Category Archives: Teens

The Perfectionist Child

The Perfectionist Child

A little perfectionist likes order, rules, and thrives on certainty. Perfectionism can start at an early age and when parents or caregivers give these children the support they need, they will thrive. However, it can be challenging to teach young children how to to deal with the inevitable reality that not everything can be achieved with perfection.

So what does perfectionism in children look like and how can you help them?

Here are just a few perfectionistic characteristics you might see in children:

  • Focusing on mistakes rather than successes
  • Low self esteem, depression, anxiety and anger
  • Being overly cautious
  • Believing there is only one right way to do a task
  • Their inability to tolerate mistakes makes them less likely to try new things or take creative risks

How You Can Help:

  • Model acceptance of mistakes and constructive coping skills.
  • Offer patience and understanding.
  • Assist in modifying or adjusting their internal standards.
  • Teach them to break tasks into chunks and encourage them to take one piece at time.
  • Remind them that you love them unconditionally.
  • Teach them that mistakes and failures are normal and essential steps in the learning process.

If you notice that your child’s perfectionism is really interfering with their happiness, social and emotional development in addition to physical symptoms such as headaches, stomach aches, sleep problems, unrelenting anger and tantrums, or difficulty at school, it’s time to seek help professional help.

Michelle Rathburn, MSMFT
mrathburn@growcounseling.com

Denial

Denial

One of our most primitive defense mechanisms is denial. Mark Twain perfectly captured the essence of denial when he quipped, Denial ain’t just a river in Egypt. In effect, denial is an effort to avoid the pain or discomfort of reality by pretending it doesn’t exist. It is the emotional manifestation of the ‘flight’ portion…

The Gift of Failure

The Gift of Failure

Parenthood sparks a powerful, instinctive drive to protect. But, in reality, we do our kids a disservice when we do not allow them the space and opportunity to make decisions with the potential outcome of failure. Like Clark Kent, we are transformed from mild-mannered, everyday people into Authority Figures, Responsible Parties…Tooth Fairies. Without a second thought…

Blended Family: Tips for Surviving the Holiday Season

Blended Family: Tips for Surviving the Holiday Season

If you are in a blended family, the holidays may seem like the most difficult time of the year rather than the most wonderful.  Splitting time between more than one household is can be stressful. Time always seems too short. You can’t please everyone or feel like you always draw the short straw. Here are…

Cultivating Gratitude in Children

Cultivating Gratitude in Children

As the holidays approach, one of the greatest gifts you can give your kids is to strategically develop their sense of gratitude. Rather than having the focus be on presents or parties, you have an opportunity to help them turn their attention to others and to cultivate a sense of gratitude. Studies have shown that…

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