Daniel Siegel - The Teenage Brain

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Daniel Siegel debunks myths about the Teenage Brain and "raging hormones". He discusses the changes and remodeling of the brain within the adolescent period.  He asserts that people need to learn about these changes to support and meet adolescents with empathy and compassion.  

Siegel outlines his "Brainstorm" approach, focusing on emotional spark, social engagement, novelty and creative exploration (ESSENCE) as important aspects during the adolescent time of development.  He reviews four key features to maintain healthy brain growth: keeping passion in your life, maintaining supportive social networks, trying new things and challenging your mind.  This not only helps adults navigate the adolescent mind to provide encouraging support for healthy development, but also supports a "life of connection, meaning, equanimity and sense of purpose".

 
 

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  • Secure and Calm

    Secure and calm describes the ability to take part in daily activities and approach new situations without being overwhelmed with worries, sadness or anxiety. To be secure and calm also means being able to cope with stress and pressure, and to bounce back from difficulties.
  • Gets Along with Others

    Getting along with others is the ability to form positive and healthy relationships with peers and adults. Children with better abilities to regulate their emotions and behaviours have more friends and experience more positive playtime with their peers.
  • Alert and Engaged

    Being alert and engaged is the ability to manage and direct one's own feelings, thoughts and emotions. In general, the ability to be 'present' and to exercise self-control.
  • Compassionate and Kind

    Being compassionate and kind is closely related to empathy. While empathy refers more generally to the ability to take the perspective of and to feel the emotions of another person, compassion goes one step further.
  • Solves Problems Peacefully

    Managing conflict effectively is about creating an atmosphere where violence and aggression are not likely. To resolve conflict means using empathy, problem-solving skills, understanding other points of view and coming up with ways to make things right in a fair way.