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Kids outside of the box are our teachers

Susan Hyatt, owner of Ideal Life Design, is certified in an elite coaching style, developed by Dr. Martha Beck, life coach to the Oprah Show and O Magazine. Through innovative coaching techniques, clients are able to identify goals, rem...

A family plan to treat ADHD

My six year old son was on the verge of expulsion, and the diagnosis of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) burned on his shirt like the Scarlet Letter. Desperate to save his short academic career, self-esteem and my sanity, we engaged in a remarkable journey that has made our family grateful for a label that, at first, seemed like a death sentence.

Take Back Your Power

You are in charge. Many parents assume that educators, physicians, other parents and the butcher know more about how to raise their children than they do. Especially when dealing with a diagnosis, knowledge is power. Learn as much as you can about your options. Even if the teacher has taught school since the beginning of time, or your doctor has the highest of degreed credentials, you have intimate knowledge of your child, and that trumps all else.

Read books, surf the internet and talk to other parents with ADHD children. Visit to find a local support group of parents of ADHD children. Give yourself permission to try, fail and try again. Eventually, you will find a creative fusion of tools that will work for your family. What may have seemed like the end of the world is a new beginning.

Develop a behavior plan

Have a clear plan for consequences and rewards. As you might have already noticed from the stack of demerits from school, the intensity and intellect of ADHD kids cause traditional parenting and discipline methods to fail miserably.

Our shift from traditional parenting to structured, positive feedback has alleviated frustration and nurtured Ryan's self-esteem at warp speed. There are positive discipline methods that truly work, and can turn the label and negative connotations on their heads. Transforming the Difficult Child, by Howard Glasser and 1-2-3 Magic by Thomas Phelan are both must-read books to consult when shaping your behavior plan.

Weighing your options and aligning with your child's school >
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