Day of the Holiday: It’s time to celebrate! The day of the holiday may bring additional stressors. Consider packing a “comfort bag” with them the night before the holiday with all of their preferred items. This will be helpful if they are feeling overwhelmed or overstimulated. Bring their schedule & agree on a time you will leave the holiday. Having a plan & sticking to this plan will help reduce stress. Lastly, enjoy the holiday with your child! While the preparation may feel like a lot of work, you are helping them learn to enjoy & feel safe during the holidays.

Contributed by: A2 Therapy Works in Ann Arbor, Michigan,
a pediatric therapy center offering speech and
occupational
therapy.

Preparing for a New Year
As we prepare for a new year, we think about what has happened this year and what we can change to make it better. Whether it is changing your eating habits or moving into a new place, the results will make a big impact. However, saying you will do it is a lot easier than actually doing it. First, it is important to plan everything out step by step. Create some small goals that you can keep track of, and then end it with a larger goal. If you are able, find someone else who is perhaps working on the same or similar goals. This way, you can motivate one another to continue with your plan. Be aware of obstacles that might get in your way and have a plan to go forward. Finally, if you are changing your daily routine and this is something you want permanently, repeat the goals and everything you did prior. Old habits are hard to get rid of, and you are the only one who can make this happen. Make this upcoming year the year of change, the year of possibilities!
Drew Shaw, M.A. — AAoM Employee and Autism Diagnosed

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