Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Accentuate the Positive

"You've got to accentuate the positive
Eliminate the negative
And latch on to the affirmative
Don't mess with Mister In-Between" – Johnny Mercer

You have caught them in the act. The act of breaking a rule. Now it’s time to dish out the consequences. How do you normally respond? Have you ever caught yourself saying something like, “If you are late again you are going to have morning detention.” Or “If you keep that up I will write you up!” But I read this article the other day that recommends that we focus on the motivation to achieve instead of the motivation to avoid failure. In other words, instead of focusing on being late to avoid detention (something they don’t want) focus on arriving on time so they can learn all the day’s class has to offer. If you are like me, this will take some time before it becomes habit. Still, I think it’s worth it. So next time you are tempted to say, “Be quiet or I am going to call your parents (something negative); say something like “Be quiet and show your classmate that you respect him.” (something positive).

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