Wednesday, October 4, 2023
William Stixrud, PhD
Neuropsychologist, Founder of The Stixrud Group, Professor at Children’s National Medical Center and Assistant Professor at George Washington University
Silver Spring, MD
The greatest worry most American parents currently have is about the mental health of their kids. These worries are well-founded, as the U.S. Surgeon General recently called the mental health status of adolescents the defining public health crisis of our lifetime. And it’s not just teens. Long before the pandemic, professionals were also ringing alarms about the significantly increased rates of anxiety, depression, suicidal thinking, and completed suicides in children and young adults. Compounding the problem is the fact that it has become increasingly difficult to find a psychiatrist or a therapist working in a clinic or in private practice who is able to take a new patient. This means that much of the responsibility for resolving this crisis rests in the hands of parents and educators.
In this talk, Dr. Stixrud will briefly discuss a few of the causes of the current mental health crisis and ways in which anxiety and depression affect the developing brain. The primary focus of the presentation, though, will be on the numerous ways in which parents and educators can help kids feel and do better. Because all mental health problems are strongly related to a low sense of control, an emphasis will be placed on strategies for fostering a healthy sense of control in kids at home and in school. Dr. Stixrud will also talk about ways to maintain a close relationship with kids, to communicate healthy expectations, and to become a non-anxious presence in a child’s life who communicates calm and courage rather than fear, anxiety, and judgment.
William Stixrud, PhD, is a clinical neuropsychologist and founder of The Stixrud Group, as well as a faculty member at Children’s National Medical Center and an Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Pediatrics at the George Washington University School of Medicine. He is also the co-author, with Ned Johnson, of the national best-selling book, The Self-Driven Child, which is published in 18 countries and 17 languages and has sold more than a half-million copies in China alone. He and Mr. Johnson have also co-authored a critically-acclaimed second book, What Do You Say? Talking with Kids to Build Motivation, Stress Tolerance, and a Happy Home.
Dr. Stixrud’s work has been featured in media outlets such as NPR, CNN, MSNBC, The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Times of London, The Wall Street Journal, U.S. News and World Report, Time Magazine, Scientific American, Business Week, Barron's, New York Magazine, and Vogue. He is a long-time practitioner of Transcendental Meditation, and he plays in the rock band Close Enough.