Who Decides What’s Scary and What’s Not?

People are fearful. Our antiquated lizard brain has helped keep us alive through fear for thousands of years. Here are some of the most common phobias: Social phobias or self-consciousness in social situations. Agoraphobia:  fear of open spaces. Acrophobia:  fear of heights. Pteromerhanophobia:  fear of flying. Claustrophobia:  fear of enclosed spaces. Entomophobia:  fear of insects. … Continue reading Who Decides What’s Scary and What’s Not?

Angry Dad, You’re Feeling Inadequate Again

Wrong side of the bed. Late. A solid work schedule with over-committed appointments. A solitary banana for breakfast.  Mix in a six and two year old trying to have a leisurely breakfast and you've got irritability. Time to get out the door kids! One thing to remember--and I write this for myself most of all--is … Continue reading Angry Dad, You’re Feeling Inadequate Again

Applying IKEA Techniques to Empower Your Kids and Maybe Even Make them Happier

The "IKEA effect" is a term used by Harvard researchers in a working paper to describe the idea that when someone builds something themselves they often overvalue whatever that may be. If you've ever bought something from the Swedish furniture maker, you know there is always some assembly required. Forget the fact that their instructions … Continue reading Applying IKEA Techniques to Empower Your Kids and Maybe Even Make them Happier

Is the Quantity of Toys in My House Hampering Imagination?

I love giving my kids presents and watching them receive presents. They get pumped up, eyes wide and explore the wonder of the new object. Whether it is a car that pulls back and races on its own or a fresh plush animal, it brings me joy to be able to give them things. Let … Continue reading Is the Quantity of Toys in My House Hampering Imagination?

The Foundation for An Easy Child

One of my favorite parenting books is Your Baby Your Child by Penelope Leach. She does an amazing job presenting a psychological approach to parenting, really digging into the why she suggest things should be done a certain way. My son is strong willed (and a friend questioned me the other day...."I wonder where he got … Continue reading The Foundation for An Easy Child

There Goes The Neighborhood:  Come on Over

A half-dozen liquor bottles were in view on their three-season porch, cigarette smoke wafted and the f-bomb was was dropped at shouting volume while I played in the backyard with my five and one-year old. There goes the neighborhood. The next-door neighbor of mine for the past nine years sold his house. Then the rental … Continue reading There Goes The Neighborhood:  Come on Over