Self reflection can be a magical tool. Writing a memoir about one’s journey with math has been shown to lower anxiety. See link to article.
The next step is to combine writing reflections with other supports. Peer-to-Peer cohort group experiences, for example, help to validate and normalize common childhood experiences. “Oh you too” moments help to increase emotional wellness, and social connections around shared experiences. Facilitated dialogue, reflection, and supporting others increases behavioral health.
Writing about math can be especially helpful for girls, young women who often decide by 7th grade if they are “smart” or not, using math as a measure.
Hats off to teachers of math who inspire, scaffold, and support the learning of each student. It’s a small distinction, through the lens of equity, “each student” vs. “all students.”
Behavioral health vs mental illness. “Packages of support.” Let’s work on child and adolescent wellness together.
“Anything worth doing is worth doing poorly.”
Make this 1/5 of your approach to lower anxiety? Don’t let need for perfection get in the way of doing something okay the first time, kinda okay the next three times, then working toward doing it well.
“Don’t always believe what you think.” Positive thinking, and behavior, takes practice. We’re carving new neuro-pathways.
The younger the client, the more therapy is interactive. The first time we do something, or talk openly about how we feel, it may feel awkward. The 19th time will come much easier.
Practical suggestions and good advice is always welcome. This isn’t a panacea for mental health concerns. Avoid saying, “If I could just…”.
“If I could just exercise more, find the right partner, change jobs, new medication…”. Mental health takes work. Therapy can be difficult, challenging, and part of the “package of support” that leads to lasting change. It’s the combination of things that make a difference.