An ADHD coach should empower you to design a distinctly you-shaped “a life that fits”
As an ADHD coach, I see my role as having three main functions:
- Help you gain awareness of how ADHD and executive function challenges show up in your life, today and across your life
Hold this insight alongside your strengths and successes
Based upon this awareness of your strengths and challenges, partner with you to design helpful systems, structures and rituals to help you move towards your goals and manage life in an easier way.
- The coaching process is not prescriptive. There’s no “this is the right way to do ADHD”. The goal of my work with ADHD clients is not to impose systems that will make that person neurotypical.
- I see my clients as already “naturally creative, resourceful and whole”. This means I partner with clients to shine a light on what they know about themselves and deepen this awareness.
What to expect from an ADHD coaching partnership
- Any actions you agree on trying will be your choice and we will check that they directly support your goals and growth. They are designed to simplify your life, not add complications
- We learn from the actions you agree to take not just when they’re “successful” and also (sometimes especially) when they’re not! Be willing to report back on what worked and what didn’t.
- Don’t expect a full life overhaul in a few sessions. It tends to be a part of the ADHD experience that we want to control+alt+delete, fresh start and implement a magical perfect plan that will solve all our problems. If that was going to work, it would have by now! Progress happens one action, one behaviour, one routine, and one insight at a time.
What happens in an ADHD coaching session?
Our first coaching session is an intake session. We’ll look at:
- Your ADHD history and how executive function challenges show up for you
- What’s going well, including your performance and character strengths
- Current supportive systems and people
- What’s getting in your way
- Main areas you’d like to improve (perhaps using that four letter world GOAL)
The structure of subsequent sessions may look like this :
- We’ll check in on how your week was and how you went on the actions or strategies you agreed upon the week before.
- We’ll establish our coaching focus for the session. This could be something currently pressing, or a piece of a long-term goal or project.
- We’ll explore the topic together.
- We’ll create an action plan that takes into account what you know about yourself, and anything that might get in your way.
- We’ll chat about accountability
- We’ll recap and highlight new insights gained in the session.
How to get the most out of ADHD coaching
- Show up warts and all. Of course we all want others to think of well of us, but it wastes time and energy. I assure you that you can’t shock me. ADHD coaching is a judgment free zone. If you’re worried about what your coach thinks about you and censoring your experience, your learning can be slower. I’m on your side, so you might as well show up completely as yourself!
- Be curious, not critical. Go easy on yourself. ADHD coaching involves engaging in a period of deep awareness and change. Most people with ADHD have a finely honed and very mean inner critic. Your ADHD coach will call out that critic when it shows up. If we can instead engage our “keen observer”, zoom out and be interested in what we notice, we can make a lot of progress.. Look for patterns, consequences, insights. They’re there!
- Experiment! Be willing to try new behaviors and make mistakes. Top performers practice and rehearse. You won’t know if something works until you swing the bat. Instead of finding reasons not to swing, focus on what happens when you do.
- Commit to self-care practices. Get the exercise, sleep, nutrition and mindful moments that your mind and body need. Expect to be asked about this early on in coaching.