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Monday, November 11, 2013

Uniquely competent, Resourceful and Whole with Learning Disabilities

Assume your child is Uniquely Competent, Resourceful and Whole. 

What would be different for you and your child if you fully embodied this outlook? Stop and think about the impact you could have if you really held this belief. As a parent you can set the emotional stage around many aspects of your child’s life, including their learning issue. The attitude you choose can have a profound and lasting influence on how you and your child deal with day-to-day challenges and longer-term attitudes around their learning disability.

Would changing your outlook around your child's learning disability help your child? Here is how to do just that!      

1.    Notice when you feel like your child is NOT Uniquely Competent, Resourceful and Whole

Catch yourself in the act of feeling bad, angry or upset about learning issues your child experiences. This can show up as an internal voice saying things like “ Why do I have a child with learning issues?” “Will he ever get this right?” “I feel so sorry for her.” It takes some practice to catch yourself listening to the “negative” thought playing in your head. If you listen closely, you will hear it. The trick is to catch the internal voice and be aware of it.

Having these thoughts is normal AND not very helpful. We all have negative internal voices but we don’t have to let them rule the day! Shifting your attitude can be as simple as replacing the “negative” thought you have with a more helpful and positive thought. This approach is like building a muscle. It hurts and doesn’t work very well at first...You must keep at it to make a difference.

2.    Review all of your child’s life – not just the hard parts.

There are many aspects to a young persons life. Are you to focused on the areas that are difficult, challenging and feel like they are not working? Shifting your focus to an area that is working can build confidence and determination. Feeling good at something builds resilience. Resilience gets stored like energy in a battery. This energy is then ready to be used for a more challenging task. Focusing on areas that are working is a resilience builder!

3.    Don't over look Unique Talents

Unique Talents are a storehouse for positivity! Engage your child’s unique talents no matter how crazy it may seem. A little girl I knew, loved to get dressed up with fancy shoes and a pretty dress for dinner and have “talk time” with her family. The parents indulged her unique talent of bringing the family together once a week. 20 years later this young woman runs a social media department for a major leading brand! She has always loved bringing people together and her parents supported the importance of her belief. Nurturing Unique Talents does make a difference!

4.    Help your children learn to be resourceful

Someone who is resourceful will reach out when they need help. Reaching out is the capacity to ask others for help or advice. A person with learning issues often has key people to reach out to that help with all kinds of things. For instance, reaching out for help to find computer programs that can aid with mathematics, writing and organization for people with learning issues. Teaching your child who to go to for help and when to go for help is a great way to be resourceful so challenges don’t become problems.

Parents help children learn how to feel good about themselves by learning to manage their own lives and feel good about the decisions they make. How the parent feels about a child’s learning issue is contagious. In order to help create strong self-esteem a parent can adopt the attitude that their child is Uniquely Competent, Resourceful and Whole just the way they are!

Tune in next time for how to teach good decision making!

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