The Yes Brain: How To Cultivate Courage, Curiosity, and Resilience In Your Child

The following is a podcast from Parent Footprint:

Dr. Dan welcomes back one of the podcast’s most popular guests -- bestselling author and parenting expert Dr. Tina Payne Bryson ( to discuss her new book The Yes Brain and her pioneering work in area of brain-based parenting. Dr. Tina Bryson is also the co-author (with Dr. Daniel Siegel) of two New York Times bestsellers (The Whole Brain Child and No Drama Discipline) and is Executive Director of the The Center for Connection in Pasadena ( ). 

How can parents cultivate resilience? What is a Yes Brain? What is a No Brain? What is success? How does the pressure of the need for success affect our children today?

Today Dr. Dan and Dr. Tina talk about her new book and the topic of basic brain science -- that is how a child’s brain is either receptive or reactive (affecting their regulation) and what we need to do as parents and educators to support that child’s brain state.

Ultimately parents and educators and caregivers want to move our kids from reactivity (The No Brain/Red Zone) to receptivity (The Yes Brain/Green Zone). The good news? Our kids can be taught to approach life with openness and curiosity. When kids work from a Yes Brain, they’re more willing to take chances and explore. They’re more curious and imaginative. They’re better at relationships and handling adversity. And we can make this a reality!

Dr. Dan explores the four fundamentals of the Yes Brain—balance, resilience, insight, and empathy—with Dr. Tina and how they can be fostered and strengthened in all of our children and students. How? By exploring the mind behind the behaviors in children instead of just focusing on the behavior. Dr. Dan and Dr. Tina offer listeners concrete examples of ways we can intentionally help our children achieve a state of balance -- by deliberate and thoughtful behavior modeling, positive parenting, and supportive disciplining. 

Dr. Dan wraps up this episode by asking his favorite guest question -- What is Tina’s Parent Footprint Moment?  Her lesson about being present and intentionally in the moment is one she continues to revisit on her own parenting journey decades later. 

Today episode is sure to be a new favorite for all Parent Footprint podcast listeners.

Watch this free video to learn more about Dr. Dan and Parent Footprint Awareness Training®.

Hear Dan & Tina Share Stories & Bloopers from The Yes Brain Audiobook

This is a fun podcast featuring Daniel J. Siegel M.D. and Tina Payne Bryson Ph.D.. In it, they talk about their experiences recording The Yes Brain Audiobook, share which words they found the hardest to pronunciation, and more.  

“Our book is about what parents and other caregivers can do in their interactions with their kids that actually develop a more integrated brain that creates a receptive state for learning and keeping the inner spark of your child alive and well."

The Other F Word: How to Move Our Brains Through Failure

This is a recording from my interview on The Other F Word Podcast. Here's a description:

Dr. Tina Payne Bryson is a Psychotherapist, Founder/Executive director of The Center for Connection in Pasadena, and the co-author (with Dr. Dan Siegel) of The Yes Brain as well as two New York Times best-selling books, The Whole Brain Child and No-Drama Discipline. Besides being an expert in the field of science and relationships, Tina is also a parent of three boys, and uses her professional research and personal experience to understand what happens in the body and the nervous system during times of stress, overwhelm and failure. Her blend of research and personal stories highlight ways to bring ourselves and our children to a place of connection and empathy at a time in our society when we are struggling with alarming rates of anxiety and teen suicide. In this passionate conversation, Tina beautifully articulates how failure is an invitation to move into a new way of being.

Episode links: 

Tina Payne Bryson:

The Stanford Resilience Project:

Jean Twenge, iGen:

Carol Dweck, Growth Mindset:

Kristin Neff:

Sunshine Parenting: The Yes Brain

In Episode 20, I’m chatting with Dr. Tina Payne Bryson about her latest book – The Yes Brain – co-authored with Dr. Daniel Siegel. I love this book and highly recommend that every parent, educator, and person who works with kids reads it this year. I found it to be helpful not just in my work with kids but in understanding myself (and my own “Yes Brain”!) better.

Tina was also interview by Sunshine Parenting in November 2017. You can watch the video chat on Facebook or Youtube.


Therapist Uncensored: Attachment Insecurity & Secure Parenting

In this interview, from Therapist Uncensored, Dr. Tina Payne Bryson talks with Sue Marriott, co-host of Therapist Uncensored, about attachment insecurity and secure parenting. Dr. Bryson covers a number of topics, including:

  • parenting when you don’t have a secure background yourself;
  • why constructing a coherent narrative is not really enough, and what needs to be added to the equation;
  • what healthy integration really means;
  • how healthy integration helps us navigate under stress and in the heat of an argument; and,
  • the role of the body over the mind in creating the bottom line, a healthy regulation of self to help others.

Joyful Courage: "Brain-Informed Parenting"

Here's a link to my interview with Joyful Courage. I love sharing the ideas from Whole-Brain Child and No Drama Discipline, and discussing how science can help guide parents in really meaningful ways.

What you will hear in this episode:

  • How Dr. Dan Siegal and Tina collaborated on THE WHOLE-BRAINED CHILD
  • How science can help guide parents in really profound ways
  • Programs, communities and in which Dr. Bryson’s work is taught
  • The importance of HOW are parent shows up to the nervous system of a developing child
  • How getting CURIOUS with your child creates gateways into building important life skills and self regulation
  • How making ASSUMPTIONS delays or stops tool building; ie, taking behavior personal, over explaining behavior, making character assumptions, if they did it once they should be able to consistently complete task/request
  • Paying attention to a developing nervous system
  • If the nervous system is not regulated the child cannot have choice over behavior
  • How to influence the nervous system in both self and child
  • Identification of Dr. Bryson and Dr. Siegals emotional “ZONES”; Red Zone, Blue Zone, Green Zone
  • The Frontal Cortex is not developed yet
  • Children do not have the architecture to control “reptilian brain” / “fight or flight” in red or blue zones – difficulty paying attention, learning, regulating
  • Tools/techniques to get in “green zone” – regulated, calm, empathetic, attune
  • Behavior is communicating child’s lack of skills
  • When to seek out professional help
  • Self regulation – be gentle and kind with ourselves (reference Kristin Neff, of
  • New techniques require time and PRACTICE
  • Calming strategy when child is disregulated- get BELOW eye level and use soothing words including “I’m right here with you”
  • Brain associates with physical state – floppy noodle technique
  • Body shift can help shift emotions
  • How discipline is teaching
  • We need to give children tools not take them away
  • Thoughts on consequences
  • Key actions of soothing, connection, problem-solving, playfulness and being pro-active build a “whole-brained” child
  • How to recognize our own “zones” and practice getting/staying into “green zone”

Click here to listen to additional podcasts from Joyful Courage.

Discovery Child Center: "Rethinking Discipline"

Yesterday I had the pleasure of being interviewed by Mike Dlott, host of Preschool and Beyond, Co-Director of the Discovery Child Development Center, and Director of Discovery Tech in  Morrisville/Cary North Carolina. 

In this episode, titled "Rethinking Discipline", I talk about discipline strategies for children during their preschool years.  This is a time when children start to become more independent and seek increasing control over their environment, resulting in more boundary testing and rulebreaking.  

As parents, this is a critical time to teach children how to recognize and regulate their emotions and how to set clear expectations and limits, as well as for giving children the tools to resolve future conflicts. 

If you prefer to read notes from this interview, you can access them at the Discovery Child Development Center's website.

WOSU Public Media: The Yes Brain Approach to Child Discipline

Time-outs and punishments are often seen as synonymous in the eyes of children and parents alike. Authors Daniel Siegel and Tina Payne Bryson have developed an alternative approach to discipline they have coined the "Yes Brain" approach.

Join us today as we discuss the benefits of utilizing the "Yes Brain" technique and how it can help children experience the world with greater curiosity and enthusiasm.