There are several types of skills that are worth working on because, as we all get better at them, they help us have less conflict and difficulty in our lives and increase the possibility that other people understand our thoughts and feelings. And the more often that happens, the more likely we are to experience our day to day life as happy. For example, Executive Functioning Skills help us to be organized so that we take care of the things we need to and help us to feel more responsible and in control of our lives. Mindfulness Skills help us to find pleasures in the small moments in life that are happening around us all of the time. They help us worry less and be happy more. Relaxation Skills, mindfulness being one of them, help us to calm anger and reduce panic and worry. Social Skills help us to work well in groups, create/deepen/maintain friendships and loving relationships, and increase the chances of other people having good/comfortable thoughts about us. Anger Management and Conflict Resolution Skills help us to not let our emotions create bigger problems for us than we already have and help us to solve problems in ways that encourage people to have good/comfortable thoughts about us.
These are all skills that we start to learn as kids but that we continue to hone as adults. And, just like working out makes your muscles strong and makes it easier to do physical things , the more we practice these valuable life skills the stronger our life skills become and the easier it is to positively manage emotional things. Study after study shows that creating habits by practicing something over and over again reinforces neural pathways in our brains and results in “habits.” This means that the more we practice and flex our emotional muscles, the easier these skills become for us. So get out there and learn some new skills or just keep practicing the ones that you have already learned about. It pays off!!
This is a fabulous workbook for kids. The book suggests using it from ages 6-12 but I think that is a loose guide and depends on the mindset of the child as well as their ability to understand that other people’s thoughts can be different than their own. Using fire as a metaphor for anger, the words and pictures then walk the reader through several different skills and approaches that can help a person develop a “longer fuse.” Explanations are concrete, using visual metaphors and practice to help increase skills that are very effective in managing anger. The author teaches, among other things, how our inner thoughts can affect our feelings and that if we work to adjust our thinking and give situations more of the benefit of the doubt,
I use this book in session with some of my clients. Parents can also use this on their own with their kids and there is an introduction in the beginning of the book to help guide parents through how to approach it. With a positive, supportive approach you can really deepen your relationship with your child by being a resource that can help him or her to work through these challenges.
* I don’t make any money from the books that I recommend. My reviews are solely based on wanting to let people know what’s out there and could be helpful to them.
The Gender and Sexuality Development Clinic, (GSD Clinic) offers psychosocial and medical support for gender variant, gender expansive and transgender children and youth up to age 21 and their families. Their multidisciplinary team, led by Nadia L. Dowshen, MD, and Linda Hawkins, PhD, MSEd, LPC, includes specialists in gender identity development from Social Work and Family Services, Adolescent Medicine, Endocrinology, and Behavioral Health. They work with families to best meet the needs of the child or youth who is transgender, gender-variant or gender-nonconforming. They also provide consultation and training for providers and organizations interested in learning how to better serve the needs of gender-variant youth.
With sensitivity and caring, they address how professional medical care can help kids in this position, along with their families, explore what these feelings mean to each individual and make decisions about whether or not hormone therapy is indicated to temporarily hold back the development of secondary sex characteristics (breast development, facial hair, etc) while emotional maturity continues to grow,
A famous psychologist, Abraham Maslow created a well-known and researched model, a hierarchy, of basic human needs that impact our mental health. They are ordered from foundationally important basic needs to self-fulfillment needs: physiological needs, safety needs, love and belongingness needs, esteem needs, and, finally, self-actualization needs.
This interesting TED Radio Hour episode takes a dive into thinking about these basic needs in our modern times. Using people’s individual stories to illustrate each level of Maslow’s hierarchy. If you are interested in reading a more complete overview about the hierarchy, I encourage you to take a look at this easy to read article on Simple Psychology.
Humans need food, sleep, safety, love, purpose. Psychologist Abraham Maslow ordered our needs into a hierarchy. This week, TED speakers explore that spectrum of need, from primal to profound.