Kid strategy of the week:
Good Catch!: One game (kids) or exploration (teens) that is especially helpful in promoting resilient and healthy relationships is “good catch!”
• You can start by describing or showing a picture of a rainbow after a storm….
• Then, introduce the idea that amongst differences and challenges with others, there may also be a rainbow!
• And/or you can start by explaining the activity of “good catch” – wherein kids/teens notice the positives in other people (parents, siblings, friends) they encounter day to day.
- A thing the person did well
- An aspect the client appreciates about that person
- A helpful strength/attribute the person has.
- You can model this by noting something you see in them!
They can think of these in session and/or notice them in-between sessions and share at the next appointment; when they share, affirm with “good catch!”
The next phase is inviting the client to notice and name the same in themselves (something that they did well, appreciate about themselves, and a strength/attribute they have); affirm with “good catch!”
Sample Progress Note: The focus of the session was (tailor based on treatment plan). The therapist engaged the client in an activity around finding the good in others and themselves to support in building healthy relationships. The client responded to the activity by (fill in the blank).
Couples’ strategy of the week:
• Look for the Good in Each Other: When couples assume that their partner has positive intentions, they typically feel more relationship satisfaction and connection. Assuming positive intent is one way to nurture the relationship consistently, and it sets the stage for effective problem-solving when disagreements arise. To read more about the benefits of assuming positive intentions in relationships, visit: https://www.gottman.com/blog/the-positive-perspective/
• Sample Progress Note: The focus of this session was… The therapist helped the couple explore ways to incorporate Gottman couples therapy skills and activities into their daily lives. The couple was (engaged/receptive/disengaged/etc) while exploring this topic, and they (were able/struggled/somewhat able) to identify positive intentions with each other.
Adult strategy of the week:
• Find the Good in Others: March 1st is World Compliment Day! Intentionally pointing out the positive aspects of other people is not only great for relationships, but can also be a mood booster for the person giving the compliment. Noticing the goodness of others is one way to promote feelings of wellbeing, connection, and positivity. To read more about the psychological benefits of compliments, visit: https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/articles/200403/the-art-the-compliment & https://nationaltoday.com/world-compliment-day/
• Sample Progress Note: The focus of this session was… The therapist helped the client explore how finding the goodness in others can help them strengthen their relationships and sense of wellbeing. The client reported that exploring ways to incorporate this concept into their daily life was (helpful/not helpful/painful/etc), and the client identified several ways to incorporate finding the goodness of others into their life (e.g., [list examples]).
Mindfulness/Meditation of the week:
• Finding Silver Linings: The following mindfulness exercise can help people practice finding the silver linings of troublesome situations and build resilience.
• To start, list five things that make you feel like your life is enjoyable, enriching, or worthwhile at this moment. These things can be as general as “being in good health” or as specific as “drinking a delicious cup of coffee this morning.” The purpose of this first step is to help you shift into a positive state of mind about your life in general.
• Next, think about the most recent time when something didn’t go your way, or when you felt frustrated, irritated, or upset.
• In a few sentences, briefly describe the situation in writing.
• Then, list three things that can help you see the bright side of this situation. For example, perhaps you missed your bus this morning.
Three ways to look on the bright side of this situation might be:
- Even though you missed the bus, you got some good exercise when you were running to catch it.
- You’re fortunate to live in a city where there was another bus just 10 minutes later, or where buses run reliably at all.
- Ten years from now, you likely won’t remember what happened this morning.
Sample Progress Note: The focus of this session was… The therapist led Ct. in a mindfulness activity to build resilience through awareness of positive perceptions and practicing adaptively reframing difficult situations. Ct. (engaged/did not engage in the activity), and they reported that the mindfulness activity was (helpful/difficult/not helpful).
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