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Catherine VanWetter

Catherine VanWetter

MSW

Catherine holds a masters degree in social work, a bachelors in behavioral and social sciences, and most recently was certified through the Chopra Center for Well Being - corporate programs division. She is one of the first eighteen worldwide to receive this certification and is qualified to deliver the Seven Spiritual Laws in the workplace, as well as small group and individualized settings.

In addition to individual counseling, "To The Heart of the Matter" offers customized experiential workshops for businesses and organizations. In her workshops, Catherine combines motivational strategies, humor, and wisdom to help inspire individuals and groups to begin to clarify goals and realize their full potential.

For more information:
To The Heart of the Matter

Insights on the journey of life Heart & Soul
This is a book of whispers.
The sweet whisperings of the heart that invoke and awaken the Soul with curiosity and tenderness. These are the whispers of the Soul that speak softly to the heart nudging it to open up, breathe love into the Self, and radiate its vital essence out into the world.



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Understanding the Teenager in Your Life

At last, the kids have gotten beyond grade school, beyond the age of clingy dependence and stubbed toes, and are finally becoming their own autonomous beings. As a parent enters into the teen years, parenting doesn’t get easier, it just changes.

The challenges that we face as parents of teenagers, can be extreme, and our teens, whether they know it or not, need us even more. As we step from one era into the next, the challenges that we face as parents can bring us to our knees or, at the least, to the verge of tears.

While puberty is hitting children earlier and earlier from environmental and food-based reasons, the development of teens’ brains is still in flux until their mid-20s. This affects mood, personality and decision-making, among other things. Insight into the brain’s development can often explain at least some of the mystery that is the teenage years. A wonderful book to read is,” Why Do They Act That Way: A Survival Guide to the Adolescent Brain for You and Your Teen,” by Dr. David Walsh.

Over the years, the way children and parents interact has been changing, and technology, such as video games, text messaging and the internet have been shifting the way teens view the world. This world of high tech is creating social isolation, and actually altering brain development and the ability to communicate. For more information in the area of child development, a great reference is Dr. Joseph Chilton Pearce.

We have moved away from the nuclear family of communicating around the dinner table, and into “on the run” communication through text messaging and brief phone calls to touch base. While the worldwide web of communication has its benefits, it has tremendously influenced how people interact with each other, specifically parents and their children.

As has been my professional and personal path, whenever I have had issues or conflicts with my family or within myself, I got trained in it. One very dear colleague of mine once proclaimed, “You have attended more workshops than anyone I have ever known!” Being the eternal optimist that I am, I reframed that and prided myself in the realization that I am a seeker of knowledge. When my children were babies, I was trained as a Lamaze instructor. When my children were showing signs of the “terrible twos (those wonderful independent months, that sometimes lapsed into years!) I was certified in active parenting and offered parenting classes. When my marriage was having complications, I got trained in couples communication. Then, when my 2 boys hit the teenage years, they are now 19 and 21 years old, I again went in search of answers and solutions, and began offering classes for families with teenagers that were proactive and resolution based. My intention was to create a community of resources where families could come for answers and support.

Personally, our family has been through a lot. There’s been grief and loss, a divorce, my sons father remarried, and in addition to that, going through the normal transitions of growing up in a fast paced society. Despite all of the emotional turmoil, I have been blessed with 2 wonderful sons who have been experiencing and adapting to the normal awkwardness of stepping into those dreaded teen and young adult years that we as parent’s were so often warned of.

With over 20 years of experience, all of my training has been based in the area of encouragement, respect, dignity, creating community, and taking personal responsibility. I have taught and guided individuals, families, groups and organizations, how to focus on active listening, empathy, and conflict resolution, with an eye toward the physiology behind behavior. Here are just a few suggestions that I can offer you, to perhaps create a smoother transition though these trying years of both your own and your child’s development:

1. Seek info about teen development. Talk with other parents.
2. Know that you’re doing your best as a parent and value your increasing wisdom.
3. Have a positive attitude about your changing teen and your own life changes.
4. Talk to your teen with 2-way communication. Listen and share things that are important to you both.
5. Stay interested in your teen’s life. Spend time with your teen and encourage them.
6. Keep your perspective and sense of humor.
7. Enjoy your teen! Consider what you appreciate about your teen and let them know.
8. Most important of all, tell your teens how much you love them. Because love heals all, and speaks much louder than words.

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  Catherine VanWetter: Understanding the Teenager in Your Life
We have moved away from the nuclear family of communicating around the dinner table, and into “on the run” communication through text messaging and brief phone calls to touch base. While the worldwide web of communication has its benefits....

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