My guest for this week’s episode of the podcast is Jessica Lahey, an educator, writer, and speaker, and the author of one of my favorite parenting books, The Gift of Failure: How the Best Parents Learn to Let Go So Their Children Can Succeed. She is also an English and writing teacher, a correspondent for The Atlantic, a commentator for Vermont Public Radio, and writes the “Parent-Teacher Conference” column for The New York Times.

In our conversation, Jess shares her insights about how we can best prepare our kids for an independent, successful adulthood in the way we practice autonomy supportive parenting versus overparenting, what it means to let our kids “fail” to help them thrive, how we can help our kids learn how to “sit with frustration,” and much more. So many great nuggets from this interview…I hope you enjoy it!

>>Click here to watch my After the Show video about this episode!<<


About Jessica: Jessica Lahey is an educator, writer, and speaker. She is an English and writing teacher, correspondent for the Atlantic, commentator for Vermont Public Radio, and writes the “Parent-Teacher Conference” column for the New York Times. She is the author of the New York Times bestselling book, The Gift of Failure: How the Best Parents Learn to Let Go So Their Children Can Succeed. Jessica earned a B.A. in Comparative Literature from the University of Massachusetts and a J.D. with a concentration in juvenile and education law from the University of North Carolina School of Law. She lives in New Hampshire with her husband and two sons. 



  • How Jessica came to realize that her students (including her own children) were missing out on opportunities to fail, and as a result, grow and develop grit
  • The difference between overparenting and “autonomy supportive parenting,” and why we want to practice the latter
  • How many parents underestimate their kids and might be unknowingly fostering learned helplessness in them
  • How we can build scaffolding for our kids to help them build their resiliency and failure muscles
  • What Jessica wishes parents of atypical kids knew about teachers
  • Jessica’s advice for how we can best advocate for our kids in school
  • How we can foster more of a growth mindset in our children, especially those who are perfectionist, as well as how to NOT foster “learned helplessness”




* 2 Holiday Survival Episodes *

What To Do When Closer or Extended Family Just Doesn’t “Get It,” with Margaret Webb

Kanesha Baynard on Navigating Multigenerational Dynamics with our Parents or Inlaws

Read through the whole episode!







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