Why Emotional Health is More Important Than Perfect Discipline with Suzanne Tucker (HPC: E94)

Start Raising Emotionally Healthy Kids Today!

I know you’ll love Suzanne and her approach and I highly encourage you to check out her products and programs. She has so many great ways to get started raising emotionally healthy kids!

Some of these interviews challenge my brain so much!!

If you’ve ever said, “Geez, stop whining,” to your kids, OR thought you were doing one better by pleasantly singing, “I hear a whiny voice!” — be ready to be challenged!

Suzanne Tucker is a physical therapist and parent educator who is on a mission to raise an emotionally healthy world.

Not sure what emotional health might look like? Dig in!

FREE DOWNLOAD: 3 Ways to Build Brain Resilience

Emotional intelligence is what we see and what we do — that’s how Suzanne explains it to kids, while the “official” definition is “self-awareness and awareness of others + self-care and social skills.”

How do we build healthy emotional intelligence in our kids?


But connection is HARD when the kids are throwing tantrums and we are feeling stressed out! Suzanne helps parents:

  • Understand how to implement positive discipline, even when the situation feels emotionally inflammatory
  • Discover the “pause button” that makes all the difference
  • Learn how to ditch the “Shoulds” and feel better about your parenting skills
  • Maximize their mornings and end-of-days to extend their lives!
  • Transform “Time Outs” into Time INs with easy-to-remember phrases that help our children learn how to behave, not just act like they’re behaving for a minute
  • Raise strong-willed children who will lead the world and make positive change (without completely draining the parent!)
  • Refocus your parenting on starting with YOU, not the child (isn’t that revolutionary? That parenting is not about the child first??? I’m telling you, brain challenging but SO good!)

I could talk to Suzanne all day long, and I’m honored to share her and Generation Mindful with you, because I know it will make a HUGE difference in your home!

No time to watch the whole video? Here are the notes!

Emotional Health Video Time Stamps

  • 0:45: Suzanne has been a parent educator for over 27 years. She saw a need in positive parenting circles and began Generation Mindful to fill the gap.
  • 1:32: Suzanne shares a bit more of her story with us.

You're enough right now, just the way you are, and at the same time, we can be learning and growing. -Suzanne Tucker

Positive discipline isn’t about being perfect, far from it. -Suzanne Tucker

What is Positive Parenting?

  • 3:31: What is parenting really? If you think of parenting as something you do to your child, get ready for a mindset shift!

Parenting is unique for every child you have in your home. -Suzanne Tucker

  • 4:54: Positive parenting allows for the differences between mom and dad. So much tension can develop when you feel that you must be on the same page as your co-parent.

Parenting is a relationship with 3 elements: who I am, who my child is, and the tools I have. -Suzanne Tucker

  • 5:53: Positive parenting is both firm and respectful. Authoritative parenting is firm and lacks respect while permissive parenting is respectful, but not firm.
  • 6:28: We further develop the idea of two parents parenting together but uniquely.

Life is just better with a pause button. -Suzanne Tucker

How to Parent Mindfully

  • 8:12: People might think of someone sitting on a mountain meditating when they hear the word “mindfulness.” Suzanne defines it as “present to the moment with joy and ease.” If you feel like positive discipline means you can never lose your temper, you NEED to listen to this part!

Notice what is without judgment and then you can respond rather than react. -Suzanne Tucker

  • 9:11: Emotional intelligence is having self-awareness and an awareness of others and being able to handle our own emotions and have empathy in relationships. It’s what you see (awareness of self and others) and what you do (social skills and self-care).

FREE DOWNLOAD: 3 Ways to Build Brain Resilience

  • 10:33: Suzanne realized that having compassion on ourselves in our parenting was severely lacking.

We’re using emotional intelligence to grow, connect, heal and live more joyfully. -Suzanne Tucker

  • 12:22: Parents today tend to compare themselves to others and hear that they aren’t enough. Tell your friends and family that they are enough and they’re doing a good job!

Cultivating Joy and Ease

  • 12:51: Suzanne shares a bit of brain science that can keep us reactive and putting out fires all day.
  • 14:24: Making connection a habit will add joy to your parenting. When we aren’t mindful and living in the moment, connection, and joy get overlooked.
  • 17:19: Being mindful first thing in the morning and at the end of the day gives you the most bang for your buck. You can use that knowledge to build routines of connection, joy, and gratitude with your kids to start and end your days.
  • 18:32: If the 5 dollar bill example above confused you a bit listen in here. Suzanne explains it a bit more clearly. When we are judging rather than observing, the joy is lost.

Nobody is born knowing how to be a perfect parent. -Suzanne Tucker

  • 20:04: Predictability and routine are helpful for cultivating joy and ease in life. Suzanne teaches other tools to allow you to adapt with joy when curveballs come.

Mindfully Dealing with Difficult Emotions

  • 20:51: When you’re experiencing emotions, name the emotion, and share it with others without judgment or guilt. This develops resilience.
  • 21:48: When a child has a challenging moment, we may shut down their emotions due to our own guilt. Suzanne shares an example of this playing out.
  • 23:56: Suzanne says “name it to tame it and feel it to heal it.” Instead of suppressing or avoiding emotions, we and our children need to acknowledge emotions and walk through them. She has a couple of simple strategies to help kids become self-aware.
  • 26:03: Even if you have an encounter with one of your kids that didn’t go the way you wanted it to, you can rewrite it.
  • 27:14: Having a family motto is very formative for kids. Even if we struggle to embody our motto, we’re all in it together striving for the goal.

Strong-willed kids are built to lead the world. -Suzanne Tucker

  • 27:46: We’ve talked a lot about improving our own mindset and emotional skills, but will these tools actually change our child’s behavior over time?
  • 31:08: Suzanne mentioned the phrase “time-in.” She explains the difference between a time-out and a time-in.

A time-in says, “you feel bad when you do something wrong, not that you ARE bad.” -Suzanne Tucker

If there's misbehavior, there's an unmet need. What is that need? -Suzanne Tucker

  • 33:35: We hear the word “self-regulate” a lot, Suzanne prefers the term “co-regulate.”
  • 34:54: Cooking with your child and feeding them is one of the best ways to nurture your relationship with them. Of course, I love to hear that at Kids Cook Real Food!

One of the most formative ways to attach to someone is with food. -Suzanne Tucker

  • 36:57: We leave you with one practical step you can take today!

Resources We Mention for Positive Discipline

I’m an affiliate for Suzanne’s products, but that doesn’t change your price!

Suzanne TuckerSuzanne Tucker, mom of four, has been a physical therapist and parent educator for over 27 years. Generation Mindful was founded based on a need she was seeing in her positive discipline classes. Parents and educators were loving the science of positive discipline, but struggling to take the science of connection practically into everyday life, particularly when they were feeling stressed or their children were acting out.

Suzanne saw a need for tangible, evidence-based tools and toys that make connection a habit in homes and schools, and Generation Mindful was born.

The mission? Raise an emotionally healthy world.

Break the yelling cycle: parent with respect and firmness

I interview experts about kids' health every week.


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