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Episode 212 | Entrepreneurship as a Neurodivergent Person with Patrick Casale

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WITH Patrick Casale

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  • Episode 212 | Entrepreneurship as a Neurodivergent Person with Patrick Casale 00:00

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Hey Group Practice Listeners! Do you feel left out of the world regarding life and business? Societal standards cover the instances that are normal for neurodivergence. Understanding how your brain works are vital to express yourself in the industry.

We have Patrick Casale, the Owner of the All Things Private Practice. As a licensed Mental Health & Addiction therapist, he understands what it means to be a neurodivergent person and what he goes through in entrepreneurship. He will help us recognize the complexity of the struggles of a neurodivergent person.

 

Episode Highlights:

  • Why does it feel like torture to have timely chaos as an entrepreneur?

  • How can virtual assistants help you in managing bursts of ideas?

  • What is a neurodivergent person, and what struggles do they have in business?

  • When can the crash of neuro processes disconnect people from recharging?

  • How can balance help neurodivergence low energy flow and manage exhaustion?

  • How can embracing authenticity bring you, ideal clients?

 

To connect with Mr. Patrick Casale:

You can email him at [email protected]

Follow him on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/allthingsprivatepractice/

Listen to his podcast at https://www.allthingspractice.com/all-things-private-practice-podcast

Visit his Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/groups/privatepracticebuilding/?ref=share

Or check out his website at https://www.allthingspractice.com/

 

This episode is sponsored by TherapyNotes. TherapyNotes is an EHR software that helps behavioral health professionals manage their practice with confidence and efficiency. I use TherapyNotes in my own group practice and love its amazing support team, billing features, and scheduling capabilities. It serves us well as a large group practice owner.

Do you ever wish for a financial therapist who could relieve you from the last few months of bookkeeping, talk you off the edge when you’re running into issues with Quickbooks, or help you work through a profit plan for growth? GreenOak Accounting does just that! GreenOak Accounting is an accounting firm that specializes in working with group practices. Their value goes WAY beyond bookkeeping; they can help you get on track for financial success. Schedule a free consultation by going to http://greenoakaccounting.com/tgpe

Transcript:

Maureen Werrbach

Hey everyone. Welcome to another episode of the Group Practice Exchange Podcast. Today I have a colleague of mine on his name Patrick Aseo, who has a business called All Things Private Practice and a group practice called Resilient Mind Counseling. Many of you probably know Patrick, and I’m really excited to have him on, and we’re gonna be talking about just being an entrepreneur as a neurodivergent person.

Hi, Patrick. How are? Hey Maureen. Thanks for having me on. Yeah, we’re uh, trading seats now. This time I was on yours. Now you’re on mine, I love it. And, uh, I love this topic too, and it’s been like the highlight of my day so far, which has basically been like, start one thing. Forget that I’m doing it. Jump to the next and move on to the next, and then it feels like chaos sometimes.

I was talking, who is I doing an episode with? It was just in the past week or two. I’ve done a bunch just in the past week. I like to batch them, so now I can’t remember who it was, but I was talking about how. For me, in some weird way, thriving for me comes out of timely chaos. Like where there’s just a lot of things going on.

I’m easily bored and if I’m not starting and stopping, you know, 10 things at the same time, I feel like I get too bored. I dunno how that is for you. I can definitely relate. And timely chaos is a good way to phrase it because it’s like, it is chaos, right? Like at the moment you’re like doing all of these different things.

Your energy is just going and you’re, you’re in that flow state and you’re feeling really creative and really energized. And then when that burst isn’t there, that can be really challenging to like have to do the thing or do the next task or like complete whatever else is on your plate. And I don’t know about you, but my brain, like if the passion isn’t there if the energy’s not there if the creativity’s not there, it feels like.

Yeah, my HR person, Nikki Ramirez, did leadership testing on all of my leadership team and myself, and I categorized really highly in the visionary space, which is like idea generation and the creativity side, but really low, uh, the implementing side of things. And it really resonated a lot with me because that’s where my flow is, is like doing the research and figuring things out and coming up with an idea and then, Handing it off to someone who can actually very nice and organized way be able to implement the ideas that I have.

Cuz I know I like putter out in that way. Yeah. And, and that’s why I think it’s, and you talk about this a lot, but like, it’s so important to have those folks on your staff too, who also kind of understand how your brain works and where your idea bursts are gonna come from. Mm-hmm. And then they can create those visions and put them into reality.

Right. And my virtual assistant for my coaching business is one of those people. I created a retreat and one day sat in my living room and I was like really inspired and I did the thing. And then eight hours later I looked up and I was like, holy shit. And then I messaged Kelsey, my va, and I was like, oh, um, I know we’ve been working on, you know, this course, but it’s gotta go to the back burner because I have this retreat idea that I wanna put out to the world.

And she’s like, Just shaking her head like, I feel like scolding me virtually, but you know. Yeah. It’s very helpful to have those people. Yeah. The executive director of my group practice is the perfect yin to my yang because we’ve been friends since we were in first grade, so she knows me very well and I, I guess maybe that’s one big piece of the puzzle.

as someone who has a D H D and can kind of go all over the place and have a lot of ideas that can overwhelm people on my team who might be the implementers, is having someone who just knows you in that way and then can take any fear that they might initially have and know this is her process and I can take that information in and then I can use that information and go with it in mine.

You know, and so that Dana, my executive director, is that way. She’s like, you are a yes person. You’re willing to take a lot of risks. You don’t have a lot of fear, you’re willing to fail. Um, where she’s more of the like think through every pro and con, I’m like, oh, if I fuck it up, I know now what not to do.

And I see it as like this opportunity of growth. Yeah, I think it’s really important to have that balancing person. In any business structure as a neurodivergent entrepreneur, my office manager is one of my best friends at my group practice and he knows how my brain works and how my communication works.

And you know, sometimes I have to get all the ideas out of my head and schedule send is always my best friend because I’m like, I don’t wanna bother my staff with this, but I do need to get it out to them, but I don’t need it to be 9:00 PM on a Tuesday. So like scheduled send it for tomorrow morning. But I am also having those people in your corner who aren’t going to.

Take offense to how you communicate and how your brain works, I think is really important as well. And it really does help create that balance. And for my retreat system, I have a co-host in a lot of them and she’s like spreadsheet upon spreadsheet upon spreadsheet and that is not how my brain works.

And when I did Ireland last year for the first time, she’s like, do you have a spreadsheet with like, Anyone’s information or what rooms they’re staying in or their flight information or their emails, and I’m like, no, it’s all in my head. Yeah, yeah. That’s, that’s gotta fucking stop. You’re like, I created the vision and got the people here.

I can’t have it all on a spreadsheet. That goes beyond me too. I wouldn’t, that wouldn’t be my thing. So, as An entrepreneur, what have you noticed to be the, maybe the obstacles, whether it’s personal ones or ones that you faced on the receiving end by either colleagues or people who work with you? Yeah, it’s a good question.

You know, I found out that I was autistic last year and I always knew that I was A D H D, but that was a wrinkle in the fold for. And just relearning how, or just coming to terms with how I have to move through the world in terms of communication and socializing and energy absorption and sensory overload and limitations too.

Because I’m, I’m someone who wants to go, go, go. And it’s a weird balancing act where autism’s like, no, this has to be regimented and structured and planned. And ADHD is like, fuck this. This has to be like, fun and creative, and exciting. Yeah. So it’s been a challenge. I mean, I, I would be lying if I said it wasn’t, but.

Learning to really communicate in a way that is effective for me and being transparent about my communication, asking for what I need. I’m not someone who likes surface-level conversation or likes small talk. And I think, you know, most neurotypical folks can assume that I’m just being rude, but in reality, it’s just not how my brain functions.

So, having to just name that in interactions and being more comfortable doing so. And that also means in the entrepreneurial space, you know, talking about the struggles of being a neurodivergent entrepreneur person and therapist is just, there are a lot of obstacles. The energy absorption is probably the biggest one for me, where I get so depleted so quickly and I absorb everything.

So big crowds, big environments, big situations like you and I are both gonna be at that summit in Costa Rica in a month. , you’re gonna see me like way out of my element where I can do the one-on-one thing. I can do a small group, I can have depth conversations. But the small talk, everyone coming up to you asking you like, Hey, how’s it going?

How’s your day? What’s it look like? And I’m like, oh my God, I’ve gotta get the fuck outta here. Mm-hmm. And 99% of the time people are gonna assume that I’m being rude. Antisocial, but in reality, I’m just really trying hard to protect what my nervous system needs and trying to ensure that I’m paying attention to the century overload just when I need to take breaks and step away.

It’s been a big lesson for the last year and a half. Yeah. I resonate with a lot of what you say, and I feel like it’s become. A bigger issue as I’ve like grown as an entrepreneur. I remember when I was just a newer entrepreneur really trying to fluff up everything to just not seem standoffish. I’ve always, I’ve grown up, you know, in my college days, people, you know, saying I have resting bitch face and I’m unapproachable.

Even though I’m, I’m very, very nice. I’m not one that needs a lot of interactions, so I tend to just, And then that can seem unapproachable. I also don’t like small talk. So then if I’ll look away or start to just think of how I can say something to get out of this situation. And I remember when I first started my group practice for the first handful of years that people.

I found out later that people were a little afraid of me. They said I was very nice, but they had a little bit of fear and I remember thinking like, oh, I’m such a nice person. Like I have nice thoughts about people and was just surprised to learn the receiving end of what this looks like or how it’s seen.

And I remember going really outta mine. In emails and stuff to do exclamations and smiley faces and all these things. And I remember, cuz I’m just to the point, um, sometimes a little abrupt, not in a mean way, but in a, like, I’m not gonna dilly dally is trying to get directly from point A to point B. And sometimes I don’t even say hi and buy in an email.

I’m just like, can you send me over da da da? Just lemme ask you this real quick. You’re doing that. Do you ever write out emails directly to the? and then you have to revise and edit them and then go put in like the welcome, the thank you so much for replying or whatever. When in reality all you wanna say is exactly what you wanna say.

Yeah, yeah. But then I’m like, fuck, this isn’t how society wants me to act and I need to revise this. And then like you said, put the emoji in, put the exclamation point in, throw in an l o l here and air make off in the blow. Ugh. I’ve gotten to a place where people are closest to me, That it’s just me.

But yes, when I’m sending, you know, emails in the workspace, I, I definitely feel like I still have to do that extra effort, which kind of sucks. Then I feel like I’m being fake and it’s not, not really me. You are right. It’s just a form of masking in a way to say, I’m trying to do what society says I should do and interact the way that it says I should interact.

So I’m gonna put a pleasantry in, or I’m gonna ask how your day is when I really don’t. I’m just trying to get like the information that I need or that you need to you, so I can totally relate to that and I, I probably struggle with that more than most things. Yeah. It’s interesting because I don’t know how you feel, but every once in a while I look back at, I’m an introvert, I’m an only child.

I feel like I have all things stacked against me in some ways to be this type of entrepreneur that is around a lot of people. To have a group practice with 60 plus employees to, you know, do business coaching and just be in front of a lot of people. It makes no sense. When I look at who I am in my history.

Do you ever look at just what you’re doing and have any sort of similar thoughts to like how interesting it is that the way I function best? In some ways, I’m doing things way outside of that. Yeah. I was actually having this conversation last week where on the outside looking in, right, for people who have a following, any sort of follow.

And I know, I hate the word influencer, but if you have a following who is influenced by the content you put out, people have a lot of access to you. And I don’t think 99% of them, aside from the small group that knows you really well, your friend group, or your trusted colleagues, like see the amount of effort and energy that goes into showing up the way that you show up.

Yeah. And the scenes, which is, I don’t know for you, but for. Is the crash, which is like I can’t function. I have to watch the same stuff on repeat over and over and zone out, not talk to people. Like I have to disconnect completely for me to recharge. And I don’t think a lot of people understand how much harder those who have any sort of neurodiversity have to.

To show up and be present and put the content out there, or get the job done, or be the boss or have the podcast or even have a private practice in general and, and going through all the motions. So I really do commend all of you who are listening, who, who struggle with their own, you know, neuro divergence and are, are just having a hard time with executive functioning or socializing or task completion.

Time management like and then shaming yourselves about it, when in reality there’s so many of us out there like probably suffering in silence a lot of the time. Yeah. Yeah. It’s really exciting in a lot of ways for me to see how much more neuro divergence. In the entrepreneurial space as being talked about, that wasn’t something that was talked about at all, even just a couple of years ago.

And I remember thinking, I’m just, you know, the person with this weird brain and this space for a long time, and now just seeing how many people are, you know, in this group feels, I don’t know, I almost, you know, have shifted in the past probably four or five years from viewing it as like, Negative thing for myself, and this makes me weird.

And although I’ve embraced the word weird and it’s all over my house is like my stairs I painted and it’s like, just be weird. Our whole family’s all. But I remember for a while just thinking it’s what was is weird. And now it’s like I view it almost as a superpower in a lot of ways. And I get really excited to see just how many people are.

Coming out and talking about it, and I think it’s just making it easier than for other people that are new in the space or thinking about business ownership, who think that being neurodivergent is gonna make it impossible to do. That’s starting to go away in some sense. Yeah, I think there’s so much advocacy right now.

To bring it to the forefront where if you go on TikTok, I mean, yeah, ADHD slash autism. TikTok is just chockful of great information and support. But I think that it’s really important to embrace both sides and to recognize like the way your brain works helps you out in a lot of ways as an entrepreneur, like thinking outside the box, those big bursts of energy, those big creative ideas, not taking no for an answer, not settling for the status quo.

Really trying hard to use the way that the brain just thinks creatively in different ways, because I think it sets us. . And that doesn’t mean there aren’t barriers and there aren’t obstacles and, and there aren’t things that are gonna be deficit areas and struggles. But the reality is like I love when I’m in my flow state, when I’m like hyper-focused and fixated on something that I feel passionate about because I know I’m gonna create something really cool.

Mm-hmm. It’s just that I also have to know the other side of the coin is like exhaustion and depletion and having to step away. Just that balancing act is so important, but I agree with you a hundred percent. What advice do you have for people that are new in the entrepreneurial space and identify as neurodivergent?

Do you have any tips or pieces of advice or feedback? Yep. I think that surrounding yourself with other neurodivergent folks, entrepreneurs, colleagues, and friend groups because I think neuro divergence and neurodiversity. Self-disclosure, connection through the weirdness connection, the special interest connection through these things can really help you out quite a bit.

There are so many resources out there for people in terms of like time management and executive functioning and how to channel that energy when it comes over to you and, and all of these strategies, whether it be my podcast where we talk about neurodiversity all the time. There’s a great Instagram account, uh, neuro Divergent Insights, Dr.

Megan Neff, who’s fantastic with tons of resources. I mean, there are so many resources out there for people right now and trying really hard, like you said, to kind of embrace the weird, because embracing who you are is an entrepreneur and allows you to be more authentically you. That’s what’s gonna set you apart.

That’s what’s gonna really make your business enjoyable. That’s what’s gonna attract the ideal clients coming in. You’re finally able to embrace who you are, how you present to the world, and how you communicate. And I think that’s really important. And for those of you who are starting group practices or privacy practices or entrepreneurial journeys, like be authentic, you disclose some of your, your story, like there’s nothing that creates more relatability and connection than disclosure, especially for groups of people who feel like they’re the only ones experiencing something.

I really do recommend trying hard to do that and having a great neurodiverse or neurodivergent affirmative therapist, that’s also very helpful to have someone in your corner that gets it, that can support you, that can support you through these struggles in this journey. I think that’s been really, um, life-changing for me.

Yeah. Do you have any, just as we slowly start to wrap up, this is actually a question that I’m wondering literally myself and also just people might benefit from it but are there any tools or. Softwares or things that you use as an entrepreneur that you feel have helped you be most successful? I’m being very broad about my question, I guess, but there are so many tools or resources.

Even pieces of technologies that people use in their business that help them in some way, shape, or another. Are there any that you feel have really helped? I know you just mentioned the send later thing on the emails, um, but are there any things that you find to be really helpful for you in that sense?

Yeah, I think definitely having a good admin or virtual assistant is huge in terms of being able to manage and have efficiency in yours. I really love this new artificial intelligence software that is helping create content like copy.ai, jasper.ai chat G P t. Like dude, I have been on chat G p t way too much.

I will tell you this, I was on there a couple of weeks ago and I wanted to really see it’s the functionality of like, how creative can you get this thing and how weird of a prompt can you give it? Yeah, so I asked it to write me a children’s story. About a wallaby named Gladys who had three butt holes living in the outback of Australia.

And it wrote me a 15-page children’s story. I mean, I was just like really trying to get as bizarre with it as possible. It’s, the stuff is wild, but like if you’re struggling, To create blog posts or content like these resources is great because it’s just a few keywords and prompts, and all of a sudden, there you go.

You’ve got a ton of information or a blog post or new content you can post on social media. And there are so many of those apps and resources out there that can just make your life so much easier than feeling like, oh my God, I have to schedule and when I make content, I have to schedule. When I do this, I have to do it.

Then it gets so overwhelming that you don’t do any of it and even like platforms like later or Buffer or any of those things that you can just batch content and then just have it post for you so you don’t have to remember to go in and do that every day. I just like to make my life a lot easier than it, you know, works smarter, not harder, for sure.

Yeah. I love that you mentioned an admin or some kind of VA or assistant, cuz that I feel is a lifesaver for me because I tend to like a brain dump things. A lot comes out at once, then I’m like quiet for a while and then a lot comes out again at once. And so having someone who can take all that information and sometimes see that I’m snoozing for a while and then take that a whole ton of information again and just be able to like put it out in that way that works for my business is really helpful.

I think outsourcing is crucial for small business ownership and having the right admin and support staff can be life-changing. It also allows you to. The things that you don’t have time to do and don’t want to do. Yeah. And our time and our energy are our most valuable currencies in my opinion. And those are the things for me as an entrepreneur that I value the most.

So yeah, it’s been really helpful. Well, I appreciate you coming on. I know you came on. Looking busy and overwhelmed as I feel as well. So I really appreciate you taking the time out for those who wanna connect with you and let them know where you’re at. But then also if you have anything, I know you always have a retreat, some things going on.

I saw something get posted today. But if there’s anything you wanted to share. Yeah. Um, for any of you listening, my website is all things practice.com. You can join my Facebook group, all things private practice. We have retreats coming up. Spain, Asheville, Portugal, and Ireland in the next year. So there are opportunities to travel internationally, get CEUs, and participate in a very small, intimate incubator-like experiences.

I don’t like the big crowd environments, and we do have spots for Ireland and Portugal too. And the All Things Private Practice podcast on all major platforms. New episodes are out every. Awesome. Thank you so much and I’m so excited that you’re going to Portugal. It’s my favorite country ever. I love it.

I was there last year. I’m looking forward to going back. So would like to move there at some point in time. As long as my wife, uh, doesn’t listen to this episode in here that, you know, that’s the goal. , it’s beautiful. So where in Portugal are you gonna be? Well, the retreat that we’re hosting is about 30 minutes outside of Lisbon, like a 40-acre Portuguese farm, and then it’s kind of walking distance to the beach.

So we’re gonna have it there and just have some cool experiences built-in and some cool, uh, day trips and stuff like that. Oh, that’s so fun. I went to Lisbon and I loved it. That’s where I would love to be. Have like a little apartment. Yeah. I would like to go to Porto like I liked Northern Portugal. I liked it.

Colder, grittier. I’m from New York, so it was kind of nice to like have that environment and the food was better. Yeah. But the weather, weather kinda sucked, so Yeah, I did not go to Porto, so, but I heard great things about that too. Well, I appreciate you coming on and I’ll see you in less than a month.

Yeah. Thanks again. I’ll see you then. Bye Bye. Thanks for listening to the Group Practice Exchange podcast. Like what you heard. Give us five stars on whatever platform you’re listening from. Need extra. Join the Exchange, a membership community just for group practice owners with monthly office hours, live webinars, and a library of training ready for you to dive into.

Visit www.members.thegrouppracticeexchange.com/exchange. See you next week.

Thanks For Listening

Thanks for listening to the group practice exchange podcast. Like what you heard? Give us five stars on whatever platform you’re listening from. Need extra suppor? Join The Exchange, a membership community just for group practice owners with monthly office hours, live webinars, and a library of trainings ready for you to dive into visit www dot members dot the group practice exchange dot com forward slash exchange. See you next week.

Resources

Here are the resources and guides we recommend based on this episode

* I am an affiliate for some of the businesses I recommend. These are companies that I use in my own group practice, and make recommendations based off of my experience with them. When you use some of these companies through my links, I receive compensation, which helps me continue to offer great free information on my podcast, blog, Facebook group, and website.

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Meet your host

Maureen

Maureen Werrbach is a psychotherapist, group practice owner and group practice coach. Learn more about her coaching services here:

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The podcast is structured so that you get practice building tips in small doses, where an episode can be listened to (and a group practice building lesson can be learned) in a single car ride.

Episodes are structured into categories: coaching sessions where I coach a group practice owner on a specific topic, tips of the day by yours truly, real talk where you get to be a fly on the wall while an established group practice owner and I talk about the highs and lows of ownership, and trainings done by experts in the field.

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