For many new coaches, the focus is on getting coaching experience… period. We want to use our skills, perfect them and become confident. An option emerging coaches often take is to agree to coach clients without charging for their services. This is what we call pro bono coaching. However, having too many or only pro bono clients will not help us with our own financial bottom line and without being able to earn a living we will not be able to keep doing what we love…coaching. It is important to consider ahead of time how serving pro bono clients can help both you and your clients, thereby creating a win win situation. Let me tell you how.
What you need to do is create a policy for working with pro bono clients that you can follow:
- Decide on how many pro bono clients you want to work with at any one time. Knowing that your business will continue to thrive with one or two pro bono clients serves everyone. Keep a list of future pro bono clients if you have an opening.
- Create an application for your pro bono client that helps you select who you want to work with. If a client cannot invest in your coaching services monetarily, you will want to be able to determine if they are willing to invest in it emotionally.
- Discover what the client is able to give for your coaching. Again, this may not be monetary, but perhaps their testimonial can be a great marketing advantage for other clients. Or perhaps they can help at an event you are speaking at or have word processing skills that can help you in creating marketing materials. Explore the possibilities.
- Treat pro bono clients the same as any other client. This includes signing agreements that outline policies for “no shows,” confidentiality, length of time you will work together, etc.
In summary, we can do it all – give back, serve and maintain a thriving coaching business for years to come.
Laurie Dupar, PMHNP, RN, PCC, SCAC, CAC, CEO and Co-Founder of the IACTCenter.
With over 15 years experience coaching persons with ADHD, Laurie has meticulously designed the IACTCenter to prepare you to confidently coach persons with ADHD and create a thriving coaching business and enjoy the lifestyle that you want.
The International ADHD Coach Training Center (IACTCenter) offers a six-month coaching program divided into three key modules focused on you becoming a truly exceptional ADHD Coach: Foundations, Growth, and C.O.R.E. Find out more here.
The holidays often mean fancy outfits with scratchy tags and stiff shoes, long family sit down dinners and stressful exhausting social schedules…a recipe for ADHD related disasters. While we long to have gratitude and good tidings in our hearts, during this time of year, many parents and children living with ADHD feel extra frustration with the impulsivity, inattention, restlessness and emotionality and other ADHD symptoms that often get in the way of holiday cheer.
To help you not turn into a Scrooge this season, here are five tips that can help you and your child be more in control of their behavior and still maintain their natural curiosity and enthusiasm.
- Be clear with the “rules” in advance. Take a little extra time to calmly remind your child what is expected of them. Many ADHD children are not auditory learners and literally will not hear you tell them something from across the room. Make sure you have your child’s attention by gently touching them on the shoulder and looking directly in their eyes. Tell them your request and have them repeat the expectation to be sure they have “heard” you. Keep your request brief and succinct.
- Answering the “Why?” Like most kids their age, children with ADHD want to know why they must follow the rules. They often comprehend things concretely and truly benefit from a simple statement as to “why” they must behave. For instance, if the rule is “not to jump on furniture,” follow this request by telling your child “because it is not safe. You could fall and get hurt.”
- Consequences. It is important a child understands what will happen if they do misbehave. By establishing this beforehand, disciplining becomes more matter of fact. If your child is around seven years old or older, they can become involved in this discussion. Remember, consequences for misbehavior should “make sense” or follow logically the specific misbehavior. For instance, if the rule is that they cannot hit another child because it hurts them, the consequence for this misbehavior may be to remove them from the situation. In other words, by not being able to act appropriately in a social situation, they will need to be removed until they can.
- Develop a “Signal.” Develop a signal between you and your child that will serve to remind them if they are starting to misbehave. By engaging your child in coming up with the “signal,” they will be more likely to respond. Some examples may include winking at them, putting your finger to your lips or using a downward motion with your hand. The more involved your child is in coming up with the “signal,” the more they will respond when it is given.
- Consistency. ADHD children are inconsistent by nature. As parents we need to model consistency for them so that they learn that rules make sense. To reinforce this, it is important that we enforce and follow our rules consistently. Never engage or negotiate after the rules have been established. Simply remind the child what the rule is, “why” it is important and follow through with the discipline.
Here is to your parenting success and a wonderful holiday season!
Being your own advocate means finding the resources that are out there to support you. Sound too arduous? Consider the following strategies for getting accommodations, and more.
If you will soon be starting a new job or just got accepted to a university, contact the disability services or human resources office well in advance of your start date. Getting accommodations is multifaceted. It will include researching your school or employer’s particular process, completing forms, gathering documentation from your ADHD professional(s), and arranging and attending appointments.
Be curious and find allies.
If you are not sure what or whom to ask, try a specialist, or human resources professional. Part of their expertise is in helping people like you to understand what accommodations are available for your situation. One size does not fit all!
Identify and use your processing style(s).
Most people use a combination of learning styles. Kinesthetic: need to move? Conceptual: understand the bigger picture first? Verbal: prefer to talk out your thoughts first? Ask yourself: What environment works best for me – a private office, a noisy café, a library, home? When am I most alert in order to accomplish my toughest work or studying? Try to arrange your schedule accordingly. If you take medication, take action during the time of day your medication is still active.
Learn to articulate your needs.
Practice by talking to a friend, coach or therapist about your ideal work/study environment, challenges you have when trying to absorb and retain information, and strategies that might have helped you in the past.
Focus on one step at a time in the accommodations process. Hyper-focus happens when you feel captivated by something. To prevent frustration or boredom with the process, find a healthy way to reward yourself with something fun or easy for you BEFORE each step. You will gain momentum to attack the tough stuff!
Take a breath to keep going.
When you feel overwhelmed, take a 1-2 minute break to focus on your breath so you can keep at it. Once you have the experience of setting things up for yourself for maximum effectiveness, your day-to-day will run much smoother, and the next time will be easier.
Reasonable accommodations are your right under the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. Don’t let limiting beliefs that you are “too needy,” “too much,” or “not enough” create shame or fear. Imagine that you’re advocating for someone else, or that you already completed the process and are in a place of success. Follow your inner leader! As social psychologist Amy Cuddy says, “Fake it until you become it.”
Ariel Davis, ADHD Coach/Occupational Therapy Master’s Candidate, uses her experience with dual-diagnosed teens/adults and the creative arts to discover and build client strengths. www.ADHDstrengthscoach.com .