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147 “How do we raise emotionally healthy kids?”

with Sissy Goff and David Thomas

Did you grow up in a family that “did emotions?” Do you feel you sometimes lack the tools to overcome struggles or develop coping skills? 

As adults invested in the lives of the kids in our world, we all want to give them the things we didn’t have. In this series about relationships, we wanted to know the keys to raising emotionally healthy kids, so we brought in the experts!  

Join Hannah and Lindsey for a conversation with Sissy Goff and David Thomas, Executive Directors of Daystar Counseling in Nashville. For over three decades, Sissy and David have been providing support, encouragement, and compassion to children, adolescents, and families through counseling. In this episode, they share some of the trends they see for kids in this present moment, strategies to connect with our kids, and the importance of doing our own work. If you’re a grown-up who wants to show up for the kids in your life, this episode is for you!

Meet this episode’s experts

Sissy Goff is the Executive Director of Daystar Counseling in Nashville, Tennessee, where she works alongside her puppy counseling assistant-in-training, Patches the Havanese. Since 1993, she has been helping girls and their parents find confidence in who they are and hope in God is making them to be. Sissy is a sought-after speaker for parenting events across the country and is a frequent guest on media outlets including CNN, Good Morning America, Inside Edition, NBC Nightly News, and Christianity Today. She is the bestselling author of 13 books including her latest, The Worry-Free Parent: Finding the Confidence You Need So Your Kids Can, Too. She is the co-host of the Raising Boys and Girls podcast. Follow Sissy on Instagram @raisingboysandgirls and @sissygoff.  

David Thomas is the Executive Director of Daystar Counseling in Nashville, Tennessee. He is the co-author of ten books, including the best-selling Wild Things: The Art of Nurturing Boys and Are My Kids on Track? The 12 Emotional, Social & Spiritual Milestones Your Child Needs to Reach as well as his two latest titles Raising Emotionally Strong Boys and Strong and Smart: A Boy’s Guide to Building Healthy Emotions. He is a frequent guest on national television and podcasts and has been featured in publications like The Washington Post and USA Today, and speaks across the country, and is the co-host of the Raising Boys and Girls podcast. He and his wife, Connie, have a daughter and twin sons three adult children. Follow David on Instagram @raisingboysandgirls

Mentioned in this episode

Mentioned in this episode:
6:18 – Working towards the first generation of emotionally healthy kids  

9:06 – Why parents need to do their own emotional and mental health work  

10:37 – Coping strategies for families experiencing big emotions  

13:09 – How emotional health gets overcomplicated with kids and adults 

21:20 – How their childhoods impacted the work Sissy and David do now  

27:01 – How to talk to your kids about your own therapy

28:08 – Mental health trends for kids in 2024

31:23 – Understanding anxiety in boys and girls  

38:40 – Helping kids practice taking safe risks  

40:54 – How Sissy and David use group therapy with kids  

44:48 – The impact birth order plays in kids’ understanding of self  

47:53 – Why it’s important for kids to have a community of safe adults 

51:37 – The practices that keep Sissy and David centered 

Onsite Experiences mentioned in this episode:

Onsite’s Living Centered Program
There’s always room for more — depth, contentment, healing, love, purpose.

Whether you’re feeling stuck or broken, overwhelmed or ready to dig deeper, we can guide you to the more you’re seeking.

Healing Trauma Program
Tired of dealing with stress, anxiety, depression, or isolation? Our world-renowned workshop is designed to address the disruptions that can follow trauma and provide you with the tools necessary to reset and recover. 

Onsite’s Healthy Love and Relationships Program

Break up with destructive patterns and learn how to give (and accept) the meaningful affection we all deserve. We’ll tackle the tough stuff, support your healing, and set you on the path to authentic connections that will light your path forward.

Stay connected 

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Lindsey Nobles on Instagram

Mickenzie Vought on Instagram

Hannah Warren on Instagram