Improve your student’s study and work habits: Using my GRIT method | Sharon Saline, Psy.D. | 6 Min Read

Does it ever seem like once your child or teen gets started on a project that they struggle to sustain their interest and complete it?  Sustained-attention and goal-directed persistence are two key executive functioning skills that work together to help a student cross the finish line. Sustained attention refers to the ability to maintain focus and extended efforts over time. Goal-directed persistence means the ability to set a realistic goal and follow through on it without being waylaid by distractions and interruptions. These skills mature slowly as a child develops into adulthood and require repeated, targeted support in the face of intense frustration, fear of failure or lethargy. Rather than anxious hovering or distressed reminders, though, you can help your youngster establish do-able goals, improve work continuity and nurture competence by shifting to collaboration and compassion.

When students struggle with setting appropriate goals and paying attention to what needs to happen to finish them, they often feel ashamed. While neurodivergent kids have natural challenges in these areas, other students who don’t meet the criteria for ADHD may just have weaker capabilities. Either way, they often feel bad about themselves as a result of comparing themselves negatively to peers who…

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Sharon Saline, Psy.D.

Sharon Saline, Psy.D. is a top expert in ADHD and neurodiversity. Dr. Saline specializes in an integrative approach to managing ADHD, anxiety, executive functioning skills, learning differences and mental health issues in neurodiverse and 2e children, teens, college-age adults and families. With over 25 years of clinical experience, she brings a positive, strength-based approach to improving the challenges related to attention, learning and behavior. As a licensed clinical psychologist in private practice in Northampton, MA, Dr. Saline helps people reduce frustration, develop daily living skills, communicate better and feel closer. An internationally sought-after lecturer, workshop facilitator, and educator/clinician trainer, she adeptly addresses topics ranging from making sense of ADHD and executive functioning skills to managing anxiety to understanding the teen brain. You may contact Dr. Sharon Saline at