Healthy Minds in a Digital World with Rachael Katz MS, ED, Helen Shwe Hadani Ph.D. & Amy Adams MSW, PPSC
Original Air Date Wednesday, June 29, 2022
Social connection is fundamental to the human experience. Our minds are incentivized to connect with other humans by the release of warm and fuzzy pleasure-inducing chemicals that encourage us to communicate with and touch other humans. Mimicking this strategy is how technology companies commandeer our bodies and minds to keep us transfixed on their product. Unfortunately, their products only feed us half of the normal biological reward and it can negatively impact our mental health.
To decode the intense draw technology has for humans, Positive Psychology Podcast Host Lisa Cypers Kamen speaks with three experts in emotional and social learning skills about how to create and maintain a healthy mind in a digital world. Rachael Katz and Helen Hadani describe the theory of mind and other findings from the book they co-authored, The Emotionally Intelligent Child: Effective Strategies for Parenting Self-Aware, Cooperative, and Well-Balanced Kids. And, the co-founder of the non-profit Healthy Screen Habits, Amy Adams, shares how technology hooks us, why teenagers are the most susceptible to the draw, and how a family tech plan can maintain balance in the home.
Rachael Katz & Helen Shwe Hadani — Raising Healthy Minds in Children & Adults:
- A child’s theory of mind journey begins at a very young age. [2:37]
- In the book, The Emotionally Intelligent Child: Effective Strategies for Parenting Self-Aware, Cooperative, and Well-Balanced Kids, Helen Hadani researches a child’s development. [9:05]
- An emotional approach differs for all human beings yet there are some approaches all cultures share. [11:05]
- We should never expect ourselves or our children to be perfect. [16:16]
- The correlation between executive function and social behaviors for learning and future success. [19:06]
- How children develop problem-solving and language skills. [21:12]
- In their book, the MIND framework helps parents and children interact with each other without judgment. [26:28]
Helen Shwe Hadani, Ph.D., is currently a fellow at the Brookings Institution where she conducts policy-focused research on the benefits of playful learning in both formal and informal contexts. Prior to joining Brookings, she served as the director of research at the Bay Area Discovery Museum.
Rachael Katz, MS, Ed, teaches social and emotional learning skills to parents and children. Previously, Rachael was head of the Discovery School at the Bay Area Discovery Museum, head of social and emotional learning for Early Years at Dulwich College Beijing, and an elementary classroom teacher. She has created and written television for Nick Jr. and Radio Television Hong Kong, and consulted for educational programs at Children’s Television Workshop.
Book: The Emotionally Intelligent Child: Effective Strategies for Parenting Self-Aware, Cooperative, and Well-Balanced Kids
Amy Adams — Healthy Minds in a Digital World:
- Amy Adams describes how some technology is designed to draw us in and keep our minds hooked. [33:56]
- Amy stresses the importance of always choosing relationships over devices. [41:35]
- Identity formation and the need for social connection explain why teenage brains are drawn into video games and social media. [45:42]
- Technology offers us superficial human connection without the richness of touch or bonding hormones. [47:34]
- A family tech plan can create technology boundaries to help us focus on each other. [52:02]
Amy Adams, MSW, PPSC, is the co-founder of the non-profit Healthy Screen Habits, which is dedicated to educating and empowering families to develop healthy habits with technology use. Amy is a credentialed school social worker and has worked with children of all ages in schools. She currently works at a high school providing counseling services to special education students. She also serves as a trustee on her local Board of Education. Amy has a Master’s in Social Work from UCLA and lives in the Los Angeles area with her husband and four children.
This episode of Harvesting Happiness Talk Radio about healthy minds in a digital world is sponsored by:
Are We Happy Yet? Eight Keys to Unlocking a Joyful Life — A boot camp manual for greater emotional fitness. Happiness waits for no one and sometimes we all need support. What is getting in the way of your happiness right now?
H–Factor: Where is Your Heart? — Lisa’s documentary film explores the journey of human happiness. Emotions are contagious and happiness is a universally desired state. We tend to forget we all have the freedom to be happy or the liberty to be miserable each day.
CONTINUE YOUR JOURNEY
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