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Many of us look at college as a new adventure, and as a way to leave the past behind, but, not surprisingly, who we are tends to follow us.
Join Anne Marie Albano as she gives us ideas for helping in smooth transitions
Anxiety involves fear or worry about bad things happening if you experience a thing or event. Energy is spent avoiding the thing/event, and then the fear or worry is eased. You feel less anxious, which makes you feel better. However, avoiding the thing/event can make it harder to function. Imagine a man who is too afraid to get on a plane even though his children live in another country. Exposure allows you to confront the avoided thing/event in a controlled way, and you are given a mental "tool box" to help decrease your anxiety while you are doing it.
One example is exposure for arachnophobia (fear of spiders).
A CBT therapist might first have you think about a spider. Next, they may show you a cartoon image of a spider on TV. Later, you see a more realistic cartoon image. Still later, a realistic looking drawing, then a photo. Eventually, you are able to go in a room with a non-poisonous spider in a cage, and you may be asked to step closer and closer. Finally, you might even be able to put your hand in the cage and let the spider crawl on your arm without experiencing extreme anxiety. The goal is not to be a spider tamer, but to be able to live without having to cross the street at the sight of a spider. All the while, you are learning to face spiders, while thinking and acting in ways to lower your anxiety as you face them.
Temper tantrums in children are common; so common that we've invented phrases like "terrible two's" to describe this stage of a child's development.
By the time children get to be about 4-5 years old, however; you should see these tantrums declining significantly.
Part of this has to do with brain maturation- the brain areas responsible for emotional control usually start showing strong development around 4-5 years of age.
The other part has to do with language development- children at this age are better able to use their words to communicate their needs rather than throwing tantrums.
Tantrums usually persist in children because they have learned that throwing tantrums helps them get their way- whether it's getting their parent's attention, getting the toy they want, or getting out of doing something they do not want to do.
Overtime, if parents and caregivers feed into these tantrums, these behaviors can worsen to the point that they can be very challenging to manage.