Learn to say NO!!!

To become healthy adults, children need to learn to deal with moments of frustration and annoyance, and know their limits.

A few years ago, education was a simple process since there was a clear demarcation of power with clearly defined roles. Adults continued to be governed by their parents and children followed the rules of the older generation without any dispute.
With the passage of time, some educators told us that this type of education was incorrect; it is necessary to hear children out and allow them a more participative role in family relationships. This may be true, but some parents have yielded to the temptation to follow the other extreme.
As a result, we have seen situations in which power is in children's' hands and the whole family avoids countering them for fear that they may undergo trauma or suffer from a psychological ailment. This can be avoided if parents deal with them firmly, following a few guidelines:
Establish the rules from the beginning
Having a child is a process that people usually associate with feelings of affection and some fear. We frequently hear first-time pregnant women voicing the fear of not being a good mother. But they need not worry at first.
Crying is the only way an infant can express comfort/ discomfort. Mother-infant bonding can be so strong that mothers can often decode different tones of crying as soon as three days after childbirth.
There are many possible reactions to a baby crying. For example, an anxious mother will run to the crib immediately and try to soothe the baby while a calmer person will realise that the baby may have woken up from a strange noise and needs a few minutes to recover before he can fall asleep. In this way people create defence mechanisms, which are also used in other situations of psychological discomfort. But these two examples of maternal attitude outlining two distinct ways to educate will consolidate children's behaviour in the years to come.
The problem is that often the decision to enforce rules arises at an advanced stage of the child's life - for example, in adolescence – when the responsiveness of the young is already reduced, or even nullified. 
Consistency is important
On rules, consistency of the father and mother's attitude is vital. We refer to the case of some couples in which one parent sets a rule and the other breaks it, replacing it with another. For example, to ensure that a child does his homework, the mother tells him that he can watch cartoons only when he finishes homework.
Shortly after, the father comes home and tells the mother, "Don't you see how little Johnny also needs to be distracted? There is enough time to do homework after the cartoon show."
Both parents may then have an argument due to their concern and affection for their son, but the attitude they assume will be detrimental for the child's education. Conflict between parents increases at the same time the child accepts the rules of one and rejects the other's. Children also take advantage of the conflict, behaving impeccably when they are with one of the parents but adopting an attitude of defiance when they are with both.

The teenage years

Adolescence is a period that follows childhood and extends into adulthood. It is an important phase in which the child is neither fully an adult nor a child. It usually lasts from the age of 14-20 for boys, and from 12-18 years for girls.

It is a fickle, disruptive and critical period which both parents and children are afraid of. Parents, because they usually ignore the reactions of the child in this period and do not know how to handle him, and the adolescent because he fears a lack of control over his own life.
Parents find it difficult to understand that children eventually grow up and can think and act for themselves. For rebellious teens, maturity is often all in the head.
All those from my generation remember our own teenage years, in which we experienced unexplained character changes, those bodily sensations that were beyond our understanding and that urge to eat everything.
Our first cigarette, our first drink, our first kiss and our first disappointment in love.
Adolescents are usually impetuous and seek new experiences, believing they are larger than life and sufficiently intelligent to overcome all obstacles that come in the way of achieving their goals.
But very often, it seems that everything goes wrong. In addition, they often feel they can only trust their friends because their parents have stopped understanding them.
The status quo ceases to exist, parents no longer protect the child and he has to face different challenges in life that lead to the adult world.
In this way, they often face other teenagers whose family ties are not too strong, whose parents are no longer concerned about them, or simply those suffering from a behavioural disorder.
No matter how grown-up and strong
he may pretend to be, the teen is still fragile. With this assumption, I want to get to a very common theme within the group - juvenile delinquency.
We call a young person who is found guilty of an offence that would qualify as a crime if an adult had committed it, a juvenile delinquent. The most common crimes are related to vandalism of property and violence.
Different theories have been put forward to explain the phenomenon. Among them is contact with other criminals, peer pressure, and seeking popularity or adventure.
The prognosis of offenders is not too good because they usually live in slums and if they are not removed from that environment, it is very difficult, almost impossible for them to leave crime.
When it comes to behavioural disorders, the best therapy is behaviour modification while the therapist works with the immediate environment to achieve a change of attitude.
Teenagers need a secure family life, which provides a suitable environment for finding the stability that will lead them into maturity. Disoriented by their internal contradictions, they seek approval and affection to be able to understand what's happening.
The world suddenly opens up and that is how a teenager explores it, without order or logical start; time passes quickly and he has a lot to absorb. Parents may be left perplexed by their energy levels and search for spiritual values and understanding.
Teens want to be popular, be admired and trusted, and mimic adults to achieve their goals.
Parents will need a lot of patience to deal with this disruptive period. They must enforce the rules and value their teen's emotions at the same time.
This is the key to achieving a balance so that when the child grows up, he can look back on his adolescence and remember it as one of the best stages in his life, and not the worst.

Anxiety neurosis

Anxiety neurosis is a mental disorder characterised by an almost constant state of restlessness, anguish, fear, etc., which is like a malaise. The affected person is in constant tension and has a fear of something that he may not be able to define.

He often has negative feelings and has no control over them. This state of mind changes the person's life to an extent where he is not in sync with reality. His life and relationships are also affected. A change of job, home, marriage or any other situation involving change can lead to a state of great anxiety and agitation.
A patient of anxiety neurosis feels the need to constantly do something in order to get away from his emotional turmoil. People who are anxious, apprehensive and nervous often have difficulty concentrating and reflecting upon things.
They are agitated and have difficulty sleeping or sleep fitfully because of frequent nightmares. They may be light sleepers, which leads them to feel tired or low on energy during the day.
They experience bodily sensations such as excessive sweating, tachycardia, respiratory disorders, stomach pain, intestinal disturbances, poor digestion and other changes of the autonomic nervous system. Sometimes this state of mind aggravates other situations such as allergies, dermatitis and other problems.
Anyone can experience anxiety, especially in these times. It has become a constant factor in the lives of many. Depending on the degree or
frequency, it can become pathological and lead to many related problems. Therefore, it is not always pathological and can be situational as well.
For example, some people start biting their nails when they are anxious. Anxiety causes the sufferer to lose a good part of his self-esteem. He may stop doing certain things because he thinks he will be unable to perform them. In this way, the term anxiety is somehow connected to the word fear, and the person is afraid of making mistakes when performing different tasks, without even trying.
Very high levels of anxiety, especially when presented with shyness or depression, prevent the person from developing his own intellectual potential. It interferes not only with learning in the case of traditional education, but in social intelligence as well. The individual will not know how to behave in social occasions or at work, which can lead to career stagnation.
Psychotherapy can help deal with this situation, as well as relaxing activities like yoga, tai-chi and other physical exercises which release stress and lead to relaxation. Therapy helps in identifying the causes of anxiety so that they can be eliminated.
Anxiety has a lot to do with the personality. People  inherit it from their parents or other relatives, or it may be a learnt behaviour. Loss of loved ones can often aggravate this condition, and so can other stressful situations experienced throughout life.
To summarise, we need to know what causes anxiety and also how to handle it, so that the affected person can continue with a normal life after psychotherapy.

Children’s Drawings

For a child, drawing is, in addition to a means of recreation, also a mode of communication. Before starting psychotherapy, or in case a child faces problems in school, a psychologist will use drawing in order to understand what is going on.

Throughout the treatment, the psychologist collects drawings by the child to get a clear idea of the child's state of mind and, at the same time, ensure that psychotherapy is having the desired effect.
Evolution of children's drawing
Around the age of 18 months, a child begins to take interest in making pencil strokes. Scribbling usually starts with making circular shapes. In the beginning, their drawings are devoid of meaning.
Only strokes that are made at a given moment, through even a slight resemblance to reality, are meaningful for a child. If you ask the child what he drew, he can tell you that it was a plane, but it could change to a table or even a cracker later.
Sometimes strokes do not represent anything in particular, so he will give you an interpretation that is most relevant at that moment. Around the age of two or three, children begin to draw vertical, horizontal and parallel lines.
At this stage, their designs are intended to be realistic, but can't be for both physical and mental reasons (The child has little or no control over his movements and his attention span is very limited).
What is most difficult to understand in children's drawings is the proportions. It is common to see designs that have only arms, or hair that is longer than the legs. Strange little figures may come up, with the legs to the side of the body, or the eyes shifted. Children often fail to take into account the elements of each drawing.
Between the ages of three and six, drawings are very different from those of an adult. For a child, a realistic drawing is one that contains all the elements he associates with an object. Houses often have transparent walls, with the furniture and occupants visible.
Human figures are often mixed up. For example, the head, arms, bodies and legs may be drawn differently. Adult observations on drawings can often be counterproductive, as they will impair spontaneity.
If you say that a profile picture drawn by a child is not appropriate because it features both eyes, for example, he may not like it. The different perspective of a child must be appreciated and is a way of encouraging creativity.
Around the age of seven, a child begins to criticise and seek feedback for his own drawings. This stage begins gradually and is not without setbacks. At this age, he can make drawings that are intellectually and visually realistic. Around the age of 12, the intellectual realism is perfectly honed.
Symbols in drawings
In dreams, symbols become meaningful when they are related to personal associations. Drawings also gain meaning in the same manner.
One of the best-known symbols is the sun, often associated with a father figure. The moon is a classic example of a female symbol. Containers and other objects such as jugs, jars, boxes and pockets are distinctly feminine symbols.
Water is commonly associated with life. Colours are associated with different feelings. For example, red is the most emotional colour and is associated with aggression, destruction and sexual awareness.
Blue, being a cool colour, is symbolically associated with depressive feelings. The same goes for the colour black. Yellow symbolises joy, strength and vitality.

Dealing with Phobia

Fear is a universal and old instinct. It can be defined as a feeling that you are in danger and that something very bad is about to happen, and is often accompanied by physical symptoms. When fear is disproportionate to the threat posed by a situation, irrational and followed by avoidance of situations, it is called a phobia.

Almost everyone has one or two irrational fears. Some are afraid of mice, others of spiders, and yet others terrified of heights. For most people, these fears are minor. But for others, they are so strong that they cause tremendous anxiety and interfere with their day-to-day life.
When fears are irrational and uncontrollable, they are called phobias. If you live in fear due to a phobia, there is still hope, and you can overcome your phobias with the right treatment and some self-help strategies. Don't wait to seek help.
In addition to seeking professional help, there are some strategies that may help overcome phobias. Learning about these is the first step towards overcoming them. It is important to recognise that phobias are common, and easily treated by psychotherapy.
There are three basic types of phobia:
- Agoraphobia: A widespread fear of places or situations. This includes a fear of being outside the house alone, of being in a crowd, getting stuck in a queue or of travelling alone
- Social phobia: This occurs when someone has a marked and persistent fear of appearing in front of others or meeting people, often for fear that they will misunderstand their anxiety. This can be specific to a situation or widespread.
- Specific phobias: A sharp and persistent fear (or simple anticipation) of things like flying, sight of blood, injections and heights. These make people steer clear of many situations and stay indoors.
To understand what is happening, think of yourself in a pleasant situation at some point. If you are in good company and there is good music playing in the background, you remember the situation every time you hear that song.
If you stop to think about it, the music does not only remind you of the situation, but you may even experience the same pleasant feelings that you felt at that time.
It is the same for the brain. We experience strong emotions at times, which are linked to whatever happens around us. Phobias usually occur when panic is triggered in situations that are potentially dangerous.
For example, no one likes being cornered or being near a person or an animal that poses a risk. Being stuck in traffic, an elevator or a mall is, for those who suffer from certain types of phobia, a situation of being cornered. For this reason, many people who are prone to panic end up developing a phobia of closed places.
When it comes to panic attacks, professional treatment and therapy can make a big difference. But learning more about panic also helps sufferers. The mere knowledge of pathology will relieve symptoms.
Reading about anxiety, panic disorders and similar conditions will help you understand that your sensations and feelings are nothing unusual, and you are not going crazy. Learn to control your breathing. A deep breath helps relieve symptoms of a panic attack and calms down an anxious person.
Practice relaxation techniques. When practiced regularly, activities such as yoga, meditation, and stretching and relaxation of muscles will help reduce the symptoms significantly.


Motivation is a set of internal forces that mobilise an individual to achieve a particular purpose in response to a state of necessity, lack or imbalance. The word 'motivation' comes from the Latin movere, meaning to move.

Motivation is what is likely to move an individual to perform an act in order to achieve something (the goal). Motivation can be broadly classified into two major types.
Physiological motivation (primary, organic, biological): This includes activities linked to the survival of an organism and is not the result of a learning process.
Homeostasis is a mechanism used by living organisms to regulate their bodies' internal balance. Such mechanisms cause certain body impulses that are closely connected with a particular internal state of the organism like respiration, hunger, thirst, avoiding cold and heat, and sleep.
Social motivation (secondary, cultural): This is what is essentially a result of learning, ie acquired in the process of socialisation. Examples: Need for coexistence (affiliation), success, recognition and social security. This group can be subdivided into individual centric motivation and that focused on society.
a) Individual-centric (self-assertion) motivation stems from the desire to be accepted, the need for security, to belong to a group, to achieve a high social status etc.
b) Motivation focused on society (independent of our private interests) includes respect for others, solidarity, friendship, love etc.
Some question this division of motives, stating that they all have a common background - the pursuit of pleasure, which is the only real reason for all human actions.
Motivational cycle
1. Need is a reason behind an action. It is caused by a state of imbalance due to a lack or deprivation (eg lack of food in the body).
2. Push or drive: It is the act carried out because of need or reason. It is the internal energy that pushes an individual to act in a given direction.
3. Encouragement: Is the goal to which orients the action.
4. Satiety: Is the satisfaction of having achieved the desired objective. This sequential behaviour repeats itself.
When an individual is motivated to achieve a given objective, but cannot, due to an obstacle, he lives in a state of frustration. This feeling depends on many factors, like the subject's personality, age, nature of motivation, type of obstacle etc.
Reactions to frustration: Each kind of frustration has a particular reaction. The reactions too depend on many factors.
Behaviour resulting from frustration
Aggression: Aggression is direct when it is shown against the source that caused the frustration. Or, it can shift to other people or objects. For example, for a child, it could be directed on the parent who prevents him from playing (direct aggression). Or, the child destroys the toys with which the parent prevented play (displaced aggression).
Throughout the process of socialisation, an individual learns to deal with frustrations through inhibition, withdrawal or disguising manifestations of aggressiveness. In extreme situations, the individual may manifest aggressiveness on himself (self-harm).
Apathy (indifference or inactivity): Faced with ongoing frustrations, an individual can fall into an apathetic reaction (indifference towards the source of frustration).
Here, the motivating impulse behaviour is reduced or eliminated

Educating through play

Small children learn a lot better when you associate the act of learning with the pleasures of a game. If you only communicate the idea, they won’t learn as easily as through a game. The concept will be immediately absorbed. This issue is fundamental because we can do a lot of work with children, using games as a tool.
Teaching children to build toys using scrap is extremely easy. A stopper and a bottle can become a spacecraft. The child represents it with his or her imagination. Free yourself from the constraints of ready toys.
Presenting various materials can stimulate the child’s imagination. It is always preferable to build games or toys that are very simple, a rag doll for example. Children quickly lose interest in sophisticated toys as their use depletes quickly.
Colours and sounds
The more the intimacy with the child, the more parents are able to know what pleases him. Colour, texture, versatility and simplicity are factors to be taken into account in the choice of a toy.
In addition, we have to always bear in mind the age of the child. It he is too small, he will tend to put everything in his mouth. Toys with sharp edges and small parts can be dangerous.
In the first three months, toys that make sound are most enjoyed. Moving toys, colourful mobiles, music boxes, plush dolls etc are preferred.
Make-believe games
Symbolic games play an important part when the child is around two years of age. Now is the time to let him play freely. This way, the child can accomplish his desires and resolve conflicts by means of toys.
Simple and colourful toys like docking games, Lego blocks, dolls, pieces of cloth, encourage imagination and are most appreciated and enjoyed. When the child reaches around five years, ‘make-believe’ games come into play; the oscillation between inner and outer worlds allow the child to assume different roles and personalities.