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Raising an Emotionally Healthy Child: Studio 5

Raising An Emotionally Healthy Child on KSL TV’s Studio 5

Self and Relationship Expert Julie Hanks, LCSW, Owner and Director of Wasatch Family Therapy, shares how you can become your child’s “emotion coach” and help her develop emotional health. Watch the segment online!


As a parent, I find it’s often easier to focus on my children’s physical and external needs (food, shelter, clothing, grooming, education, relationships) than on their emotional needs. As a therapist I understand the crucial role that emotions play in our lives, but when I was a new mom and my own children expressed intense emotions, it was challenging to help them work through it. I tried hard not to shame or to dismiss their emotions, but I also didn’t want their intense emotion to rule my life…or theirs. When I came across the work of Dr. John Gottman and his book Raising an Emotionally Intelligent Child several years ago I remember thinking, “This fits with what I intuitively knew about parenting and it describes the parent I want to be!” It provided a framework to help me more effectively help my children understand and express emotions in healthy and productive ways.

 

Why Emotional Intelligence Matters

According to Dr. John Gottman’s research emotionally healthy, emotionally intelligent children are better able to regulate their emotions, calm their heart rate faster after being emotionally upset, had fewer infections, are better at focusing attention, have healthier peer relationships, and perform better academically. The best way to help you children achieve emotional health is to adopt an “emotion coaching” parenting style.

Dr. Gottman’s 5 Steps to Emotion Coaching:

1. Be aware of your child’s emotions

2. View emotional expression as opportunity for teaching and intimacy

3. Listen, empathize, and validate your child’s feelings

4. Label emotions in words your child understands

5. Help your child come up with solution or way to manage emotions

Recommended Parenting Books:

Raising An Emotionally Intelligent Child by John Gottman, PhD & Joan Declaire

Parenting From The Inside Out by Daniel Siegel and Mary Hartzell
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Self & Relationship Expert Julie de Azevedo Hanks, LCSW, founder and director of Wasatch Family Therapy, LLC specializes in women’s mental health therapy, marriage counseling and family therapy. Visit www.wasatchfamilytherapy.com to learn more about counseling services, workshops, & classes. Visit HERE for more relationship advice.

Join the discussion by posting comments below (your email will be kept private). I’d love to know your favorite parenting books. What do you do to raise emotionally healthy kids?

“A Woman’s View” Interview

Joanne Milner (Education Partnership Coordinator with Mayor Ralph Becker) & I chatted with Amanda Dixon on “A Woman’s View” KSL radio show, which aired today, July 4th at 10am.

We talked about current news topics ranging from patriotism, high profile affairs in the media, to mudslinging in political campaigns…

Listen Online HERE

Quoted in AOLHealth today on Teens, weight, & depression

A recent study a Penn State suggests that teen girls who think they are overweight but are actually at a healthy weight are more at risk for depression than their overweight peers. I was invited to comment as an “expert” on the topic in an AOLHealth.com article and give suggestions on how parents can help their teens develop healthy body image.

Here’s a link to the article…

Weight & Depression in Teen Girls: Misperception of Weight Leads to Depression

God In Therapy Interview on PsychCentral.com

Since I work with so many religious clients I was delightful to participate in this interview on the topic of God in Therapy with CR & Richard Zwolinski, LMHC, CASAC who host the Therapy Soup Blog. Here’s the first Q & A in the interview titled “God in Therapy: Songwriter & Psychotherapist Julie Hanks Shatters Stereotypes.”

Q: “We’re the first to say our own view may be somewhat limited due to lack of exposure and we don’t want to fall guilty of stereotyping, so can you reflect a bit on Mormon culture in general?

A: Unfortunately, much of the media coverage on “Mormon” extremists, like Warren Jeffs for example, aren’t actually even Mormon and in no way represent Mormon culture or lifestyle.

Most practicing Mormon’s are fiercely dedicated to taking care of their families. They also generously donate time and resources, are conscientious community members, and genuinely trying to make the world better.”

Read the entire PsychCentral interview HERE

Quoted in MSN.com Article “Recess Rascals”

Quoted by MSN.com “Recess Rascals”

Has your child been picked on? Inevitably, every child goes through being left out or being teased during recess at some point in their school experience. Read this MSN.com Mom’s Homeroom article on “Recess Rascals” for tips on:

How to know when it’s bullying

When bad behavior isn’t so bad

How to know when it’s bullying & what to do (*I’m quoted in this section)

Read “Recess Rascals” HERE

Quoted in E! Online about spoiled kids

I responded to a reported request yesterday for an “expert” to comment on spoiled kids. When I got the questions it was about Suri Cruise’s being seen, at age 4 using an iPad and my comments ended up on E! Online article “She Has an iPad – So is Suri Cruise Spoiled?” Kinda fun.

Read Article HERE

How do you define a “spoiled” kid??? Post your comments below…(email will not be made public)

Boost Your Emotional Energy: Studio 5

Boost Your Emotional Energy

 


Do you wish that you had more energy? I do. I often look at my three year old who jumps out of bed with boundless energy, excited to face the adventure of the day, with envy. Unlike my three-year-old daughter, who has relatively few worries and concerns, I have many potential concerns that can drain emotional energy. Life transitions, grief and loss, mental or physical illness, stress, and relationship distress can all take a toll on emotional energy.

Energy is defined as a usable power source. “E”motions are “energy in motion”, propelling us to move in certain directions. More than mere physical energy; emotions provide a deeper, internal energy source. We’re talking today about how to use emotional energy as a power source and how to boost our emotional energy. According to therapist and researcher Mira Kirshenbaum, emotional energy is, “an aliveness of the mind, a happiness of the heart, and a spirit filled with hope.”

Tips for boosting your emotional energy:

Pursue your passions

What gets you excited about life? What do you look forward to? What emotionally energizes you? Dream big! Passion is a life compass, pointing you to your unique strengths and life purpose. Being involved in your passions refuels your emotional energy. When my sister Rachel Coleman’s daughter was born profoundly deaf, Rachel, along with our sister Emilie Brown, started producing Signing Time! DVDs designed to improve the communication of all children by teaching American Sign Language. Their passion is infectious and has inspired many families throughout the world.

Live on purpose

What is your life about? What is your greater purpose? How are you making a difference for others? Having a purpose greater than your own life is energizing and can even transcend physical health problems and chronic illness. A wonderful example of this purpose is the well-known actor Christopher Reeves. After being thrown off of a horse, he became quadriplegic and he dedicated the remainder of his life to advocating for research and life enhancement for individuals with spinal cord injuries.

Just say “no”

Do I want to do this? Does this feel emotionally energizing or emotionally draining? What you want matters. If you don’t want to do it, don’t do it. If you find yourself doing things just to please others, to avoid guilt, or because you think you “should”, you may be unnecessarily draining your emotional reserves. Resentment is a helpful clue that you need to put “no” back into your vocabulary, and start being more selective about what you commit to. Distance from draining people

Guard your emotional reserves by being selective about who you spend time with and who you listen to. Just as joy can be contagious, negativity of others can seep into your emotional space and drain you. If you notice any of these chronic patterns, consider taking a step back and reflecting on your relationship. Complaining, blaming, belittling, gossiping, demanding, rigid rules, and excessive neediness are a few examples of draining relationship patterns.

Invest in important relationships

We are all born to connect with others. It’s necessary for our very survival. Close relationships can emotionally energize you like nothing else in the world. Prioritize the relationships that feed your soul, and take care of your intimate family relationships above all others. Take time to connect with your loved ones, and to let them know on a regular basis how much you value them.

Shared joy is a double joy; shared sorrow is half a sorrow. ~Swedish Proverb

It is in the shelter of each other that people live ~ Irish Proverb

Self & Relationship Expert Julie de Azevedo Hanks, LCSW, founder and director of Wasatch Family Therapy, LLC specializes in women’s mental health therapy, marriage counseling and family therapy. Visit www.wasatchfamilytherapy.com to learn more about counseling services, workshops, & classes. Visit www.drjuliehanks.com for more inspiration on how to let your best self shine!

What do YOU do to boost your emotional energy? Comment below (your email will not be made public) 🙂

Confessions of a Multitasking Mama

I often get asked “how do you do it all?” The answer is “I don’t”. I don’t do it all. You see the things I DO on this website, in my Facebook events and updates, newsletters, etc. You can easily find out about my therapy practice, my music career, my media appearances, speaking engagement, and my family life. I admit, I do A LOT, but I definitely don’t do it all.

Here are some of the things I DON’T do:

I don’t cook (unless you count heating up a Dream Dinner cooking). I value family dinner time but I don’t cook from scratch. I’d like to, but not enough to actually take the time to do it.

I am not the room mother. I am the assistant room mother.

I don’t attend every soccer, baseball, lacrosse, or basketball game, recital or school program. I attend “more often than not”.

I don’t make my kids breakfast before school. They have cold cereal or cinnamon toast every morning (unless its Sat. and my hubby makes waffles with ice cream).

I don’t have a clean, organized home. I generally know where to find most things, but home organization is not my strong suit. I don’t deep clean my home. I hire a cleaning crew twice a month.

I don’t feel guilty having other people help take care of our kids. I have a part-time “home assistant” who keeps things moving when my husband and I are not home, and we have an amazingly supportive family.

Even though I take a detailed list of birthday gifts my children receive every year, it is the exception that we actually send out “thank you” notes.

I don’t work in the yard on a regular basis, much to my husband’s chagrin.

I don’t sacrifice sleep. I get at least 7 hours of sleep nightly and a 3-4 hour nap on Sundays.

I don’t separate my life into categories of mother/wife/work/music. It’s all one big amazing mess called “my life” and that big category encompasses all of the people and causes and activities I’m passionate about. My life is NOT perfect, but its pretty darn good. There are many sacrifices for trying to pull off as much as I do: my house and yard aren’t spotless, I’m often tired, and sometimes feel like I’m not doing well at anything. But for me it’s worth it to have a life overflowing with wonderful opportunities to love and help others during whatever time I have on the planet. I don’t want to do it all. I just want a lot of the things I care about.

No, a girl can’t have it all but she can have A LOT.

I’d love to hear some of your confessions! Enter comments below.

Recent Interview on New Music Show with Cherie Call

LISTEN TO THE INTERVIEW HERE

I had a delightful time talking with my dear friend Cherie Call for yourldsradio.com New Music Show. Throughout the interview I was temped to start asking HER questions about her music because I’m such a fan of her songwriting. If you haven’t heard her CD “Grace” you’ve got to hear it!

To hear the stories behind my songs “Window To His Love”, “Angels”, “Make Enough of Me”, “Hard Things”, & “God’s Signature”