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5 Ways to Help Optimism Grow

In a world where we are constantly surrounded by negative news, stories, stresses of everyday life, and increasing school or work demands, it is often difficult to maintain an optimistic attitude, for both children and adults. As a professional working with children on a daily basis, I have often caught myself taking a negative attitude or feeling defeated at times (progress might be slow, I’m juggling too much on my plate, etc.)…. but then I think to myself, what kind of role model am I being or what example am I setting for my clients? 

Many of my clients struggle with anxiety due to self-esteem or academics, and have difficulty coping appropriately with the demands of these areas and everyday life. In the same manner we teach good behavior to promote appropriate social skills, we can also teach optimism to help our children see the bright side in every negative situation. 

Here are 5 lessons that help children grow into optimistic adults!


It’s OKAY to Make Mistakes- no one is perfect! 

As an Occupational Therapist, many of the clients I see are working towards improving their handwriting. Handwriting is often a challenging and frustrating task. I remind my students that pencils were made with erasers for a reason—we are expected to make mistakes and that is okay!

Mistakes Are Learning Opportunities for Growth

I often ask my students, “what could you do differently next time?” Making mistakes involves taking risks and taking risks often leads to things we might not have discovered if had we not tried.

Find The Silver Lining

This is often challenging for students who are so overcome with defeat that all they see is the negative. Many adults I encounter in my personal life struggle with this as well. I try to remind students that even when it appears that everything went wrong that could possibly go wrong or they made mistakes, find the positive (ex. You gave your best effort, you were creative, etc.)


It’s OKAY to Ask for Help- even adults need help sometimes! 

Much of my mission as an OT is empowering kids to be independent. For many of my kiddos, this is something that is innate—the strong desire to do everything on their own. However, I often see them try so hard to the point of utter frustration and defeat, refusing to ask for help. I try to instill in my students that it asking for help is not a bad thing. There are times and things that even adults struggle with and we may need help from someone else.

Take a Deep Breath- then count to 10

I work with many students who have difficulty remaining calm and coping with simple things that many of us take for granted. I often teach them the strategy taking a step back, taking a deep breath (smell the flowers, blow out the birthday candle), and counting to 10. Doing so causes them to stop, reflect, and think about what is causing them distress or negative thoughts. How big is the problem really? We like to use the Zones of Regulation program and think to ourselves “is it a tiny problem, medium, or huge problem?”   

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Patient Reviews

LLA Therapy

Patient Reviews

Crystal Scheibe

Great place, glad we found them. Been going to Medina over 2 months now and he loves Lauryn and Kyler. Wish they had more ABA therapy places available... live in Wooster and long drive everyday.

Karrie Swan LaRock

My 11 year old son has dyslexia and has made noticeable gains in working At LLA THERAPY. Katie is strong in her approach toward him and also keeps him comfortable enough to perform well. We will continue visiting both the Fairlawn and Hudson offices and recommend them highly.

Ron Monroe

My 9 year old just completed about 9 months of weekly speech sessions (due to his stuttering) with Matt Hagge at LLA and we are thrilled with the experience and results. What I thought might be a negative (what kid really wants to go to speech class?) was made very positive by Matt, and my son never hesitated or complained when we talked about class. He really enjoyed it and really took what Matt taught him to heart. His speech has been greatly improved and we definitely recommend LLA. Thank you so much!

Heather Dougherty-Pantoja

My son’s Occupational Therapist, Jess, is an amazing OT! She gives practical tips on working with my son at home and school!

Terri Apgar

I cannot say enough good things about LLA Therapy. My daughter was a client of Teal Simmons’ for approximately 2 years and was just released from speech therapy! She was diagnosed with Apraxia in 2015 and worked with Teal twice a week. Through Teal’s application of PROMPT therapy, my daughter had age-appropriate speech after one year. All of the staff we interacted with at LLA were absolutely wonderful. They really care about what they do and making sure your child achieves their goals.

Kelli Geisler Davisson

LLA Therapy has been an excellent experience for my son as well as my family! My son always asks, "When can I go see Ms. Jeannine again, is it Monday??" He has also made huge gains in only 5 months! I would highly recommend LLA and have already shared my experience with friends looking for services!

Victoria Hansford-Price

We are so grateful for our Speech Therapist Ms.Teal. We have seen a great improvement with our sons confidence and communication abilities since we have started "Prompt" therapy. What we love the most about LLA and Ms. Teal is that Kohl feels comfortable and relaxed which has played a critical role in his progress. Thank you Ms. Teal for all you have done.

Laura Lee Hogsett

They have helped in numerous ways. Speech, OT and behavioral. I've had numerous compliments on my son's progress thanks in very large part to LLA. I would recommend LLA before I recommend our local children's hospitals, though they are good, they don't have the staff that LLA does.

Amy Furukawa

We had a great experience with Matt Hagge at LLA! Our Middle School age son was becoming very conscious of his voice, which is nasal due to a cleft palate. Matt helped him to better form his sounds and project his voice in a way that makes the unavoidable nasality less noticeable.Our son is more confident and outgoing & even took on a speaking role in the church play. Matt has the perfect personality to relate with our son, and we would recommend him to anyone needing speech therapy services!

Jessica Havalotti

LLA Therapy has been an excellent experience for our daughter. I would highly recommend LLA. Miss Grace was so amazing and I can't believe how quickly our daughter showed improvement. Thank you!
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