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The Better Behavior Show with Dr. Nicole Beurkens

Mar 25, 2020

My guest this week is Bryan Post, an adopted and former foster child, is one of America’s foremost child behavior and adoption experts and founder of the Post Institute. A renowned clinician, lecturer, and best-selling author of From Fear to Love, The Great Behavior Breakdown, Bryan has traveled throughout the world providing expert treatment and consultation to a variety of groups. An internationally recognized specialist in the treatment of emotional and behavioral disturbance, Bryan specializes in a love-based treatment approach that focuses on developing a deeper understanding of trauma, stress and fear and how they rule our lives. He counters this by offering an enlightening perspective on the all-encompassing power of love to bring us peace and healing. 

In this episode, Bryan and I discuss how stress and trauma can greatly impact behavior in both children and adults. Bryan explains to parents how behaviors arise from a state of stress and provides them with effective tools and techniques to approach their children when acting out. By breaking down the science behind breathing techniques and guiding adults through known and unknown past traumas, Bryan helps parents better facilitate and react to their children’s behavior with a love-based approach. 

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Episode Highlights

The Role of Stress In Behavior

  • Bryan uses his “Stress Model” to explain:
    • All behavior arises, whether good or bad, from a physiological cellular  and neurobiological experience of stress
    • When we become stressed we constrict into survival state which can lead to the pathway of fear


How Trauma Can Impact Behavior 

  • Trauma stems from a stressful event/experience
  • Often adults have yet to realize, recognize or address their trauma
    • This can sometimes lead to parents becoming reactive to certain children’s behaviors 


Trauma Related to Adoption

  • It is important to remember the in utero experience has a great impact on us
  • Adopted children, even if they were adopted as infants have already been significantly defined by their in utero experience and may have already experienced trauma in this way


Where To Start

  • Learn the power of breathing, simple but not easy
    • In the midst of your child’s behavior before you react and say anything to your child, you must learn how to breathe in the midst of stress
    • It will immediately help lower your cortisol and allow you to interrupt your stress physiology
    • Remember when your child is misbehaving they are already in a state of stress, if you approach them in the same state you will have confused and distorted thinking
  • See and recognize your child’s behavior as coming from a place of stress
    • They are stressed out, they are coming from a place of sensitivity and fear


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