What Is 1-2-3 Magic?

September 10, 2021
Parents carrying their kids piggyback style

What Is 1-2-3 Magic?

1-2-3 Magic is the world’s simplest parenting program. So much parenting advice is complicated and confusing—not 1-2-3 Magic! Dr. Thomas W. Phelan, a clinical psychologist with decades of experience, breaks the complex job of parenting down into 3 simple steps:

  1. Getting your kids to stop doing the things you don’t want them to do (tantrums, whining, etc.)
  2. Motivating your kids to start doing the things you want them to do (cleaning up, homework, etc.)
  3. Bonding with your kids (the best part!)

With these 3 steps, which you can start using in your house right away, 1-2-3 Magic has helped millions of families grow stronger and more connected, with happier parents and, most importantly, happier kids!

Why Does 1-2-3 Magic Work So Well?

The most effective part of 1-2-3 Magic is that it encourages parents to talk less. When your child is throwing a tantrum, your attempts to talk to and reason with them just add to the overwhelming noise in their head! 1-2-3 Magic focuses on calm, non-verbal communication and signaling to help your child regulate their emotions and respond more appropriately to the situation.

By emphasizing the need for parents to stay calm in the face of chaos, help their children develop emotional intelligence, and focus on every parent’s ultimate goal of creating a close, connected family where everyone feels heard and respected, 1-2-3 Magic is the original gentle parenting program.

1-2-3 Magic is also incredibly versatile. It is appropriate to use with kids ages two to twelve, applies to neurotypical kids as well as kids with ADHD, learning disabilities, and other challenges, and is available in Spanish and other languages.

What Do Parents Say About 1-2-3 Magic? 1-2-3 Magic has helped millions of families become happier and more connected. Here are just a few of the things they’ve had to say about how this groundbreaking program has helped them:

“Words can’t begin to describe how much this book, workbook, and program have changed our lives for the better.”

“This book has been revolutionary for our discipline and child raising and has helped us so much.”

“I have been recommending this book to every parent I know. It's so simple and easy to follow. And I am telling you, the results are almost immediate.”

“Best parenting book ever, period. All parents should have this book. It really is simple to follow, easy to execute, and really is magic. My husband and I are shocked at the change (for the better) in our 3 kids’ behavior.”

“Please do not wait to get this book! I have tried everything for my son. His father and I have done everything we know to do to help with his ‘fits,’ which have been happening for over 3 years now. Screaming, crying, physical contact, yelling, throwing, etc. Nothing was helping at all, until his pediatrician recommended 1-2-3 Magic. THIS BOOK OPENED OUR EYES!”

Watch the Video

Whether you have yet to start using 1-2-3 Magic or want a refresher, this video with Dr. Phelan will help to outline exactly what the 1-2-3 Magic program is and how it can help in your home.

In this video Dr. Phelan answers:

  • What is 1-2-3 Magic?
  • How does it help?
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