What's one lesson kids of all ages could benefit from knowing? PT bloggers (psychologytoday.com) weigh in on the basics that youngsters—and the rest of us—would do well to learn.
"Rather than shun people for acting in ways you can't explain, ask questions about their behavior. You may discover they're deploying an ingenious coping strategy to a challenge you weren't aware of." —Glenn Alperin, Face Off: Living with prosopagnosia.
The Choice Is Yours
"Your genes may determine what tempts you, but temptations alone are not enough to explain actions. When people around you are behaving badly, you can still choose to be a mensch." —Mindy Greenstein, Ph.D., The Flip Side: You can't spell "joy" without the "oy."
The Best Policy
"Be honest. It may sound simple, but it takes courage to do the right thing when no one is watching and to tell the truth even when it isn't celebrated." —Maureen Healy, Creative Development: Growing a child's unique gifts.
Know Thy Synapses
"The most important lesson lies in understanding one's fear and anger, and the primitive brain. Fear of loss, isolation, and abandonment are a death threat to the amygdala, which pushes us into a fight-or-flight mode. The most important work involves soothing the amygdala, as well as generating love, compassion, and wisdom from our cerebral cortex." —Ravi Chandra, The Pacific Heart: Psychiatry, spirituality and culture.
Learn Your Limits
"Do what you love, but make sure you have the ability. Identify your strengths and make them work for you." —Pia Savage, Odd Girl In: How do I fit in?
"Relationships are about balancing space between you and your loved one. One person may need more; the other, less. Identify which side you take. Then develop the parts of yourself to balance the continuum." —Laurie J. Watson, L.M.F.T., L.P.C., Married and Still Doing It: Wanting the one you're with.
Ups and Downs
"Understand the role of challenge and hardship in life, and know that success is measured through effort rather than grades, test scores, or life status. Children grow intellectually and emotionally when they overcome obstacles, learn from mistakes, and experience the valleys as well as the pinnacles of success." —Marilyn Price-Mitchell, Ph.D., The Moment of Youth: Helping teens believe in themselves.
Don't Fall for It
"Question negative self-talk before it becomes destructive. And don't believe everything you feel and think. Just because you sometimes believe you're worthless, unlovable, and stupid doesn't mean you actually are these things." —Victoria Maxwell, Crazy for Life: Escapades of a bipolar princess.