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August 12, 2017

Strength-Based Parenting
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The things parents say to their children can have a huge impact on them- either good or bad. An expert says praising a child’s strengths has a powerful effect. Then, research shows your mindset- how you think about your fitness- can affect your risk of premature death.
Episode Segments:
Being Positive as a Parent
Lea Waters, Ph.D., is President-Elect of the International Positive Psychology Association, Gerry Higgins Chair in Positive Psychology at the University of Melbourne, Australia, and author of The Strength Switch: How the New Science of Strength-Based Parenting Can Help Your Child and Your Teen to Flourish. Dr. Waters discussed strength-based parenting, which focuses on sincerely praising children’s strengths rather than always trying to correct their weaknesses. She said her approach helps children recognize skills, talents and positive aspects of their personalities, and shows them how to make the most of those positive resources. She said the technique differs significantly from the “participation trophy” approach that was common in the past couple of generations of parenting.
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Low Income Living
Rachel Tolbert Kimbro, PhD, Professor of Sociology at Rice University co-authored a study that found that, in the wake of the Great Recession, more children than ever are living in low-income neighborhoods. She said white children were the group with the biggest increase. She explained why low-income living conditions are a negative influence on academic performance. She offered suggestions of how educators and legislators should attempt to deal with the issue.
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Health is a State of Mind
Physical inactivity is estimated to account for 1 in 10 deaths worldwide. Octavia H. Zahrt, doctoral candidate in health psychology at the Stanford University Graduate School of Business. co-authored a study that found that people who think they are less active than others in a similar age bracket die younger than those who believe they are more active – even if their actual activity levels are similar. She talked about the possible reasons behind this finding, and how a person’s mindset affects their overall health.
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Guest(s) Appearing on this Episode
Lea Waters
Professor Lea Waters (Ph.D) is a psychologist, researcher, consultant, author and public speaker. She works to bring positive psychology to children, teenagers, parents, schools and organizations in order to enhance their mental health and help them reach their full potential. Lea has been a registered psychologist for 22 years and is the first Australian to be appointed as a Professor in Positive Psychology. She currently holds the Gerry Higgins Chair in Positive Psychology at the University of Melbourne and was the founding Director of the Centre for Positive Psychology at the University of Melbourne (2009 to 2016) where she has been a researcher for 20 years.

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