Generalization and Sustainability in Positive Behavior Support

Managing Strong Emotions

Trauma written on file folder tab

Trauma-informed support is an excellent example of a practice that works well with positive behavior support because it addresses the underlying physiological responses that are paired with past events in a child or adult's life. Positive support practices that help people understand and manage strong emotional experiences can be used to respond to past experiences.

Understanding operant and respondent learning can help teams design positive behavior support plans that support mental health needs and empower children and adults to develop emotional coping skills that can generalize to other situations which evoke similar types of emotions.

Traumatic life experiences such as child or domestic abuse, natural disasters, or other negative life events can have a lasting impact on a person’s health and emotional wellbeing. Trauma-Informed Cognitive Behavior Therapy is an evidence-based practice that people to address strong negative emotional feelings like fear, anger, and anxiety. Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavior Therapy is a positive support that teaches children and adults skills to recognize negative or unhealthy thoughts associated with past experiences and to engage in stress management and coping strategies when these thoughts occur. This approach can also include teaching new skills for parents and caregivers of children involved in therapy. A family therapy approach is used to help recognize family dynamics that may create barriers that prevent healing, teach new parenting skills, support stress management for both child and family members, and help to improve communication skills.