I have borrowed an approach from Gestalt tx to conceptualize ADHD and have developed a Training Program for use with adults who 'have' ADHD. The Program is called: "Becoming Centered and Organized: A Skill Training Program for Individuals with ADHD". I am interested in working with individuals who are interested in conducting RESEARCH as to the effectiveness of this approach. I have the Program all ready to go. It would be ideal for a dissertation project. The Table of Contents and Introduction follows.
Anyone interested please let me know.
Table of Contents
Session #1 Group Procedure Overview for Facilitators Introductions Guidelines for the Functioning of Training Group Daily Journal Questionnaire Goal Setting Psychoeducational Framework for the Training Program Homework
Session #2 Creative Precommitment Skill - Awareness Development: Progressive Muscle Relaxation Method Behavioral Strategy Skill - Focus
Session #3 Creative Precommitment Skill - Meditation Behavioral Strategy Skill - Focus
Session #4 Creative Precommitment Skill - A Meditation: Concentrating on Your Cycle of Experience Behavioral Strategy Skill - Planning
Session #5 Creative Precommitment Skill - A Meditation: Now I am aware of... . Behavioral Strategy Skill - Planning
Session #6 Creative Precommitment Skill - A Meditation: Attending and Concentrating Behavioral Strategy Skill - Converting your Focus and Plans into Actions
Session #7 Creative Precommitment Skill - A Meditation: Sensing Opposing Forces Behavioral Strategy Skill - Converting your Focus and Plans into Actions
Session # 8 Creative Precommitment Skill - A meditation: Differentiating and Unifying Behavioral Strategy Skill - Team Up
Session # 9 Creative Precommitment Skill - A Meditation: Mobilizing the Muscles Behavioral Strategy Skill - Team Up
3 Month Followup Session Creative Precommitment Skill - Integrated Awareness Behavioral Strategy Skill -Review of Participant’s use of Day-Timer
APPENDIX A - Handout for Participants: The Gestalt Cycle of Experience as a Theoretical Framework for Conceptualizing the Attention Deficit Disorder (Root, 1996)
APPENDIX B - Handout for Participants: 4-Dimensional Time Management (Day-Timer, 1997)
(Copyright 1997 by Richard W. Root, II, Ed.D. All rights reserved. No part of this manuscript may be reproduced in an from without the prior written permission of the Author.)
In an earlier paper (Root, 1996), I extend the theoretical conceptualization of the Cycle of Experience (COE), developed by the Gestalt Institute of Cleveland, to the Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD).1 This paper serves as a guide for this Treatment Program both for clinicians and individuals with ADHD. We are establishing a research program to determine this program’s effectiveness.
The two cognitive constructs of "awareness", as Perls used the term, and "attention", as used in ADHD, have similar and different meanings and characteristics, which may have relevance for the individual with ADHD. Attention as used in ADHD is primarily defined by behaviors that are observable by others, e.g. Teachers or Parents of children/adolescents with ADHD, Spouses or Fellow Workers of Adults with ADHD. Awareness as used in Gestalt Therapy is primarily an activity that is unobservable. Attending (or lack there of) by the individual with ADHD is characterized as an active sustaining or active focusing process. Awareness as used in Gestalt Therapy is both an active and an indifferent or passive activity the individual undertakes.
In my work, I have felt there is something missing in working with ADHD individuals wherein the primary if not sole focus of interventions described in scientific journals have been based upon their external observable behaviors, with little focus on their internal, phenomenological processes, as are described by the initial phases of the COE. This treatment program focuses on both the external observable behavior and the internal, non observable, behavior in terms of providing skill building techniques in both areas. Thus, there are two broad skill areas taught in this program. One involves developing “Creative Precommitment” skills. The second group of skills we call “Behavioral Strategy” Skills. These skills give Participants specific time management skills using the Day-Timer system.
In Session #1, the Participant is given psychoeducational information regarding what is meant by the Attention Deficit Disorder, which includes a consensus definition developed by Barkley (1991) of ADHD, as well as DSM-IV diagnostic guidelines. The Cycle of Experience, which is the “cognitive map” we use throughout this psychotherapeutic interventions to conceptualize ADHD symptoms (and our interventions to overcome these symptoms) is introduced. Other conceptual and procedural information is shared in session #1.
Subsequent sessions are more experiential in nature. These sessions are designed to run approximately 120 minutes, with roughly equal time being spent on developing skills in the two broad areas. Thus the standard session format is as follows:
5 minutes- Beginning, Review of Practice during the Week and Journals 15 minutes - Progressive Muscle Relaxation Technique 45 minutes - Creative Precommitment Skill Development 5 minutes - Sharing 45 minutes - Behavioral Strategy Skill Development 5 minutes - Homework
I am deeply grateful to many people for their assistance in my completing this Manual. Russell Barkley has been an inspiration to me for well over a decade. His work sets a high standard for professionals working with ADHD. Members of The Vermont CHADD Group, whom I have been a Consultant to, have been supportive in providing me with a setting to ‘try-out’ various ideas I have. The Lower Valley ADHD Support Group has likewise been inspirational in giving me opportunity to share my thoughts in a supportive environment. Sonia Nevis and The Gestalt New England Writers Group has provide support for my bringing the Gestalt COE to ADHD, which I am particularly grateful for.
This Manual is dedicated to my family who have given me support, love, good cheer and many joys.
Thankyou all for your supportive help in this endeavor.