Thursday, October 13, 2011

Fertilizing bad behavior

I believe in positive reinforcement. I have had this belief for ages. In my very short career as a kindergarten teacher, but also as a mom and friend. There's not much difference in saying motivating words over negative phrases, but the feeling the receiver gets from those words, may make a whole world of difference. It doesn't take that much an effort to compliment someone. It's not that hard to tap someone on the shoulder and tell him how great a job he did. Even though those actions are not difficult, it's a whole lot easier to let someone know how they suck.. how poorly they behave and how useless they are.

Fertilizing bad behavior is not very rewarding. What if someone would keep telling you how bad you are or how you suck at what you do? How would that make you feel? Pretty insecure, I guess. It sure wouldn't give you a good feeling about yourself. If people keep pointing out the negative characteristics of one person, they loose sight of the good points. All the other person will hear, are not very pleasant remarks. It will do nothing but feed the negative behavior instead of encouraging the other person to work on the good skills he has.

Both children and grown ups like to get compliments. Not all the time! The compliments need to be sincere and well considered. Hollow words won't bring you anywhere. Believing in what you say will help the other in accepting the compliment. The world can be such a nice place. Make living worthwhile. It won't cost you anything to make someone else's life easier and brighter through positive reinforcement.

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