Michigan Family Institute Newsletter

May/June 2013
What We Do     Specialty Services     Staff     Contact     mifamilytherapy.com     248-593-4784
In This Issue
BEYOND SELF-ESTEEM
SURVIVING THE SUMMER
SEE NEW THERAPY AND EDUCATIONAL GROUPS FOLLOWING THE BOOK OFFERINGS BELOW

 
 

BOOKS 
 

(Guilford Press 1996)
Jerome A. Price
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(Impact Publications 2011)
Margerum J, Price J, and Windell J 
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(Impact Publications 2007) 
Gaulier B, Margerum J, Price J, Windell J 

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(Zeig-Tucker Publications 2003) Price J, Margerum  J 

CLINICAL AND EDUCATIONAL GROUPS

 

  

Take Control of Your Divorce

  

Learn to manage the conflict in your divorce

  

with Dr. Judith Margerum

  

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Circle of Friends

  

A middle school aged social skills group

 

with Lynn Ernst

Margolis,  MSW, LMSW 

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The Right to Be the Grownup

A parent skills training program for difficult teens and pre-teens 

 

with Jerome A. Price, MA, LMFT, LMSW 

 

 

 

SPEAKERS' BUREAU 


As a courtesy to the many trusted professionals who refer to us, we offer presentations for staff development and for parents in schools or treatment programs at no charge.
Subjects are many and varied and can be coordinated with your program's needs.

Just call or email us




info@mifamilytherapy.com




    

                      

BEYOND SELF-ESTEEM

                                                 

   Judith Margerum,Ph.D.

 

We often focus on boosting children's self-esteem in order to improve their grades, decrease aggression, increase self-control and a myriad of other problems. The problem is that high self-esteem has not been shown to improve grades, decrease aggression or improve self-control. In fact studies have shown that praise given indiscriminately makes it meaningless and too much praise may decrease performance.  

 

I have often worked with teenagers who had so much self-esteem that they felt they should not have to do homework to prove their worth or should be allowed to play on the football team because of their superior skill despite their lack of effort. Unfortunately the world does not agree with them and they may end up with poor grades and being benched!

      

So what is a parent or professional to do? Psychologist Roy Baumeister, a researcher on self-esteem, suggests focusing on self-control and self-discipline. So we may be circling back to what our parents and Thomas Edison once said, "There is no substitute for hard work." Feeling good about yourself will not help you master your algebra but studying every day will. Feeling good about yourself will not get you into the Philadelphia Philharmonic Orchestra or the Olympics but practicing daily for hours might. Having high enough self-esteem feels good and improves initiative so it can certainly play a role in life success if it is coupled with perseverance and self-control.

       

Make sure children have opportunities to build on and develop their personal strengths whether they are academic, athletic, musical or social. Help your child identify areas upon which to build and encourage persistence when the going gets tough. Point out how their persistence and hard work resulted in their successes. Persistence needs to be developed over time just like any other muscle.

      

Every child is not going to shine academically but they need to be successful enough they do not feel that they are failing at their major life task. Years of failure and years of not putting effort into schoolwork result in the teenager who is doing nothing at school resulting in nothing but failure. Use this summer as a time to work on the self-control and hard work muscles to get them in better shape for next fall.

 

SURVIVING THE SUMMER

Jerome A. Price, MA, LMFT, LMSW

 

 

The summer is a fun time everyone is looking forward to, right? Unless you're dealing with serious divorce problems, an acting out or academically failing teen or preteen, or both. It's tempting to shift into neutral and let the summer pass using vacations to fill the time and avoiding academic issues. School isn't open so it's easy to feel that it can be let go until the Fall.

However, when Fall comes the problems will kick into high gear rapidly. Summer is actually a great time for intervention and strategic planning for dealing with problems. Then children will have made progress and situations in divorces will have stabilized come September.

For those dealing with divorces it's a good time to negotiate agreements, work with a mediator or file that motion that will settle the issues that are pending. Once those are settled your children will know what they're dealing with on all fronts when school starts and be able to concentrate on school. Get that parenting time schedule nailed down.

For those dealing with children who are having behavior problems or are academically underfunctioning the summer holds a wealth of options for helping him or her. Summer camps such as Howe Academy in Indiana combine academics, fun and military-style discipline. Sedentary and computer-addicted youth need to get moving. Don't give them the choice of laying around.

Give them a couple of options of theme camps or healthy programs and tell them that if they don't decide, you as parents will decide for them. Outward Bound is a wonderful outdoor adventure program that's been around for decades.

If they're a musician insist they participate in summer band programming. If they have been athletic but are now just laying around, insist they condition with one of the sports teams. Don't take no for an answer.

Daily service activities are great for improving a youth's self concept. Take them to get started helping with the homeless or the mentally challenged. Have them work at the Friendship Circle. Have them do the Summer in the City program where youth go in supervised groups to impoverished areas in Detroit and help work on the communities.

It all comes down to the physics Law of Inertia. An object in motion will tend to remain in motion. An object at rest will remain at rest. This will be so unless they are acted upon by an outside force. That outside force is us parents and the professionals in the community.

 

 

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Southfield, Michigan  48076
248-593-4784