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Here’s an email I received:
I subscribed because I’m seriously lost as to help my child that STRUGGLES with executive functioning— every hour, every day in every situation! His output of schoolwork is far below his capabilities!
This is a great topic that many families experience! Here I dive into several key insights that will help. I discuss how it takes time, how it’s about skill-building NOT perfect output, about the role of emotional regulation, and in video 2 I discuss how you have to attack it from many different angles and why you’re looking for small wins and baby steps.
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Part 1 — Video transcript:
What’s up? Are we having a great fall? This is Seth with Seth perler.com. And I have an email here from a mom. And it says the following I subscribed to your channel because I’m seriously lost is the help my child that struggles with executive function. Every hour every day in every situation is output of school work as far below is capabilities and that’s all she wrote and I want to respond to this because I hear the pain in her voice. I hear the fear in her voice parents are going through this they’re afraid that if child is not going to be able to launch a good future. They can see down the road and they can see that if their child does not figure this out. They will not be able to have the opportunities that they want their children have so I have some good news and bad news. I’m going to give you some insight that will help break this down a little bit. The bad news is that this stuff takes time. It takes patience. It takes persistence constant for assistance over and over and over and it’s going to feel like you’re not even getting anywhere but do not give up. Okay what you do matters what you say matters what you work with your child on matters. Do not give up. You’re going to get frustrated. You’re going to feel a shame that you’re not a good enough parent. I hear this a lot. I’m you might be hard on yourself, but just don’t stop just keep moving forward and you’ll see small breakthroughs. You’re not looking for giant epiphanies. You’re not looking for major change if there is a Magic Bullet it be sold out there for a million bucks. There is no magic bullet this stuff takes time. It takes time. It takes time. It takes patient patient patient. It takes persistence. It is the baby steps that matter it is the micro winds that matter. It is the small tiny little things that you can help your child succeed with it is helping them feel a sense of success. Your child probably feels really beaten down there. Probably not feeling engaged and they feel like their efforts are not paying off and putting all this effort into why even try this really big mindset in these these habits that are not working for them. So yeah, it takes time. I also wanted That this is skill building and so often when we’re talking about output. We are looking at are they getting the things done that need to be done? And are they getting done to the high in a koala and often if your child is here and you’re wanting them to be where they’re really getting all their homework done their double-checking everything. Everything’s right. It would take so many hours that they wouldn’t have any time for free time. So their attitude is why even try I’m not going to try to do out, but I want to avoid it. I want to procrastinate I’m not motivated to do this. So reversing that is really hard and part of the sheets that is really thinking that you are building executive function skills rather than where we get to as parents often is we get into the urgency game and the urgency game is a game where there’s something to do tomorrow. There’s something due next week. The teacher just said this was in complete. The teacher said it need to be redone there needs to be Corrections then and so we urgently trying to Swim upstream and play catch-up and help our child catch up and make sure that they stay ahead of the curve which doesn’t happen often with these kids. So they get behind him and there’s all this urgency round getting everything done. Okay, and what you you do want to get stuff done, but you want to get it done. Well enough OK and you don’t want to worry about perfection in perfect output and you want to worry about skill building building executive function skills. You want to worry about how do I help my child? Learn the skill of taking a baby step of pushing a little bit beyond their comfort zone if we push him too far beyond their comfort zone we lose them. So there’s this fine balance between this gray area between sort of you want to push them pass their comfort zone but not past the threshold you put some passes. I sure will you lose them. If you don’t push him past the comfort zone than theirs learned helplessness. So there’s this small gray Zone that you want to play in in terms of pushing them moving them for Getting them to develop the skill of grit and then there are other skills the skill of managing a backpack the skill of using a planner the skill of being honest and forthcoming the skill of self-advocacy sew-in but we’re still worried about how put oh my God. This is missing. Oh my God, this is and there’s all of this urgency going on that we sort of lose focus on we are trying to build these skills. We may have to let go of the outcome of how good the output is may have to be okay with Seasons. He’s in terms of the long game. The long game is the marathon. It’s not the Sprint. It’s the marathon we want to help them develop the skills to it to be able to go for their goals and dreams is an out because if they do not figure out how to execute They will not be able to execute one that matters to them when they are older and when they do want to watch a great future and they do have things that that they value and have goals that they can achieve because they can’t excuse so we need to build these girls. So like I said what you do matters and there’s also the whole emotional component that the resistance the procrastination the motivation that’s an emotional experience that and their body they’re feeling they’re feeling an emotion resistance is emotional. So you have to work with that as well. So anyhow, I’m going to leave you with this what you do matters parents it processed. Don’t stop keep moving forward and what works I’ve been doing this a long time. Trust me on this, please what works is baby steps microsteps small wins small successes. How do you eat an elephant one bite at a time a journey of a thousand? Miles begins with one step measuring your child next to the door frame if their growth in fractions of millimeters. Okay, you don’t even see it. But it matters and account. That is what you want to focus on small successes with the skills. Also the mind that’s also the habits but your building skills get out of the urgency game. You do need to play it sometimes I mean, it’s the reality of the of the most of the schools but don’t get stuck in that game and don’t lose sight of that. There is the other game and their the skill building game. All right. Good luck to you. Have a great.