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Roger E. Lauer, Ph.D.
Roger E. Lauer, Ph.D. Director
Developing Unique Minds
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Executive Function Deficit

Executive functions refer to key mental skills that are required for learning and paying attention. They help interpret information and remind you to finish tasks. When someone struggles with executive functioning, they can feel overwhelmed by tasks requiring planning, organization, time management, flexible thinking or remembering. In short, these skills help you to get things done.

Think of executive functions as the CEO of the brain. Within any company, the CEO must keep everything running smoothly, integrating many different aspects of a company into an efficient and successful venture. Similarly, executive functions integrate different mental skills to run smoothly and efficiently. Executive functions make sure that every day tasks are completed from start to finish. If you or your child have difficulties remembering deadlines at work or school, managing anger, organizing your desk, showing up for work or activities on time, or other day-to-day activities, you likely struggle with an executive function deficit (EFD).

If you or someone within your family struggles with executive functions, a neuropsychological evaluation can help to better understand and pinpoint the specific mental skills that are impacted. We look at the client’s performance in areas which impact school, work or home life including:

Regulate behavior:

  • inhibit yourself or “put the brakes on” in situations that need it
  • track the effect of your behavior on others
  • transition easily between activities

Control your emotions:

  • shift your behavior in a flexible manner
  • modulate your emotional responses appropriately

Mental or cognitive control:

  • be a self-starter or begin a task independently
  • check your work effectively
  • plan for the future and develop appropriate steps to attain goals
  • hold information in your mind in order to finish a task
  • keep your workspace organized

Executive function problems are associated with a number of psychiatric and developmental disorders, including:

If you or someone you know has executive function problems, our clinic offers Executive Function Coaching.  For more information about our coaching or coaches, click here or contact our office.