web analytics
April 19, 2015 / 30 Nisan, 5775
At a Glance
Sections
Sponsored Post


Questions & Answers

Schonfeld-logo1

Q: I always thought it was best to be an optimist. But, I’ve been hearing (especially from a friend who is a perpetual pessimist) that there isn’t so much wrong with pessimism. Is this true?

A: In American culture, there is a large emphasis put on optimism. We are told that we need to think positively and that things will work out. For a lot of people, this type of outlook is beneficial and healthy. However, optimism is not a one-size-fits-all affair. Positive thinking works for some, but not for all. For people who have anxiety, optimism can be very difficult and unproductive. Instead, anxious people can harness that anxiety and use it in order to ensure that they do succeed.

This approach is what Julie Norem, the author of The Positive Power of Negative Thinking, calls defensive pessimism. She explains that defensive pessimism encompasses an entire process by which negative thinking transformed anxiety into action.”

“Don’t worry, it will all work out” does not always come true. Worrying and preparing yourself for the worst can help. And that is exactly what defensive pessimists do. Before going into a stressful situation, they set low expectations for themselves and then follow up with a list of all the things that can go wrong. Once they have figured out all of the bad things that can happen, they can begin to prepare to prevent them or to prepare to deal with them when they occur. This gives those with anxiety a sense of control.

In reality, roughly thirty percent of Americans are defensive pessimists, and then tend to also be highly successful. Their fear of negative outcomes tends to motivate them to perform better in the future.

 

Q: I grew up in a generation when parents potched their children. My generation didn’t potch kids, but we used time out instead. Now, people are saying time out is not effective as a disciplinary tactic. I definitely don’t want to go back to potching, even though it worked for my parents. What is your take on time out?

A: While at different points there is negative press surrounding the use of time outs, many psychologists and educators believe that when used correctly, time out can be effective and valuable. According to psychologist Daniela Owen at the San Francisco Bay Center for Cognitive Therapy, time outs increased compliance and positive behavior far more than other forms of discipline. Here are some guidelines when enforcing time out.

 

  • Separate. When negative behavior occurs, the parent should take the child away from the situation and place the child in a separate area. This area need not be in another room.
  • Explain. In as few words as possible, explain what the child did to earn the time out. For instance, Moshe’s mother might say, “No hitting” or “Don’t hit.”
  • Set a time. A reasonable amount of time is the child’s age in minutes. For example, if the child is three, time out should be three minutes.
  • Don’t attend. Once the child is in time out, the parent should avoid eye contact and not speak to the child. Time out is time out from the parents and the rest of the action happening in the house.
  • Embrace. When time out is over, “time in” begins. Parents should hug their child and let them know that he or she is loved.
  • Discuss. Later that evening or at a calm time before bedtime, parents can discuss with the child the events that led up to the time out. This will allow everybody to rationally and calmly evaluate how to better proceed in the future.

 

About the Author: An acclaimed educator and education consultant, Mrs. Rifka Schonfeld has served the Jewish community for close to thirty years. She founded and directs the widely acclaimed educational program, SOS, servicing all grade levels in secular as well as Hebrew studies. A kriah and reading specialist, she has given dynamic workshops and has set up reading labs in many schools. In addition, she offers evaluations G.E.D. preparation,, social skills training and shidduch coaching, focusing on building self-esteem and self-awareness. She can be reached at 718-382-5437 or at rifkaschonfeld@verizon.net. Visit her on the web at rifkaschonfeldsos.com.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Questions & Answers”

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu reviews details of a "bad deal" with Iran.
Netanyahu Warns of Increased Iran Aggression in Middle East
Latest Sections Stories
Lewis-041715-Jewish-Soldiers

During the Second World War, a million and a half Jewish soldiers fought in the Allied armies, the Partisan units in Eastern Europe, and the anti-fascist underground movements in Western Europe and North Africa. These Jewish fighters won over 200,000 medals and citations. The Museum of the Jewish Soldier in World War II in Latrun, […]

Jerusalem Heights Penthouse

The 2-day real estate event will take place in Brooklyn on April 26 and 27.

Schonfeld-logo1

She wasn’t paying attention to what the child did when the mother was not in the room. Rather, her main focus was on what the child did when the mother returned.

The Mets at least have hope for the future with some good young pitchers.

French thinkers of the Enlightenment were generally not pro-Semitic, to say the least.

My Jewish star was battered, indeed it was a wreck
But I picked it up anyway and put it around my neck
To know that hatred mangled it was surely very painful
But just the same to me it is still very beautiful.

A compulsion is a repetitive action. But what underlies the compulsion is an obsession or fear.

When any student in the building is in danger of failing, the equivalent of tornado warning sirens should wail around the school.

It goes without saying that when it comes to your kids, safety is always your number one priority.

After the last of Austria’s Jews were murdered, Albert confiscated whatever Jewish property remained.

How can you expect people who go through such gehenom to even know how to give warmth and love?

More Articles from Rifka Schonfeld
Schonfeld-logo1

She wasn’t paying attention to what the child did when the mother was not in the room. Rather, her main focus was on what the child did when the mother returned.

Schonfeld-logo1

When any student in the building is in danger of failing, the equivalent of tornado warning sirens should wail around the school.

“If you don’t stand straight, you’ll never get a husband.”

A lot of people have heard about dyslexia, a learning disability that concerns reading.

Because birth order can affect most children in similar fashion, there are things you can do to help your children overcome weaknesses that birth order has thrown their way.

Occasionally, a teacher will encounter a student who simply cannot be motivated to do his homework, finish his worksheet or study for a test.

There is a point that many parenting books miss: children do more for us than we do for them.

Tutor. Counselor. The doctor too,
Sometimes it’s hard to keep up with you.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/sections/family/parenting-our-children/questions-answers-2/2014/08/15/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: