How can a person with NLD learn to improve social skills?

Question:I was recently diagnosed with NLD as an adult and was told that people with this disorder have trouble interacting socially because we don't always pick up on non-verbal cues. Can anyone give me some tips on how to improve my social skills so that I can communicate with people without them thinking I am a weirdo or not interested in what they are saying? I also have ADD and sensory integration issues that were diagnosed when I was a child.

Answers:
For children there are social groups that help with the many issues that you are speaking about (picking up on non-verbal cues).

It is typically suggested that you work with a counselor or therapist so that you can work on social skills. The counselor or therapist would do role playing with you and model strategies that may work for you.

If you have a trusted friend or family member that goes to social gatherings, you can develop a hand single or tactile cue to let you know something needs to be adjusted. For example, I work with a young man that likes to sit very close to another on a coach. We developed a single that is socially accepted. He will look at me; I will tuck my hair behind my left ear if I need him to move to the left and my hair behind the right ear if I need him to move to the right. No one in the room knows that I am cueing him it just looks like I am tucking my hair behind my ear.

If you are having symptoms of your ADD and Sensory integration, you may want to talk to an occupational therapist that specializes in sensory integration. Most OT's that specialized in sensory integration work with children but they maybe able to offer you some suggestions that will work in work place. For example, a stress ball is an example of something that might be suggested.
Start with one-on-one interactions, especially with people who will give you honest feedback.
I am 19 and have a simular problem because of my Asperger's Syndrome. I have found it very helpful to read body language books that include pictures. They often sell these on the "Bargain" books rack at Barnes and Noble. Also, if you have a very understanding person, you can arrange for them to make a subtle hand signal (like maybe touching their ear or something) that means you're doing something wrong.

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