When you have a brain injury or autism, you may have a whole team of people willing to speak up for you. Though these team members may have good intentions and/or professional experience, your voice should be heard clearly. This isn’t easy for everyone. Frustration or fear may get in the way making it harder to know what they want. We have a few strategies that may help you to have stronger voice in your person-centered meetings or discussions.
- Get prepared: Find a time when your thoughts are quiet, and you can focus. Brainstorm the topics you want to talk about, outline a brief description about the topic, how you feel about the topic, and what you may be asking the other people for.
- Write it down: Whether you write it, type it, record it, or have someone scribe it for you, having your thoughts right there in front of you can help to make sure you are getting your point across.
- Breathe: It can be stressful to sit in a room with everyone talking about you, especially if you have important things to talk about. Get yourself into a calm state of mind and when you veer off-course, take a breath (or two) and reset.
- Listen to the feedback: Listening to feedback from others doesn’t mean you have to agree, but there is likely to be a few solutions or ideas when you get good quality feedback. Don’t be afraid to ask for it to!
- Follow up: Outline responsible people and timelines for each follow-up task. This will help you to know who to turn to for each task you created with your team and to keep them accountable for their part in your support team.
- Ask for help: If speaking up for yourself is easy and effective for you, you may not need the help. But if you do, don’t be afraid to ask. It can be helpful for someone you trust to guide you through the preparation, sharing, and follow-ups. As you are more confident, you can take the controls back.
Come see what we have to offer on our website: https://www.ccsnct.org/services/adult-neurocare/