Cook’s FSD Dysregulation: Functional system regulation using a spiritual growth-oriented learning model 3.7

Cook’s FSD Dysregulation: Functional system regulation using a spiritual growth-oriented learning model. Nurture Their Nature Newsletter. T. Cook, 2023 Feb.: V.1 A.15

People with neurodiverse conditions such as autism, ADHD, and dyslexia may experience various challenges in their lives, including social communication difficulties, sensory sensitivities, executive function deficits, and learning differences. These challenges may cause them to feel misunderstood, isolated, overwhelmed, and inadequate, leading to stress, anxiety, depression, and other mental health issues [22,26]. Learning differences such as dyslexia can co-occurs with problems in executive functions which can often cause individuals to experience a range of emotions, including frustration, anger, and shame. These emotions may stem from the difficulties they face in certain academic areas, which can affect their self-confidence and self-esteem. This Crisci (2020) study discusses Miyake’s model, which identifies three essential Executive Functions (EFs): inhibition, shifting, and updating. Inhibition refers to the ability to intentionally stop automatic or dominant responses when necessary. Shifting refers to the capability to adjust to changing priorities by switching between different tasks, operations or mental sets. Updating refers to the ability to replace irrelevant information in working memory with new and pertinent input and to transform instructions into action plans [9].

In addition, learning disabilities can also lead to questioning one’s beliefs and values, as individuals may struggle to keep up with their peers, leading them to feel inadequate or inferior. They may begin to question their abilities and their worth, which can further exacerbate negative emotions; there are several brain mechanisms and functions that are involved in these numerous neurodifferences and emotions [24]. For instance, non-effective communication can be one of the many challenges neurodiverse individuals may face in communication which can lead to a form of masking or social camouflaging for the neurodiverse. Masking refers to the process of hiding one’s true thoughts, feelings, or behaviors in order to fit in with social norms and expectations [21]. Please note this is a common strategy used by individuals who feel that their natural way of being may not be accepted or understood by others, particularly those with neurodiverse conditions such as autism, ADHD, anxiety disorders, and learning differences. 

The masking strategy is a common technique utilized by neurodivergent individuals to navigate social situations, and it can often be a learned trauma response. The use of masking or social camouflaging allows individuals to fit in better and feel more accepted, but it can also be exhausting and lead to mental health challenges in the long run. Difficulty with social cues: Neurodiverse individuals may have trouble recognizing social cues such as tone of voice, facial expressions, and body language. This can lead to misunderstandings and misinterpretations, making it challenging to communicate effectively with others [28,7]. These are just a few reasons for non-effective communication due to neurodiversities: 

  1. Sensory overload: Many neurodiverse individuals experience sensory overload in social situations. This can cause them to feel overwhelmed, anxious, and even physically ill. As a result, they may have difficulty concentrating or responding appropriately during communication.
  2. Difficulty with language and speech: Neurodiverse individuals may have difficulty with language and speech. For example, they may struggle with expressing themselves clearly, using appropriate language, or understanding idioms and metaphors. This can lead to misunderstandings and make it challenging to communicate effectively with others.
  3. Challenges with social reciprocity: Neurodiverse individuals may have challenges with social reciprocity, meaning they may have trouble taking turns in conversation, listening actively, or responding appropriately. This can lead to communication breakdowns, misunderstandings, and frustration for both parties.

The neurodiverse often engage in other forms of masking or social camouflaging as a coping mechanism to fit in with neurotypical social norms and expectations. Neurodiverse individuals may feel pressure to mask their differences to avoid stigma, discrimination, or social isolation. This can be especially true in social situations where there may be pressure to conform and fit in [23]. The Pearson study (2021) outlines how classical social theory (i.e., social identity theory) can help us to understand how and why people mask by situating masking in the social context in which it develops. Masking or social camouflaging for the neurodiverse can include suppressing stimming behaviors, adapting speech patterns, and mimicking social cues or behaviors that may not come naturally to them. Masking or social camouflaging can provide temporary relief by allowing neurodiverse individuals to blend in and feel more accepted in social situations. The Pearson study argues that although masking might contribute toward disparities in diagnosis, it is important that we do not impose gender norms and stereotypes by associating masking with a “female autism phenotype” that masking should be examined through a socio-developmental lens, taking into account factors that contribute toward the initial development of the mask and that drive its maintenance and  provide recommendations for future research, stressing the need for increased understanding of the different ways that autism may present in different people (e.g., internalizing and externalizing) and intersectionality [27]. 

Adapting speech patterns refer to the act of modifying one’s language, tone, and communication style to suit the needs of a particular situation or audience. It involves adjusting the way we communicate to better fit the social and cultural norms of the people around us, whether it be in a formal or informal setting. For example, adapting speech patterns can involve speaking more slowly and clearly when communicating with someone who has a hearing impairment, using simpler language when speaking to someone who has limited English proficiency, or adjusting the tone and volume of our voice to fit the social setting, such as speaking quietly in a library or loudly in a concert [8].

Adapting speech patterns can be an essential skill for effective communication and building relationships with others. It allows us to connect with people from different backgrounds and cultures and helps us to convey our message in a way that is easily understood. However, masking or social camouflaging can also be a learned trauma response [18]. It can lead to feelings of burnout, anxiety, and depression, as well as a loss of sense of self. In the long run, masking or social camouflaging can be detrimental to the mental health and wellbeing of the neurodiverse. It is important to recognize and support neurodiverse individuals’ differences and promote a culture of acceptance and inclusivity [5,19].

However, masking and camouflaging such as adaptive speech can be related to skepticism or a lack of trust in others. It’s survival strategy used to navigate a world that is not always accommodating of neurodiversity. The neurodiverse experience skepticism which is an attitude of doubt or questioning towards claims, ideas, or beliefs which can hurt the core of one’s being and self-image. 

Interestingly enough, skeptics are often characterized as being open-minded but critical thinkers who are willing to challenge assumptions and beliefs. It is important they begin to recognize and respect the ways in which individuals with neurodivergent conditions adapt to social situations while also advocating for greater understanding and acceptance of neurodiversity. Similarly, some individuals with neurodiverse conditions may feel pressure to conform to social norms and expectations, which can lead them to mask their true thoughts and feelings through speech adaptation. In these cases, adopting a more closed-minded or rigid approach to communication may help them to avoid revealing their true thoughts or feelings [7].  

Examples of masking include speechlessness towards leadership and authority can be a form of masking for some individuals with neurodiverse conditions. This can be particularly true for those with conditions such as autism or ADHD, who may struggle with social communication and interpreting social cues.  In situations where individuals with neurodiverse conditions are expected to interact with authority figures, they may feel pressure to mask their true thoughts and feelings in order to fit in with social norms and expectations. This can lead to speechlessness, where individuals may feel unable to express themselves or speak up for their needs and preferences [30,21].

It is important to recognize that the experiences of neurodiverse individuals can vary widely, and there is no single approach that works for everyone. However, in general, it is possible that cynicism or closed-mindedness could be related to speech adaptation or masking in some cases. For example, individuals with conditions like autism or ADHD may be experiencing burnout and as well have a different way of processing and interpreting social cues and may struggle to understand the nuances of social interaction [17]. As a result, they may find it helpful to adopt a more cynical or guarded approach to communication in order to protect themselves from misinterpreting social cues or making social mistakes [15]. 

While masking can be an effective coping mechanism in certain situations, it can also be detrimental to mental health and well-being in the long run. When individuals constantly mask their true selves, they may experience feelings of isolation, disconnection, and even depression. This is because masking requires a significant amount of cognitive and emotional energy, leaving individuals feeling drained and exhausted. Moreover, masking can prevent individuals from forming authentic connections with others. When individuals hide their true thoughts and feelings, they may struggle to connect with others on a deeper level, leading to a sense of loneliness and disconnection [21,12].

It is important to note that masking is not a choice, but rather a coping mechanism that is often developed in response to social pressure and expectations. As such, it is important for society to become more accepting and accommodating of neurodiverse individuals, allowing them to express themselves in a way that feels authentic and natural to them. However, it is important to recognize that these coping mechanisms can also be limiting and can prevent individuals from fully expressing themselves or engaging with others in a meaningful way. As such, it’s important to work with individuals with neurodiverse conditions to develop strategies that allow them to communicate in a way that feels authentic to them while still navigating the challenges of social interaction. Similarly, there are several brain mechanisms and functions that are involved in these numerous neurodifferences and emotion:

The thymus, an endocrine gland in the neck region, is also associated with emotional wellbeing. It plays a vital role in the immune system and may contribute to emotional responses to stress and anxiety. The thymus is also associated with how we navigate their emotions and develop a positive self-image. The Thymus is a gland located in the upper chest, near the heart. It plays a significant role in the development and maturation of T-cells, which are vital for the immune system’s functioning. Thalamus is a vital relay center in the brain, responsible for routing sensory information to the relevant parts of the cortex for further processing. It also plays a crucial role in regulating attention, arousal, and maintaining consciousness [31,36]. 

Executive function deficits are a set of cognitive processes that help individuals plan, organize, initiate, regulate, and monitor their actions and behaviors. These deficits can affect an individual’s ability to make sound decisions, adapt to changing circumstances, prioritize tasks, and stay focused. ARAS, or the Arousal Regulation and Attention System, is a neurobiological network involved in regulating arousal and attention levels in response to incoming sensory information. Dysfunction in this system can lead to difficulties in maintaining an optimal level of stimulation and regulating emotional responses [37,29,10]. 

Research suggests that executive function deficits and Ascending Reticular Activating System (ARAS) dysfunction are linked to resentful and selfish behaviors. Individuals with executive function deficits may struggle with impulse control, decision making, and regulating emotions, leading to impulsive and selfish actions. Furthermore, ARAS dysfunction can cause individuals to be more reactive and less able to regulate their emotional responses, leading to resentful and angry behaviors. This can lead to a cycle of negative emotions and behaviors, making it difficult to break free from this destructive pattern [29,11,25]. 

Please note the ARAS and Pons are both parts of the brain that are involved in regulating arousal, attention, and sensory processing. They are also involved in the processing of emotional information and the regulation of emotional responses.Research has suggested that individuals who engage in masking may have differences in their ARAS and Pons functioning compared to those who do not mask. For example, some studies have found that individuals with autism who engage in masking may have reduced activation in the ARAS and Pons, suggesting that they may be less able to regulate their arousal and emotional responses during social interactions [10].

The Reticular Activating System (RAS) and the limbic system are two important components of the brain that work together to regulate physiological responses and emotions. The RAS is a network of neurons in the brainstem that regulates the level of arousal or alertness in the brain. It regulates the sleep-wake cycle, controls attention, and filters sensory input. The RAS also plays a role in regulating emotional responses and behaviors. The limbic system is a complex set of structures in the brain that are involved in processing emotions, memory, and learning. The limbic system includes the amygdala, hippocampus, thalamus, hypothalamus, and cingulate gyrus [29]. These structures work together to regulate emotional responses to stimuli, assess the impact of events on the body, and coordinate appropriate behavioral responses [10]. Specifically, the RAS-MAPK pathway has been shown to regulate the growth and survival of neurons in the hippocampus, a key structure within the limbic system that plays a critical role in learning and memory. Dysregulation of this pathway has been implicated in a number of neuropsychiatric disorders, including depression and anxiety, which are often associated with abnormalities in emotional processing and memory [33,34].

Please note there are several studies that have shown that the RAS-MAPK signaling pathway plays a critical role in neurodevelopment and neuroplasticity. Mutations in genes encoding proteins in this pathway have been implicated in several neurodevelopmental disorders, including neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1), Noonan syndrome, and cardiofaciocutaneous syndrome. These disorders are typically associated with developmental delay, cognitive deficits, and behavioral abnormalities [3,14].

In addition, alterations in the RAS-MAPK signaling pathway have been associated with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Increased activation of the MAPK/ERK pathway has been observed in postmortem brain samples from individuals with ASD, and several genetic studies have identified mutations in genes encoding proteins in this pathway in individuals with ASD. Overall, it appears that dysregulation of the RAS-MAPK signaling pathway can result in significant neurodevelopmental differences and contribute to the pathophysiology of several neurodevelopmental disorders [20,34,3].

In some cases, individuals with sensory sensitivities, including those with Ras, may experience anger as a result of feeling overwhelmed or overstimulated. It is important to recognize that anger is a natural human emotion and can be expressed in a healthy way. However, for those with sensory sensitivities, managing anger may be challenging and require additional support and strategies. Overall, it is important to understand and respect an individual’s sensory sensitivities, and to work with them on developing coping strategies that work best for their needs. Social communication difficulties can often lead to feelings of embarrassment, discomfort, and shame. Social communication difficulties can be caused by various factors, including language disorders, autism spectrum disorder, social anxiety, and more [2]. 

The pons is located in the brainstem and serves as a relay center, connecting various parts of the brain with each other. It also plays a critical role in regulating breathing, sleep, and some aspects of attention and arousal. The cerebellum is located in the back of the brain and is primarily responsible for coordinating and fine-tuning motor movements. It also plays a role in cognitive functions such as attention and language processing. The cerebellum receives sensory information from the body and uses that information to adjust motor movements in real-time, ensuring that movements are smooth and precise [13,32]. Pons is an “empathic brain” structure that plays a significant role in social communication. It acts as a bridge between a number of brain regions, facilitating the flow of information between them. Dysfunction in the pons and the “empathic brain” can lead to difficulties in processing social information and can result in social communication difficulties [11].

When a person has difficulty communicating socially, they may feel inadequate or different, leading to feelings of shame. This shame can arise from societal expectations and norms that dictate how people should behave and interact with others. In some cases, individuals may internalize this shame, leading to self-doubt, anxiety, and poor self-esteem. The relationship between pons and shame is closely linked to social communication difficulties. Since social communication relies heavily on the pons, an individual with pons dysfunction may experience communication difficulties, leading to feelings of shame. Additionally, shame can exacerbate communication difficulties, creating a cycle where social communication difficulties lead to shame, which further impairs communication [16,4,35].

 Note: In order to support individuals who mask, it is important to provide a safe and accepting environment where they can feel comfortable expressing their true thoughts and feelings. This may involve providing accommodations such as sensory-friendly spaces or alternative communication methods, as well as educating others about the experiences of neurodiverse individuals. Overall, while masking can be an effective coping mechanism in the short term, it is important to recognize the long-term consequences and work towards creating a society that is more accepting and inclusive of neurodiverse individuals as well discovering the “Extraordinary Gifts of Autism, ADHD, Dyslexia, and Other Brain Differences” [1].

Cook’s Call for Research

This article below is one of the most profound quote for me [actually for all of us]:  “For the inequities that structure the lives of people with learning disabilities to be holistically understood, they must be reframed as an issue of social justice, and violence must be identified as a central contributor to these inequalities.” Wiseman, Phillippa, and Nick Watson. “”Because I’ve Got a Learning Disability, They Don’t Take Me Seriously:” Violence, Well-being, and Devaluing People With Learning Disabilities.” Journal of interpersonal violence vol. 37,13-14.  (2022, Retrieved from website here). Please note Holistic refers to a philosophy or approach that considers the whole system or organism, rather than just individual parts or factors, when seeking to understand or address a problem or situation. In healthcare, holistic or “whole-person” care takes into account the physical, emotional, social, and spiritual needs of patients, with the goal of promoting overall health, rather than just treating individual symptoms or conditions. Holistic approaches are also used in fields such as therapy, education, and business management, among others. 

Holism and prudential personalism are related in that both emphasize the importance of the whole person, rather than just one aspect or part of the individual. Holism is the belief that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts, and that a person should be viewed and treated as a whole being, rather than just a collection of separate parts. Prudential personalism, on the other hand, is a philosophical approach that emphasizes the importance of the individual’s overall well-being and flourishing, rather than just their immediate needs or desires. Both holism and prudential personalism recognize that a person’s physical, emotional, and spiritual dimensions are interconnected and must be considered together in order for the individual to achieve true fulfillment and happiness. 

In terms of holism and spiritual-growth, it is important to acknowledge and support neurodiversity and provide accommodations and resources to help individuals with diverse abilities thrive in their lives. Mass gatherings, loud music, and other sensory experiences can be overwhelming for individuals with certain neurodivergent conditions. This can make it difficult for them to engage in worship or feel a connection with God. Holistic proof that addresses these concerns can provide a more comfortable and accessible environment for worship.  Many individuals with neurodivergent conditions have experienced trauma due to disparagement, which can lead to a loss of faith or trust in God.

Neurodiverse individuals may struggle with accepting authority figures or traditional religious teachings. Holistic proof can provide a more inclusive and nuanced understanding of spirituality that is not limited by traditional dogma. It is important to note that while executive function deficits and ARAS dysfunction can contribute to resentful and selfish behaviors, they do not cause them outright. Other individual and environmental factors can also contribute to these negative behaviors, and individualized support and interventions are often necessary to help individuals develop healthier patterns of interaction and behavior. By providing the neurodiverse with the necessary resources and support systems, they can overcome challenges and achieve their full potential.  Further research is needed to better understand the specific mechanisms by which this pathway regulates neuronal development and plasticity, and how its dysregulation contributes to the emergence of holistic views for ones’ overall well-being.There also needs to be research into whether people with conditions such as autism, ADHD, and dyslexia may face spiritual challenges that lead to masking, camouflaging, and mental health issues [c]. As well, research into holistic ways to support neurodiversity and provide resources to help them thrive such as prudential personalism by being in unity with Jesus, we embody the principles of living sacrifice, all-out righteousness, and holiness, as well as becoming the temple of the Holy Spirit [a]. Holism is proof that acknowledges the pain and suffering neurodiverse individuals go through in their lives and offers hope and healing that can help them find their way back to their faith. In terms of the spiritual dimensions and holism, the neurodiverse community often feels left out or underrepresented in religious communities, which can lead to doubts about their place in God’s plan. This can also stem from a lack of accessibility or accommodations for their specific needs. Holistic thought about bible scriptures can help demonstrate that God’s love extends to all individuals, regardless of their differences such as: 

F- decision to follow Him: We are people of faith who hold the strong desire to align our thoughts and actions with what Christ has taught us. By emulating Christ’s character, we can follow His example and fulfill His calling in our lives by striving to embody His qualities.

  • Practice imitating Christ’s character: By striving to emulate these qualities in our own lives, we can walk in His steps and follow His example. The Bible gives instruction on following His compassion, humility, and selflessness.

C- called to co-work with God: Christ’s message of love and forgiveness is a cornerstone of His teachings. As we walk in Christ’s footsteps, we are also called to model for others and practice forgiveness. As Christ forgave us, we are called to forgive others who have wronged us.

  • Practice forgiveness:  It is through practice of forgiveness that we can make a positive impact on our relationships with others by demonstrating Christ’s love and mercy. To do this, we must be committed to letting go of anger and resentment, and to extending grace to those who may not deserve it.

R- do right in His eyes: Christ lived a life of perfect obedience to God, and by seeking to obey God’s commands in our own lives, we can follow in Christ’s steps and align our lives with His will. The obedience of God is a fundamental part of following Christ, so we must make every effort to obey His commands and align our lives with His will.

  • Practice obedience to God: By praying, studying scripture, and being willing to surrender our desires to God, we can become more willing to walk in Christ’s footsteps and grow in obedience through God.

A- by “ALL THINGS”: The power of God’s love and grace can transform our lives if we devote ourselves to worship, which will allow us to draw closer to Him such as [YouVersion: Emotions by topic, d]:

  • Practice Worship: Worship is a vital practice for believers wishing to honor God by aligning their lives with His will.  Believers can give the Lord His portion by offering Him their worship and devotion. This might include attending church services, participating in prayer, praise and worship, and cultivating a personal relationship with God through daily spiritual disciplines.
  • Self-Acceptance: Relying on Christ can help you to accept yourself for who you are, flaws and all. Through Christ’s love and grace, you can come to understand that you are valuable and worthy just as you are, and that you do not need to be perfect in order to be loved.
  • Forgiveness: Relying on Christ can also help you to forgive yourself for your past mistakes and to let go of any guilt or shame you may be carrying. Christ’s sacrifice on the cross provides the ultimate example of forgiveness, and by following His example, you can learn to forgive yourself and others.
  • Purpose and Meaning: Relying on Christ can give you a sense of purpose and meaning in life. By following His teachings and living according to His will, you can find fulfillment in serving others and making a positive difference in the world.
  • Inner Peace: Relying on Christ can bring you a sense of inner peace and contentment, even in the midst of life’s challenges and struggles. By placing your trust in Him and seeking His guidance, you can find comfort and strength to face whatever comes your way, knowing that He is with you always.

By being in unity with Jesus, we embody the principles of living sacrifice, all-out righteousness, and holiness, as well as becoming the temple of the Holy Spirit. In other words, we offer our lives as a living sacrifice, surrendering our wills to God and living out His purposes for our lives. 

We also pursue righteousness passionately, seeking to align our thoughts, words, and actions with His will, and allowing Christ’s righteousness to transform our lives from the inside out. Through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, we become the temple of God, and our bodies become a holy place where His presence can dwell. Hence, research into our actions, words, and attitudes bear witness to the truth and love of God, and we become a living testimony to His grace and salvation. Thus, we become part of the body of Christ, working together to bring His light and love to the world [b]. Through this transformation, Christ is revealed in our bodies, and others can see His light shining through us as it is written: Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength,” Deuteronomy 6:5 This verse is a central commandment in the Old Testament that is also quoted by Jesus in the New Testament. In essence, it calls for complete devotion and love for God, with all aspects of our being, not just our intellect or emotions. Let’s break down each phrase: 

  • RAS- “Love the Lord your God”: This implies a personal relationship with God, not just a distant admiration or theological concept. It also calls for an intimate and emotional connection with God, beyond mere obedience or duty.
  • PONS- “with all your heart”: This refers to the core of our being, the seat of our desires, affections, and motives. We are to love God passionately and wholeheartedly, not half-heartedly or lukewarmly (see Rev 3:15-16).
  • THYMUS- “with all your soul”: This emphasizes the spiritual dimension of our love, beyond the physical or material. It involves our will, conscience, and character, as well as our eternal destiny. To love God with all our soul means to surrender our selfish ambitions, fears, and sins to Him, and to align our lives with His purposes and values.
  • ARAS- “with all your strength”: This implies a practical and active expression of our love, not just a sentimental or theoretical one. It involves our time, energy, resources, and abilities to serve God and His kingdom, and to love our neighbors as ourselves. To love God with all our strength means to engage in acts of worship, prayer, obedience, evangelism, charity, justice, and discipleship that honor God and bless others.

Together, these elements of love represent a comprehensive and holistic response to God’s love for us, as revealed in His Word and in Christ. They require faith, repentance, obedience, and perseverance, as well as the empowering of the Holy Spirit. May we all strive to love the Lord our God with all our heart, soul, and strength, and to experience the fullness of His love in return. Here are four ways to become in total involvement with God [YouVersion: Emotions by topic, d]:

1. Prayer and Meditation: In order to become fully involved with God, prayer and meditation are essential practices. These practices help you to quiet the mind, connect with God, and gain a deeper understanding of yourself and your relationship with Him.

2. Study of Scripture: Reading and studying the Holy Scriptures helps to deepen your understanding of God’s word and the teachings of Jesus Christ. He is essential to recognize and accommodate these differences to promote effective communication and build strong relationships. This knowledge helps to align your thoughts and actions with God’s will, and strengthens your faith. 

3. Service to Others: Serving others is a way to demonstrate your love for God and to live out the teachings of Jesus Christ. Through acts of compassion and selflessness, you can experience the presence of God in your life, and find joy in serving others.

4. Worship and Fellowship: Participating in worship services and fellowship with other believers is another way to become fully involved with God. These activities help to build community, provide support, and deepen your relationship with God and with others who share your faith.

Psalm 139:13-16 is a passage that speaks to the value and worth of each individual in God’s eyes. The verses state: “For you created my inner being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in a secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.”

These verses emphasize the intimate knowledge and care God has for each individual, even before they are born. They speak to the idea that every person is created uniquely and with a purpose, and that their value is not based on external factors or accomplishments, but on being a beloved child of God.

Supporting verses for this concept include Jeremiah 1:5, which says “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart;” and Ephesians 2:10, which states “For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”

In order to support individuals who engage in masking, it is important to provide a safe and accepting environment where they feel comfortable expressing their true thoughts and feelings. This may involve providing accommodations such as sensory-friendly spaces or alternative communication methods, as well as educating others about the experiences of neurodiverse individuals. By creating an environment that is accepting and inclusive, individuals who engage in masking may be better able to form authentic connections with others by exploring spiritual-growth models instead of mind-set models to improve their overall well-being such as:

  • Effective communication requires fluency in speech. To develop fluency in speech, it is essential to cultivate humility and grace. Humility allows us to listen attentively and respond thoughtfully to others. It also enables us to learn from our mistakes and continually improve our communication skills. Grace allows us to show kindness and respect to others, even when we disagree or face challenges.
  • A servant attitude is also crucial for developing fluent speech. When we approach communication with a servant’s heart, we put the needs of others first and seek to understand their perspective. This attitude helps us to be empathetic and compassionate, which are essential qualities for effective communication.
  • To avoid disrupting our fluency in speech, it is crucial to watch for signs of threatened, self-induced, or overt revenge. These negative emotions can quickly escalate a situation and damage relationships. Instead, we can hope for divine or proper revenge. Divine revenge allows us to surrender the situation to God, trusting that justice will prevail. Proper revenge allows us to address the situation in a way that promotes understanding and reconciliation.
  • Psalm 37:8-9 definitely has a powerful message…Living a holy life in Christ during persecution is not only essential for maintaining faith, but also for enduring and growing in faith. By following Christ’s example, praying for your enemies, living a simple life, and relying on God, then we then can keep from anger and endure in the narrow gate to life:  

W-  turn from wrath: Has someone wronged or has persecuted you recently? Live in mercy and grace in the insight of “The Lord shall endure for ever” (Psalms 30:5)  Therefore, by following Christ’s example of suffering for the sake of faith, loving our enemies, blessing those who persecute us, and praying for those who mistreat us, we can stand firm in our beliefs.  

[Note: This requires us to put our trust in God and let go of our desire for revenge. By following Christ’s example and forgiving those who have wronged us, we can break the cycle of hatred and promote peace. It helps us to release our negative emotions and connect with God’s love and grace. Through prayer, we can find strength and courage to face our challenges and endure in our faith]. 

R- refrain from anger: Did you get angry and then let it go and give it to God? Live in Hope and Faith in the sense instruction of “bear” (Hebrews 12:20 ): “bear up under,” hardship, persecution, etc. (2 Timothy 3:11); most importantly, “to remain under” (Hebrews 10:32);  “to be strong, firm” (Hebrews 11:27). Therefore, simple living helps us to focus on God rather than worldly things and persecutions. Simple living, such as praying for our enemies, enables us to have a clear mind (no worry) and be more resilient in times of adversity.

 [Note: Our hope is in Jesus Christ, who has promised to be with us always, even to the end of the age (Matthew 28:20). Christ suffered persecution and endured the cross for the sake of humanity. Following His example means we should be willing to suffer for the sake of Christ and stand firm in our faith. We should also love our enemies, bless those who persecute us, and pray for those who mistreat us. Again, living a holy life in Christ during persecution may not be easy, but it is essential for enduring and growing in faith]. 

F- and not fret: Did you forgive them? Live in Divine Love and Honor in the sense of the oath of “continue,” “last” (Psalms 9:7) ; “to persevere” beneath a heavy burden (Matthew 10:22 ). Trust that God is in control and can handle the situation. Let go of the need to control the situation and trust in God’s plan. By relying only on God-means trusting Him to provide for our needs and protect us.

[Note: This will connect us with God and seek guidance and strength from Him. It also helps us to keep our minds focused on God rather than the situation we’re facing. Our enduring hope is in Jesus Christ, who suffered and died for our sins, and rose again on the third day. Through Him, we have the hope of eternal life and salvation. By keeping our faith in Christ, even during times of persecution, we can hold on to the one great hope of our salvation. Enduring to the end is a critical aspect of living a holy life in Christ during persecution. It is easy to get discouraged and lose faith when faced with adversity, but by enduring to the end, we can reap the benefits of salvation. The Bible teaches us that those who endure to the end will be saved (Matthew 24:13)].  

A-anger only leads to evil: Can you see where it helped you endure in your Faith?  Live in Divine Love and Honor in the sense of the oath of “continue,” “last” (Psalms 9:7) ; “to persevere” beneath a heavy burden (Matthew 10:22 ). Trust that God is in control and can handle the situation. Let go of the need to control the situation and trust in God’s plan. By relying only on God-means trusting Him to provide for our needs and protect us. He may also Divinely Revenge them. 

[Note: Therefore, this verse is a powerful reminder to refrain from negative emotions such as anger and wrath, as they can only lead to evil. Instead, we should love our enemies, bless those who persecute us, and pray for those who mistreat us. By doing so, we can maintain a positive attitude, show kindness to others, and overcome evil with good (Romans 12:21)].

Speechlessness in these situations can be particularly damaging, as it may prevent individuals from advocating for themselves and accessing the support they need. This can lead to feelings of frustration, anxiety, and even depression. It is important for society to recognize the experiences of neurodiverse individuals and work towards creating a more inclusive and accommodating environment. This may involve providing accommodations such as alternative communication methods or sensory-friendly spaces, as well as educating leaders and authority figures about the experiences of neurodiverse individuals. 

By creating an environment that is accepting and inclusive, individuals with neurodiverse conditions may feel more comfortable expressing their true thoughts and feelings, allowing them to better advocate for themselves and access the support they need. This can lead to improved well-being and a greater sense of inclusion and belonging such as in light for the whole body of believers.  Here are four ways to become in total involvement with God and to live in the fourfold of Christ and Light for the whole body [YouVersion: Emotions by topic, d]:

1. Seek Personal Transformation: By focusing on personal transformation through prayer, studying scripture, and seeking the guidance of the Holy Spirit, individuals can become more fully aligned with God’s will and purpose for their lives. This inner transformation can help to bring light and healing to the entire body of Christ.

2. Serve Others: True discipleship involves serving others, just as Christ did during his time on earth. Engaging in acts of service, both within the church community and beyond, can help to bring light and hope to those in need.

3. Participate in Worship and Fellowship: As mentioned above, participating in worship services and fellowship with other believers is essential for building community and deepening one’s relationship with God. It can also help to provide support and encouragement for those who may be struggling.

4. Share the Gospel: Finally, sharing the good news of Christ with others is a fundamental aspect of living in the fourfold of Christ and Light. By sharing the love of God with those around us, we can help to bring others into a deeper understanding of his grace and salvation, and further expand the body of Christ.

How do you have any co-occurring mental conditions with your neurodivergence? Find me on Insight Timer:

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For more information: ©2018, In-Text Citation: [a] Cook T. Cook’s FSD Dysregulation: Functional System Regulation Using a Spiritual Growth-Oriented Learning Model; Feb; 2023; [b] N T Nature – Helping Those with a Neurodiversity Enjoy Learning Again (Updated) Part I. Scribd; [c] Cook’s Nurture Their Nature Part I. Learn more Neurodiversity Hub. (2022). YouVersion: Emotions by topic [d]. Epigenetics and neurodiversity. Available from and learn more ere: 


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Published by Tricia Cook, MEd., Online Dyslexia and Behavioral Interventionist, RSP, AA O-G Tutor & Montessorian

Dyslexia Screenings & Emotional Intensive Intervention - Staff Training - Online Courses- Consultancy- Tutoring-Reliance and Family Coaching I have a unique approach in helping individuals achieve their full potential. With over two and a half decades of experience, I have a passion for learning new techniques and being at the forefront of groundbreaking advancements in education. As a graduate of the renowned Auburn University, I have earned both her BA in ECE and Masters Degree in Secondary with Reading Specialist certification from the University of Alabama. I have experience at the Montessori School in Birmingham which has provided me with valuable insights into the best practices of teaching young minds. I have also developed training programs for teachers, providing essential support to students with neurodiverse needs such as dyslexia, ADHD, and autism spectrum. I have focus on developing a "whole child" pedagogy that caters to all modes of learning, I continually work with Dr. Joseph Nwoye on teaching and learning including DEI. I have helped develop programs and training with SDIG ( in promoting the intersectionality of the complexities and complicated issues of diversity. I have credentials as a reading specialist with a speech pathology background expanded greatly while owning Cook's Independent Tutoring, Coaching, Consulting, LLC. I currently pursuing a Neurodiversity Family Coaching certification in the framework of the CReW Coaching Institute. Again, I have a commitment to being at the forefront of groundbreaking advancements in education. As an enthusiastic learner and educator, I am confident that I have the necessary skills to support others in achieving their goals ( For more information, contact Tricia Cook, Cook's Independent, Tutoring, Coaching and Consulting, LLC. (;

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