It’s hard to go to therapy. Some kids don’t want to. Most families struggle to make time in their schedules. And insurance? Also a barrier for many families. Even if you have made the difficult decision to pour out your parenting frustrations to a total (trained) stranger, the wait can be long and the fit might not be right.
It’s no wonder that parents desperately search online for advice and options to help their child cope with their mood and behavior problems. Such searches can yield an overwhelming amount of advice, however, prompting parents to default to whatever they’ve been trying and hope for a different outcome that doesn’t come.
Today I want to guide that search a bit. Below are a few of my favorite workbooks to help families address three common problems: kid anger, kid grumbling, and teen negativity. These workbooks work best when they are read together with a caregiver who can reinforce the ideas in a positive way throughout the day. The best part? Even if your child doesn’t buy into the concepts, I am sure you will learn strategies you can use with or without your child’s cooperation.
Check these out and see what you think:
Workbook for Kids Who Get Mad Easily (ages 8-12)
Here is one of my go-tos for kids who get mad easily. One of my favorite explanations in the workbook is that anger is like a fire and you have to recognize not only what fuels your fire but what puts it out too. The fire analogy also helps parents understand what they do that sparks their angry kid as well, like yelling, comparing, shaming, and reminding them of past mistakes. The link below will lead you to Amazon.com.
And What About Kids Who Seem to Complain About Everything?
This workbook has great ideas like “taking off your bad memories backpack” to help you not focus on what has gone wrong in the past. Helpful for parents who are complainers too!
What About Those Grumpy Teens?
I find that the workbook below is useful for helping teens who struggle with any issue that might spark negativity…perfectionism, anxiety, depression, peer problems, family conflict. Many of the situations that we find challenging often start with how we think about the scenario. This book helps teens identify those thoughts and how to challenge them to spark a more positive perspective on situations like hard homework and friend troubles.
This workbook is easy to read and would be a great source for how to resolve negative thinking habits or avoid them in the first place.
Children’s mental health problems can take more than a workbook to solve. These resources offer a solid springboard for moving in the right direction. Consider them part of your parenting toolbox. Be sure to seek additional support through a qualified health care provider sooner than later if your parent radar tells you problems are becoming too overwhelming to figure out alone.