children

Why It Is So Important For Parents to Validate Their Children

Validation is a way of letting someone know we understand him or her.  Being understood is an essential ingredient to feeling connected and supported.  When someone important to us understands us, their hearing us helps us to tune into ourselves and accept our emotions as real and meaningful.  This ultimately supports the growth of self-compassion… Read more »

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Helping Children Thrive: How I Spoke Up for One Little Girl

When I first met Rikki in the parking lot of a Motel 6, she effortlessly captured my heart. I had actually started to care about her even before that first meeting. As a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) volunteer preparing for my first case, I had read Rikki’s file. I knew she was 10, she… Read more »

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What to Do When Your Teen Pushes You Away

8 ways to respond when your teen wants space All parents reach that point when they hang their head in their hands and lament, “My kid hates me.” For most parents, this moment either happens for the first time or a lot more often when their child reaches adolescence. Adolescents and teens have a natural… Read more »

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What’s Up with Boredom?

In my office I have encountered clients who report “boredom” as an almost unbearable state.  My young clients find they are “bored” at school, doing chores, having to even engage in conversations.  It is a painful state they feel they need to escape from which often leads to distracted behavior in class, conflicts at home… Read more »

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What Inside Out Can Teach us about Loving our Kids

The other day I recommended the movie Inside Out to my friend, Cynthia, as an intervention. Her favorite niece, Emily, is going through puberty. The sweet little girl who used to love shopping and doing craft projects with her aunt, is now moody and not interested in sharing those activities. Cynthia feels hurt about this… Read more »

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7 Tips for Parent’s to Help Their Teen Create a Strong Sense of Self

As we welcome in the New Year we also look at goals and new opportunities to explore in the coming year. A fresh start. As parents, it might be a great time to reflect on how you are supporting your kids in building a stronger sense of self. Sometimes as parents we can get a… Read more »

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VIDEO: Dr. Allan Schore on How to Help Children Regulate Their Emotional States

Watch an excerpt from PsychAlive’s interview with Dr. Allan Schore. Dr. Allan Schore explains how to optimize a child’s capacity to regulate their own emotional states. Dr. Allan Schore:  The right hemisphere is in an early growth spurt from the last trimester of pregnancy through the second year of life, which overlaps perfectly all of the… Read more »

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Top 8 Ways to Protect Your Kids Online and Improve Communication in the Family

As a middle school teacher, I constantly have parents come to me and ask if I would be willing to impose a rule for my class that students cannot use social networking sites like  twitter, Snapchat, Instagram, or any of those types of social networks at home, because they don’t want to be the bad… Read more »

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The Problem with Overpraising Children

Research has shown that there are positive effects of praising children, but it depends on what kind of praise we’re dishing out. A recent Stanford study of toddlers showed that “praising effort, not talent, leads to greater motivation and more positive attitudes toward challenges” down the road. These findings are consistent with previous research, which has connected… Read more »

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Being Green: Working Toward a Sustainable Future

Kermit the Frog was right – it’s not easy being green. When the famous Muppet and Sesame Street star performed his hit song, “Bein’ Green,” he described a lonely path of self-discovery. Kermit sang: It’s not that easy being green; Having to spend each day the color of the leaves. When I think it could… Read more »

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