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One skill at a time - Be kind to yourself


You probably are if you are reading this blog.

And a very engaged and loving parent.

I can hear you say to yourself and your partner every week after reading Emu Education's blog: "Let's go, we are working on this skill this week!". And then another week comes by and another skill is added and another one and another one until you feel overwhelmed. You might end up feeling like you are not a good parent, you are not doing enough and worse you are not making the expected progress.

As I noticed for myself, when I'm doing more than one thing at a time I really do many things poorly.

"One program at a time" said my good friend, father of a 2 year-old, when we stayed at his place for a week.

Potty training setup in the toilet

Jess wanted to help as much as she could, so she shared a humongous amount of her knowledge with the him and his wife. From 6am to 12pm on Saturday, the four of us went from 5 minutes play time with their child to 7 minutes of potty time in the bathroom. This pattern was on repeat and we took turn to make it easier on the four of us. Outside of potty training, not much was achieved on that morning. Dishes didn't get clean, lunch wasn't prepared, laundry stayed dirty, groceries stayed at the supermarket. We were all dedicated to toilet train their child and stayed on course with the program for 6 hours.

We couldn't have added another skill to work on that morning. And we certainly decided not to work on anything else on that afternoon. We simply enjoyed playing with their child and spending time together.

Trying to work on too many skills at a time reminds me of the scene in The Simpsons when the doctor explains to Mr. Burns why he doesn't get sick. Mr. Burns doesn't get sick because he has all the diseases trying to get through the "door" at the same time so none of them get through.

The Simpsons - Doctor explains Mr Burns why he doesn't get sick

Our recommendation for you is to take one step at a time. It will take you and your child much further. It will also keep your stress level low and your satisfaction for progress high.

Choosing one skill to work on or one program to focus entirely on that one will help you to remain sane as a parent.

Once one skill is mastered, simply move on to the next skill you want to work on.

Here is a quick summary on all the skills that were addressed in this blog:

Much more has been discussed during the live webinars and addressed in the complimentary pre-recorded webinar (email info@emued to receive the link the pre-recorded webinar).

That is plenty to overwhelm a professional if they would try to implement all the strategies discussed in these blog posts and webinars in a short period of time!

Jess is a professional with 25 years of experience as a Behaviour Therapist working with children with autism, ADHD, oppositional defiance disorders or other neurodiverse conditions.

She developed the ability to narrow down what would be the best strategy for a parent to implement and guide them through it. If this first strategy doesn't work as expected, she will continue down her list of most likely things to work. Always recommending one at a time.

When parents work with Emu Education we emphasize the importance of choosing 1 or 2 goals or skills to improve. Then, strategies are shared one-by-one for you to try and implement. As we progress together, more strategies are shared to reached the goals set together.

I think of it to something similar to a Physiotherapist giving you 5 exercices to do to fix yoruself. I always end up doing none of them when there are too many to do. When only 1 exercise is recommended, I never fail to do it.

Physiotherapist guiding a patient through exercises

If you feel overwhelmed and spread too thin, book a complimentary Discovery Call with our Behaviour Therapist to discuss your current challenges, your goals for your child and to identify priorities for the next month.


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