Posts tagged #children

How can you boost your child's emotional IQ?

Five tips for increasing your child’s emotional intelligence

Keith Miller, PhD

Label your emotions on a daily basis with your child (e.g., I am frustrated by that driver cutting me off; I am excited to take you to the game on Saturday; I am proud of you putting so much effort into math)

Help your child identify their emotions  (How did you feel when recess ended early?; So you felt embarrassed when you got to school late?. . . I’ve felt that way too; What was the happiest/most frustrating thing that happened today?)

Validate your child’s emotions (I understand how you could feel that way).  Do not use sarcasm, shame, or criticism when responding to your child’s emotions (e.g. There’s no reason to feel angry/sad/mad).

Know what emotions were “off limits” in your childhood home and provide opportunities for your child to express these emotions

Provide guidance and modeling on how to respond to difficult situations while openly discussing related emotions


Want to learn more?  Join me at my free 

Vista Knowledge at Noon Seminar:

Are we there yet?: Getting to where you want to go with your child without nagging, cajoling, or coercing

Tue, Nov 5th, 12:15pm

Register now, space is limited.  



Posted on October 28, 2013 .

Eight ways to raise a mindful child


Check out this great blog post on raising a mindful child, with eight terrific tips.

Children are exemplars of the art of being. Wherever they are, they are completely immersed: in mud, in make believe, in laughter, in tears or in spaghetti sauce up to their eyeballs. Without a bit of self-consciousness, they lose themselves in what they are; they literally throw themselves away. This is the kind of losing in which mindfulness is found.

Without making a big deal about it, parents can gently encourage everyday actions that nourish and grow attention, empathy and self-care.
Posted on October 3, 2013 .

What are the three top problems that families have that lead them to therapy? Ask A Child & Family Therapist

  1. Parents  often seek help in setting boundaries and expectations for behavior.
  2. For parents of teenagers, a frequent problem is how to improve communication so their kids will share information, especially about school.
  3. Parents often share that once kids hit late adolescence, suddenly kids find the opinions of their peers, and even the parents of their peers more enlightening than what they hear at home. 

Laurene Larson, LPC is a Licensed Professional Counselor with Vista.  Learn more about her and schedule an appointment by visiting her page at  .

Laurene Larson, LPC is a Licensed Professional Counselor with Vista.  Learn more about her and schedule an appointment by visiting her page at .

What are the top three goals or resolutions that families want?

  1. One great way to set boundaries and have rules that work is to engage your child in the setting of rules - not to say they decide the rules, but that they have some participation. In doing so there's more willingness to follow the expectation being set. If there's a breach in the expectation, make certain the consequence is immediate, and has an end point. Especially when using grounding or removing phones or other privileges, having a date for the end of the grounding, or return of the item is effective and healthy for everyone. Open ended consequences quickly lose meaning.
  2. Kids often report that their parents are always bugging them for too much information about their lives. Remember, they are trying to spread their wings, and just because they seem to be less excited to share every detail doesn't mean they are trying to shut out parental involvement. It's a natural part of development, and in most cases as the late teens hit, communication flow picks up again.
  3. The age old story of a teenager excitedly sharing a remarkable comment made by someone outside the family, when you are confident you've said the exact same thing, is commonplace. It doesn't always happen, but most of us experience it at some time raising a teenager. Remember Charlie Brown and "wah wah wah" being the only audible comments adults made? Tuning out has been around a long time! If you've guided  your kids to develop core values, this stage usually subsides and they will once again be seeking the wise advice of their parents!  


Posted on August 5, 2013 .

All benefit from help for at-risk mothers

Program helps reduce crime, poverty and medical costs for the entire community

Anthony Biglan, PhD, with Oregon Research Institute highlights an important and cost-effective prevention program that has been proven to improve the lives of children and families in a recent Register Guard editorial.  

"Somewhere in Lane County tonight there is a family that has benefited from the Nurse Family Partnership. There the kids went to bed feeling good about their families and excited to grow and learn. No one in their community may ever know it, but some other family will not be harmed by an aggressive teen, because that teen never became aggressive thanks to the help their family got in becoming more nurturing.

We have the know-how to makes this happen in virtually every family in Lane County."


Posted on July 7, 2013 .

Helping Children Cope with Tragedy in the News

Helping Children Cope with Tragedy in the News

Sadly, this week has been marked by two tragic shootings, one more locally in Oregon, and another one at a school in Connecticut.  Our hearts and thoughts go out to the victims of these tragedies.  We  thought it would be helpful to identify some tips that can help parents talk to their children about these difficult events.  
  1. Honor your own feelings
  2. Be Supportive and available to your children
  3. Talk about it: Talk to your children, but also listen: encourage your children to express how they feel
  4. Reassure them of their safety and security (no matter what age).  That the grown ups in their life are working to keep them safe
  5. Take a break: Focus on positive activities, connecting with others
  6. Keep descriptions simple, limit their exposure to graphic descriptions or images
  7. Limit access to TV and Radio reports
  8. If they ask if violence can happen to them? Repeat that it is unlikely, and the grown ups are there to help them keep safe
  9. Watch for symptoms of stress: Clinginess, stomach aches, headaches, nightmares, changes in behavior
  10. Seek help if you are concerned that your child is not coping well after a few days
  11. Take care of yourself and your children: Eat healthy, get exercise, Connect with friends and loved ones

Take care,

Ryan Scott, PhD, Vista Counseling 

(with help from the American Psychological Association, the Children’s National Medical Center, and the American Humane Association)

Posted on December 14, 2012 and filed under "children", "coping", "shooting", "tragedy".