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Helping children build self-esteem and resiliency through a strength-based approach to child therapy

As a child therapist, I know how important it is for kids to have strong self-esteem in order to feel successful and good about themselves. During elementary school years, a child’s positive self concept and sense of competency can be built upon success in school, making friends, and other age related tasks. Challenges in these areas can lead to low self-esteem, impacting a child’s ability to thrive across settings, and can lead to behavioral, emotional, and social challenges. With use of positive coping skills, children can gain the confidence and resiliency needed to move past challenges and work toward their goals. As a mental health therapist, I find a combination of approaches such as cognitive behavioral therapy and narrative therapy, are best to empower kids to challenge negative perspectives and break free from problem saturated stories keeping them stuck. I also use art therapy and play therapy in my sessions with children, as these modalities are familiar forms of expression, creating safety and providing distance from distress in order to share feelings and find solutions.

A collaborative approach to addressing behavioral concerns

As a behavioral therapist, I use my training and experience to engage in positive reinforcement strategies for your child. I provide tools for both you and your child in order to more effectively manage challenging tantrum behavior and resistance to following directions. For example, together we can create an individualized behavior chart that resonates with your child’s interests to increase motivation, and collaborate to implement a behavior plan well-suited for your child and family’s needs. Strengthening parenting techniques go hand in hand with your child’s individual behavioral therapy treatment. I will work with you to choose the most beneficial therapy approach.

Behavioral therapy is also needed when a child’s pent up frustration and anger result in aggression toward others, destructive behaviors, and challenges with conflict resolution. Children’s acting out can signify an underlying emotional issue to be explored once immediate behavioral concerns have been addressed. Successful anger management strategies to help a child decrease distress and calm down independently can increase a sense of competency, and assist in increasing a child’s ability to solve problems with a positive outcome.

Increasing children’s confidence in social skills and ability to manage emotional challenges

As a mental health therapist, I am very familiar with the way helplessness and negative self-concept can result when children are faced with sadness, anxiety, or intense anger they cannot control. When emotionally overwhelmed, it can be difficult to process and express complex feelings or resolve conflict with peers successfully. Sometimes negative self-talk becomes an obstacle in socializing and doing what they love.

I can support your child resolve emotional and social issues. Through creative collaboration, we work together to develop a specialized tool box of coping skills that can be used to create positive change. These can include asking for help when needed, effectively sharing feelings, creating positive self-talk, and learning strategies to assist in emotional regulation and calming down effectively. To help strengthen relationships with peers, children might simply need an increased confidence in their abilities, or practice with specific social skills in order to more successfully make and maintain friendships. I reinforce and highlight the inherent strengths already present within your child, in order to increase problem solving capacities and the self-confidence to accomplish desired goals.