Where the Science of Psychology Meets the Art of Being Human

Speaking

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For Parents

Strengthening Children and Teens Against Anxiety

Anxiety is a very normal part of being human, but for as many as one in five children it can reach intrusive levels, interfering with family life, friendships, and school performance. This transformational session will provide parents and carers with the essential information and powerful, practical strategies to help their children and teens thrive through anxiety, whether it’s everyday levels of anxiety or more intrusive. 

The Power of the Adolescent Brain – What All Parents Need to Know About the Changes During Adolescence

During adolescence, the brain goes through remarkable changes to support the transition from childhood to adulthood. Understanding these changes can be powerful in helping parents strengthen their connection, increase influence, and support their teens as they navigate towards becoming healthy, happy adults. It will also help make sense of the behaviours and challenges that can be so confusing during adolescence, for both adolescents and the adults who love them.

Building Courage and Resilience. 

Courage and resilience are vital qualities that help children adapt in the face of adversity and challenge. It is impossible to ensure our children will always have a smooth path ahead of them. What we can do is nurture in them the qualities they need to move through change, challenge and adversity in ways that will flourish them. Learn the language and strategies that will encourage brave behaviour and resilience in children, and strengthen them from the inside out. Both courage and resilience are qualities that can be cultivated in any child, and parents are in the perfect position to do this. 

 

Building Self-Control and Emotional Regulation in Children – Why It’s So Important and What Parents Can Do

Self-control is a vital skill that is instrumental in helping our children develop into healthy, happy adults. It will take time to take shape – nobody was born knowing how to manage big feelings and delay immediate wants in favour of a longer-term goal, but parents have enormous power to provide children with the experiences that will build this vital skill in their children. This seminar will explore the powerful ways parents can, quite literally, influence the strengthening of the brain in ways that will build self-control, emotional regulation, and resilience in their children for life. We will look at the importance of relationship in nurturing self-control, and how parents can strengthen their connection and influence with their children during childhood and beyond.


For Professionals (Therapists, Educators, Teachers)

These talks can be adapted to be full-day workshops or presentations for one, two, or three+ hours.

Working With Anxiety in Children and Teens

Anxiety is a very normal human response but for as many as 1 in 5 young people, the symptoms become so intrusive, they significantly interfere with day to day living. They can undermine the way children see themselves and shrink their world – but it doesn’t have to be this way. With the right support, children can be empowered with the skills and knowledge to manage anxiety and move forward with courage and resilience. This dynamic workshop will offer a range of practical, powerful interventions to assist participants to respond effectively within their own professional context. 

Anxiety in the Classroom – Helping Children Thrive Through Anxiety at School

Anxiety loves anything unfamiliar or any situation that comes with any potential for embarrassment, failure, humiliation, shame, or separation from a loved one – and school is ripe for all of them. Anxiety can significantly affect friendships, confidence, and school performance – but it doesn’t have to be this way. All children and teens need the right support to thrive, and even the smallest considerations can go a long way to helping children with anxiety find the very best version of themselves. This presentation is for teachers or any professional who works with children. It will be packed with practical, powerful, proven ways to strengthen kids and teens against anxiety and build courage and confidence at school.  


For Adolescents (High School)

Anxiety During Adolescence – How to Strengthen Against Anxiety.

Everyone experiences anxiety at some point, but add in the whirlwind of changes that come with adolescence, and anxiety can feel like an intrusive beast of a thing that undermines and overwhelms – but it doesn’t have to be this way. This presentation will provide adolescents with information and powerful strategies to strengthen themselves against anxiety, and discover their remarkable capacity for courage and resilience – because the world can’t be brilliant without them. 

Thriving Through Adolescence – Making Sense of the Changes and Challenges by Understanding Your Changing (and Amazing) Brain

During adolescence, the brain goes through the most remarkable changes. This is to provide adolescents with the neural power to learn new skills, experiment with the world and their place in it and stretch beyond the familiar as they make the transition from dependent children to independent, healthy, happy adults. The adolescent brain is wired to drive them through this transition, but there will be challenges along the way. Information is power, and with the right information, adolescents will have an expanded capacity to navigate through the challenges, and see the changes they are going through as positive and dynamic.  


For Primary School Children

‘Who Doesn’t Get Anxiety!’ – Discovering Your ‘Brave’

 Children are powerful when we empower them. The more children and young people can understand about the workings of the brain, the more empowered they will be to make choices that help them thrive. This presentation will focus on providing young people with the information and strategies they need to strengthen and protect themselves against anxiety, so they can discover the calm, courage, and resilience that is in them.

How to be the Boss of Your Brain – Building Social and Emotional IQ

 If you could teach one set of skills to every child in the world, what would it be? What if it could be something that would bring intelligence and compassion to decision-making, reduce (or end?) violence, embed within humanity a drive towards kindness, empathy and relationships that connect, heal, nurture and flourish those who are in them? Social-emotional intelligence lies at the heart of this. It has also been shown by abundant research to be vital to individual success and happiness at school and in life. This presentation will provide children with information and strategies to strengthen emotional IQ.

 

















    Hey Warrior - A book about anxiety in children.








    Hey Sigmund on Instagram

    The need to feel safe is primal. We’re wired to The need to feel safe is primal. We’re wired to fight or flee anything that presents itself as a threat - and shame, punishment, judgement, exclusion, humiliation all count as threat, even if they come with loads of love.
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When our kids or teens mess up - which they will, because they’re humans not robots - the way we respond can open them up to our influence or shut them down to it. It can expand the fight and the disconnection, or it can shrink it. In time they will learn to be more in control of their urge for or flight, but for now, we will need to lead the way. (Of course, we are also human, and sometimes despite our biggest efforts to stay calm, we will step into the ring rather than wait for them to step out. We’re human. It’s going to happen. And that’s okay.)
.
If we want them to be open to our influence, we first need to calm their active amygdala (the seat of anxiety and big emotion) by sending the message that we aren’t a threat. We can do this by validating their feelings or the need behind their behaviour (if we know what that is).
.
Validation doesn’t mean agreeing with them, and it doesn’t mean approving of their behaviour. What it means is letting them know that we want to understand the world through their lens. ‘I can see you’re really upset about this.’ ‘It sounds as though you’re worried I’m going to get in your way. I can see this is important to you. I really want to understand. Can you talk to me about this?’
.
When we do this, it sends a message to the protective, powerful, emotional amygdala that it’s safe and that it can back down. This will start to switch off the need to fight us or flee (ignore) us and open them up to our influence, support, warmth and guidance.
.
It also doesn’t mean giving them a free pass on ‘unadorable’ behaviour. What it means is letting them know that we see them, and that we understand there is something important they need. When things are calm, they will be much more open to exploring their decisions, their behaviour, the consequences of that (including any consequences for them), and what they can do differently in the future.
⠀⠀

    The need to feel safe is primal. We’re wired to fight or flee anything that presents itself as a threat - and shame, punishment, judgement, exclusion, humiliation all count as threat, even if they come with loads of love.
    .
    When our kids or teens mess up - which they will, because they’re humans not robots - the way we respond can open them up to our influence or shut them down to it. It can expand the fight and the disconnection, or it can shrink it. In time they will learn to be more in control of their urge for or flight, but for now, we will need to lead the way. (Of course, we are also human, and sometimes despite our biggest efforts to stay calm, we will step into the ring rather than wait for them to step out. We’re human. It’s going to happen. And that’s okay.)
    .
    If we want them to be open to our influence, we first need to calm their active amygdala (the seat of anxiety and big emotion) by sending the message that we aren’t a threat. We can do this by validating their feelings or the need behind their behaviour (if we know what that is).
    .
    Validation doesn’t mean agreeing with them, and it doesn’t mean approving of their behaviour. What it means is letting them know that we want to understand the world through their lens. ‘I can see you’re really upset about this.’ ‘It sounds as though you’re worried I’m going to get in your way. I can see this is important to you. I really want to understand. Can you talk to me about this?’
    .
    When we do this, it sends a message to the protective, powerful, emotional amygdala that it’s safe and that it can back down. This will start to switch off the need to fight us or flee (ignore) us and open them up to our influence, support, warmth and guidance.
    .
    It also doesn’t mean giving them a free pass on ‘unadorable’ behaviour. What it means is letting them know that we see them, and that we understand there is something important they need. When things are calm, they will be much more open to exploring their decisions, their behaviour, the consequences of that (including any consequences for them), and what they can do differently in the future.
    ⠀⠀
    ...







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