Executive Functioning

I am ready to tear my hair out over my impaired executive functioning. Before I realized I was autistic, I didn't know why I had such a difficult time setting priorities and all the sub-priorities and categories and how to get things done. Now that I understand executive dysfunction better I can see that it is probably the most influential and integral contribution to my daily problems that clog up my head and get my anxiety and loss of self-esteem going.

I suspect that in earlier days I got by just on tons of energy and excitement and commitment to what I wanted to do. But now I am older and I don't seem to have the energy for all that. And I also think the dysfunction is getting worse. At least, it isn't getting better.

So, the overarching problem over the past year or two has been: I can get my work done (at least mostly) OR I can do the things that bring me joy. I don't have time and energy for both.

My challenge: improve my executive functioning.

I just took a class on how executive functioning works (biologically) and what interventions (pharmacology, behavior management, etc.) seem to improve or at least stave off the disintegration of executive dysfunction . Interestingly, the most potent preservative of executive function is: Exercise. and then also, freeing one's mind of all the worrying and chaotic self-talk that goes on inside the mind. And also, the most effective way to install and keep a new habit is to work on only one habit at a time.

So I have ditched WW and noom and will forget about restrictive dieting. I will work on only one thing and that is walking. I have found a great little app that does nothing except set walking goals. The smart phone itself counts steps and also times the walks and talks to you regarding warming up, moderate pace, cooling down, etc. And it will play your music the same time. It even has a program for old people, although it is named so euphemistically I didn't know what it was at first. I have been using this for 5 days and so far, so good.

This afternoon I was distressed over my inability to think about how best to spend about 2 hours of my time. Work (and get a couple of things off my desk?) clean house (I hate to do this, but my house is yukky), or go out in the beautiful sunshine and sit in a blind for a couple of hours (wonderful).

I corralled my assistant to help me finish filling out a Plan of Remediation (in my recent audit, my score was 99.3%, but anything less than 100% requires a plan.) This is required and exceedingly important to keeping my contract. Then I finished completing an evaluation and post test for a six hour continuing education course (also required for my contract.)

I ended up feeling better about my choices. And decided to put this down on paper and post it.

Other input on this topic is greatly appreciated.

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Comments

  • @blazingstar said:

    I just took a class on how executive functioning works (biologically) and what interventions (pharmacology, behavior management, etc.) seem to improve or at least stave off the disintegration of executive dysfunction . Interestingly, the most potent preservative of executive function is: Exercise. and then also, freeing one's mind of all the worrying and chaotic self-talk that goes on inside the mind. And also, the most effective way to install and keep a new habit is to work on only one habit at a time.

    Crazy stuff, here. Exercise, to help in managing life, comes up every fracking place!
    I have realised, relatively recently, how important exercise is in establishing a person's emotional stability.

    I have heard it said for years, but didn't act on it, for a long time.
    I'm surprised, but not surprised, that you have found it helpful with Executive Dysfunction.

    I am a big-time advocate of examining what goes on in our subconscious mind chatter, through Metacognition, and actively program/reprogram myself into avoiding negative internal thinking with positive, realistic, reality-based thoughts instead, such as how brilliant I am in everything. 😎

    Now that I am off caffeine, and reducing my sugar levels, I might actually be able to engage in meditation techniques to help clear the mind of 'noise'.
    When I was on a 1.25 litre of coke a day, it was never going to happen, for me.

  • SheldonSheldon Citizen
    edited November 2020

    @blazingstar said:

    So I have ditched WW and noom and will forget about restrictive dieting. I will work on only one thing and that is walking. I have found a great little app that does nothing except set walking goals. The smart phone itself counts steps and also times the walks and talks to you regarding warming up, moderate pace, cooling down, etc. And it will play your music the same time. It even has a program for old people, although it is named so euphemistically I didn't know what it was at first. I have been using this for 5 days and so far, so good.

    Don't get me wrong, I have a long way to go in taming my Executive Dysfunction, but I too have found that walking is a brilliant way to enhance the quality of 'one's' life.

    I started off walking the kids 15 minutes a day, and even that gave me aches and pains, for a week or so, in the begining.
    "No pain, no gain", as they say.

    Now I can easily do 2 hours of power-walking/marching, in winter. The hot weather, here, has limited me to only early morning walks which haves that time, but still, a brisk hour and 10 minutes a day is still doing the job in terms of blood-sugar and presumably blood-pressure, now that I am sweating so much salt out of my system. 😎

    I actually bought myself a walkman and downloaded military marching songs. It puts you in the mood to exert 'oneself' 😎

    BTW, I have been advised not to jog, bc of the damage to the joints, eventually.

  • Years before I was diagnosed with Asperger's I did a time limited free cognitive test mentioned at schizophrenia dot com. I scored average or above at everything but EF. For that I was 1.5 to 2 SD below 100. My main EF problems are organising and planning I'm not at all good when it comes to multi step tasks.

  • @blazingstar said:
    Interestingly, the most potent preservative of executive function is: Exercise. **and then also, freeing one's mind of all the worrying and chaotic self-talk that goes on inside the mind. ** And also, the most effective way to install and keep a new habit is to work on only one habit at a time.

    While I never connected exercise with executive function, I am of course, aware of the other benefits of regular exercise. What I accidentally found is that strenuous exercise (I don't recommend this if you're not used to it) is also going to empty my mind and quiet the chattering monkey. When I up the effort and concentrate on form, it's like there are no mental resources left for anything else and I exist strictly as a physical being, in harmony with my body, in an almost zen-like state (I seem to remember you used to go canoeing, people who regularly practised a sport will know what I'm talking about).

    Not sure what happens to my mind during this state but it's very much like a reset button and I do it religiously because even a 1-week break will make me disorganised and irritable.

    Also, I concur on forming one habit at the time - I've got good results using a habit app, but only after I stopped trying to do everything at once. If you're motivated by being able to track and visualise progress, I recommend one of those "don't break the chain" habit apps, you can set them to do something only 3 or 5 days a week if you want, it doesn't have to be every day (many apps are free btw, I'm not trying to sell anything).

  • @firemonkey said:
    Years before I was diagnosed with Asperger's I did a time limited free cognitive test mentioned at schizophrenia dot com. I scored average or above at everything but EF. For that I was 1.5 to 2 SD below 100. My main EF problems are organising and planning I'm not at all good when it comes to multi step tasks.

    Is it easier if someone else helps you organise the steps and you only need to follow them?

  • I used to be a jogger and weight lifter and then ended up with a crippling condition no one could diagnose. I’ve never been able to get back in shape and that was 25 years ago. It does clear one’s mind.

    The interesting thing about this class...it was taught by a neurobiologist...was he reviewed all the data on the various things thought to preserve executive function...drugs, diet, etc. but the only variable that reliably showed improvement was exercise.

  • Sheldon, I’ve been doing metacognition since I was a child. I didn’t know others didn’t do it until college age when I finally learned to stop talking about it. I didn’t know it had a name until I read about it on WP. It’s really the only way I survived and also how I learned to mask. I see this now only in retrospect.

    When you begin any program to still your mind, your mind won’t be still. You have to practice a long time till it comes. It can also help to do it in a group of similarly motivated people. Buddhists have a sangha. Unprogrammed Quakers have silent Meetings. I’m sure there must be other practitioners.

  • Bender, the class also worked on the neurobiology of habit. I could look for another app. Right now the walking app meets my needs. Simple. Direct. Walk every day. I had to do that with jogging. It was everyday or the habit started to weaken.

  • @blazingstar said:
    I used to be a jogger and weight lifter and then ended up with a crippling condition no one could diagnose. I’ve never been able to get back in shape and that was 25 years ago. It does clear one’s mind.

    I'm sorry to hear that, I'm sure you explored all possible avenues, so I won't make any suggestions.

    The interesting thing about this class...it was taught by a neurobiologist...was he reviewed all the data on the various things thought to preserve executive function...drugs, diet, etc. but the only variable that reliably showed improvement was exercise.

    It is interesting, and I've never heard it before. While exercise is always recommended in a general way, maybe this kind of specific information would help more with autistic people who are resistant to what they might see as "vague" information.

    Re habit-forming - what you have seems more than adequate, I was exploring different types of habits with mine. Especially with things that I want to do regularly but not every day, it was more difficult for me to keep track and turn it into routine.

  • AmityAmity Administrator, Citizen

    Executive functioning... There have been days where Ive been so frustrated with my brain, to know what needs to be done, but to know that my functioning is at its limit. I was aware of it as a teenager, but it became more significant as a young adult and impacted in real life ways. I have a lot less brain fog since I cut out gluten.

    Exercise does appear to be essential in so many ways, its that mind body connection that it regulates.

    I go through spurts of exercising these days, but I made walks into a daily habit when my dogs lived with me.

  • JesterJimJesterJim Citizen
    edited November 2020

    My executive functioning varies if I am not stressed or burning out it is quite high and I am extremely sharp and analytical.

    When I am overworked gradually over a period of months my functioning starts to erode and I feel more autistic and my symptoms worsen and worsen.

    I can stave things of a bit for a while by being strategic and trying to predict in advance how much left I have to give before a full burnout and book annual leave to get 3-4 day weekend every few weeks which worked for me for a while but in my case for the first time ever I have requested a sick note to take time off work as the periods of recovery have not been enough to fully recover due to the highly stressful work and social elements involved in my job so each time my battery so to speak is continuing to deplete at even lower levels resulting in gradual deteriorating functioning.

    But yes this year has been extremely stressful in a already stressful job but have managed till this point to work fulltime while being borderline burned out for extended periods of time with weekends/ occasional extended weekend to recover further between weeks.

    It is interesting how we can almost become a different person from autistic burnouts and how are symptoms become more obvious when we have no energy to mask.

    (Even though I think I mask without meaning too or with any intent)

  • AmityAmity Administrator, Citizen

    Ive been watching Gabor Maté videos a bit of late and the theme of this topic reminded me of this video ☺

  • @Bender said:

    @firemonkey said:
    Years before I was diagnosed with Asperger's I did a time limited free cognitive test mentioned at schizophrenia dot com. I scored average or above at everything but EF. For that I was 1.5 to 2 SD below 100. My main EF problems are organising and planning I'm not at all good when it comes to multi step tasks.

    Is it easier if someone else helps you organise the steps and you only need to follow them?

    It is certainly easier if that is done. I'm best if things are written down in a clear and concise manner. So I can refer and re refer.

  • @blazingstar said:
    I am ready to tear my hair out over my impaired executive functioning. Before I realized I was autistic, I didn't know why I had such a difficult time setting priorities and all the sub-priorities and categories and how to get things done. Now that I understand executive dysfunction better I can see that it is probably the most influential and integral contribution to my daily problems that clog up my head and get my anxiety and loss of self-esteem going.

    I suspect that in earlier days I got by just on tons of energy and excitement and commitment to what I wanted to do. But now I am older and I don't seem to have the energy for all that. And I also think the dysfunction is getting worse. At least, it isn't getting better.

    So, the overarching problem over the past year or two has been: I can get my work done (at least mostly) OR I can do the things that bring me joy. I don't have time and energy for both.

    My challenge: improve my executive functioning.

    I just took a class on how executive functioning works (biologically) and what interventions (pharmacology, behavior management, etc.) seem to improve or at least stave off the disintegration of executive dysfunction . Interestingly, the most potent preservative of executive function is: Exercise. and then also, freeing one's mind of all the worrying and chaotic self-talk that goes on inside the mind. And also, the most effective way to install and keep a new habit is to work on only one habit at a time.

    So I have ditched WW and noom and will forget about restrictive dieting. I will work on only one thing and that is walking. I have found a great little app that does nothing except set walking goals. The smart phone itself counts steps and also times the walks and talks to you regarding warming up, moderate pace, cooling down, etc. And it will play your music the same time. It even has a program for old people, although it is named so euphemistically I didn't know what it was at first. I have been using this for 5 days and so far, so good.

    This afternoon I was distressed over my inability to think about how best to spend about 2 hours of my time. Work (and get a couple of things off my desk?) clean house (I hate to do this, but my house is yukky), or go out in the beautiful sunshine and sit in a blind for a couple of hours (wonderful).

    I corralled my assistant to help me finish filling out a Plan of Remediation (in my recent audit, my score was 99.3%, but anything less than 100% requires a plan.) This is required and exceedingly important to keeping my contract. Then I finished completing an evaluation and post test for a six hour continuing education course (also required for my contract.)

    I ended up feeling better about my choices. And decided to put this down on paper and post it.

    Other input on this topic is greatly appreciated.

    Blaze it is so encouraging that you keep moving towards and searching for solutions and try not to stick in the problem. I also have a challenge with executive functioning due to ADD and find that if I can stick to performing a task for a month or more then it becomes a habit that I am not resistant to. I am happy you chose sitting in the sun over cleaning.

  • @Amity said:
    Executive functioning... There have been days where Ive been so frustrated with my brain, to know what needs to be done, but to know that my functioning is at its limit. I was aware of it as a teenager, but it became more significant as a young adult and impacted in real life ways._ I have a lot less brain fog since I cut out gluten._

    Exercise does appear to be essential in so many ways, its that mind body connection that it regulates.

    I go through spurts of exercising these days, but I made walks into a daily habit when my dogs lived with me.

    Bingo!

  • AmityAmity Administrator, Citizen

    @Sheldon said:

    @Amity said:
    Executive functioning... There have been days where Ive been so frustrated with my brain, to know what needs to be done, but to know that my functioning is at its limit. I was aware of it as a teenager, but it became more significant as a young adult and impacted in real life ways._ I have a lot less brain fog since I cut out gluten._

    Exercise does appear to be essential in so many ways, its that mind body connection that it regulates.

    I go through spurts of exercising these days, but I made walks into a daily habit when my dogs lived with me.

    Bingo!

    I miss bread, but other than that, there are plenty of decent GF foods available. I reckon sandwiches were the reason I had a 4 o clock slump.

  • verityverity Administrator, Citizen

    I feel you. I'm going come back to this becuase I have a lot to say. Just don't have time now, I find composing my thought hard becuase of Executive Dysfunction. I do have some coping tips.

    I was diagnosed separately with Executive Dysfunction before AS and it has been the bane of my life.

  • SheldonSheldon Citizen
    edited November 2020

    @Amity said:

    @Sheldon said:

    @Amity said:
    Executive functioning... There have been days where Ive been so frustrated with my brain, to know what needs to be done, but to know that my functioning is at its limit. I was aware of it as a teenager, but it became more significant as a young adult and impacted in real life ways._ I have a lot less brain fog since I cut out gluten._

    Exercise does appear to be essential in so many ways, its that mind body connection that it regulates.

    I go through spurts of exercising these days, but I made walks into a daily habit when my dogs lived with me.

    Bingo!

    I miss bread, but other than that, there are plenty of decent GF foods available. I reckon sandwiches were the reason I had a 4 o clock slump.

    I live off gluten-free toasted sandwiches.
    Twice the cost of normal bread, but worth it.

  • I don’t have good Executive Functioning.

    I have decent Clerk Functioning, though....

  • Self-knowledge is good.

    I took Thanksgiving Day off and it totally threw me off. In the morning, I sat on the dock and thought about what I could do that day. Pretty soon there were so many things to do that I thought I’d enjoy that there was a systems crash.

    I realized if I didn’t get up and do something...Anything!...I would end up as a puddle of goo and ruin the whole day.

  • Two recent examples of impaired executive functioning. And these problems eat up time and spoons out of my day!

    Whether to have hot chocolate with instant coffee mixed in or coffee with coconut creamer and honey. My brain weighs all kinds of variables in my head, calories, cost, flavor, my stomach condition. And none of it makes any difference.

    OR

    We get out of the hot tub. We each use our own towel to dry off. The he hangs his towel in the place where my towel hangs. This leaves me with no choice but to hang my towel in his place. Or should I remove his towel and put it in his place and put both towels back in their proper places. I can actually spend minutes on this decision and yesterday I realized how ridiculous this all is. Keep in mind too that my spouse has no idea there are any “places” where the towels “belong.” This is all in my head.

    🤪

  • My EF is most taxed in situations where I must handle novelty, or a lot of attention to social cues, or visual-motor integration. I wasn't a good general education teacher because student behavior easily frustrated me, or else I didn't notice improper behavior to correct in the first place. It was especially hard to tend to many students at once, so large classrooms were just no. That would involve problems handling novelty and social cues. As for visual-motor integration, I was a late car driver, and still require GPS or another mapping service with directions as an accommodation (unless I'm going somewhere I've been to many times, and thus have the route memorized). I also never learned to ride a bike or swim, and have a lot of trouble cooking anything that involves more than a few steps. (I was a decent athlete in team sports, however; I think certain sports like basketball, especially, are less taxing because they have a very narrow focus, the basic rules never change, and I mastered all the motor skill basics early in my childhood, so I'm more proficient.)

    Areas where my EF isn't impaired include learning passively in classroom settings, or doing tasks I'm fairly proficient at (such as the basketball example) and which don't require a lot of social/novelty/motor complexity, such as keeping a house clean. It's easy to see why I wasn't a "clear" autistic case growing up, because I was a quiet female who did well academically, always could focus fine in school, and never drew much negative attention to myself. It was only later in adulthood when the deficits I mentioned in my first paragraph became readily apparent and problematic.

  • I never heard the term EF until five years ago when I suffered my stroke. During Rehab, my Speech-Language Pathologist introduced the term when we were working on receptive language, processing sequential instructions, and using memory aids to complete tasks. When she described EF, I realised that I'd had a dysfunction in those areas all my life without knowing the name.

    Starting and finishing a task have always been very hard for me because I think in circles between ADHD and Synaesthesia, which make it difficult to sustain a train of thought. Sensory stress and overload from SPD also contribute to executive dysfunction, at least in my case, because I avoid tasks which will cause hypo or hyper stimulation. I'm very cerebral and live in my head, so it's difficult to translate a thought into physical action much like ting describes (mine is difficulty with cerebral-motor integration, rather than visual-motor).

    I also have difficulty with multi-tasking. When I do begin a task, I can be easily distracted by its subtasks, by any form of bothersome sensory input, or by common interruptions. It's very hard for me to refocus when this happens.

    I started ADHD medication in March. It's helped to improve my attention and focus for longer periods of time, and I feel slightly more physical energy overall, which is a good first step.

    I'm working toward EF strategies with my current OT. She believes that it's imperative to regulate our sensory system prior to working on executive thought. In this regard, the lizard brain or limbic system demands attention and balance to satisfy its primitive need for safety and survival, before the brain can focus on cognitive tasks. I've been working on SPD and Interoception strategies since July and I'd be interested to learn more strategies for EF that anyone is able to share.

  • verityverity Administrator, Citizen
    edited December 2020

    Ironically this process of writing has taxed me because getting my thoughts into words can be really hard, which is why this post has been delayed.

    I was once prescribed a drug called Aricept for my executive dysfunction, which is usually used to treat Alzheimers.I had the worst experience on it. The room started spinning, I was hallucinating with high this pitched screeching in my ears. It was like being on roller-coaster going really fast. I couldn't move at all, my body was stiff. My eyes were forced shut and I had no control over what was happening. Just when I thought I everything was slowing down and I was back in the room (e.g conscious), it turns out I wasn't and everything started speeding up again and my eyelids would be forced shut. This repeated countless times and I had no idea when or if it would end. Eventually I felt I may be concious, and tried my hardest to keep my eyelid open. They were dry, sand-papery and raw. I still couldn't move my body, but eventually as hyper tense muscles released I was able to lift my arms keep my eyelids open with my fingers and thumbs. One of the most scary things I have experienced.

    I can't fully blame the doctor, I as was seeking any solution available just to me and probably would have taken anything. I was also wrongly diagnosed with ADHD inattentive and the stimulant made me drowsy, especially Dexedrine.

    I was explaining thing like aphanatsia to doctors before I had head the word, and even requested functional testd but nothign useful came of it.

    I also had poor recall on demand (but good lateral/prompted recall). This has got a bit better with a lot of hard work.

    Exercise can help for sure as well as diet. I also find some stimming (e.g. repetitive humming, pacing) can help with my thought process. I also need to be free of distractions. My work area needs to have a plain background behind it and there can't bee too much in my peripheral vision.

    I also think it really important to treat or deal with any other problem stressor that would compound your executive problems.I have worked on sleep, diet, anxiety (diet also helped this).

    Working from home, all I really could to is keep persisting, keep picking myself up over an over. If you can find a occupation that can work for you all the better. I expect to get derailed even now after many year, but what I realised is getting derailed is just part of my thought process, The point is if my brain gets stuck, I take a short break, try to get back on the rails. I just have to keep on reminding myself. If I am really stuck I have move onto something else. Doesn't always work out for me, but better for trying.

    What I have found is have made some progress. There must be some neuroplasticity, becuase I was lot worse before. It is not a short term thing. and I don't pretend to understand it. I think there is a level of mental exercise that is beneficial to persist with, and times when you stop must recover. However if you stop altogether you could potentially get worse.

    Having said that I woudl kill for more capacity becuase I feel I'm not meeting my potential, what is the point of intelligence if you can't fully use it? However being hard on myself is counter productive. My working memory is not great.

    I have done some neurofeedback (and biofeedback) and I found this helped a bit. However there are people in that field who are con artists. There isn't one protocol and I wouldn't feel comfortable recommending one.

    My tip for mess is: Don't try to clean up. Instead try to put like things together. Maybe start with broader grouping of like things. Once that is done, then try an sort into more specific groups and keep going. It will be easier to understand what you have and where to clean or put way. It doesn't matter if you can't tell how long something will take, becuase if you do this it will start to get easier. Have bin in every room, anything hat can be picked out an disposed do it.

    I also recommend have sectors (not piles). So individual room are associated with certain object. If there is say a spoon in the bathroom or a sock in the kitchen, it need to be immediately moved the correct sector. It seem obvious but thing tent of pile up pretty quickly when you can't file thing easily in your brain.

    No neuropsychologist taught me these ideas, I figured it out. In fact even though they should understand what what we are missing, most of their solutions rely on capacity that isn't there.

    Disorganisation happens in the the brain not the mess they see. While I try not to rely on the floor nowadays, actually there is some logic to spreading thing across a surface, when you have problem remember where thing are especially amounts stack like collections, Then spreading everything provide a lateral and parallel way of finding something. The problem with this is is a poor use of space and surfaces are precious commodity, and loose their utility very quickly this way.

    I would say if you can live minimally, don't have more stuff then you really need, at lest have stuff not needed for every day in one room.

    Of course I don't follow this religiously, I just know what can and does work. It is always in cycles though, what matters is overall you have made some strides however small.

  • In my 47 years as a psych patient there's been very little assessment of cognition or help for such. During my 1st admission in 1975 I had to count in 7s from 100, and do digit span. That was it. At my recent video consultation I had to do a memory test. Between those times - nothing. My worst EF is organising and planning.

  • By contrast, my executive functioning works very well in an emergency. You would never believe it, but I was the co-manager of a Red Cross hurricane shelter that housed over 1000 people. I dealt with food, running out of TP, finding a cot for a literally 9 months pregnant woman, dealing with the press, with the cops, with the donations of blankets, radio stations, protecting privacy. And it was no problem. Decisions made on the fly, taking care of people.
    This is the same person who can't decide what hot drink to have in the morning. Sheesh.

  • AmityAmity Administrator, Citizen

    Wow Blaze, that is impressive! I'm good in emergency situations but not to that degree, I am strangely calm and clear headed when the situation is serious.

  • verityverity Administrator, Citizen
    edited December 2020

    Executive dysfunction is a presentation what is causing could be myriad of things it is quite complicated to know for sure.

    It could be arrested executive or hard wired who knows. It may be that the neural pathways can be rerouted to another part of the brain, that normal provides some other function..

  • DeepthoughtDeepthought Member
    edited January 10

    @verity said:
    Executive dysfunction is a presentation what is causing could be myriad of things it is quite complicated to know for sure.

    It could be arrested executive or hard wired who knows. It may be that the neural pathways can be rerouted to another part of the brain, that normal provides some other function..

    In terms of what causes executive planning disorder ~ my theory is that autism results from a high saturation of stress induced cortisol when in the womb, so that the neurological and physiological organisation develops as a permanent state of freeze, hide, flight or fight, and as such the ability to focus on a single objective goal in the present time and space remains active, whilst the ability to focus on multiple subjective goals remains latent ~ as a functional support to the singular or narrow range of focus.
    .

  • I've been on ADHD medication since last March, and working with an OT and Neuropsychiatrist for ED since the summer. Only now do I feel some benefit starting to occur. It's been a very, very slow process.

    In the past few weeks I was able to prioritise / plan / start / do / finish / evaluate tasks sequentially without excessive anxiety or procrastination. It's almost like a light switch was turned on, after a full year of active therapy.

    I agree with you @Deepthought that the mind is in a permanent state of freeze, fight, and flight when we experience ED challenges. We're stuck in our limbic brain.

    My OT began by addressing my sensory processing difficulties, to regulate my nervous system. With baby steps, we advanced toward cognitive and executive thought. I feel like I may have written this in a previous post so I won't belabour my response but I wanted to say there's hope. I'm finally starting to see the light, and I hope you will find some strategies that help you as well, @blazingstar.

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