Executive Dysfunction: How It’s So Much More than ‘Being Lazy’

Hi, P-assangers! We meet again on our latest article, it seems. If you’ve been going on a tough week, then PIDAS81 has got your back. We’re here to bring you a new and exciting topic on our latest article which can hopefully help some of you with yourselves. Can you guess what it’s about…?

Yep, it’s about executive dysfunction! Let’s get on to the article, shall we? 

Now, what exactly is executive dysfunction, you ask? Well, P-assangers, before we get to the dysfunction half, it’s important to first understand the first part, about executive functions. Executive functions are a set of mental skills that include working memory, flexible thinking, and self-control. We use these skills every day to learn, work, and manage daily life. 

The frontal lobe is dedicated to executive function makes us able to do a lot of things, like doing things without external stimulus as a motivation. When that part of the brain doesn’t function properly, like if you’re neurodivergent or mentally ill, then those fun things that executive functions allow you to do would not be as easy. 

When someone’s executive function is otherwise impaired, then one could suffer from executive dysfunction. Someone who has executive dysfunction might not be able to multitask, make plans or organize, focus or pay attention, sit still, and many other things. Executive dysfunction can be caused by ADHD, Alzheimer’s, depression, and so many more. 

People with Executive Dysfunction can be seen as lazy, because they have difficulty starting and/or remaining on a task. They might be seen unable to get up for hours in the morning, failing to turn in assignments on time, or maybe even putting the pile of clothes on their chair into the closet. On students, this will greatly affect their learning abilities, thus may also causing their grades to go down. 

A lot of parents like to label children who don’t achieve as much as their peers as ‘lazy’. While it certainly must have a good meaning behind this, we as growing children still absorb anything and everything our parents tell us, thus affecting our mental health a greater amount than we might realise. In fact, this label might not be true at all, because what the labeled child might be going through isn’t laziness or procrastination in the first place, but executive dysfunction.

So what makes them so different? Well, P-assangers, someone that’s lazy would see a task that needs to be done, proceeds to ignore it for later or not do it at all, and then walk away because they actually don’t care about that task. When you do care for the task that needs to be done, though, even when you’re still unable to do it, then that’s not laziness. That’s most likely executive dysfunction, which sucks because it isn’t really a choice. Because your executive functions aren’t working very well, you now need external stimulus to get you to do things. 

However, you can still work around it. Some people found that practicing mindfulness could help. Others have tried assistive devices, organizational aids, or even therapy, if P-assangers have the money and time for it. If alarms on your phone can help you, then you can try that!

There are so many ways to work around executive dysfunction, but the earliest step should be not to beat yourself up while suffering it. That would just make things worse and not help at all. What do you think, P-assangers? Was this article a great help to you? We would be really happy if it did, because we’d be back with more amazing articles in the future. Stay safe, stay healthy, and stay happy, P-assangers! See you later! 

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