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Parenting author, speaker, columnist, media commentator.


Dr Justin Coulson is one of Australia’s most respected and popular parenting authors and speakers.

He is sought after for his expertise in family life, relationships, and wellbeing and resilience; and he is the founder of ‘Happy Families’. Dr Coulson earned his PhD in Positive Psychology.

Justin not only brings credibility and experience, he is at the coalface of family life. He and his wife Kylie are the parents of six daughters, all of whom have successfully mastered sleeping all night in their own beds, using the bathroom unassisted, eating most of the food on their plates most of the time, and always speaking kindly to one another no matter the circumstances. (Well, maybe there’s still some work to do on that last one.) Justin and his family live in Brisbane, Queensland.

Previous experience

Education: He holds an Honorary Fellowship at the University of Melbourne’s Graduate School of Education in the Centre for Positive Psychology, and he is a Senior Associate at the Positive Psychology Institute.

Author: Dr Coulson has written 5 books, and is a three-time bestselling author. He is an occasional columnist for the New York Times and appears regularly in all of Australia’s major news outlets for television, radio, and print.

Speaker: He’s a TEDx speaker and has worked with many of Australia’s biggest brands including the Commonwealth Bank, Intel Security, ANZ, IHG, and many, many more.

Talking Points

The Truth About Trust

Could your organisation function - or flourish - without trust? How would your relationships look if there was no trust in them? What would it mean if others could not trust you? Trust is the critical and essential glue that allows us to interact with others, believing that the needs of the greater good will be placed ahead of self-serving, immediate, personal needs of individuals involved in interactions. It is, in short, the belief that others will act in our best interest. But how well do we communicate trust in our organisations and relationships? Can the people around us: colleagues, clients, our families, trust us? This presentation has been designed to help leaders: • Understand what trust really is, and how it works • Consider the scientific basis of trusting relationships • Gain insight into the way that trust impacts on engagement, motivation, and wellbeing • Develop skills to increase the quality of their relationships, thus building greater trust • Discover the secret to real and lasting influence.

Creating an Emotionally Intelligent Classroom

Classrooms can be challenging places, especially for teachers. Initiatives, programs, and reporting aimed at increasing classroom performance create pressure on teachers, which can flow into the classroom. Combine this with anxious or competitive parents, kids under pressure or lacking motivation, and the rigours of general classroom management, and you have a formula for frustration and eventual burnout. That is not a positive learning environment. Is it possible, with these pressures, to create a classroom culture where teachers spend less time on classroom management and more time focused on real teaching and learning? Imagine students being responsive to their teacher, engaged in their work, and being helpful to one another. That is a positive learning environment. This presentation shares: • What emotional intelligence is and how it works • Why emotions matter and how they influence everything • Evidence that show how emotional intelligence changes classroom climate • Our invisible bias towards students and what we can do about it • What emotional contagion looks like in a classroom • The secrets to creating a positive classroom environment

What Your Child Needs From You

There are endless do’s and don’ts that surround parenting, and so many of those do’s and don’ts are contradictory. DO set limits, DON’T be too hard on your kids; DO allow freedom, DON’T be too laid back. And with so many ‘experts’ out there telling you how to do what they think is best for your child, it can all get to be too much. We think we’re doing the right thing by our kids - but so often we unintentionally make things worse. In this session, Justin takes parents from confusion to clarity. Combing through the past several decades of parenting research and literature, Justin will share the three essential keys to get to the heart of raising a resilient, happy child and creating a connected family. Based on his book, What Your Child Needs From You, Justin will share: • How to build a strong connection with your children • How to really understand your child • Proven discipline strategies that teach

Will the Best Me Please Stand Up?

Have you ever noticed that on any given day some people are switched on, fully engaged and doing meaningful work, while others seem to be going through the motions but getting nowhere? How can there be such a dichotomy when the conditions and resources are similar? Will the Best Me Please Stand Up? shows that it doesn’t have to be this way. Using groundbreaking, empirically validated positive psychology techniques, this presentation shows how easy it can be to create a workplace of productivity and meaningful contribution. Attendees will discover: • How to identify and use their strengths • The unexpected way gratitude can motivate individuals and build relationships • Opportunities to optimise optimism • Discover the essence of work that matters

Parenting Tools to Help Your Adolescent Thrive

Teenagers test and try us in the most inconvenient of ways. Many of them become secretive, or moody. They want to be with friends more than family. And they seem to have no energy for helping, but an endless capacity for arguing, negotiating, or making themselves scarce. Then there are the big issues: • Are they drinking? • Are they taking drugs? • Are they having sex - or sexting? (Hell, I don’t even want them holding hands!) • Are they going to finish school? • How do I motivate them to do anything? In this presentation, Dr Justin Coulson will help parents understand: • Exactly why teenagers act the way they do, and how to get more out of them than a grunt or complaint • The stages of teen development that make all the difference • What to do when you find out that news that you really, really didn’t want to believe • How to really understand your teen - and how to help your teen really understand you • The four critical steps to setting limits with your teens • How to make the teenage years some of the best years of your life - and theirs

Lifestyle & Wellbeing

  • Mental Health
  • Relationships
  • Adolescent Support
  • Psychology
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