I don’t have children. I read a lot of child-rearing books though. Whether someone is three or thirty, the same rules apply. Often you can learn about how to deal with adults by reading books about how to deal with children. Sometimes adults are simply children in bigger bodies. Getting older doesn’t always mean getting wiser.
I know a lady who insists that dog-training books are useful for learning how to deal with husbands. I know I’ve certainly learned a lot about customer service by watching “the Dog Whisperer.”
Either way, energy is energy. It is all about how you direct it and how you spend it. It has nothing to do with changing the other person. It has everything to do with changing yourself. If you present positive energy, you’ll get positive energy back. If you expect trouble, you’ll find it. So change yourself first.
The basic message that I’ve gotten from these sources is that any attention is better than no attention. So if you ignore your child (or dog, or coworker, or customer) when he is behaving correctly, and yell at him when he is misbehaving, he will keep misbehaving. Ignore the bad behavior, and praise the good.
Ignore what you don’t want. Don’t give it any energy.
People want energy, and they will take it any way they can. Even if it is negative, it is better than nothing.
Workplaces do their employees a huge disservice when they only communicate with their employees when they have made a mistake. It is far healthier to praise them for doing something right.
I have had several bosses who never got this. Their opinion was that you should know when you were doing right. You should know how to do your job, and take pride in it. They only talk to their employees when they messed up.
To them, they messed up a lot.
There is a lot to be said for praise. There is a lot to be said for letting people know that they are doing well. We all need to hear when we have done well.
Now, does this apply to everything? Can we take this and apply it to all things –not just people? Can we apply it to pain, and loss, and hurt? Can we apply it to physical as well as emotional pain?
Maybe. I’m working on it.
It seems like focusing on the good is always a good idea. Oprah says “What you focus on expands.” This seems very useful. You just have to be mindful of what you focus on – what you give attention to.
I’m reminded of the phrase “You’ll either find a way, or you’ll find an excuse.” It is your choice.