Posted by: jofarmer | June 29, 2020

Accessing the Autistic Skill Set 3. Ripening and Growing Part 1

I hope I have now provided guidelines into how to get to respect and understand the autistic person, and their immense skill set. I will now tell you how to understand them better and build on this and help ripen and grow them. This requires teamwork and patience.

When doing this and anything else when working with autistic people it is important to remember this. Once you have met one autistic person you have met one autistic person. We are all individuals, and our needs and responses can change with circumstances.

1. Training

Where there is inhouse training this can really help improve skills in areas such as communications, confidence, assertiveness, work related and many other areas.  External training may also help, along with ‘Access to Work’ and help from charities.

Implementing training as any issues arise rather than taking more extreme reaction will help increase rather than reduce or potentially destroy confidence which may be fragile anyway.

2. Communications

Building on what was discussed when getting to know the person, this will ensure they feel able to continue to communicate, however this might be, written, verbal or with support. Useful training may improve this, as will support from colleagues, managers or other support sources.

This may be for daily communications or meetings. By reducing stress by implementing suitable 2 way communications, issues relating to this will be eased, helping everyone. This will help autistic people to prepare, possibly getting support, from trusted friends. Follow up meetings may help to clarify further issues. This does not indicated any lack of intelligence, simply how we process information.

3. Meltdowns/ shutdowns

All too often these are viewed in negative ways, as tantrums or sulking, and that we are behaving like spoilt children, and not responsible adults, when faced with circumstances.

This is not the case. It means we have become overwhelmed/overloaded, often by outside stimulation. These maybe sensory, emotional or information over load or just too much unpredictability, and may lash out or shutdown. They may take place in public or in private and are not attention seeking, but rather more embarassing.

They are not a reaction of choice, to gain a reward, such as with a childhood tantrum. They can be exhausting, and need to be dealt with appropriately, if possible once the warning signs are visible, thus stopping them, maintaing or increasing productivity and confidence

To recap I have now said how training can help, as can extra understanding of communications and melt downs, when working with autistic people.

Thank you for reading. I have more information on how to ripen and grow autistic staff which I am sure you will enjoy and consider when working with autistic staff.

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