low arousal approach - professionalsIn his book, No Fighting, No Biting, No Screaming: How to Make Behaving Positively Possible for People with Autism and Other Developmental Disabilities (HejlskovElvén 2010) Bo gives a very clear interpretation of the Low Arousal Approach.

“the low arousal approach is based on the notion that people with challenging behaviour often have trouble regulating affect. They often react to others’s affects by experiencing and expressing the same effect. Affect is always contagious, but most people learn to differentiate between our own and others’s affects early in life. Some people don’t. They don’t know if an affect they feel is their own or somebody else’s. That can result in anger if somebody else is angry and telling off the one you tells you off.”

- Bo HejlskovElvén

Bo really understands that the key issue of the Low Arousal Approach is that understanding that our behaviour needs to be the focus rather than the person who is distressed. In his book Bo uses the term “emotional contagion” to explain how heightened arousal can literally spread from person to person.

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