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Amy Morin LCSW shares how being mentally strong can help be resilient with teenagers

Today’s guest is Amy Morin who is a licensed clinical social worker, psychotherapist, and a lecturer at Northeastern University. She is also a keynote speaker, parent teen expert and child discipline expert for VeryWell.com and best selling author of 13 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do. I watched Amy’s TED talk, The Secret of Becoming Mentally Strong, recently and I am excited to speak with her today about how parents and teens can build resilience.

In this episode you will learn:

  • Building your mental strength
  • What locus of control means
  • Role modeling your mental strength to your teen
  • Taking calculated risks

Why Amy wrote a book

  • Amy shares her personal story of the loss of her mother and husband and how it impacted her journey in becoming more mentally strong during tough times
  • She began to write articles after the death of her husband
  • She wrote a letter to herself about “13 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do”, posted it on line “and it went viral”
  • Amy does speaking events in helping others “give up bad habits that keep them stuck.”
  • “As therapists we focus on good habits and strengths, but also need to explore what keeps us held back.”
  • The chapters give examples and at the end of each chapter there is “what’s helpful” and “what’s not helpful”.
  • Chapter one “They don’t waste time feeling sorry for themselves”
    • People get stuck on problems vs solutions
    • Need to look forward or how can I make my life better
    • Amy shares how she had to figure out how to manage “the tough days” after her loses
    • Finding ways to be grateful for what you have vs what you lost
    • Not dwelling on past, learn from it and move forward
  • Recognizing that you can control your mood
    • Allow yourself to feel emotions vs choice of staying stuck in it or leaning into it and move forward
  • Chapter four is about locus of control (external vs internal and bilateral)
    • External locus of control-think outside forces dictate our lives
    • Internal locus of control-I have power over the things that happen to me
    • Bilateral-little of both
      • You accept you can control your behaviors and other areas of your life you don’t have control over, such as other people’s behaviors.
  • Raising mentally strong kids is being a good role model
    • As you embrace these mentally strong concepts it helps your teenager
    • Teaching your teen how to deal and cope with difficult emotions

Tip for Parents

  • Being mindful of language you use because it can imply you are a victim
    • For example “I have to” vs “This is a choice”
  • Chapter six is about taking calculated risks
    • Decisions usually based on emotions vs exploring logic and seeing pros/cons of taking risk
    • Parents can help teens understand how their brains are changing and looking at risks/consequences vs reacting impulsively
    • Begin to face fears and tolerate anxiety, you can gain confidence
    • Parents you can reflect why your teen daughter’s friends maybe doing X behavior (i.e. feels good, is exciting) and why we need to look at both sides of good and bad of choice

As you practice these concepts, it can help not only you build resilience when tough times happen, but also help your teen daughter gain this skill.

I invite you to sign up for my newsletter. I have some upcoming announcements I will be making, so go to www.LaunchingYourDaughter.com. This podcast is available on iTunes, Stitcher, Google Play, YouTube and now iHeartRadio.

Amy’s Information:

Website: www.AmyMorinLCSW.com

Her eCourse: http://amymorinlcsw.com/ecourse/

Her book: http://amymorinlcsw.com/book/