Meet the CEO of your Brain

In January of 2020, I created a blog post titled, “You Mean There’s a Name for That?” The post itself explained what executive functioning skills were and described the various ways that people can struggle with their executive functioning. So much has transpired since that post was first shared, and as I begin to offer executive functioning coaching for individuals 18 and up, I felt it was important to bring this post back. As you read through my original post, if you are someone who feels that you could use support with your executive functioning skills, I can help! Read on for more information about executive functioning skills and how they can help, or hurt, your day-to-day success.

Being unorganized. Losing things. Feeling overwhelmed by daily activities. Difficulty managing your responsibilities at home and work/school. There is actually a name for the set of skills needed to be successful in these various areas and more – Executive Functioning Skills.

According to the Center on the Developing Child at Harvard University, executive functioning skills are the skills necessary in order for a person to “plan, focus attention, remember instructions, and juggle multiple tasks successfully.” These are the vital life skills we need to organize our day, create and work toward goals, and live successful, rewarding lives. All individuals with ADHD struggle with their executive functioning skills, but there are many others out there who don’t have ADHD who also experience difficulty in this area. People who struggle with their executive functioning skills experience difficulties in many facets of their lives.

1) Organization – while this is an area of difficulty for many people, individuals who have weak executive functioning skills struggle even more. It is hard for them to sift through all of the information they receive on a minute by minute basis, manipulate it, process it, pull from it what they need, store it in memory to pull from later, or even realize it’s information that can just be dumped altogether. This disorganization can appear to others as just sloppiness or a lack of caring on the part of the individual, but that is far from the case.

2) Starting tasks – because an individual with poor executive functioning skills struggles to be organized when presented with tasks, it is that much more difficult for him or her to even begin a task. While a neurotypical individual usually can get right to it, a neurodiverse individual will often become stressed or anxious just trying to determine where to start. This in turn can cause that individual’s family, friends, co-workers, and boss to assume that the individual is indifferent or unmotivated.

3) Prioritizing – in addition to the difficulties that a person with executive functioning struggles has with just organizing and starting tasks, he or she also struggles to prioritize them. Therefore, what often happens is that the budget report which is due by 5pm is given the same amount of attention as the presentation that is being given later on in the week. While these are both important tasks, a person with weak executive functioning skills has a hard time discerning when and how much effort to give to each project.

There are a myriad of other ways that a person struggles when they have poor executive functioning skills, but the good news is that there are also a myriad of different strategies for overcoming these challenges. If you desire more information for yourself, a friend, co-worker, or loved one – I can help! Visit my website for more information or to request a consultation.

Allow Me to Re-Introduce Myself

I started this blog as part of the initial set-up for the launch of my consulting career. It was 2019, and the world was a much different place back then. Fast forward to our current time, and I am now refocusing my efforts on building my consulting practice and creating a foundation for growth as 2021 is coming to an end.

When I first began planning for exactly what type of consulting services I wanted to provide, I will admit that I struggled to put together my “elevator pitch.” You might have heard of that reference before – and if we end up working together it is a term that you will definitely become familiar with and have an opportunity to apply to your own life. For those of you unfamiliar with the phrase, an elevator pitch or speech is about a thirty second statement that outlines your concept, company, or services you provide in such a way that the listener understands and ideally desires to then learn more about said concept, company, or services. At my first networking event as a consultant, I was less than stellar. I looked the part and had the business cards to pass out, but I struggled to put together an engaging elevator pitch that would open the door for further opportunities. Shortly after that initial event though, the world shut down in an unprecedented way. Once that happened, pursuing my consulting business was at the bottom of my priority list as my focus turned to adjusting to a new normal, keeping loved ones close, staying healthy and safe, and just managing day to day responsibilities in a world that was not making a lot of sense. I believe though, that the time I have spent away from actively building Kimberly Frey Consulting has actually made me more able to understand what services I want to provide and how I want to help my community.

I have been in the teaching profession for twenty years, and I worked with youth in various settings prior to that. The majority of my career has been spent in special education; teaching students with Individualized Education Plans that are designed to help them be as successful as possible in school and have access to an equitable education. During this time, the majority of my students have been those with learning disabilities, emotional/behavioral disabilities, mental illnesses, and/or on the autism spectrum. When people outside of the special education field think of individuals with disabilities, they often picture students with physical or cognitive disabilities and lack an awareness of how other disabilities can impact a person’s life in both school and beyond. After having time to thoroughly assess what I wanted to offer others, I realized that success in the “beyond” years of life was exactly where I wanted to focus. The students I have been working with for over two decades are adults now, and they are navigating their post-secondary lives. College, careers, relationships, self-care and more – these are all areas where many adults still need guidance and support. A common sentiment shared by so many today is that, “Adulting is hard.” As a consultant, my goal is to make it a little easier. Additionally, I want to support adults who are now navigating their own children’s educational needs, as the special education system can be difficult to understand. Lastly, as my former students are making their way in the workplace and business world, I want to ensure that their employers understand that ADA compliance is so much more than creating physically accessible spaces.

So, here you go. Two years later, I finally have created my elevator pitch….. Kimberly Frey Consulting: I provide executive functioning and life balance coaching for individuals 18 and up, support for families of students with disabilities navigating the education system, and inclusivity coaching for workplaces. I will be offering various workshops over the next couple of months designed to help usher in a new year that is full of growth and success. Contact me for more information on how I Can Help!