Supporting Parents. Fostering Change.

Monthly Archives: December 2011

Social skills training groups vary tremendously in their ability to help children not only learn but also transfer skills from a group to a home and school environment. For many children, learning new social skills is like learning a foreign language. Similarly to acquiring a new language, it’s important that the kids are immersed in the thinking and culture of interpersonal skill building.

These skills need to be practiced inside and outside of group in order for new friendship skills to take hold.

When a child participates in a Stepping Stones social skills program, we offer a simultaneously-running parent group. Experience has shown that the parent’s role is critical to progress and success, and the parent’s group emphasizes tips and techniques for parents to use at home to foster positive social and emotional development, better manage behavioral issues, and lessen family stresses. Parental involvement in reinforcing those skills learned in group is instrumental in effecting change and making new social skills “stick.”

Continue reading “Parent Involvement is Critical in Social Skills Development”

Posted in Concurrent Parent and Child Therapy Groups, Social Skill Development | Comments off

Socially anxious teens desperately want to interact and connect with their peers. Sadly, “wanting” is not “doing.” These teens struggle with a challenging and painful irony: the desire they have to belong, to fit in, to be more in-sync with their peers leads to the very feelings of anxiety they are trying to avoid.

With family gatherings, holiday parties and New Year’s Eve get-togethers just days away, support your socially anxious teen with these strategies.

  1. Make a commitment to overcome your social anxiety
    Changing your social anxiety will be difficult.  You need to be ready, willing, and able to take action even when you need to confront situations you fear.
  2. Expect fits and starts
    Be kind to yourself when your progress is not linear.  Rather, you can expect to take two steps forward, one step.  This is how change of any kind takes place.
  3. Focus on personal benefits of overcoming social anxiety
    Based on your own values and goals, identify your own reasons for changing.  Perhaps your goal is to have closer friendships, rather than being more comfortable in a crowd.  You are more likely to succeed if the goals are yours.

Continue reading “Socially Anxious Teens”

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