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First Steps to Getting Your Adult With Autism to Become Independent

We are starting this series on helping our Adult with Autism to kickstart their journey towards becoming independent. We want to highlight 6 steps that we hope can help you get started.

This post also contains FREE printable PDFs that you can download.

Watch our video here to have a detailed explanation of the steps.

1) Assess what your Adult with Autism can currently do

It is important to know what your starting point is in order to know where to lead your Adult with Autism. This Functional Living Skills Checklist can help provide tasks/skills within categories to help bring some clarity.

Functional and Independence Skills Parent Checklist-2
Download PDF • 104KB

2) Look at the categories in the order of importance

The checklist can look quite overwhelming. In order to break down which areas to focus on, we look at the categories of items starting with the highest priority categories.

3) Choose a list of 1-3 tasks that your Adult with Autism can start on

It can be a lot of items to CHOOSE 1-3 tasks to start on which is why we created another worksheet that can help guide your thought process. Click here to download the PDF.

Checklist Organizer - Functional Living Skills Checklist
Download PDF • 169KB

4) Educate yourself on the Growth Mindset

The Growth Mindset believe that their learning, capabilities and intelligence can grow with proper efforts put in place. People with the growth mindset believe that failure is an opportunity to learn and grow.

I highly recommend this book 'Mindset' by Carol Dweck which helps us reframe failure and struggles. As we all know, failure and struggle is no stranger to our Adult with Autism as they navigate through life.

5) Discuss achievable goals with your Adult with Autism

When our Adult with Autism is able to articulate what it is they desire, that is when we are able to bring purpose to their tasks. Our goal is to break down for them why learning small, seemingly menial tasks, can contribute towards them achieving their desires.

6) Get outside support

You may need someone else to come in to support in this process which leads to the last point which is to get outside support. If you are a parent, sometimes you may be too close to your child or have too much history to say certain things without it being misunderstood.

When you say "You need to build up your skill sets in this area" what your child might hear is "You are not good enough" which might not end well. So we encourage getting someone else who has a good relationship with your Adult with Autism, who is respected by them and who you trust and align with to join in with this discussion. It could be a sibling, relative, teacher, neighbour, psychologist.

So these were 6 things to bare in mind as you start off your adult with autism on their learning and independent journey. Leave a comment below if you have tried any of these steps and how it worked out for you.

Stay tuned for more resources.

Let's learn together!



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