ADHD Essentials
COVID Q&A with ADHD Coaches Lollie Weeks and Kyra Todd

COVID Q&A with ADHD Coaches Lollie Weeks and Kyra Todd

April 2, 2020

Today's episode features Lollie Weeks of Fast Brain Coaching and Kyra Todd of Northern Virginia Coaching Solutions.  Lollie and Kyra joined me for an impromptu Q&A to help us better manage the challenges that COVID-19, learning and working from home are causing for families.  I hope you find it useful. 

 

Check out the online learning support program Lollie has created here! 

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Creativity and Confidence Born of Big Passions and Small Wins with Roxanne Jarrett, Educator, Artist, Creativity Coach, and Mom with ADHD.

Creativity and Confidence Born of Big Passions and Small Wins with Roxanne Jarrett, Educator, Artist, Creativity Coach, and Mom with ADHD.

March 27, 2020

As promised, as normal episode.  :)

In today’s episode, we’re talking to Roxanne Jarrett.  Roxanne is a coach, educator, multi-disciplined artist, and mother with ADHD. Who believes that consistent creativity can be a powerful affirmation of our own unique contributions to the world, and evidence of our self-worth. Her mission is to help people build and maintain feelings of self-value through creative accomplishments. 

Today, Roxanne and I talk about the benefits of understanding the needs of the people we are caring for, why  we should push our kids in the directions of their passions (even when it’s hard), how short-term goals fuel our pursuit of long-term goals, why putting our adult ambitions on our kids is inappropriate, and the power of theater arts.

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An Overview of COVID-19 with Dr. Carolyn Lentzsch-Parcells, Pediatrician.

An Overview of COVID-19 with Dr. Carolyn Lentzsch-Parcells, Pediatrician.

March 26, 2020

Dr. Carolyn Lentzsch-Parecalls is a pediatrician based in Texas who is confronting COVID-19 full on in her practice.   She's one of the most intelligent, driven, and determined people I know.  So, I was overjoyed when I found out she wanted to come on the show to talk about the virus and its fallout.

In today’s episode, Dr. Lentzsch-Parecalls gives us an overview of the COVID-19 Pandemic.  We discuss where to get reliable information, why social/physical distancing matters, way to maintain support for your mental health (including medication), maintaining our social relationships, the impact of the virus on our medical infrastructure, and medical community, and a lot more.  It's a fairly quick episode, but it's packed with ideas and information.

P.S.  The promised Q&A will likely post this weekend, so there's still time to get questions to me.  Send them to:  brendan@ADHDessentials.com.

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Thoughts on Self-Care During COVID-19

Thoughts on Self-Care During COVID-19

March 20, 2020

What's Up Team!?!

There are a lot of different ideas in my head.  Lots of topics to address.  My skill set, professional experience, and educational background make me uniquely qualified to handle some of the problems we’re facing right now in the shadow of COVID-19.  Obviously, I’m not a doctor, but the challenges around maintaining our mental health, homeschooling, working from home and parenting during this time?  Those I can handle.

I think the most important place to start, though, is to remind all of us (me included) that self-care matters. Take the time to care for yourself and your family.  That matters more than school, or work, or cleaning out your closets.

  • Watch an extra episode of your favorite TV show together.
  • Go for a walk.
  • Call a friend. (Or Skype with them!)
  • Eat the cookie.

 

Also, set healthy boundaries around your social media and news consumption.  It’s easy to get overwhelmed by all the information available to us.  Especially because we’re at home, with easy access to it, and little pressure to avoid the rabbit holes. 

  • Limit how much time you spend on social media
  • Remember that when you are on there, you’re seeing other people’s highlight reels. Don't compare other people’s highlight reels to your blooper reel.  They have a blooper reel, too.  It’s just not on Facebook.  (And it’s definitely not in Instagram!)

    That post your friend shared about the amazing project their kids did this week?  It didn’t happen.  Not like you think.  Those kids got a ton of help, and mom’s fried because of it.  She’s as burnt out as you are.  You just can’t tell because she keep smiling in all the pictures.

  • Also, remember that the news is for profit. It’s designed to get ratings. And the best way to keep you watching is to elicit strong emotions.  Fear, anger, concern, that sort thing.  Those emotions aren’t helping you.  Turn off the news, and be targeted in your consumption.  Pick a few reliable, well-established news outlets, like NPR, the Associated Press, the Wall Street Journal, or the New York Times, and visit their sites once or twice a day at most to get updates.  Don’t overwhelm yourself with constant monitoring.

 

And speaking of boundaries, set some for you expectations of yourself and your kids, too.  Your kids are just as anxious as you are, if not more so.  That means they’re going to make mistakes, and get frustrated and sad, and angry.  Don’t take it personally, but help them bounce back.  And frame social distancing so they know it’s not a time to be scared.  Social distancing right now is like looking both ways before you cross the street.  We don’t do it because we’re scared, we do it because it’s a strategy to keep us safe. 

As for yourself, set reasonable expectations.  You’re not going to do all the things you think you’re going to do. 

You don’t need to be all things to all people.  You don’t have to be a great spouse, and a great friend, and a great parent, and a great homeschool teacher, and a great housekeeper. Allow yourself to be thoroughly ok at some of them, the important ones, and crappy at the rest.  Support those who need it if you can, but pace yourself to keep some gas in your tank. 

If I’m honest, this is a lesson I’ve had to learn over the last few days.  Because I know ways to navigate this situation, I feel very much like I should be helping everyone else.  And because it feels urgent, I want to help everyone RIGHT NOW!  I want to post a podcast episode every day, and start a YouTube channel to share tips and strategies that I know will help.  But to do that, I would have to ignore my own family.  I just can’t drop the ball on my kids to help everyone else with theirs, and then claim I know how to be a good parent.  I have to prioritize the important over the urgent. 

So, here’s how I’m going to do that.  I’m wrapping this episode here.  But I will post at least twice next week – somewhere in the middle of the week, I will post a COVID-19 tip show for those who want the help.  And on Friday, I will post an interview episode like usual for those that want a break from all this.

If you’re anything like many of the folks I’ve been in contact with, you probably fall into both of those groups.  If there’s anything specific about maintaining our mental health, homeschooling, working from home, or parenting during this time you want me to address, send an email to Brendan@ADHDessentials.com, and I’ll address your concern on the mid-week show.

 That said, this is going to pass.  Things will be okay.  Take care of yourselves, and each other.  And give yourselves and each other the grace to make mistakes, feel uncertain, and be not-quite-good enough.  That’s where ADHD lives, after all.  Our comfort in that space might just help us navigate this uncertain time more effectively than others.

Again, email me at Brendan@ADHDessentials.com if you have any questions you want me to address in the mid-week show.  I’m here to help.   I love you all, I believe in you.  We can handle this.  Together.

COVID-19 & What to Do When You and Your Kids are Stuck in the House with Dr. Sharon Saline, Clinical Psychologist and ADHD Expert

COVID-19 & What to Do When You and Your Kids are Stuck in the House with Dr. Sharon Saline, Clinical Psychologist and ADHD Expert

March 13, 2020

Today's episode starts with my thoughts about COVID-19, and how to respond to it.  (Like ordering a bidet!)  I hope you find them useful, and maybe even a little reassuring.

After that, we’re talking to my friend, Dr. Sharon Saline.  Dr. Saline is a licensed, clinical psychologist specializing in ADHD, and the author of “What Your ADHD Child Wishes You Knew”.

In today’s episode, Sharon and I are talking about what to do when your kids are cooped up at home.  We did the interview through the lens of a snow day, but it works for quarantine and social distancing, too!  There’s a lot of really good information and ideas in here.  I hope you enjoy it, and I hope you’re able to navigate the current pandemic with as much ease and grace as possible.

 

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The Benefits and Pitfalls of Technology and ADHD with Brittany Smith of Devise and Conquer

The Benefits and Pitfalls of Technology and ADHD with Brittany Smith of Devise and Conquer

March 6, 2020

Today, we’re talking to Brittany Smith of Devise and Conquer!  Brittany is a cognitive neuroscientist, coach, and computer enthusiast. She specializes in helping people get their work done: better, more efficiently, and more enjoyably.

In today’s episode, we’re talking about the pitfalls and benefits of smartphones for people with ADHD.  We look at ways to determine what your goals are for your smartphone, managing notifications to increase our available willpower, the importance of turning off autoplay, the affect social media can have on our mood, and best practices for setting up your phone.

 

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How to Play with Your Kid with Megan Vandersluys, Play Therapist

How to Play with Your Kid with Megan Vandersluys, Play Therapist

February 28, 2020

Today, we’re talking to Megan Vandersluys.  Megan is a therapist with over a decade of experience, who specializes in play therapy services for children, as well as providing support for their parents.  

In today’s episode, we’re talking about Play Therapy, and how to more effectively play with our kids. Megan discusses how video games factor into play therapy, the importance of “getting back into our bodies”, co-regulation and modeling through verbal awareness, and how to enter the child’s world.

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Two Good Things One Thing You Would Change If You Could at Disney, with Brendan Mahan Your Traveling Talker

Two Good Things One Thing You Would Change If You Could at Disney, with Brendan Mahan Your Traveling Talker

February 21, 2020

In today's episode, I share an exercise called "Two Good Things, One Thing You'd Change if You Could" that can be used for debriefing family adventures, events, and vacations.  

During the episode, I share some reflections on my family's recent once-in-a-lifetime Disney vacation, as well as the tale of my stolen $200.

 

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Bids and Turning Towards with Dr. Don Cole, Clinical Director for The Gottman Institute

Bids and Turning Towards with Dr. Don Cole, Clinical Director for The Gottman Institute

February 14, 2020

Today, we’re talking to Dr. Don Cole.  Dr. Cole is the Clinical Director for The Gottman Institute, a Certified Gottman Method Couples’ Therapist and a Master Trainer for the Gottman Institute. He is also a Clinical Member of the American Association of Marital and Family Therapists.

In today’s episode, Dr. Cole talks to us about how we can improve the quality of our relationships by responding effectively to bids for connection, and turning towards the people we care about.

 

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Guarding Your Yes with René Brooks of Black Girl, Lost Keys

Guarding Your Yes with René Brooks of Black Girl, Lost Keys

February 7, 2020

Today, we’re talking to René Brooks of Black Girl Lost Keys.

Diagnosed with ADHD on three separate occasions, René is a friend of the pod, and a friend of mine, who has made it her mission to uplift others with ADHD. 

In today’s episode, René shares with us her new mantra (and her new workbook), “Guard Your Yes”.  We talk about the interplay between values and boundaries, the roles people pleasing and ADHD play in causing us to overtax ourselves, why would should expect both push back and a new sense of self-respect when we start guarding our yes.

 

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