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building self-esteem Children Individual Counseling Teenagers

Self-Confidence from Competence

I counsel a lot of teenagers and young adults who suffer from low self-confidence. One thing that sometimes happens is they find themselves staying in relationships that aren’t working because they allow their self-worth to be dictated by being in a relationship, or by being valued by their friends, rather than valuing themselves independently for […]

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anxiety Children friends Individual Counseling making friends social anxiety Teenagers

Children and Teenagers with Social Anxiety

Children and teenagers with social anxiety is a common occurrence.  It often shows up in early adolescence where kids have difficulty making friends, making connections and developing a satisfactory social life.  We generally describe these kids as shy but the problem can become more pervasive and problematic for many kids. Few things are more painful […]

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anxiety building self-esteem Children Individual Counseling

Managing Teenage Anxiety

Does your child have teenage anxiety?  If so, they are not alone.  Even before COVID 19 happened to us, lots of kids had anxiety.   How do you know if your child has anxiety?  There are a few signs that are common to teenage anxiety that I have seen in my counseling practice.  This can […]

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depression Parenting Teenagers Uncategorized

My Teenager seems Depressed

During the teenage years, teenagers go through a lot of changes, both physical and emotional.  When you see your teenager’s behavior changing, it’s easy to become worried that they seem depressed.  Worse still, you might be worried your teenage seems depressed enough to hurt themselves. Is My Teenager Depressed? Some of the common behavior changes […]

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building self-esteem communication Individual Counseling Teenagers Uncategorized

Counseling for Anxiety Using SFBT

Counseling for Anxiety is one of the main things that therapists provide. So the good news is that if you have anxiety, you’re in good company. There are many different strategies that help with anxiety. Below, I will discuss one of the strategies. Anxiety as a Mental Construct Anxiety often comes about because of our […]

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Good habits Individual Counseling Uncategorized

New Healthy Habits and Keep Them

We all have tried to start new healthy habits such as exercising more and many of us have trouble sticking to it. We start off well and then run out of steam. Here is one strategy for making it stick. First start out small. Don’t plan on suddenly working out for an hour a day, […]

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friends making friends

How to Make New Friends

The need to make new friends is something that happens to people of all ages. I’ve seen this with children who find themselves without a satisfactory group of friends. I’ve also seen this with both young and older adults. You move to a new area or take a new job and want to make friends […]

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Work more to Reduce Depression

This article provides a tip to reduce depression when depression is caused by a lack of motivation or life direction. One Cause of Depression Many of my younger clients become depressed because they don’t know what they want to do with their lives. They talk about nothing motivating them and so they often just “hang […]

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Get Better Teenage Behavior

We all want to work with our teens to get better teenage behavior out of them. Last weekend I was reminded of something while watching my son’s soccer game. The coach is a good coach and loves soccer. However, during games he tends to get excited and starts shouting directions at the kids. “Move back! […]

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Parenting Teenagers

High Achiever High Anxiety Students

In my Grand Rapids counseling office, I see a lot of stressed out teens who worry about their futures. They try to get the best grades they can and do all sorts of extracurricular actives to create a portfolio that will impress colleges. They worry about not getting into the right college and ruining their […]

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communication Marriage Counseling Relationships Uncategorized

Communication In Marriage: Remind Them to do What They Promised

Communication in marriage is a keystone necessity. Good communication with your spouse is an essential tool for staying connected and resolving problems so they don’t take over your marriage. I was meeting with a couple today for marriage counseling and they told me a story that I thought had an amazingly good strategy. They gave […]