Can Cuddles Really Beat Exam Stress? Positive Psychology and Seven-Second Hugs Can Help the Whole Family Survive the Stressful Exam Season, Happiness Guru Andy Cope Tells LISA SALMON

Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England), April 26, 2016 | Go to article overview

Can Cuddles Really Beat Exam Stress? Positive Psychology and Seven-Second Hugs Can Help the Whole Family Survive the Stressful Exam Season, Happiness Guru Andy Cope Tells LISA SALMON


AS THE summer exam season approaches, parents might think their primary role is to keep their teenagers well-fed and rested.

But as well as such practical help, positive psychology and emotional support is a key part of keeping the whole household calm and stress-free during the exam period, says happiness expert Andy Cope.

Andy, who studied for a PhD on the science of happiness and positive psychology, and has written a series of books on the Art of Being Brilliant, is offering parents tips on how to make teens feel more positive about themselves and their exam prowess. "As we enter the silly season, when kids get stressed about exams, teachers get stressed about kids not living up to expectations and parents get stressed trying not to nag too much about revision, it's important to stay calm and positive," he points out.

He promises the following tips can help the whole family sail through the exam period: THE 8:1 RATIO AN attitude that equates success with hard work can lead to nagging, punishment and pointing out what's wrong, says Andy. As a result, kids learn to stick to what they know to be safe and to a fixed mindset - "I'm rubbish at maths. I'll never be able to learn it".

But Andy says positive reinforcement can avoid such a mindset. "One of the most effective things a teacher or parent can do is use a positivity/negativity ratio of about 8:1," he advises.

"It may seem a lot and it can be difficult to get it right, but catch your child doing things well. Notice the little things and tell them. And mean it."

CELEBRATE BETTER PARENTS need to be "active constructive", says Andy, by celebrating success with genuine enthusiasm.

"I'm not suggesting over-the-top punching the air for every smidgeon of good news, but a raising of levels of enthusiasm.

"Your active constructive response means they know you're proud. The result is that everyone feels great and your child will want to repeat that behaviour."

PRAISE EFFORT RATHER THAN TALENT POSITIVE psychology advice is that if your child accomplishes something, don't say, "Well done, you're a genius", but rather "You put the effort in and got the reward".

NEVER PAY FOR EXAM RESULTS ANDY acknowledges it's tempting to give cash for results, but warns: "You're effectively saying study is horrible and you appreciate your child will only do it for money.

"You're teaching them that learning is a chore."

He suggests parents should instead suggest a family day out as a reward for hard work.

THE SEVEN-SECOND HUG THE average hug lasts just over two seconds, says Andy, but if you hang on for a full seven seconds, "oodles of nice warm chemicals flow around both bodies and the love is transferred. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

Can Cuddles Really Beat Exam Stress? Positive Psychology and Seven-Second Hugs Can Help the Whole Family Survive the Stressful Exam Season, Happiness Guru Andy Cope Tells LISA SALMON
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.