacebookDigg and Tumblr. For more information on my work, check outwww.carrolledu.com and www.iepexperts.com. Feel free to email me at jonathan@adhdefcoach.com if you have any additional questions.

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