Goofy Thoughts and Daily Stress

December 10, 2021

Today we are talking about some of the thoughts we have as parents that can contribute to the daily stressors in our lives—and we have plenty of those! Oftentimes we’re talking specifically about how to approach discipline and child behavior in a calm and effective way. Today we’re going to focus a little bit more on the parents.


In this video, Dr. Phelan answers the following:

  • Why is this a topic he wanted to cover?
  • Dr. Phelan tell us what you would define as a “goofy thought” that parents might have?
  • How do those thoughts contribute to the stress level a parent has on a daily basis?
  • Knowing that these kinds of thoughts are having such an impact, what can parents do about this? It’s one thing to say “stop thinking that!” and another to be able to do it.

So, Dr. Phelan, why did you want to cover this topic?

This topic is a little different than cover tantrums or good and bad behaviors because this video focuses on the parents. Especially, parental stress and mental health. 95% of emotional stress doesn’t come from the reality of life but from what you are thinking–this manifests in a lot of ways from physical tension to our behaviors. 

What is a “goofy” thought?

When you are in a certain situation, that situation creates an emotion in you. And then, that emotion creates a reaction or action, physical or otherwise, in sometimes less than 2 seconds. Say, you’re thinking: “What if we’re late to the doctor’s office?” even if you are perfectly on time. This thought might make you anxious and lash out at your child. Parents probably have hundreds of thoughts like this every day–it is the sheer volume of these goofy thoughts that causes stress.


I hope this video helped! For more parenting advice, check out 1-2-3 Magic .

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