Q: Dear Dr. Nowell,
I am an eighth-year student working on a Ted Talk style presentation. I have decided to study the causes of procrastination and how motivation can solve the problem...What motivates people to get objectives done?
A: Hi - what an interesting project! Dopamine is the brain's chemical messenger of motivation and reward. When we think of something we are looking forward to - really visualize it and hear it and smell it and feel it - we activate dopamine in our own brains.
In my clinical work, as in the ADHD workshops, I emphasize an approach to diagnosis and treatment which I describe as:
- and nonjudgmental
Bycurious, I mean this: approach each client or student with fresh eyes, inquiring deeply into the "how" rather than the "why" of behavior.
Compassionstarts with the assumption that we're all cut from the same cloth. When I think I am somehow essentially different from a client I cease to be therapeutically or diagnostically useful.
January of last year I committed to giving Gmail a try. Finally. And I wrote a little update on thathere
Glad I did, it's a much better service than what I was using before. I've played around withSaneBox
(didn't like it) andKeyRocket
For 2015? I'm givingBoomerang
a try. I'm using it as a Chrome extension but I believe it works with other browsers as well. Basically, it's a way schedule emails back to your inbox at a later time, and a way to schedule later delivery for your outgoing emails (maybe queue up a bunch of emails on Friday afternoon and schedule Monday morning delivery?
This morning I had a chance to speak with the fantastic staff
Special Needs Horseback Riding Program in Lincoln,
Mass. Also met a couple of beautiful horses
and two very cool dogs.
We discussed the challenges of being sure that we’ve identified
treatment goals which are developmentally appropriate and reasonable and
attainable for a specific client. And we agreed that the ways in which we and
our clients’ families conceptualize behavioral strengths and weaknesses is
crucial in developing supports and managing our own stress in these unique
Re-reading a book I'd half-finished and stuffed in a box -The Other 90%
by Robert Cooper. Super quote about passion (whichof course
makes me think of dopamine, executive functioning, etc etc).
One of the simplest ways to increase passion is by noticing where it's hiding in the midst of your busy life. What do you love enough to do for free? What gives you so much enjoyment that you yearn to do more of it? What were your childhood dreams? What do you get the biggest kick out of doing – even if you're not great at doing it?
Join me this Friday (12/5/2014) for aworkshop at Assumption College in Worcester Mass.
Executive Function: Effective Strategies and Interventionswill offer a quick overview of the neuroanatomy of executive functioning (EF) and then we'll zip through a couple of current models of EF for clinical and classroom application.
We'll spend most of our time, though, on practical hands-on strategies for managing executive dysfunction in home, clinic, and school settings.
One of the key take-away skills will be an easy and compassionate (and fun) meta-cognition support tool called Strategic Behavioral Inquiry.
- folks with ADD and ADHD are more likely to have broken sleep
architecture, referring to those nice 90 minute cycles of deeper sleep
punctuated by lighter sleep and dreaming?
- students with ADD are more likely to
have night wakings, delayed sleep onset, even nightmares and sleep walking. And
on top of that, what’s more interesting at 10pm than getting to bed? Answer:
- and on top of that, folks with ADHD are often using stimulant medication
which, for some, may delay sleep onset.
Hooray for exercise
Did you know that
- adults report better mood and perform
better on measures of cognitive functioning after a period of physical activity
and the benefits last for hours?
- exercise actually has an
- for older adults, exercise has protective properties for
brain functions. (Physical activity, typically three times a week about half an
hour, increases brain derived neurotrophic factor which helps protect the hippocampus
which is so important for laying down new memories.
So this morning I offered a training on Personality Disorders, including an overview of the DSM-5 alternative model. Our focus was on the impact of these disorders on the disability review process.
Click through the slides and leave your comments or questions or observations in the comments below. If you think a similar training would be a good match for your team, contact me
And P.S. - hope to see you at an
Hey kids - I was doing a websearch this afternoon for resources on this topic, and thought I'd share a couple of good ones with you guys. Also (pretty) please (with sugar) pass on to me any good stuff you've got on the ADHD and HR theme.
"...looking back, I see that I performed very differently for different kinds of bosses. The ADD friendly bosses all had similar profiles and so did I when I worked for them.