We’re Hiring: ADHD Professionals San Francisco

San Francisco – The Hallowell Center of San Francisco, located in the downtown area, is seeking to expand. We are seeking part-time clinicians (Educational Therapists, Board certified psychiatrists, licensed psychologists, social workers, or nurse practitioners) to join our team.

Candidates must have experience in working with:

  • Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder;
  • associated disorders including anxiety;
  • depression; and,
  • demonstrate excellent diagnostic and clinical skills.

The Hallowell Center is a multidisciplinary private practice with offices in New York, Boston, and San Francisco.  Consequently, our Centers provide comprehensive evaluation and treatment for a full range of emotional, behavioral, and developmental issues in children and adults.

The San Francisco office primarily treats adolescents and adults. However, we’re considering adding services for children as well. Founded by Dr. Edward Hallowell, the Hallowell Center uses a strength-based model to help all of their clients recognize and reach their full potential. 

Applicants must align with our strength-based approach and have the ability to work collaboratively with a multidisciplinary team. Since our San Francisco office is small,  applicants must be flexible and fairly independent. We are looking for self-starters interested in growing with and helping us build our team.

There is room for growth and flexibility within our practice and the position could conceivably expand to full time. The position is fee for service. Anyone hired must be willing to work some evenings and/or Saturdays.

We’re recruiting clinicians with the following skills:

  • Psychiatrists or Nurse Practitioners who can provide medication evaluations and ongoing medication management. Training and/or experience in integrative approaches a plus
  • Couples therapists experienced in working with couples where ADHD is an issue
  • Clinicians/educators/coaches who are knowledgeable and skilled in helping clients develop executive function skills, including high school and college age students 
  • Group therapist that has used protocols for ADHD
  • Clinicians trained in DBT or EMDR, who have used these models to treat ADHD.
  • Neuropsychologists

Candidates have the option to bring their current clients into the practice.

If you are interested, please reply to: gabrielle@hallowellsfo.com

Please forward this message to potentially interested colleagues. Thank you.

 

Fear of Feedback

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

Q: We have a very sensitive engineer who is key to our startup. My partner and I have to be very careful how we phrase anything regarding his work. I’m not even talking about constructive criticism; it may just be something said in passing. We try very hard not to say anything that may be misconstrued, but you just never know what is going to be misinterpreted. How do you suggest dealing with this employee?

For many, fear of feedback (including compliments) is a problem. The most common reason for someone to be this sensitive is that in their past they were severely and frequently criticized, so even the mildest suggestion is painful. They may express this fear of feedback in several self-sabotaging ways: denial, procrastination, rigidity, avoidance, jealousy, brooding etc. It’s extremely self-limiting burden to bear, personally and professionally. Any slight suggestion is interpreted as failure or rejection. An extreme fear of feedback is a condition called Rejection Sensitive Dysphoria (RSD) and improved only with medication.

Your employee’s sensitivity to feedback may require some outside coaching or some clinical help, but here are things you can do:

1) Increase trust. Schedule a short coffee break with him a couple times a week to talk about his interests or how the startup is moving along. Point out general areas of improvement that are needed within your startup (marketing, beta testing, quality control etc.) and share the remedial steps that others had to take.

2) Get his perspective on ways to make the company better, and how to implement those improvements. Let him know you appreciate the perspective sharing. This is a good way to model how positively feedback can be received and put to work.

3) Gradually, I would point out a change that he needs to make in order to make the company better and possibly to incentivize him. Use numbers and benchmarks. Avoid making any direct attacks on his performance; keep it more “big picture.” Break it down the change into do-able steps with opportunities for regular updates.

4) Verbally reinforce any progress made toward change.

If that fails, coaching is a good next step. As a coach, I would help him identify the emotion behind his reaction, and help him re-frame the criticism to loosen the grip of the negative association. Next, I would help him approach the needed change by breaking down the task to small, satisfying and manageable chunks. In my experience, this results in decreasing the fear of feedback, and in most cases, creating a healthier attitude around feedback.

If the fear of feedback prevents you from advancing in your career and in your relationships, let’s have a talk. Contact me at Rebecca@MindfulCommunication.com

Is Your Procrastination Style Working For You?

 

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

I bet you thought I was going to curse procrastination in this blog. Au contraire!  Not all procrastination is bad. As a matter of fact, putting off a major undertaking may give you time to consider the risks. On the other hand, you may have a style of procrastination that works very well for you. According to Mary Lamia in her book What Motivates Getting Things Done, procrastination is a problem when styles collide or when the deadlines are missed or met with unreasonable stress.

Before I talk about different styles of procrastination, let’s clarify the difference between good and bad stress. Good stress is excitement or intense curiosity, like the jitters you may experience before doing a talk. Bad stress is anxiety provoking, panicky, self-sabotaging and physiologically unhealthy for us and those around us.

Lamia distinguishes between Deadline-Driven and Task-Driven procrastination styles, DDPs and TDPs respectively. DDPs note the deadline and begin mentally planning the task in spurts without taking any overt action. They may let the idea incubate for several days and weeks. Come the last day, it all comes together. Many successful DDPs report a surge of “good stress” and a heightened state of focus within hours of the deadline. They often deliver their best work under pressure. If you’re DDP, and the fallout doesn’t take a toll on your health or the well-being of those around you, it’s a safe and effective strategy, so go with it.

TDPs will start tasks almost immediately, but not complete the tasks until later. They may be perfectionistic and postpone task completion until it meets a high level of quality. These folks have a hard time being satisfied with “good enough.” Yet the successful TDPs will manage many tasks at once and eventually meet their deadlines with a minimal amount of bad stress.

Since procrastination, the bad stress variety, is such a common complaint, I find it easier to help my clients become more efficient within a style that suits them versus trying to switch horses. It’s also good advice to share your style for meeting deadlines with co-workers and partners, as both styles can be unnerving to the non-procrastinator.

Would you like to make your style of procrastination more efficient or rid yourself of procrastination for good? Happy to help! Contact me at Rebecca@MindfulCommunication.com     

Your “Guy In The Basement”

 

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

Several years ago at a National Speaker’s Association meeting, I heard a motivational speaker who planted a metaphor in my mind that I’ll never forget. He described a friendly fellow somewhere between our conscious and subconscious, who works mostly behind the scenes and is loyal to the core. He is, figuratively, your Guy In The Basement, your GITB.

Your brain’s CEO, located in the penthouse (your prefrontal cortex), orders the GITB to dig up information, and deliver the data for the CEO to synthesize and execute. For example, when the CEO is trying to recall the name of your 6th grade teacher, he directs the GITB to do a search, and a few minutes later the GITB runs up the stairs to the CEO and announces: “MRS. CRUM!”  Although it may take awhile, your GITB is good at retrieving data.

The GITB also loves autonomy. He likes to scan your existing knowledge base, integrate anything in view that is novel and shiny and interrupt your deep work (including your sleep), to proclaim his findings. Be kind to your GITB; he is always at work. But he is impulsive, gets bossy when restrained and has no sense of time.

Instead of getting mad at your GITB, shutting him out and blaming him for all your unfinished deep work, let him get his ya-ya’s out. When you’re working on a task that requires a lot of focus, have a pad of paper handy to capture ideas that your GITB sends forth. Keep a notepad at your bedside for his middle-of- the-night revelations. He’ll quiet down once he’s been heard. You can come back and elaborate on those ideas later. If he just can’t settle down, take your GITB for a walk. Remind him of your goals, problems you’d like to solve, or visions you have for your project. After the romp, your reliable GITB will gladly hunker down with his new orders, mind his own business and get to work, giving you the peace and concentration you need to do your CEO thing.

Let me help you manage distractions, get things done well and on time! Contact me at Rebecca@MindfulCommunication.com

Stuck in a Rut at Work?

How many times  have you found yourself sitting in a meeting, yawning, pinching yourself or grinding your teeth? How many days have you gone to the coffee machine multiple times, begging the caffeine to create some energy and get you out of this rut at work? Most people wake up, maybe grab some breakfast or at least a shot of caffeine, go to work, and assume they can stay consistently focused without taking any steps specifically designed to replenish and maintain their energy at work throughout the day.

If you’re having difficulty staying focused and feeling stuck at work, you can follow the 6 tips below, adapted from Dr. Hallowell’s book:

Driven to Distraction at Work

His book was recommended in “8 books to Read When You’re Stuck in a Rut at Work

The Sensational Six*

Prep works relies on “the sensational six.” Do the things recommended below and your brain will give you much more time in flexible focus if you prepare it every day by following each of these practices so you’ll spend less time in a “rut” and be more productive.

  1. Sleep – one of the greatest favors you can do for  your brain and your entire body is to get enough sleep. Sleep is tonic. Reset your priorities to make time for sleep.  Set a regular bedtime and get-up time. Do make sure you have comfortable bedding. Reserve your bed for sleep; not work – don’t bring your screens into the bedroom.
  2. Nutrition – when you don’t eat right, your brain can’t function well. Eat a breakfast with protein. Eat a balanced lunch. Use a fruit snack and a burst of exercise to combat the blahs. Eat more fresh fruits and vegetables to feed your brain the micronutrients it needs. Watch the amount of coffee you drink.
  3. Exercise is beyond doubt one of the best tonics available for your brain. You can start by walking every day with a friend; schedule time each week to play a game of some sort; i.e., golf, squash or tennis; or join a gym.
  4. Mediation can lower stress levels and blood pressure, increase energy and cognitive function, and make you calmer and happier.  You can start by sitting in a comfortable chair, both feet on the floor and both hands comfortably placed on your lap. Close your eyes and focus on your breathing. In, out. Watch your thoughts float by like leaves on a river. Try not to evaluate your thoughts, but rather let them pass by without a comment or a care. You can meditate for just a 5 minutes or more. Try to meditate daily and it will help you focus better.
  5. Mental Stimulation – When you stretch your brain by trying new tasks or doing everyday tasks in a way you’ve never done them before, you are doing something that will not only enhance your ability to maintain focus, but also help stave off the ravages of aging, include dementia.
  6. Connection – The human connection is the most powerful force in the world for growth, health, fulfillment, and joy. I call connection “the other vitamin C” or “vitamin connect.” You can get tips on ways to connect here.

ADHD and Focus at Work

Dr. Hallowell explains in this VIDEO how to reclaim your focus at work with ADHD.

  • He discusses the “salience network” and the default mode network (DMN), which he calls the “Demon of ADHD.”
  • He clarifies how these distractors take you away from the task at hand leading to distraction, negativity and rumination that so often accompany ADHD.
  • He shares his strategies on shutting down these distractors so you can manage your ADHD and focus in the workplace.

3 Tips to Help You Focus:

1. Close your eyes. When you are losing focus or feeling confused, the simple act of sitting back in your chair and closing your eyes can, oddly enough, allow you to see clearly. It can restore focus and provide a new direction.

2. Take a break. When you start to glaze over or feel frantic, stop what you are doing. Stand up, walk around, get a glass of water, stretch. Just sixty seconds can do the trick.

3. Do what works. Don’t worry about convention or what’s supposed to work. Some people focus better with music playing or in a noisy room. Some people focus better when walking or even running. Some people focus best in early morning, others late at night. There is no right way, only the best way for you. Experiment and discover what works for you.

Want more tips on how to focus in the work place? Read Dr. Hallowell’s book, Driven to Distraction at Work . Learn about ADT (Attention Deficit Trait), its traits, how it effects your focus and productivity, and what are the six most common distractions at work and how to overcome them.

 

 

Can You Handle the Truth? Accounting For Phone Time

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

Where does the time go? Why can’t I get more done each day? I want to finish my business plan, but other stuff gets in the way.

Do these complaints sound familiar?

If you’re serious about improving your productivity and finding the waste in your day, being accountable for your phone time is a good place to start. Of all the distractions and interruptions we need to control for, smartphones and tablet use rates as Number One!

We typically underestimate the time spent on our phones. As an exercise, I ask my clients to write on a slip of paper how many minutes or hours a day they think they spend on their phones and tablets. Their estimate is sealed in an envelope. Using one of the apps below they track the actual time spent on their phones for one week. After seven days their written estimates are unveiled. The estimates are often off by 50% or more! These apps can also tell you how many times you check your smartphone, what apps you use the most, reminders to take digital breaks and help you set limits on phone and tablet use. You all know that I’m not a big fan of GAGs (Gimmicks, Apps Gadgets) except for the ones that can keep us from over-using them!

The truth can be liberating. If you care about productivity, the truth can also motivate you to make needed changes.

Moment – Screen Time Tracker
A Handy iOS Feature

Also read: Become aware of just how much your use your smartphone!

After the shocking reality hits home, you might take the next step and track your reasons for your excessive phone use. In subsequent blogs, I will address the most common reasons and their solutions.

I’m always glad to get your comments and suggestions for topics. Write to me at rebecca@mindfulcommunication.com