Paula Burgess: Beyond the Maze
Experience with ADHD inspires Paula’s different way of thinking
When Paula Burgess’s son was diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), she struggled to find advice on how to help him.
She had struggled with the condition as a child and was determined he would not have the same plight.
She could not find enough useful information on the internet so, after doing her own research, she wrote a book called Beyond the ADHD Label to help parents in a similar position. She also went on to complete an 18-month course in ADHD coaching.
She then set up a small business, Beyond The Maze, to help families cope with ADHD.
But she doesn’t like the formal ADHD definition. “I like to refer to it as attention-different rather than deficit because ADHD is a different way of thinking,” she says.
“A lot of people don’t understand it. Some don’t think it’s real. They think it’s just a child being naughty.”
Beyond the Maze uses her real experience to provide low-cost coaching for people with ADHD or, in the case of children, their parents.
“I try to make everything accessible and affordable.”
She also has a Facebook group and runs free support groups and free webinars, “because there’s not a lot of support, and not much of it is free”.
Paula is pleased to be voted a Westfield Local Hero and will use the $10,000 Westfield Local Heroes grant to purchase sensory tools and equipment and implement a membership program.
“I want to get more activities and equipment in the office for the kids to use in our sessions,” she says.
“I also want to write another book for Dads with ADHD kids, as well as getting the book Beyond the ADHD Label into every day care centre and paediatrician's office.”