The MLRA Therapy Blog

Insights and ideas from the therapist team at Meghan L. Reitz and Associates.

Everything listed under: Self-Care

  • Tantrums: Part Deux

    More Tantrum advice

    "To be in your children’s memories tomorrow, you have to be in their lives today." -Unknown (

    Let's talk more about tantrums. Can there really be too much information about this topic? Here are a few things to consider from the physiological angle of behavior in children:

    • 90% of brain development occurs as early as before age 5
    • Full development of the brain occurs by age 25
    • Critical period of life/brain development occurs between age 5 and puberty
    • Last part of brain to develop is the frontal lobe – brain’s top executive functioning
    • “Neurons that fire together wire together.” (Hebb’s axiom)

    Source: Psychology Today     

    Remember: A child’s brain is like a house under construction.

    Let’s get into Dr. Thomas Phelan’s 1-2-3 Magic program. Here are some things to consider, institute techniques and manage parents’ behaviors:

    1. Counting: 1-2-3, then take 5

    2. Kids are NOT little adults

    3. Don’t engage in a power struggle

    4. Be a united front with the other parent

    5. Your authority is non-negotiable

    6. Routine, routine, routine

    7. Time-Outs and Reverse Time-Outs

    8. No spanking (that’s a parental temper tantrum)

    9. Be the master of “quick exit”

    10. Use tantrums/behavioral outbursts as teachable moments

    These tenets can be found in Dr. Phelan’s books and on his website. We at Meghan L. Reitz & Assoc. use this program consistently with our young clients and their families. 

    Be sure to be a role model, live your own life, let your children love you and work on your relationship with your significant other. Being an effective parent means being a healthy adult. We cannot be successful in navigating a child’s emotions and behaviors if we do not take care of ourselves.

  • Self-Care Tips and Tricks

    Coping With Change

    Sometimes we need a quick and simple list of things we can do to self-soothe. The following suggestions work best when used proactively. However, if you're feeling stressed, anxious, or down, us this as a reference guide to improve coping during these times. 

    • Journal 

    • Stream of consciousness writing 

    • Healthy diet – track food and mood 

    • Meditation and mindfulness practice 

    • Build your support system 

    • Ask for help 

    • Limit social media time 

    • Keep a consistent schedule 

    • Spend time in nature 

    • Emotional Freedom Technique 

    • Locus of control – recognize that you can only control you, not others 

    • Radical acceptance – accept what you cannot change 

    • Grounding – ground yourself to your physical and present environment 

    • Get creative –draw, paint, color 

    • Take a walk 

    • Listen to or play music 

    • Develop and venture into your spirituality 

    • Take a drive 

    • Medication – consult your primary care physician and/or psychiatrist

    • Alternative therapies – massage, hypnosis, acupuncture, chiropractic, yoga, essential oils/aromatherapy

    Investigate your options. More info on these ideas can be found via Google or speaking to your therapist. Keep in mind that if one thing doesn't work, try another. Don't give up. Sometimes we must simply weather the storm so we can appreciate the sunshine and peace on the other side.


    Meghan Reitz, LCPC, NCCMeghan has worked within the counseling profession for over 12 years. Her therapist experience includes providing individual, couples, family, group, and crisis counseling. She also speaks with companies and groups on mental health and wellness topics. Learn more about Meghan HERE.

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