The Ultimate Self-Esteem Workbook for Teens: Overcome Insecurity, Defeat Your Inner Critic, and Live Confidently
Author Megan MacCutcheon
It has been an extremely challenging time for young people, especially teenagers. Since the pandemic, we have seen a rise in depression, anxiety, stress and (sadly) self-harm and suicide ideation.
Helping our young develop self-worth and coping skills can also help them make better choices in this difficult world.
Inside The Ultimate Self-Esteem Teen Workbook:
Take on the world with confidence and positivity―a guide to self esteem for teens
Sometimes, feeling self-confident and secure seems impossible, especially if you’re a teen dealing with school, friends, family, and other challenges that can affect how you see yourself. This workbook helps you build up your self esteem and confidence with creative activities and advice that show you how to think positively, release self-doubt, and start loving who you are.
This supportive self esteem workbook includes:
More than 50 different exercises―Get to know yourself with quizzes, journal prompts, checklists, and more that help you set goals, work through insecurities, and find out what makes you feel strong.
True stories from other teens―Feel less alone when you read real-life anecdotes from your peers, along with a Q&A section full of bonus advice.
The power to change―Self esteem is like a muscle, and practicing with this workbook will help you build your confidence, stay resilient, and focus on the future.
Entitled attitude – feels they deserves or are “owed” stuff but not willing to put in the effort
Substance abuse, vaping
Self-harm, suicide ideation
Running away, sneaking out
Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD)
Family conflict, withdrawing from family
Dropping out of their favorite activities (sports, dance, cheerleading)
Shoplifting, stealing (usually from parents)
Have you tried these things to help:
Switching schools, moving
School counselors, therapists
Taking away technology, removing cell-phones
Mentors, teen coaches
Short-term in-patient or out-patient services
Living with a relative
There are few things more frustrating than trying to help someone who doesn’t want help. They don’t see any reason to change their behavior because it isn’t causing enough pain and frustration now.
But if they don’t get help. . . then they are going to experience a very challenging life. They are unlikely to complete high-school let alone be able to obtain and hold a job. It is unlikely that they will have the opportunities that you want for them. They will struggle.
They needs more help than you can offer. . . but it isn’t too late.
Removing your teen from the influences of negative peer groups or sometimes even family conflict can help them reflect more on what is creating their negative behavior.
These programs (therapeutic boarding schools/residential treatment centers) continue with your son’s education, have therapists to work on your son’s emotional wellbeing to help him develop coping and communication skills as well as building motivation and setting goals for his (now) bright future.
This is a major emotional and financial decision that shouldn’t be taken lightly. It’s why we help educate parents on schools and programs that would best fit their individual teen’s needs. We know how confusing the internet can be — and you don’t want to make a rash decision while you’re in crisis. Learn from our mistakes, gain from our knowledge. Read more about the founders story.
Contact us today for a free consultant about teen help programs.
Why Should I Hire An Educational Consultant for Teen Help?
Are you debating whether you should hire an educational consultant to find the best therapeutic boarding school for your teenager? Did you just realize they cost about $6000-8000.00 for their service?
Be an Educated Parent
As much as you are trying to ignore or just say it is a phase, you notice your teen is withdrawing from the family, failing in school, smell alcohol, maybe even marijuana, cigarettes, and overall have become a child you no longer recognize with a personality that is defiant and totally disrespectful the the family boundaries – what do you do?
Most parents try local therapy – which is a great first step, but when happens when therapy doesn’t work? You can’t be afraid to take that next step! A parent in a denial only harms your teenager. Don’t be held hostage in your home by your teen’s behavior.
Sending a child to a residential program/school is a major decision. It is not one to be taken lightly or to be decided on overnight.
Usually a teen’s behavior has been slowly escalating and a parent knows that deep down things are not getting better. As much as you hope and pray that things will change, this is only typical teen behavior, sometimes it just isn’t.
With drug use and substance abuse rising – more dangerous and deadly ingredients being used, such as spice and inhalants, parents have reason to be concerned. It isn’t your marijuana of generations prior – it is so much worse and in many cases – addictive and deadly.
If you have reached your wit’s end and now surfing the internet for help, remember, anyone can build a website. Anyone can put up nice pictures and create great content. You need to do your due diligence.
Years ago I struggled with my own teenager. I was at my wit’s end. I didn’t realize what a big business this “teen help industry” was. Yes, my child needed help, but what we received was anything but that. My story is a cautionary tale – not one to scare you into not using a program, however on the contrary, you have to get your child help, but you have to do your research in getting them the right help.
Here are some quick tips:
Your child is not for sale, try to avoid those marketing arms selling you a list of programs that are not in the best interest of your child’s individual needs.
Always speak with an owner or director – Someone that has a vested in your teen’s recovery. Their reputation is on the line.
Wilderness and other short term programs are usually nothing more than a band-aid that will fall off as quickly as the program lasted. They are expensive camping trips and in most cases the Wilderness program will tell you at about 4 weeks that your teen will need to continue on to a longer term program. What? Yes, now you go back to the research board and worse than that, your teen will be deflated when he finds out he/she isn’t coming home in 6-9 weeks as they were lead to believe – and they will be starting all over again with a new therapist – new schedule – and new setting. Don’t get caught up in this “shuffle.” Start and finish with the same school/program.
The average stay should be about 6-9-12 months, depending on your teen. Anything less is probably non-effective. Anything more, you may be creating abandonment issues in our opinion.
Do you really need an Educational Consultant? Probably not. You are the parent and no one knows your teen better than you do – with a few solid and intelligent resources, you will be able to make some sound choices.
For more helpful hint and tips, please contact us for a free consultation. After the ordeal I went through, I created this advocacy organization to help educate parents on finding safe and quality programs.
It’s been a challenging time since the COVID-19 pandemic. We’ve seen a rise in teen depression, anxiety, stress and worse — self-harm and suicide ideation.
Parents are dealing with teen defiance that is amplified more than ever. Remote learning has been anything but easy for most teenagers.
Today teenager’s not only have the stress of schoolwork and peer pressure, they are concerned about their social media presence. If you doubt this is an issue, you are fooling yourself. Statistics have proven that teens rely on their virtual reality for many feelings of acceptance. This is why it is critical for parents to continue to have offline discussions about online reality.
FOMO (fear of missing out) is very real for these kids today. Even some adults have this fear. You have to look far and wide to walk down the street to find someone without their cell phone in their hand.
Complaints of pains, including headaches, stomachaches, low back pain, or fatigue
Sleeping a lot
Difficulty making decisions
Excessive or inappropriate guilt
Irresponsible behavior — for example, forgetting obligations, being late for classes, skipping school
Loss of interest in food or compulsive overeating that results in rapid weight loss or gain
Preoccupation with death and dying
Rebellious behavior, defiance (more than normal)
Sadness, anxiety, or a feeling of hopelessness
Staying awake at night and sleeping during the day
Sudden drop in grades (underachieving)
Use of alcohol or drugs and promiscuous sexual activity
Withdrawal from friends and family
Withdrawal from activities they used to love
The lesser known relative of depression, anxiety, afflicts people of all ages and can be especially detrimental for teenagers. It is completely normal and even common for individuals to experience anxiety, particularly during stressful periods, such as before a test or important date (think Prom). For many, this is beneficial, serving as motivation to study hard and perform well; however, for many, anxiety goes beyond standard high-stress periods. While occasional stress is nothing to worry about and can even be healthy, many people experience anxiety on an ongoing basis. People, especially teenagers, who suffer from anxiety disorders, find that their daily life can be interrupted by the intense, often long-lasting fear or worry.
Anxiety disorders are not fatal; however, they can severely interfere with an individual’s ability to function normally on a daily basis. The intense feelings of fear and worry often lead to a lack of sleep as it makes it very difficult for people to fall asleep. Those with anxiety disorders also commonly suffer from physical manifestations of the anxiety.
The anxiety can cause headaches, stomach aches, and even vomiting. In addition stress can cause individuals to lose their appetite or have trouble eating. One of the more difficult aspects for students to deal with is difficulty concentrating.
When one is consumed with worry, his or her mind continuously considers the worrisome thoughts, making it considerably harder for teenagers to concentrate on school work and other mentally intensive tasks. These affects of anxiety can make it difficult for teenagers to simply get through the day, let alone enjoy life and relax.
While there seems to be no single cause of anxiety disorders, it is clear that they can run in a family. The fact that anxiety disorders can run in families indicates that there may be a genetic or hereditary connection. Because a family member may suffer from an anxiety disorder does not necessarily mean that you will. However, individuals who have family members with this disorder are far more likely to develop it.
Within the brain, neurotransmitters help to regulate mood, so an imbalance in the level of specific neurotransmitters can cause a change in mood. It is this imbalance in a neurotransmitter called serotonin that leads to anxiety. Interestingly, an imbalance of serotonin in the brain is directly related to depression.
For this reason, SSRI medications, more commonly referred to as anti-depressants, are often used to help treat an anxiety disorder. Medication can provide significant relief for those suffering from anxiety disorders; however, it is often not the most efficient form of treatment.
In addition to medication, treatments for anxiety disorders include cognitive-behavioral therapy, other types of talk therapy, and relaxation and biofeedback to control muscle tension. Talk therapy can be the most effective treatment for teenagers, as they discuss their feelings and issues with a mental health professional.
Many teens find it incredibly helpful to simply talk about the stress and anxiety that they feel. Additionally, in a specific kind of talk therapy called cognitive-behavioral therapy teens actively “unlearn” some of their fear. This treatment teaches individuals a new way to approach fear and anxiety and how to deal with the feelings that they experience.
Many people attempt to medicate themselves when they suffer from stress or anxiety. While individuals find different ways to deal with the intense worry that they may experience, self medication can be very detrimental to their body.
It is not uncommon for people who suffer from anxiety disorders to turn to alcohol or drugs to relieve the anxiety. While this may provide a temporary fix for the afflicted, in the long run it is harmful. By relying on these methods, individuals do not learn how to deal with the anxiety naturally. Reliance on other substances can also lead to alcohol or drug abuse, which can be an especially significant problem if it is developed during the teen years.
Statistics on teen anxiety show that anxiety disorders are the most common form of mental disorders among adolescents:
8-10 percent of adolescents suffer from an anxiety disorder
Symptoms of an anxiety disorder include: anger, depression, fatigue, extreme mood swings, substance abuse, secretive behavior, changes in sleeping and eating habits, bad hygiene or meticulous attention to, compulsive or obsessive behavior
One in eight adult Americans suffer from an anxiety disorder totaling 19 million people
Research conducted by the National Institute of Mental Health has shown that anxiety disorders are the number one mental health problem among American women and are second only to alcohol and drug abuse among men
Anxiety sufferers see an average of five doctors before being successfully diagnosed
Teen depression and anxietyis treatable. It’s imperative you seek help for your child. As many parents know, sometimes your teenager can be stubborn and refuse to get help. It’s a parent’s responsibility to do what is best for them.
Finding the best therapist that specialize with adolescent’s and connects with your son or daughter may take a few tries. Sometimes outpatient therapy works and typically finding a good peer support group is always beneficial.
If you come to a point where you have exhausted all of your local resources and you find your teen is still hitting rock bottom in darkness, you may want to consider residential therapy. This gives them a second opportunity at a bright future. It doesn’t say you or they are failures – opens up many doors for them.
They will be with others that feel the same feelings they do – they are not alone. It’s not any different when adults have feelings of sadness and want to talk to people that feel the same way – they can bring each other through their difficult times. Contact us for more information.
Parenting the New Teen in the Age of Anxiety: A Complete Guide to Your Child’s Stressed, Depressed, Expanded, Amazing Adolescence
By Dr. John Duffy
Parenting is more difficult and complicated than it has ever been. Our kids today are psychologically and emotionally burdened by social media, unreasonable academic and social stressors, and an unprecedented stream of information. They are exposed to the harshest elements of the world much too soon. The upside is that they have this thoughtful, compassionate worldview and sense of justice that we may have lacked. The downside is that our kids are in an undue degree of psychic pain. They suffer far more anxiety, depression, attention issues, and suicidal ideation than any generation preceding them.
More than ever, our kids need us to help them make sense of, and integrate, all they take in, starting at a very early age. To do that, we must know and truly understand their world.
This book is a complete guide to all of the issues that your child, teen and young adult will face.
So when your kid is overwhelmed (and your kid is going to feel overwhelmed), when you kid is exposed to too much (and your kid will be exposed to too much), she will know: I have mom and/or dad, and they are my constant, they are my solid. I can go to them and they are going to hear me out, without judgment. I know that. I know that I can talk to them and they are going to be there for me unequivocally. In their complicated world, with all of this stimuli, with all of this identity traffic, kids need some compass. They need you to be that compass.
Learn about the “New Teen” and how to adjust your parenting approach. Kids are growing up with nearly unlimited access to social media and the internet, and unprecedented academic, social, and familial stressors. Starting as early as eight years old, children are exposed to information, thought, and emotion that they are developmentally unprepared to process. As a result, saving the typical “teen parenting” strategies for thirteen-year-olds is now years too late.
Urgent advice for parents of teens. Dr. John Duffy’s parenting book is a new and necessary guide that addresses this hidden phenomenon of the changing teenage brain. Dr. Duffy, a nationally recognized expert in parenting for nearly twenty-five years, offers this book as a guide for parents raising children who are growing up quickly and dealing with unresolved adolescent issues that can lead to anxiety and depression.
Unprecedented psychological suffering among our young and why it is occurring. A shift has taken place in how and when children develop. Because of the exposure they face, kids are emotionally overwhelmed at a young age, often continuing to search for a sense of self well into their twenties. Paradoxically, Dr. Duffy recognizes the good that comes with these challenges, such as the sense of justice instilled in teenagers starting at a young age.
Readers of this book will:
Sort through the overwhelming circumstances of today’s teens and better understand the changing landscape of adolescence
Come away with a revised, conscious parenting plan more suited to addressing the current needs of the New Teen
Discover the joy in parenting again by reclaiming the role of your teen’s ally, guide, and consultant
Today we are facing a time when teen depression is on the rise. Young people are struggling with anxiety, stress and overwhelmed by peer pressure. They are isolating themselves – completely immersed in their screens without considering their emotional or physical health.
-An obsession with being online -Frustration, anxiety, and irritability when not able to get online -Abandoning friends or hobbies in order to stay digitally connected -Continuing to spend time online even after negative repercussions (such as failing grades, deteriorating relationships, and even health issues)
Reset Summer Camp offers a fully immersive, clinical program hosted on a university campus, providing a fun-filled summer camp atmosphere. Participants are able to detox from their screen addiction and learn how to self-regulate, as they participate in individual and group therapy.
The Life Skills program cultivates responsibility and builds self-confidence, so campers will be prepared to handle their real-world obligations. Everything from healthy meal-prep and laundry skills to basic vehicle upkeep and a healthy sleep schedule.
Their staff includes experienced youth-development professionals, clinical interns, registered nurses, and private-practice mental health PhDs who work daily with those suffering from problematic use of technology, including gaming addiction and other unhealthy screen-time habits.
With 4-weeks of intensive therapeutic intervention, a full Family Workshop weekend and 12-weeks of individual follow-up with every camper, Reset Summer Camp stands alone as the leader in summer digital detox programs.
Reset Summer Camp isn’t done when your teen goes home. What sets them apart from others is their therapeutic after-care. Counselors will be available to help you, your teen and your family find a healthy relationship at home with technology.
When should parents snoop rather than monitor their teen’s online behavior?
This has been a debate for years and the answer comes back to when safety trumps privacy.
Especially now as technology is in the hands of every teens and many tweens, as well as COVID has locked us online more than ever — parents need to be in tune with how are teens are dealing with peer pressure, friendships and most of all, digital school life.
Teenagers earn their trust with their parents. Respecting each others privacy should always be priority, however if you fear your teenager is heading down a dark path, and is not willing to talk to you or a third party (therapist, guidance counselor, relative or adult friend), you may have to cross the line of trust.
Warning signs it might be time to investigate:
Is your teen becoming very secretive? Sure, teens do like their privacy, however if you have a “gut feeling” something is deeper than a secret, you may have to cross that line. There is nothing stronger than a parents intuition.
Is your teen becoming withdrawn? Again, teens will develop some attitudes of not wanting to be with adults, however when it becomes extreme, it may be time to cross that line. The pandemic has caused a rise in stress, anxiety and defiance in many teenagers. Parents are struggling to keep up with the challenging behavioral changes.
Is your teen changing peer groups? Are they hanging with a less than desirable group of friends, even virtually? Have they started joining risky chatrooms? Possibly meeting strangers? Sneaking out?
Is your teens eating habits changing? Eating more or less? Binging? Especially during this pandemic, families need to try to have meal times several times a week.
Is your teen sneaking out? Becoming extremely defiant? Not respecting your boundaries or house rules?
Overall, is your teen slowly becoming a child you don’t recognize?
Are you snooping or are you legitimately monitoring your teens?
Should you read your teen’s diary? Scroll through their text messages or even befriend them on their social networking sites? That is a personal question only you can answer.
Remember writing can be very healthy for teens (and adults for that matter), so if your teen isn’t giving you any valid reasons to “invade their privacy” – respect it.
When safety trumps privacy –is the time to pry – but every day you should be monitoring your child’s online activity – it’s called parenting.
The latest trend with online behavior that have many parents concerned, is their teen’s that are meeting unsavory people online and attempting to meet-up offline. Or their teen is spending an enormous amount of time on sexual sites (porn) or possibly engaging in sexual activities online (such as sending sext messages) to people they don’t know.
This is exactly when safety trumps privacy. If you’ve exhausted your local resources and the behavior is not ending, it might be time to consider the next step. Residential therapy can be an option to steer your teen down a healthy path.
A Year of Positive Thinking for Teens: Daily Motivation to Beat Stress, Inspire Happiness, and Achieve Your Goals
We are now realizing how teens are experiencing a rise in depression, anxiety, self-harm, suicidal thoughts and other emotional struggles. These are some very challenging times.
Finally, a book aimed at helping shift our young people’s thoughts to help them become more positive and feel inspired about their future. A must have for all teens.
By Katie Hurley
Being a teen can be an emotional roller coaster. When you’re overwhelmed by unrealistic expectations from your friends, family, social media feed, teachers, and even yourself, it’s normal to have thoughts and feelings like This is too hard or I’ll never measure up. With A Year of Positive Thinking for Teens, you’ll discover how to overcome these anxious thought patterns, and build a happier, more positive mindset to achieve your goals.
Let go of stress with relatable prompts and reflections―all grounded in positive thinking and positive psychology strategies. Find a daily dose of motivation through insightful quotes and affirmations designed to encourage you to embrace happiness one day, one thought, and one year at a time.
This guide to positive thinking includes:
Pockets of joy―Practice positive thinking in the moment with this beautiful, easy-to-navigate, and portable book.
Achieve your dreams―Insightful quotes and affirmations will help you remember your strengths, stay motivated, and reach your goals.
Teens like you―From self-esteem issues to social media stress, you’ll discover prompts to help you through a wide range of issues teens face every day.
Find confidence, courage, and clarity on the road to adulthood with positive thinking.
Many of us won’t dispute, 2020 has been a difficult year. The pressures that the ongoing pandemic have placed on all of us have been challenging, especially for students who have had to adapt to online learning overnight.
During this uncertain time, it’s not only school that have our youth concerned. The rise of mental health issues among children and teens since the beginning of the pandemic have many parents and health professionals worried.
According to a study in the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (JAACAP) we are now seeing children and adolescents with higher rates of depression and anxiety resulting from the required isolation and loneliness of COVID-19.
The latest findings in a new survey released by ParentsTogether, of hundreds of kids and parents are very troubling.
The majority of kids, 70 percent reported feeling sad, overwhelmed and worried — while nearly half the parents (44 percent) are saying that their kid’s are struggling with mental wellness since the pandemic started.
Although almost half (47 percent) are worried about their child’s mental health, 45 percent are experiencing more challenging behavior from their kids since the pandemic.
In another study from the National 4-H Council, it concurred that the pandemic is having a great impact on teen’s mental wellness.
Some of the key findings:
81% of teens say mental health is a significant issue for young people in the U.S., and 64% of teens believe that the experience of COVID-19 will have a lasting impact on their generation’s mental health.
In this stressful climate, 7 in 10 teens have experienced struggles with mental health.
55% of teens say they’ve experienced anxiety, 45% excessive stress, and 43% depression.
61% of teens said that COVID-19 pandemic has increased their feeling of loneliness.
Teens today report spending 75% of their waking hours on screens during COVID-19.
82% of teens calling on America to talk more openly and honestly about mental health issues in this country.
79% of teens surveyed wish there was an inclusive environment or safe space for people in school to talk about mental health.
Rise of teen defiance
There’s no shortage of parents crying out for help. If you were struggling with your teenage prior the pandemic, chances are you are at your wit’s end now. From social distancing to wearing masks, teens are not making life easy for parents.
As an Educational Consultant for 20 years I’ve helped families of struggling teens. In the past 6 months the numbers have spiked of moms and dads are walking on eggshells with their teenagers. Defiance, rage, depression, anxiety, rebellious – teens that runaway for days only to come back and put their family at risk of COVID.
Some recent comments from parents over the past several months have been:
His poor emotional regulation has gotten worse since Covid-19 and he is now depressed feeling like nothing ever works out for him. – parent of 16 year-old boy
He has been stealing repeatedly and it has only gotten worse with lying as well during COVID. – parent of 15 year-old boy
Depression and lack of motivation due to COVID pandemic. – parent of 18 year-old boy
With COVID she’s acting out aggressively, defiant and always seems depressed. – parent of a 14 year old girl
Sharing this information is to help parents understand, they are not alone.
Helping teens emotionally handle these trying times
Everyone is suffering during this pandemic on some level. The ParentsTogether survey concluded that families that made $50,000 a year or less, their children were twice as likely to struggle with anger issues, sadness, loneliness and fear.
Rich or poor, parents are equally concerned about their child’s mental wellness – and searching for answers.
“The pandemic has added stress to how teens are feeling. They were already stressed before COVID-19, now it has just doubled because of their concerns and worries for the future,” said Dr. Borba, “A change in behavior, such as acting out, defiance and tantrums can all be signs your teen or child emotionally is suffering,” she continues.
Teenagers are particularly vulnerable to depression and other mental health challenges. If you suspect your child is suffering from depression, ask your family doctor or pediatrician to provide you with a referral to an appropriate mental health professional. “No one knows your child or teen better than you. If you suspect something is wrong, chances are you’re right,” says Borba.
3 Ways to improve teen wellness:
Exercise: Download a yoga app or exercise with your friends (virtually).
Music: Listening to certain music is the 2nd popular answer to what teen’s said helped them cope with the stress and worry of the pandemic.
Journal: Writing is very therapeutic and helping young people express their emotions.
The Depression Workbook for Teens: Tools to Improve Your Mood, Build Self-Esteem, and Stay Motivated
By Katie Hurley, LCSW
Don’t face depression alone―advanced tools for teens.
You can feel better and The Depression Workbook for Teens is going to help you do it. Drawing on the most effective and up-to-date techniques―including cognitive behavioral therapy and mindfulness―this depression workbook is filled with helpful exercises designed specifically for teens that will help you conquer depression. Develop the skills you need to manage your emotional well-being and bring happiness back into your life.
Get information all about depression―its symptoms, causes, and risk factors―so you can identify the differences between normal stress and depression. There is a light at the end of the tunnel―The Depression Workbook for Teens will show you the way.
The Depression Workbook for Teens includes:
Just for teens―Tackle your depression head-on using a depression workbook filled with strategies written with your unique needs (and time constraints) in mind.
Useful tools―With quizzes, journaling prompts, conversation starters, and more, you’ll discover simple skill-building exercises to improve your mood and build your self-esteem.
Practical problem solving―Find ways to work through the challenges you’re facing―including fighting with your parents, getting up in the morning, struggling with homework, and more.
About Katie Hurley: Katie is a child and adolescent psychotherapist, parenting expert, and writer. Hurley is the author of No More Mean Girls and The Happy Kid Handbook. Her work can be found in The Washington Post, PBS Parents, US News and World Report, and Psychology Today.