We are adding a new Middle School group in our Northwest location on the specific topic of self-regulation and emotional coping skills. Self-regulation has an important impact on so much of life - academics, peer relationships and overall well-being. When you have good self control and the ability to tolerate and cope with a variety of situations, you have a greater chance of success later in life. Early childhood self-regulation starts with the ability to inhibit one's self and delay gratification. Of course, this also continues all the way into adolescence and adult life.
Ever heard of the marshmallow experiment? This experiment was conducted in the late 60s and early 70s by Walter Mischel. In follow up studies, it produced correlations that indicated those children who were able to delay gratification and not eat the marshmallow immediately were later described by their parents to be more competent. Here's a modern-day version of the experiment.
Much of the distress of adolescence comes from a lack of self-control and difficulty with self-regulation. Emotions can feel intense and difficult to manage because the executive functioning part of the brain is underdeveloped. ParentMap shares an informative write-up about self-control/self-regulation and what you can do as a parent to help your tween/teen. Of course, parents can work and work on this with their children and still find days that things don't seem to "click." Try not to get discouraged, as this is all developmentally appropriate. One idea is to provide an alternative learning environment for your child to work on these skills with peers. If this seems like a good idea for your teen, contact us to find out more information about our new Middle School therapy group!