Guilt, anxiety and negativity are the three emotions parents struggle with most. If you can’t push these feelings away, it’s time to delve into them. They have a lot to teach you. Focusing on these feelings, in fact, can make you strong.

About “Sanity” Workshops and Programs for Parents

Not knowing what to do with our most challenging emotions makes parenting overwhelming. Parents often wonder: “Why do I get so anxious” and “Why can’t I be more calm and reasonable?” The answer discovered by Dr. Claudia Luiz after more than twenty years of clinical practice, is to learn how to follow our emotions to new and better answers. This means helping parents understand how to follow their emotions instead of trying to harness and control them uselessly. As parents learn how to follow emotions, they discover what emotional experiences they must search for that enrich our understanding of ourselves and our children, creating greater connectedness and depth.

As parents learn how to follow their emotions in search of the right emotional experiences, they naturally become stronger and more able to manage even the most challenging emotions. Anxiety decreases, confidence increases, and family life becomes more enjoyable. That’s the key: to provide families with a new way of managing their emotions that set them up with a greater potential to enjoy connectedness and closeness – in childhood and beyond. Dr. Claudia Luiz believes that learning how to use and manage difficult emotions instead of trying to control them and change them is the key to creating a calm and peaceful family where everybody has the focus and energy to grow to their full potential.

"Successful parenting begins when a parent stops battling inside his or her own head against feelings of anxiety, guilt, and negativity. When you can give yourself permission to have those feelings, you can start learning how productive they are."

The Path to Emotional Wellbeing in the Family

Parents can’t connect with their children or learn what they need when they are overwhelmed by anxiety, fear and negativity. These feelings, though, are necessary for setting limits, knowing what our children’s weaknesses are, and for our own personal growth. Learning how to listen to emotions in a new way is at the heart of Claudia Luiz’s message, helping parents with a wide range of concerns to manage and use their feelings in new ways.

Learning how to stop pushing away feelings because we think they are destructive or unproductive is at the heart of Claudia Luiz’s method, leading to a parenting style that has positive effects on behavior, academic performance and physical health.

Some of the benefits of learning what to do with emotions include:

  • Better academic performance
  • Increased ease in social situations
  • Decrease in behavioral problems
  • Fewer sick days
  • More emotional stability and resilience
  • Greater concentration and focus for the whole family


Claudia Luiz’s program teaches you the benefits of having and using a wide range of negative emotions, including: anxiety, guilt, and negativity. These emotions are typically pushed away by parents, making it difficult to set limits, frustrate children when it is appropriate to, and help children with their challenges.

At the end of this program, parents will be able to:
• Learn how to set limits and problem solve with children
• Understand the importance of using anxiety, guilt and negativity to inform parenting
• Learn new ways of dealing with negativity in the family
• Develop a new set of listening skills
• Develop a new arsenal of responses to children’s negativity

Most approaches to parenting address behavior, or try to move parents into a more compassionate, positive place. Claudia Luiz’s method teaches parents how to take stock of their emotions in a new way, and leverage the feelings to increased family resilience and strength. When parents are helped with their anxiety, guilt and negativity, children are also helped to trust their own emotions and to be able to talk about what they are feeling safely and openly. The whole family learns to trust their perceptions, determine what is safe and appropriate, and create more connectedness and love. Being able to embrace, use and process a wide range of emotions gives a family the depth that enhances meaning and creates enduring positive memories.

Parents love their children unconditionally, and want their children to have the best possible opportunities and benefits of life. But while these feelings are always the driving force behind parenting, being unable to process anxiety, guilt and negativity compromises family connectedness and peace. This is why “sanity” training is so important: helping parents know what to do with their anxiety, guilt and negativity, gets to the heart of what prevents families from feeling productive and safe.

The good news is that no matter who needs emotional help in the family, “sanity” training can address the feelings of all members. Whether dealing with children challenged by psychological, physical, social or academic problems, “sanity” training helps families learn how to understand and work with emotions in a new way, so that the feelings can be used to draw family members closer.

When feelings of anxiety, guilt and negativity are addressed and used constructively, parents are able to hear and process their children’s feelings and behaviors. This is the first step to figuring out what children need, which can range from increased to decreased discipline. The power of the “sanity” method is that emotions that we usually can’t use or listen to actually advise the best plans of action.

For the past half-century, most psychologically-based programs have set forth “optimal” behavioral and cognitive practices for how to set limits, listen to children’s feelings and help children develop positive self-esteem. However, feelings of anxiety, guilt and negativity can unwittingly undermine and ruin even the best plans of action. Until parents learn how to listen to these feelings and use them, even the best parenting programs can fail. By addressing these emotions parents are able to develop, assess and modify strategies that are best suited for their unique child. “Sanity” takes a step back from the usual approaches to start at the beginning: with what we feel.

Being able to understand, listen to and use feelings of anxiety, guilt and negativity, prevents families from reeling into behavioral and thought systems that are excessively hopeless, negative and alienating. Families can learn where to take their emotions to achieve productive results: family closeness and bonding begins, parenting improves with the next generation, and the family becomes a source of support, understanding and connectedness.

claudiacroppedAbout Claudia Luiz, PsyaD

Claudia Luiz’s award-winning work is based on over 25 years of clinical practice as a Modern Psychoanalyst, using principles of “drive theory” which is the study of how positive and negative emotional energies are processed by each individual. This clinical method is written about extensively in scientific and theoretical journals, and talked about in institutes and societies, but rarely does the general public get to see how modern psychoanalysts think and work. Her mission is to bring this knowledge to mainstream America and beyond, so that people can learn how to follow their emotions to new experiences that create change.

Still Pushing Boundaries…

Claudia’s book, “Where’s My Sanity? Stories that Heal,” has been endorsed by the National Association for the Advancement of Psychoanalysis, the Society of Modern Psychoanalysis and has been included in the curriculums of four psychotherapy schools in the Northeast. It is the first book of stories ever to be reviewed in the Journal of Modern Psychoanalysis.