Life skills are the functions we learn from birth to young adulthood that most would consider things that lead to being responsible and independent. They are also known as executive skills or executive function, and we all have areas that are strengths and some that are weaknesses. Counseling for children, adolescents, and young adults focus on assisting the client in developing these important skills through a collaborative approach between the client, counselor, and parents. For those with neurodiversities, we will also explore the unique challenges and benefits of how the neurodiverse brain works.
For a better understanding of the areas of focus for life skills counseling, the following is a list and brief description of executive or life skills by Guare, Dawson, & Guare, (2013):
To set up an appointment for life skills counseling, you can book an appointment on our website by clicking HERE or text 251-232-2396.
Guare, R., Dawson, P., & Guare, C. (2013). Smart but scattered teens: The "Executive Skills" program for helping teens reach their potential. Guilford Press.
Teaching life skills and giving independence begins at an early age. In the beginning, we feed our babies and eventually they hold their own bottle. Next, we feed them baby food, then finger food, until they can feed themselves. This process continues throughout life in various stages until the child is an adult who goes to the store, prepares a meal, and feeds themselves without any assistance from anyone. There are countless life skills that have to be developed for an adult to eventually complete this task themselves and multiply that times all the areas where our children have to learn to apply these skills. Life skills is not something that starts in the teenage years. It is a developmental process from the beginning.
During the teen and young adult years, expectations change greatly as kids are moving from childhood to adulthood and all the responsibilities that come with adulting. Not only is this a time of more responsibility, but it is also a time of extreme hormonal changes, social changes, and the world around them is not the one we parents grew up in when we were their age. The teen and young adult years are challenging with more distractions than ever. Life skills counseling offers the opportunity to identify the greatest needs and work toward developing those skills with the support of parents and counseling.
As your child, teen, or young adult is participating in life skills counseling, parent and family involvement is essential. The adults in the home or blended family are invited to participate in family sessions for psychoeducational information, implementing support systems for the client, and establishing a collaborative approach to encourage the client.
Counseling for adults with neurodiversities also includes psychoeducation, exploring executive function challenges, and skills building. Individual counseling is provided; however, it is also possible to include a spouse, partner, or other family members. The decision to use family counseling with an adult is based on the client's goals and the treatment plan developed.
We often receive phone calls during times when we are unable to answer the phone. It can also be difficult for us to return phone calls between sessions. For more information or if you have questions, text us at 251-232-2396. FREE phone consultations can also be scheduled by clicking the "Request Phone Consult" button on this website.
Gulf Coast Family Services strives to provide the most effective therapy strategies for each client. Unfortunately, many insurance companies force diagnoses and certain types of treatment modalities in order for therapists to receive reimbursement. It is not our desire to rush diagnoses or limit our services based on insurance restrictions. Therefore, we are self-pay and offer super-billing for clients to file with their insurance for reimbursement. Please check with your provider to make sure your insurance provider allows such reimbursement.