How to overcome negative, spiral-down thinking

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How to overcome negative, spiral-down thinking

Have you ever heard your daughter say after a test I did badly on this test, I am going to fail this class, I am going to not get into a good college and my life is probably ruined? Spiral down thinking. We want to help girls and teens move from spiral down thinking to a more solution focused thinking that helps them stay in the moment and have more of the life they want. With little kids, I like to refer to this change of thinking as moving from caterpillar thinking, which are those unhelpful spiral down thoughts, to butterfly thinking, which are the most solution oriented helpful thoughts, like I did poorly on this test and I can ask for help next time and I can put in more effort or I did put in good effort and I feel good about that. And next time, I am going to do even better.

See Melissa Johnson, PhD's video on How to overcome negative, spiral-down thinking...


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Melissa Johnson, PhD


Melissa J. Johnson, PhD, licensed psychologist, is the founder and CEO of the Institute for Girl’s Development in Pasadena, CA. An expert in child and teen development, Dr, Johnson holds a master's degree in Education and a Doctorate in Counseling Psychology. Dr. Johnson has worked with children and teens for over 30 years. At the Institute. Dr. Johnson and her team deliver strength-based therapy, inspiring education programs and consultation with schools and districts to help create positive school climates. Dr. Johnson's approach to raising and mentoring youth draws together contemporary research in neuroscience and mind/body health, and evidence based interventions in mindfulness and social and emotional intelligence.

Dr. Johnson was recognized by the State of California with an Outstanding Women in Business award winner in 2011. Dr. Johnson is a former Interim Chair of the Maters Programs in counseling at the University of La Verne and has served as an adjunct faculty member at both the University of La Verve and the University of Southern California. Dr. Jonson is a welcomed local and national speaker. Her peer-reviewed publications have appeared in the Journal of Humanistic Psychology and Professional Psychology: Research and Practice. Her numerous articles about raising strong girls have appeared in community online blogs and newsletters.

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