How to Help Your Child Manage Adolescent Anxiety

Anxiety is a condition that affects nearly 20 percent of all children, and if left unmanaged, the consequences can be dire. Studies have shown that children who never successfully manage their anxiety miss out on opportunities, are at a higher risk of underperforming in school and are more likely to engage in substance abuse. As…

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Emotional Invalidation-The First Deadly Sin

You are having an emotional moment. Your best friend is with you and, in response to your feelings, says one of these things: “Don’t be so dramatic.” “Deal with it.” “You can’t be serious.” “But it doesn’t make any sense to feel that way.” “Why are you making such a big deal over it?” “You…

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How to Calm an Angry Child-Video

A few weeks ago, I posted a blog on how to calm an angry or upset child. The response was pretty phenomenal, so I decided to follow-up with a video that shows you exactly how to do it. I’ve posted the video on YouTube and embedded here for your convenience. I welcome your comments. If…

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The Four Principles of Relationship Negotiation

Yesterday, Dr. Laura posted my thoughts about relationship negotiation on her front page. The thing is, most of us have unwarranted entitlement expectations from our significant others. No one helped us connect the dots that, as adults, we cannot expect others to meet our unstated needs. We need to ask for them to met. More…

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How to Calm an Angry Child

Recently, I received the following note from a participant in one of my Its Pure Magic workshops: “The Sunday after your workshop, we were having dinner with our son’s family. At the table, our Asperger grandson flew into a rage last week because his sister appeared to “get credit” for a comment the two of…

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Learning Emotion Intelligence Backwards

When Laurel Kaufer and I started the Prison of Peace Project, we did not set out to teach emotional intelligence. We were devising a curriculum that would help life inmates become good mediators as quickly as possible. Since we guessed that they did not have strong interpersonal skills, we decided to spend 4 weeks teaching…

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If You Don’t Meet These Needs, You Will Never End the Drama

Years ago, my friend and colleague Erica Ariel Fox, gave a talk to a group of highly experienced mediators on the six needs of victims. This was a concept she had developed with Daniel Bowling, the former president of CPR and the current chief mediator for the U.S. District Court, Northern District of California. I…

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Emotionally Unavailable–Another Relationship Killer

Emotional unavailability is the situation in which one person is not able to be empathic with another person. Emotional unavailability almost seems like it has reached epidemic proportions in relationships. Parents become emotionally unavailable to their children. Teachers become emotionally unavailable to their students. Intimate partners become emotionally unavailable to each other. Conflict, chaos, and…

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How to End the Drama in Your Life

The number one cause of drama, by which I mean any situation that upsets you, is the failure to listen. People create drama because they are not being heard. You probably create some drama yourself because you do not feel heard. What do I mean by “not being heard?” Being heard means that another human…

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Fights, Arguments, and Conflicts Will Kill You–Literally

If you live a life of arguments, fighting, and conflicts in your family and at work, you are killing yourself. Danish researchers have found that people who fight and argue suffer 10 times more cancer, diabetes, heart disease, and are 2 to 3 times more likely to die than those who do not. “Stressful social…

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