How Can I Help My Child Who Is Afflicted With ADHD?

Does your child always seem to be running around? Is he/she easily distracted by the least of sounds? Does he/she find it difficult to focus on anything?

Have you classified these symptoms as a result of your child merely being naughty or playful? Think again.

Kids are naughty, definitely. However, there are several ailments, which may come across as the child being naughty but are actually a form of disorder classified by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (5th ed.). One of these ailments is ADHD.

What is ADHD?

Attention deficit/ hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) refers to three major symptoms; inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsivity. These can be detected in the following behaviors:

Inattention

Does your child:

  • make careless mistakes in schoolwork?
  • find it difficult to sustain attention in tasks or play?
  • fail to finish chores, schoolwork etc.?
  • seem distractible even when you are talking to him/ her?
  • have difficulty organizing tasks?
  • avoid tasks that require sustained effort?
  • often lose things?
  • gets easily distracted by external stimuli?
  • Is your child often forgetful?
Hyperactivity and Impulsivity

Does your child:

  • frequently fidget with hands, feet, or squirms in their seat?
  • often leave his/her seat during the class?
  • often run or climb when it is inappropriate?
  • talk excessively?
  • have a hard time waiting for the question to be completed before he/she blurts out an answer?
  • have difficulty waiting his/her turn?
  • often interrupt during conversations?
  • Is your child often ‘on the go’?

If your child seems to have at least six or more of the symptoms in any one (or both) areas, he/she might be suffering from attention-deficit/ hyperactivity disorder.

How to treat ADHD?

Treatment for ADHD helps manage symptoms. The treatment modalities consist of medication or therapy. Often, a combination of both is best.

Both the diagnosis and medication are best left to the psychiatrist. If you suspect, your child may have ADHD, it’s best to see a professional right away. The disorder can be easily diagnosed from ages 4 and up.

Additionally, think about therapy for your child. It can be highly valuable for both of you. The behavioral child therapist will help you understand the disorder, train, and educate you regarding your behavior with the child and work with your child on several aspects (i.e., behavior therapy, social skills training etc.).

Further, certain diets and supplements are also seen to help with the treatment. Some parents may even go one step further and enquire about making their own supplements so they can ensure that their child gets all the nutrition they need. As such, they may want to head to a place like Capsule Supplies to see how they can find particular types of capsules to get started with the manufacturing process. Of course, they always have the option of buying their supplements from the relevant retailers if this is something they want to do. The treating team will guide you regarding the best options for you.

ADHD can be a distressing condition, both for the child as well as the parents. However, with timely and effective treatment, it can be brought under control. Following these tips with your child will go a long way in changing his behavior in the long-term.

How can I help my child afflicted with ADHD?

Apart from consulting professionals and starting the treatment at the outset once the diagnosis has been made, you can also do some concrete things to help your child.

  • Nature and Exercise. Your child needs to spend time in nature. Playing outside for at least 30 minutes is essential. Other recommended activities are dance, gymnastics, skating, and martial arts. Did you know that Olympic sensation Simone Biles has ADHD?! If that doesn’t make your child feel like going to gymnastics training center, we don’t know what will. Encourage team sports.
  • Regular sleep. Ensure there are a regular sleep and wake times for your child. Turn off all electronics at least an hour prior to bed (i.e., phone, TV, computer, tablet). Also, limit physical activity a few hours before bedtime.
  • Nutrition. Schedule regular meals. Ensure your child has snacks every two to three hours. Include protein and carbohydrates in each meal. Check the levels of Zinc, Iron, and Magnesium. Boosting these would be of help. Add Omega-3 fatty acids to your child’s diet (i.e., tuna, fortified eggs, milk products, salmon, sardines).
  • Behavior Therapy. Set specific goals for your child. Make a daily timetable and stick to it. Provide rewards for a behavior well done and consequence for when the child fails to meet a pre-decided goal. Use the rewards and consequences consistently to ensure the long-term changes in behavior.
  • Consistency. Follow a routine. Set a time and place for everything. Establish a predictable routine for bed, meals, study, and play.
  • Organization. Encourage the child to put things in the same place every day. That will reduce the chances of losing things.
  • Manage distractions. Limit noise, turn off the TV, and clear the workspace for your child to do homework.
  • Limit choices. Don’t overwhelm or over-stimulate the child with too many options. Offer choice, but fewer.
  • Clarity and specificity. Be clear and specific in conversation with your child. Use brief directions to direct them.
References:

American Psychiatric Association. (2013). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (5th ed.). Arlington, VA: American Psychiatric Publishing.

Barkley, R. A. (Ed.). (2014). Attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder: A handbook for diagnosis and treatment. New York: Guilford Publications.

negative beliefs

Negative Beliefs

Have you grown up with certain beliefs about the world? You know how life works, what is possible and what’s not, what you can expect and what you can only dream about. Hence, you think you have a clear picture of the reality, right? Well, think again. Maybe the world is not exactly how you look at it right now; maybe if you change your perspective, you’ll find out that what you believed as a definite truth is actually a lie. We lived our whole life with a certain set of rules and a certain set of beliefs. However, some of these beliefs are not helping us grow. Additionally, they are simply wrong. These are called Negative Beliefs, and they can stand in your way to be happy.

Psychology Tomorrow Magazine posted a great blog about Negative Beliefs. Read it here.

Snigdha Gharami gives some good examples of negative beliefs and how they are wrong. For instance, the idea of “never changing” in life is a false belief- some people have a habit of not accepting changes, but changes are actually good for us. Or, here is another example – some people believe admiring something (even something good) will create a lack of self-control. However, it is also false, because you cannot lose your value by admiring something good. There are other good examples in the article, so take a look; maybe you find yourself in it, and challenge some of your beliefs.

In the end, she wraps it all up well: “It is you who makes and breaks these patterns. Take a chance, live life your way because you only have one- this opportunity and this day will never come back.

Embrace change, take a chance and live big!

 

Happy Holidays!

 

Jennifer Lawrence and Social Anxiety

Making headlines today was the release that Jennifer Lawrence, from X-Men and more recently, the Hunger Games, suffered from Social Anxiety. Although our society is becoming more understanding of mental health issues, stigma still exists. When it comes to discussing mental health issues and getting treatment, there is still not enough openness regarding this topic. Using medicinal marijuana as a treatment for anxiety has historically been a taboo topic. In recent times people are becoming more outspoken and thankfully places like ilcbd.com are helping people overcome their conditions.

For a celebrity like Jennifer Lawrence, to publicly share her challenges is inspiring for us all. It helps to reduce stigma and increases awareness about mental well-being. At the moment there are many ways someone could choose to treat their anxiety, from therapy to CBD Oil. Many people who don’t suffer from anxiety often question why people go to therapy and question What are the benefits of using CBD because they don’t understand the effects of anxiety.

Social Anxiety and It’s Prevalence

According to Statistics Canada, social anxiety, is one of the most common anxiety disorders. Social anxiety is

“a disorder characterized by a fear of situations in which there is potential for embarrassment or humiliation in front of others. There are generally two subtypes of social phobia: one involves a fear of speaking in front of people, whether it be public speaking or simply talking with a person of authority; the other subtype involves more generalized anxiety and complex fears, such as eating in public or using public washrooms, and in these cases individuals may experience anxiety around anyone other than family”.

In Canada, anywhere between 8-13% of Canadian’s will be influenced by social anxiety. The disorder is more common in women than men. Also, there appears to be an environmental and familial link to the disorder.

Jennifer Lawrence’s story of facing her fear of social scrutiny head-on teaches us all one important thing. Facing the things that cause us anxiety is the best form of treatment. Hence, the best example is exposure therapy combined with Cognitive Behavioural Therapy.

If you’d like to inquire about social anxiety treatment in Mississauga or Bradford Ontario at Real Life Counselling, don’t hesitate to call us at 289-231-8479.

Reference

http://www.statcan.gc.ca/pub/82-619-m/2012004/sections/sectionb-eng.htm#a3

http://www.people.com/people/article/0,,20756991,00.html

I’m excited. I’M excited. I’M EXCITED!

The year was 2005.

I was in my last year of my Bachelor’s program, meticulously spending hours checking my research data and putting the final touches on my thesis defense. Night after night, I found myself ruminating over having to present in front of my professors, not to mention mine in front of my peers. Ever since I could remember, public presentations, regardless of size or length, caused me grief. I mean, not your typical 11th hour jitters, but…blushing, shaking, nauseous stomach, cold sweats – you name it, I had it.

So, the day had come. I was to defend my thesis. Although most of the day felt like a blur, a few moments still stick with me. The first was feedback from one of my peers as we were standing in the halls practicing our scripts. I shared with my friends how nervous I was, feeling unable to control the physical and emotional reactions happening in my body. My friend, Susan*, turned to me and said, “…instead of telling yourself you’re nervous and scared, why don’t you say you’re excited!”. I listening, and thought to myself – “heck, I have nothing to lose!” So, minutes before my hour of fame, I said, “I’m excited”, “I’M excited”, “I’M EXCITED!”. I think after the 3rd excited, I was starting to feel it. The reaction kicked in! Then, before I knew it, I was done.

I think that’s the second part of my memories of my thesis. My accomplishment. I “felt the fear but did it anyway”. There’s no better feeling then working through a tough obstacle. Or, overcoming a fear.

I encourage you to feel inspired, to reach out for help if you need it, and to “feel the fear and do it anyway” (as Susan Jeffers would say).

 

Enthusiastically,

Ashley J. Kreze

overcome-your-fears

Overcome Your Fears and Transform!

I hear my clients struggling with different kinds of problems. Some are shy and have difficulties making new friends, some are constantly getting into conflicts, some are staying in destructive relationships or on the job that’s making them miserable, and some are dreaming about their perfect life without making any move towards it. This is just a teeny-tiny portion of all the different struggles my clients are facing; but every one of them is unique to that person’s life situation. However, one thing stands out as the background issue of almost all of the problems I hear about. It’s fear. Fear of rejection, fear of uncommon, fear of change, fear of failure. Even I myself was struggling with anxiety in public-speaking situations, which you can read about HERE. Additionally, many have no clue how to overcome fears, so it can all get pretty messy.

Once you learn to face your fears and stop running away from them, but instead do the thing despite the fact you’re scared, you’ll transform. You’ll discover there are many great opportunities you’re able to catch, you’ll learn to live the life you want and you’ll discover some awesome parts of yourself you maybe didn’t even know existed. Sounds exciting? I agree. But it needs work and effort.

How to overcome your fears?

The first step is to discover and make yourself aware of your fears. Second, and the most difficult step, is to face your fears. To let yourself feel the fear, and do the thing you’re scared of anyways. Only this way, you can come to the third and final step, and that is overcoming your fears and, with that, transform your life.

This is exactly what Susan Jeffers talks about in her book “Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway”. This book contains tons of enlightening ideas and useful techniques that will help you get out of passivity-mode and start working on facing your fears. Additionally, Susan teaches you how to stop negative-thinking patterns and start implementing positive thinking into your daily habits. There is much more to this incredible book, so I recommend you start your transformation by reading it.

Hygiene for Your Sleep?

On occasion I see clients who share their struggles with: getting to sleep, staying asleep, or, getting a good night’s sleep. It’s a frustrating issue that can interfere with our everyday tasks and success in what we set for the day, week, future. Often, the problem was with their Sleep Hygiene. Have you ever heard of it?

What is Sleep Hygiene and Why It’s Important?

Sleep Hygiene, according to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, says it is the act of controlling “all behavioral and environmental factors that precede sleep and may interfere with sleep.” Thus, it can sometimes slip out of our control. However, there are scientifically proven ways to get it back to track.

My colleagues at Precision Nutrition have written a great blog about good sleep habits, and I want to share it with you.

In case you haven’t heard, sleep is absolutely crucial to your health. With a few simple strategies, you can get the high-quality, restful sleep your body and your mind deserves.

Sleep is just as important as nutrition and exercise when it comes to improving your health, your performance, and your body. Something that can disrupt a healthy sleeping pattern could be overexposure to blue light from electronic devices. Perhaps wearing glasses like those of Felix Gray which filter out blue light and reduce screen glare can help mitigate negative effects on your health.

Good sleep helps us stay fresh, lean, strong, mentally focused, and healthy.

Bad sleep slathers on body fat, screws up hormones, ages us faster, increases chronic illnesses, and drains our IQ and mojo.

Fortunately, research also shows that returning to adequate sleep can quickly reduce these risks.

So why leave sleep to chance?

With the strategies outlined in today’s article, you can engineer high quality, restful nights on a regular basis.

They share tons of helpful tips and strategies to help you get some good night sleep and wake up refreshed and ready for the day. I recommend you to take a look.

—> Click here to learn more: http://www.precisionnutrition.com/hacking-sleep

introvert

Are You an Introvert?

If you find yourself tired after being in social situations for extended periods of time, you might be an introvert. It is the type of personality that gets drained by social encounters. Rather, they find energy in solitude, opposed to extroverts, who feel energized by getting into social situations and avoid being alone.

Many misconstrue shyness with introversion, which can go together but don’t have to.  Yes, introverts can be shy people who find it hard to socialize, but many introverts are getting into social situations easily; they just prefer not to.

Unfortunately, today’s society is designed for extroverts, which we can see in almost every system throughout our lives, from schools to workplaces. Almost the whole system discourages introverts to behave in their natural way. Further, society is demanding socialness and talkativeness all the time. It became a norm if you want to succeed in modern days. However, it’s not all that pessimistic as it can sound at first.

Being an Introvert Is Your Power

According to author Susan Cain, introverts are deep thinkers who contributed most of the great ideas to this world. Thus, encouraging introverts by accepting them as they are is crucial if we want to continue having revolutionary ideas and great decisions in our society.

Can you relate to this video?

There’s something special about finding quiet, alone time. Letting go of all the demands, noise, and expectations we place on ourselves, and society expects, is something totally OK to do. Finally, it’s something necessary from time to time.

Take the next 10 minutes and enjoy the solitude.

work-life balance

Work Life Balance

Do you feel overwhelmed with work? Are you constantly tired and under stress? Your boss is calling you to ask just one more question about the meeting, you’re checking your e-mails on the evenings and you can’t seem to get that huge workload out of your head? Well, you’re not alone. Many young people feel exactly like this in the 21st century. As a matter of fact, a new study shows that Canadians are feeling lower levels of satisfaction with their work-life balance in comparison with eight years ago. This is the same period in which smartphones and internet became inevitable parts of our everyday lives. Coincidence? Didn’t think so.

But let me ask you one uncomfortable question: until when are you planning to go on like this? Can you imagine yourself in 5 years feeling the same? If your answer is “Oh, hell no!”, then it’s time to reevaluate priorities and make some changes.

What Is a Work-Life Balance and How to Maintain It

Greenhaus (2002) defines work-life balance as “satisfaction and good functioning at work and at home with a minimum of role conflict”. However, the expansion of technology brought pressure for us to be available in any moment of the day. This makes your roles in the workplace and at home hard to strictly separate, creating the conflict between them. In other words, technology is making it difficult for us to unplug and separate work from home. Further, our private life is suffering, and we’re feeling stressed and unhappy. Eventually, it takes a toll on your physical and mental health.

So, how to make the balance? Is there a way to be successful and maintain a fulfilling career while having enough quality time for friends, family, partners, hobbies, and yourself? Yes, there is. It is understandable that people may find it hard to find this balance, especially if they are used to working in an office environment. But it is not impossible to do. With articles such as How to Maximize Remote Working Experience During COVID-19 and these tips provided below, finding that work-life balance may be a lot easier to introduce to your daily routine. Additionally, some people actually prefer working from home. They find that they have a little bit more flexibility and many of them find that they can focus on their tasks more at home. Companies are allowing more people to work from home these days, especially if they’re using software from Mirantis (https://www.mirantis.com/software/docker/docker-enterprise/), for example. That software allows workers to access their work anywhere, meaning that more people can work from the comfort of their homes. However, this means that people do have to establish a work-life balance. You can get loads of advice about working from home especially due to Covid-19, where most people have been made to work from home, and therefore have to deal with their work-life crossing over with their home life. These tips will help you to get on with the work while working from home so you can meet all your goals, and attempt to assist you in limiting your distractions.

1. Let go of perfectionism – perfectionism was useful when we were kids, because it helped us stay on top of our obligations and get good grades. However, as you grow up, life becomes much more complicated, and in these circumstances, making everything perfect is often impossible. It’s the habit that works against you; the soon you learn to let it go, the better. This, of course, doesn’t mean to get sloppy and to stop caring about the way you do your job; it just means that you should strive for greatness, but not for perfection.

2. Unplug – Turn off your devices! Every time you jump to respond to that e-mail or the phone call from work while you’re at home, you’re sending the message to your brain that what’s happening at work while you’re not there is extremely important and that something catastrophic can happen if you don’t answer. But that’s irrational belief; if you stop for a second to think about it, you’ll realize it. But every time you decide to turn off your smartphone and make yourself unavailable for the next few hours, you’re sending yourself the message that your well-being and maintaining your relationships are valuable. Eventually, you’ll feel more in control of your time and your life.

3. Exercise and Meditate – Working out and sitting in silence are two incredibly powerful methods of taking control of your thoughts. If your mind is constantly shifting towards your work, practicing mindful meditation can do wonders for training yourself to stay in the moment and enjoy it. Further, exercise is proven to boost your mood; it’s an instant fix against feeling stressed or overwhelmed. If exercise and meditation don’t give you the desired effects that you were after, then don’t hesitate in trying an alternative method.

4. Limit Time-Wasting Activities and People – How many times have you caught yourself endlessly scrolling through social media, and feeling miserable after that? Or you said ‘yes’ to hanging out with people who are drowning your energy? Identify the bad habits you have that are swallowing your quality time and try to eliminate them. Next, make a list of priorities – what are the things you enjoy the most? Then devote your quality time to high-priority people and activities on your list.

5. Change the structure of your life – If there’s something that cuts your precious time, try to reorganize things a little. You don’t have to do everything by yourself; this is the perfect opportunity to soften the grip around the need to control everything and delegate part of your obligations to someone else. This way, you’ll make room for your higher priorities.

6. Start Small. Build From There. – Don’t put too high expectations in front of yourself. Start one thing at a time; and reward yourself for every small step you take toward your goal. Why don’t you start with this list? Trying to accomplish everything at once and create a work-life balance in a short period of time would be impossible, and you would soon end up frustrated and disappointed. So, one step at a time. Moving slowly is completely alright.

Be gentle with yourself, you’re doing great. Take care.

Reference:

http://www.gmferd.com/journalcra.com/sites/default/files/Download%20579.pdf

How to Improve Your Romantic Relationship

I’m eager to share a link by Brendon Burchard, who is one of the leading speakers and experts in personal development and motivation. In his video, titled “How To Improve Your Relationship”, he discusses a few great points, which I’ll outline below.

One of the first key points he makes is that it’s easy for people to fall in love, but very quickly, they lose the intention of working together in the same pure way which drove the couple together in the first place.

To help us, he identifies 3 intentions we can make on a regular basis:

1) Attention

We are social creatures! Life is so full of distractions. We have conditioned ourselves to habitually disregard those around us. We are engaged with our phones, iPads, and everything else around us that so few of us have real connections.

One of the most heartfelt ways of giving attention is to be fully present. Give that person you’re with your full attention. Lock your phone away and Make eye contact.

As he says, take a few hours and learn to be human again!

“You have to have the intention to give extraordinary amounts of attention.”

2) Give more appreciation

Learn to make your partner feel appreciated. Giving compliments and practicing gratitude are great habits for relationships. Appreciating the things they do, as well as the things they don’t do. Unconditionally appreciating the person you’re with rather than showing appreciation with gifts.

“The magical part of a relationship is having someone you can pitch and catch with.”

3) Adoration

Show more attention and appreciation to that person you’re with. It’s a give-and-take. As you both start to turn towards each other (phrased from Dr. Gottman), you’ll work together as a team, and feel more magic in your relationship.

As a bonus, here is an awesome video about how to improve your relationship: