Parenting

Four Essential Elements for Effective Consequences

Creating Effective Consequences for Children

Parents often ask me how to effectively create consequences for their teen or emerging adult child. In some ways, it’s the same as when you crafted consequences for your young child, but there are two really important differences. I thought about all the elements I’ve spoken to parents about over the years and created a list of the four essential considerations when creating effective consequences. Continue reading “Four Essential Elements for Effective Consequences”

College

Top 10 Things Colleges Look for in Applicants

College application time can be very stressful for the whole family, especially because sometimes it’s hard to predict what college are looking for. With the help of the Independent Educational Consultants Association’s (IECA) survey, let’s demystify what colleges are looking for in applicants. Below are the top ten strengths and experiences colleges look for (with my added commentary below each point). Continue reading “Top 10 Things Colleges Look for in Applicants”

College

Study Skills Backed by Science

As a psychologist that works with lots of college students, I see how important study skills are. Many of my clients discover that their high school study skills didn’t set them up for success in college. Even though they are capable students, they find themselves struggling in class. They become demoralized, their self-esteem takes a hit, and they may even find that their academic struggles stir up anxiety or trigger a depressive episode.

Fortunately, as a clinical psychologist, I studied learning and memory. If my clients are struggling, I give them a few research-backed study tips and refer out to a great educational therapist or skilled tutor if they need more specialized support.

So what are my favorite scientifically-grounded study skills? Continue reading “Study Skills Backed by Science”

"Failure to Launch", College, Parenting

Ensuring a Smooth Transition from High School to College

The transition to college comes with lots of excitement… and usually also a hefty dose of anxiety. College is often the first time your child will live away from home and be entirely responsible for his or her life. Not only will he or she be handling more rigorous academics, but he or she will be navigating a new social scene, juggling more competing responsibilities than ever, and managing higher levels of stress. Without proper planning and support, your child may struggle or flounder. Continue reading “Ensuring a Smooth Transition from High School to College”

College, Parenting

Pick the College that Fits You Best

As someone who works with emerging adults (18-20 year olds) already in college or graduated from college, I know how important college fit is. I’ve seen how a poor fit in terms of academics, campus community, and supports can really hurt a person’s ability to thrive in a college environment. I’ve also seen students who transferred to somewhere that’s a better fit were able to really flourish and make huge progress.

I don’t want to perpetuate the myth that there is a perfect college for everyone. However, I do think it’s important that people understand that not every college (no matter how prestigious or well known) is a good fit for every student. Picking a college that fits you best encompasses more considerations than just reputation and finances.

Here are some questions to consider when deciding if a college if the right fit for you: Continue reading “Pick the College that Fits You Best”

Adulting, Anxiety

3 Simple Tips to Conquer Phone Anxiety

More than ever, it seems like people are anxious about talking to people over the phone. When I was the director of an independent living program, I saw numerous residents become overwhelmed by anxiety when prompted to call someone. My clients in private practice also often report that same feeling of dread, preferring to email or text. Continue reading “3 Simple Tips to Conquer Phone Anxiety”

Adulting, Work

My Secret Steps to Acing Your Next Job Interview

Being unemployed or underemployed are the most frequently noted struggles of my emerging adult clients. Their reported major pitfall? Not being able to “wow” in a job interview. They may be bright, friendly, and a perfect fit for the job, but they come across as underwhelming in the job interview. When asked what gets in their way, oftentimes, my clients report feeling anxious, overwhelmed, and/or underprepared. That’s when I know I need to employ my tried and true plan to help clients ace their job interviews.

Continue reading “My Secret Steps to Acing Your Next Job Interview”

"Failure to Launch", College, Parenting

Is Your Teen Ready for College?

Transitioning from high school to college can sometimes feel like a precarious leap, instead of the manageable next step in the journey to independence. Oftentimes, students who are successful in high school find the transition to college to be a challenge because the work is faster paced, the instruction is less specific, and the academics are more competitive. College requires students to be more independent, self-driven, and organized. Additionally, the social scene can feel intimidating and more stressful than in high school. Continue reading “Is Your Teen Ready for College?”

"Failure to Launch", College, Parenting

Four Paths to a Productive Gap Year

Not every adolescent is ready to tackle college right after high school. Instead of sending them off to college because it’s the norm, why not take a gap year to help better prepare them for the challenges they’ll face? Taking a gap year is normative in countries like Australia and the United Kingdom, and it seems like more teens in the United States are trying it out, too. Even Malia Obama took a gap year before starting at Harvard University! Continue reading “Four Paths to a Productive Gap Year”