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Monday, December 31st, 2018

Happy New Year 2019!!!

Thank you! Thank you for being a part of my community.  We work hard to bring you useful and entertaining material, but it would all be for naught if you didn’t take the time to read it. So, again, thank you, thank you, thank you.
What’s my message to you for 2019? Would you like me to have a message, or are you tired of messages? Maybe you’d prefer a couple of jokes, or a reliable cure for hiccups (the reason there are so many is that none of them is reliable), or my recipe for red beans and rice, which, honestly, is to die for. I learned it when I was in medical school at Tulane in New Orleans. Mmmmm, makes me hungry just to think about it. Or maybe you’d like another photo of our new puppy, Max, now 75 pounds, only 7 months old.
But no, I am going to send you a message. I can provide all those other options in future newsletters if you’ll write to me and tell me which you want (drhallowell@gmail.com). My message for 2019 is one I am sure you have already guessed. It is terrible that I am so predictable. The sun rises, the sun sets. Taxes are due April 14. You set off fireworks on the Fourth of July. And Ned’s message? Love, love, love.
Okay, so I say connect. Because you can’t love everyone. By the way, if you are one of those people who doesn’t know how to love, I have a guaranteed way for you to learn. This method is foolproof and will work on anyone, any age.  Get a dog. But coming back to love and connection, these are the absolute proven keys to everything that matters most in life. This is a solid fact. Health, longevity, happiness, it all comes back to love and connection (and a dog, or a cat if you must).
What do I mean by a connection? Anything you feel joined to, part of, desirous of, close to, emotionally attached to, moved by, motivated by, inspired by. Anything that gives meaning or joy to your life. A piece of music, a work of art, a football team, a meadow, the restaurant where you met the woman or man you love, the street where you found that 20-dollar bill when you really needed it, the boss who gave you a break when you really needed it, your grandmother, fudge, a funeral when it’s done right, New York at Christmas time, Cape Cod in the summer, oysters on the half shell, red beans and rice made by me, your children, the nap you take after Thanksgiving dinner, the tears you cry on someone’s shoulder, the person whose shoulder you cry on, the person who shows you how to forgive, the person who betrayed you asking for forgiveness, the light at the end of the tunnel, the single red geranium in a clay pot on the kitchen table there to greet me in the cottage I rented all by myself one summer week, heavy rain in the middle of the night when you’re in bed, any child looking up at you with trust, people over 40 who have not become cynical, my wife Sue, Tabasco, the memory of my cousin Lyn who died way too young, the sound of waves crashing onto the shore at Harding’s Beach where Lyn loved to walk, honeysuckles in Chatham, boiled lobster, my best friend Peter, playing squash, delivering babies, a straw hat with a red band, hoopla wherever it happens like at the Puerto Rican restaurant we ate at the other night, the Messiah, Fenway Park, snow before it becomes a problem, polite and humble people, the works of Samuel Johnson, every episode of Curb Your Enthusiasm, pasta, feta cheese, taramasalata, church music, Christ Church Cambridge, the memory of our dog, Ziggy, the fact that hope still does spring eternal, the works of Dav Pilkey, the Lincoln Memorial, and that we are all connected, you, and I, and all the rest of us, now and forever.
Happy 2019!
Blessings upon all of you!
Ned
Friday, December 28th, 2018

Parenting, College Support, Mindfulness and Homework Workshops in NYC

Jan 15, 2019 to Feb 19, 2019
6:30 PM to 8:00 PM United States / Eastern
$450.00 Regular Price
Hallowell NYC

Workshop info:

Scientific research shows that your mind can be trained just as your body can be trained with practice. We go to the gym to workout and strengthen our bodies. Come to this workshop to train and strengthen your mind. You will learn ADHD friendly mindfulness tools and techniques that increase your focus and ability to center yourself, calm your inner chaos, and improve your interpersonal effectiveness. You will experience an increased engagement in all aspects of your life and will be better able to manage daily stress.


Jan 14, 2019 to Feb 18, 2019
4:30 PM to 6:30 PM United States / Eastern

Coming Soon!
$750.00 Regular Price
Hallowell NYC

Come join us at the Hallowell Center for our newest 6-week group for kids ages 11 to 14 who are interested in learning more efficient ways to study, stay organized, and manage their time inside school and out.

The full 6-week package is priced at $750.00 and includes a copy of Executive Functions at Home and School: Six Skills Young Learners Need to Succeed by our own Christina Young.

To register, please contact the front desk at 212.799.7777 or info@hallowellcenter.org

 


Tuesday, January 8, 2019
6:00 PM to 8:00 PM United States / Eastern

Coming Soon!
$55.00 Regular Price
Hallowell NYC

Presented by Andrea Elrom M.A.Ed., ACC
Tips, Tools, Strategies, and Your Role – 2 Hour Workshop for Parents*

January 8, 6-8pm OR January 17, 10am-12pm

Register at info@hallowellcenter.org or by calling 212.799.7777

Workshop created by Cindy Goldrich, Ed.M., ADHD-CCSP, PTS Coaching

*please do not bring children to workshop


Monday, January 7, 2019
10:00 AM to 5:30 PM United States / Eastern
$900.00 Regular Price
Hallowell NYC

Monday, January 7, 10:00 AM to 5:30 PM

Led by Dr. Jocelyn Lichtin, PhD

This workshop is a day-long course in executive functioning and related college-readiness skills for college students with ADHD.  It derives from evidence-based – specifically, cognitive-behavioral – interventions for ADHD that have been shown to lead to significant improvements in ADHD-related symptoms and impairment.

Objective:  Students will learn strategies that lay the groundwork for positive habits, academic success, and personal growth.


Jan 7, 2019 to May 6, 2019
6:30 PM to 7:45 PM United States / Central

Coming Soon!
$300.00 Regular Price
Hallowell NYC

The DBT group is comprised of 4 four week modules for a total of 16 weeks.

Starting January 7th, 2019

Individual modules – $300 each or $900 for all 4 modules

Dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT) is a form of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy that incorporates eastern philosophies of Mindfulness and Radical Acceptance. The Hallowell Center has specifically tailored this DBT workshop to fit the needs of the ADHD population. The workshop with focus on issues that those with ADHD struggle with on a daily basis and will help participants develop strategies to help manage those struggles.

Jul 14, 2019 to Jul 19, 2019
1:00 AM to 1:00 AM United States / Eastern

Coming Soon!
$1,295.00 Regular Price
The Homestead Resort – Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore

A summer camp like none other! Families will learn, connect, and explore together in the most beautiful place in America, the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore!

To discuss how you and your family may benefit from this transformative experience, call Sue Hallowell, LICSW at (781) 820-0881.

New and returning campers welcome!
New Campers – $1295.00
Returning Campers – $795.00

Learn More!

Saturday, December 22nd, 2018

6 Ways to Give to a Special Someone This Christmas

by Rebecca Shafir, M.A.CCC Personal Development and Executive Functioning coach at the Hallowell Center MetroWest

I received many thumbs up from the last newsletter about my Uncle Charlie and folks like him. One reader was particularly articulate: “How can my children interact with their older relatives with a  memory problem? I want my kids to know that the world is not all about them, that there is much to be learned from older people, and that all relatives are to be valued, not ignored. My kids ask, ‘What’s the point? Why bother talking to Grandpa? He won’t remember anyway.’ What do I say to them?”

Now there’s good parenting! Please explain to your kids that, even although the content or the memory of the conversation may be lost, this older person will feel really good. It’s the warm hug, the sensation of someone sitting shoulder to shoulder, the eye contact, the lively chatter or experiencing something out of the ordinary that makes someone feel good. These folks won’t quite know why they are smiling more, feeling brighter and a little more energetic after the interaction. They may not be able to thank the person who made them feel this way, but their heart, soul and general physiology will get a kick up. I have no hard evidence to support this,  unless we could put a person in a PET Scan before and after a positive 15-30 minute interaction and compare the levels of brain activation. I’d wager, based on what I have observed, that the differences would be startlingly significant and possibly endure for hours.

The activities I suggest need to include some talk, close physical interaction and a strong visual component to keep them engaged. Here are some activities or conversation starters your kids can try:

  1. Bring out an old photo album and go through it with them. Fill in the details from your memory to enhance the experience.
  2. Bring out a checker board or another board game and play. Point out their good moves, or just let them win already. If they have trouble with the game, get a 2nd person in on the act to prompt them.
  3. Share some magazines on a topic of their interest − fashion magazines, or a Sports Illustrated or a National Geographic where the pictures are dramatic.
  4. Teach them how to play a simple video game where they man the controls. Keep it simple and fun.
  5. Let them tell you stories of the war, or when they were kids. Forget yourself and get into their movie, try to see and feel the experience as they describe it.
  6. Download a video of a Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin or some famous singer from their youth in concert and sing along. Karaoke works great even if they can’t read the lyrics! Put a microphone in their hand and watch them become a superstar!

Have a back up activity in case the one you chose doesn’t pan out. Either way, your effort is one of kindness and affection. Better than a present or money, the gift of your time, gratitude and attention is what Christmas or any family gathering is all about.

Happy Holidays, Merry Christmas and Happy New year to you all!

Rebecca Shafir

 

 

Tuesday, November 27th, 2018

Adult ADHD Support Group with Dr. Hallowell

Starting Nov 29, 2018 – Dr. Hallowell One-on-one Sessions! 6:00 PM to 7:30 PM
Hallowell Center NYC
Biweekly Adult ADHD Support Group led by Dr. Hallowell

Meets every other Thursday in Dr. Hallowell’s office at 6pm.Dr. Hallowell provides his world-renowned expertise and insight in an informal setting.

Tuesday, August 14th, 2018

Summer Reflections

I just completed teaching my course about ADHD on Cape Cod at the Cape Cod Institute.  If you’ve never taken the course, you ought to consider it.  It’s a lot of fun.  You get a week in Eastham, or whichever nearby town you choose–more on this later–and after spending 9 – 12:15 learning about ADHD in the morning, you get the afternoon and evening free to play.  People always have a ball. Attendees make friends with each other, and almost everyone leaves feeling glad they came, not just for what they learned, but, more important, for the people they met and the experiences they shared.  

            It’s all produced by the Cape Cod Institute (Cape.org).  They offer 3 courses per week all summer long, each on a different topic in mental health, each given by one or two authorities in a wide range of different fields.  It was started 39 years ago by a marvelous psychiatrist, Dr. Gil Levin, who was at Mt. Sinai Medical School when he opened the Institute.  He has since passed the operation on to his son, Alex, who ran it for the first time this summer.  We had about 55 attendees in the course this year, in which I introduced my new name for ADHD.  I now call it VAST, Variable Attention Stimulation Trait.  Carrie Feibel, who attended last year’s course and is Health Editor at KQED in San Francisco, came up with the name and I love it.

               I urge you to check out the Cape Cod Institute for yourself.  Now, let me commend the rest of Cape Cod to you.  A few memories from the week.  Hatch’s seafood and produce in Wellfleet Center.  We got six lobsters steamed and cracked which fed us and our friends just wonderfully along with the corn from the adjoining farm stand.  LeCount Hollow Beach.  You leave your footwear atop the dune, then walk down to the beach and the surf.  I grew up in Chatham and it makes me shudder to think that now we have to watch for seals and the risk of sharks that might be following them, but we do.  Nonetheless, the beaches on the Cape, especially those that face the ocean, give me doses of majestic beauty like nothing else.  Provincetown, Commercial street, a place where people can be whoever they want to be.  It is so wonderful to walk through that little town and bask in how great, and rare, true freedom really is.  The Wellfleet Drive-In.  Although we didn’t go there to see a movie, and rarely do, it is a landmark, one of the first places I made out when I was a kid, and a wonder that it still stands.  I hope it never closes down.  Arnold’s.  Lobster rolls, fried clams, beer.  Isn’t this summer at its best?  The occasional rainy day, reading inside, deciding what to cook for dinner, we opted for linguine with clam sauce with plenty of crunchy bread for dipping.  Driveways made of broken oyster shells.  The pungent salt air when you get near the beach at just the right tide with the right wind.  Horseshoe crabs.  Blue claw crabs.  Seagulls.  Beachgrass.  Roadside stands selling jellies made of beachplums and honeysuckle.  Standing barefoot on the white lines in parking lots so as not to burn your feet while you wait for an ice cream from a truck.  The many bars where when you sit down and look around you have the passing fantasy that maybe you really should have spent your life as a beach bum.  The many churches, some splendidly white, some in such disrepair you wonder why God doesn’t just send a lightning bolt and end it right there.  The spectacular houses lining the best roads belying the poverty and broken down houses so many of the locals live in while the super houses go empty through the winter.  Hydrangeas and wild roses galore, wildflowers everywhere, each marshy area boasting cat-o-nine-tails standing like fat Churchill cigars, titling in the wind.  To me, it was, and always will be somewhat, home.

            The fact that if you are driving it is so hard to get onto the Cape and so hard to get off makes you wonder why so few people live here year round. Maybe some day.

Tuesday, July 10th, 2018

The New Refrain

There’s a new refrain I’m hearing more and more everywhere I go.  It used to be, “I’m so upset, I don’t know what to do.”  But that’s just not sustainable.  You can only be so upset you don’t know what to do for so long before you figure out something to do.  And that’s become the new refrain.

What I hear more and more, everywhere I go, is this:  “I’ve decided I’m going to focus my energy and my talent and my resources on what I can control, and let the rest go hang,” or words to that effect.  “I’m going to work on what I can actually change myself, or help a team to change, and let the rest be damned,” or words to that effect.  “I’m going to stop being so upset by what I can’t control and start taking satisfaction in working on what I can control.”

That’s the new refrain.  That’s the conclusion more and more people tell me they’ve reached, everywhere I go.

It makes a lot of sense.  One way to die young, or get sick soon, is to worry yourself silly over all the things you can’t control, and these days we have more than life’s usual array of scoundrels, thieves, charlatans, and popinjays who’d steal us away from the meaningful tasks and pleasures we can actually regulate and develop ourselves.  They would abscond with our minds, if we’d let them, and lately we’ve been letting them, many of us have at least, myself included.

Which is why I am joining the refrain, I intend to embrace, work on, advance, and sweat over what I can stand a chance of controlling or at least significantly influencing myself, and do my very damnedest to ignore the most diverting sideshow this country has ever seen.

If I am going to get work done, if I am going to have fun, I’ve got to stop getting distracted by the sideshow, because it’s becoming the main show.  For us with ADHD, this is a teaching moment, as the new jargon puts it.  People like me can take a lesson and learn how to focus what matters and stop getting distracted by what is enormously entertaining and seems to matter a hell of a lot, but over which I, at least, have zero control.

I have to get back to work.  To this note.  To my books.  To my patients.  To my talks.  To growing my clinics.  To spreading my strength-based message.  To having fun with my wife and our kids and our friends.

I bet you have really interesting stuff to get back to as well.  As incredibly diverting as the sideshow is, produced by masters of entertainment and PR, we have to seize this teaching moment and discipline ourselves to get back to tending to what we can significantly influence and control.

Don’t get me wrong.  I am not saying don’t vote.  For goodness sake, vote!  Every citizen should vote if he or she wants to call him or herself a citizen.

But at the same time, live the life that adds the most to this world.  Life the life not of a spectator, but of a do-er, a creator, a builder.

Enough of the feeling miserable, ok?  Let’s do something positive every day.

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