Confident and Curious: Overcoming Anxiety in Neurodiverse Adolescents and Young Adults

Does your neurodiverse, bright-minded teen struggle with anxiety and stress?  Join neurodiverse experts Dr. Sharon Saline and Dr. Michael Postma for this 6 week workshop that will arm your kids with the tools and insight they need to manage anxiety and thrive in their journey to self-reliant adulthood. Each session will include lessons, interactive discussions, break-outs and coping strategies to equip your teen/adolescent for living with more confidence and success.

Kick off Week #1 begins Thursday, September 16th.  We will run two groups of 20 teens each (40 total): 

 

Group 1 - Teens aged 12-15 will meet each Monday evening from 7:30-8:45 p.m. EST (4:30-5:45 PDT) starting on Monday Sept 20, 27, Oct. 4, 11, 18, 25th

Group 2 - Teens/young adults aged 16-20 will meet each Thursday evening from 7:30-8:45 EST (4:30-5:45 PDT) starting Thursday, Sept. 16, 23, 30 Oct. 7, 14, 21st

 

Cost of 6 week workshop: $297 per person 

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Learn the Science Behind Why Bright-Minded Neurodiverse Individuals are at Higher Risk for Increased Anxiety

Dr. Sharon Saline and Dr. Michael Postma, who have over 40 years combined experience working with neurodiverse children, adolescents and adults in clinical counseling, classroom instruction and coaching/consulting environments,  will be teaching some of the science behind neurodiverse, bright minds, and how it specifically affects and can increase anxiety, including social anxiety, perfectionism, procrastination, depression and more.

Meet with Like-Minded Peers

It is estimated that 30-40 percent of teenagers struggle with anxiety. Facilitated and led by Dr. Saline and Dr. Postma, workshop participants will meet together in smaller break-out groups to learn, discuss their challenges and develop strategies to tackle their anxiety. 

See the sign up links below for the age groups and weekly session date/times.

And NO WORRIES if your teen doesn't want to participate in discussions, be on camera, etc. - we get it, they have anxiety!  So whenever they are comfortable if/and, or if they just want to listen - that's ok!  Also parent's are welcome to join with their teen if that is more comfortable for them.  Whatever works - we want to ensure this is a CALM, reassuring and supportive time for them! 

Learning to Cope

This workshop is specifically designed to help your teen(s)/young adult identify the source(s) of their stress/anxiety and learn strategies for coping and living with anxiety.  Dr. Saline and Dr. Postma will be leading and guiding the group to develop a personalized plan- their OASIS: Overcome Anxiety Successfully in Stages so that they can live with more confidence and success.

Sign up your teen/young adult today! Sessions start week of September 13th

We live in an age of unprecedented uncertainty.  While global fears about COVID, climate change and divisive politics affect all of us, neurodiverse adolescents and emerging adults are simultaneously coping with the pressures of academic performance, peer relationships, career choices, and connected independence.  For these high functioning young people, dealing with such intense stressors can be overwhelming.  With their unique cognitive and emotional profiles, these teens and young adults are more vulnerable to stress, frustration, anxiety, panic attacks, depression and risky behaviors.  This six week workshop will arm your kids with the tools and insight they need to manage anxiety and thrive in their journey to self-reliant adulthood.  Each session will include lessons, interactive discussions, break-outs and coping strategies to equip folks for living with more confidence and success.

Weekly Session Topics Include:

Week One:  An Introduction to Neurodiversity

In this session we will:

  • Learn the definition of neurodiversity
  • Explore how the brain grows, develops differently and why it is wired for anxiety
  • Create our own definitions of neurodiversity and examine how it affects everybody in different ways
  • Begin to build a personalized plan for tackling our fears- your OASIS: Overcome Anxiety Successfully in Stages (this will be on-going throughout the workshop)

Week Two:  The Link Between Anxiety and the Brain

In this session we will:

  • Define and discuss what anxiety is and how it affects the body
  • Understand the roles of sensory integration, the limbic system and executive functioning skills in anxiety and fear
  • Talk about why reassurance from others fails to reduce anxiety and how curiosity is more effective
  • Develop better awareness about the effects of our anxiety on others
  • Introduce and practice body scan and mindfulness exercises
  • Work on your OASIS plan

Week Three: Different types of Anxiety

In this session we will:

  • Examine different types of anxiety, key symptoms and diagnostic clarifications 
  • Identify tools to improve motivation and productivity
  • Practice exercises designed to improve coping strategies for these challenges 
  • Work on your OASIS plan

Week Four:  Tackling Social Anxiety

In this session we will:

  • Discuss social anxiety and describe its effect on participants
  • Break down issues caused by peer pressure, dating, bullying, presentations, parental communications, and crowds
  • Redefine what social success means for neurodiverse individuals and how to live with it without judgment
  • Examine effective responses to awkward social situations and interpersonal insecurities
  • Work on your OASIS plan

Week Five:  Resilience and Rebuilding 

In this session we will:

  • Discuss definitions of positive self-image 
  • Identify personal strengths and talents
  • Reduce negative thinking about individual challenges with learning, attention and anxiety
  • Design more positive, affirming self-talk about living with anxiety and the ability to reduce stress and frustration
  • Explore what resilience looks like and how to nurture it
  • Work on your OASIS plan

Week Six:  Wrap-up/Questions/Take-Aways

In this session we will:

  • Summarize lessons from previous sessions and discuss any ongoing questions
  • Review coping mechanisms, calming techniques and positive self-talk for responding to and managing anxiety
  • Finish your OASIS plans and share ideas

Sign Up  for Group 1 (12-15 year olds) Today!

 

Group 1 - Teens aged 12-15 will meet each Monday evening from 7:30-8:45 p.m. EST (4:30-5:45 PDT) starting on Monday Sept 20, 27, Oct. 4, 11, 18, 25th

Register Here

Sign Up  for Group 2 (16-20 year old's) Today!

Group 2 - Teens/young adults aged 16-20 will meet each Thursday evening from 7:30-8:45 EST (4:30-5:45 PDT) starting Thursday, Sept. 16, 23, 30 Oct. 7, 14, 21st

 

 

Register Here

Meet Dr. Michael Postma

 

Hello! I'm Dr. Mike Postma, an educator, speaker, author, consultant and coach residing in beautiful Bellingham, WA.  Together with my wife, Julie, we have raised our own 4 gifted/2e children and know how difficult this journey can be.  That is one reason I have dedicated my life work to the holistic development of the gifted/2e community.  In my 25+ year career, I've served as a Gifted Teacher in the classroom, as an Administrator of gifted schools, as a professional developer of gifted programming and curriculum and as Executive Director of the SENG organization (Supporting the Emotional Needs of the Gifted), and now launching our brand new company Gifted & Thriving, LLC.  I look forward to spending time together with you to  learn how we can best teach and support this exceptional community so we can all move from a place of just surviving to THRIVING!  I look forward to the journey with you!

Meet Dr. Sharon Saline

Sharon Saline, Psy.D., clinical psychologist and author of the award-winning book, What Your ADHD Child Wishes You Knew: Working Together to Empower Kids for Success in School and Life and The ADHD Solution Card Deck specializes in working with kids, young adults and families living with ADHD, learning disabilities and mental health issues. Her unique perspective – as a sibling in an ADHD home, combined with decades of experience as a clinical psychologist and educator/clinician consultant – assists her in guiding families and adults towards effective communication and closer connections. She lectures and facilitates workshops internationally on topics such as understanding ADHD, executive functioning, anxiety, different kinds of learners and the teen brain. Dr. Saline is a regular contributor to ADDitudemag.com and PsychologyToday.com, a featured expert on MASS Appeal on WWLP-TV and a part-time lecturer at the Smith School for Social Work. Learn more at www.drsharonsaline.com.