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Positive encouragement; not negative generatorsPosted Monday, October 22, 2007, at 3:37 PM
Wrong behavior only gets worse when it is watered and fed.
Through the years, I have learned that there are no two children exactly alike. Since every child is different, every child learns in different ways.
Another important thing that I learned is that all children, actually all people, crave attention of some type. Some children have developed wrong actions because that is the only way they can get the attention desired. Though this is negative attention, it is attention, nonetheless. Negative attention, for some children is better than no attention at all. In a situation where a student is constantly doing the wrong things, a teacher must try desperately to find positive things, no matter how small they are, to praise the child for. That teacher or parent must show the child that he or she can get the desired attention by doing good. After a while, that student will want the positive attention instead of the negative. Teachers must become that child’s cheerleaders. Does this mean that a child will never need correction for negative behavior? No of course not. It just means that encouragement and positive attention may help to lessen the amount of behavior issues that a teacher or a parent must deal with.
These two important bits of information that I have learned through the years apply to many people and many situations. Just like with children, there are no two adults that are completely alike. All adults learn differently and function differently. This is what makes us all so special. Wouldn’t it be a boring world if we were all the same?
Again, as with children, all adults crave some type of attention. For some, it may just be the smile of a friend or loved one that gives them the encouragement to make it through a day. Others may need to hear their bosses tell them that they are doing a good job, so that they will have the confidence that it takes to do their job from day to day. Unfortunately, there are those adults who must be yelled at, written up on the job, arrested or given a traffic citation in order for them to continue to do the right things. As adults, we must learn to become each other’s cheerleaders. We must spend time encouraging each other. Since life can be extremely hard from time to time, it is helpful to have friends and loved ones who cheer us on by telling us that they believe in us.
One thing that I have noticed about our world is that sometimes people are too quick to correct the actions of other people. We are so fast at handing out that same negative attention that children get in the habit of trying to obtain. Even as adults, negative attention can be better than no attention at all. Maybe if we tried to encourage those around us, instead laying in wait for someone to mess up to jump all over that person, people would feel better about themselves. Maybe there would be less unhappiness in the world if people cheered each other on before they got to the point of needing the negative attention that raping someone or harming themselves might bring. Once the actions have gone this far, it can sometimes be too late.
I have heard many times that people in this community wonder why we don’t have more positive stories in the paper. To this, I say that the positive stories are there. I’ve written several myself about the wonderful achievements of some of our school children in town. The hard work of our own Public Works department has also been a positive topic that has been covered recently. I wonder how many people in town do not take the time to read these stories because they are too interested in the negative topics to give the positive ones any consideration. If you go to the Tribune Web site, you will notice that it is only the articles about rape, molestation and murder that receive any comments. The articles that tell about people doing good things are often overlooked and uncommented on. Why? Maybe an article about a student achieving great things would stand a greater chance of impacting that student’s life if people would comment on that article. What if that child’s community showed the student encouragement by taking the time to congratulate or encourage that student. Maybe the city workers who find themselves in an often thankless job would feel much better about the tireless work that they do everyday if local people would just say thank you once in a while.
What if we became a community of positive encouragement instead of negative generators?
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