For many people, the stress of everyday life—where you go from stressful situation to another—can seem overwhelming. Between work, family, social commitments, and even the daily onslaught of negative news, stress levels across the board are rising. As a result, conditions like anxiety, depression, OCD behaviors, and insomnia are on the rise.
Fortunately, in many cases, you have a choice. No matter what the stressful situation is, you can choose to react to it positively or negatively. You can choose to let life weigh you down. Or you can choose to rise above the challenges.
Consider this old story and think about the deeper meaning being illustrated:
A farmer had an old dog. One day his dog fell into a … >>>
Teaching impulse control for kids can be a challenge. If you want to become a more effective adult when working with young people, then give up the desire to control. Instead, hand over to the young the responsibility of learning to control themselves. This is important for every child but especially important for those young people who have repeated discipline and impulse control challenges.
The key to fostering impulse control for kids is to use the Levels of Development all the time so that it isn’t associated with corrective discipline. In fact, the more you use the hierarchy, the more young people will understand the difference between external and internal motivation. They will also become open to using the hierarchy … >>>
One thing teachers and parents continually struggle with is getting students to do their homework. But if you review the Levels of Development, you actually have a nice framework for encouraging students to do their homework. Think of it as a “Homework Hierarchy,” which may assist in more students completing home assignments.
Using the Levels of Development for homework may encourage personal reflection and create a desire to put forth more effort. Therefore, guide your students to quickly create such a hierarchy. There’s no need to write it down. Just do it orally. Here’s an example.
LEVEL D – Motivation for doing homework is internal.
When it comes to stress management, you have more control over your stress levels than you may think. That’s because your emotions play a big role in stress management.
Fact: Emotions and Stress Management are Related!
Emotions have many variations: joy, contentment, serenity, frustration, sadness, sorrow, guilt, etc. If you break them down into their simplest elements, there are only two important categories; one sends positive messages and the other sends negative messages. To practice stress management, you need to be aware when your emotions are sending negative messages and transform them into positive messages.
The question is, how do you do that?
If you are mindful (conscious) of your emotions, you will realize that they are affected by your … >>>
One of the most common questions I receive from people has to do with rewarding students. In fact, a common thinking is that it is necessary to reward students to do what you would like them to do. Additionally, most people still compare rewarding students with adults receiving a paycheck to do a job. But the two concepts are completely dissimilar.
For working adults, money is a satisfier—not a motivator and not a reward. Your compensation is a binding contract between two entities. “You do this task and I’ll give you this much money.” If either party fails to do their part, the contract can immediately end. Either you quit the job (if you don’t receive your income) or you … >>>
Perseverance is a vital skill to develop. In fact, one of the most important principles we can teach children is that effective and responsible people persist in their endeavors. They don’t give up easily. In fact, a major quality that classifies people as successful is that they stick to a task. They display perseverance.
What is it that enables certain people to persevere? Usually, they have a repertoire. They create many different ways to solve a problem.
Why is this important? Because if people have only one way to solve a problem, and if they try it and it doesn’t work, they will have a tendency to give up.
People who persist, however, will try one plan. If that approach … >>>
Teachers and parents are always looking for ways to motivate students and children. Whether it’s inspiring them to do their homework or clean their rooms, adults try many different techniques to get the youth to comply.
Unfortunately, many adults use external motivators at school and at home. These include telling young people what to do, threatening and punishing them, and rewarding them for things that they should do. These approaches do little to motivate students and children. Rather, they teach young people OBEDIENCE. The shortcomings of obedience appear when teachers and parents are not around to use these EXTERNAL motivators.
I created the Levels of Developmentto help teachers and parents focus on internal motivation. This is important because internal … >>>
Positivity is important. And sometimes we need to think of the meaning behind what we like to keep. This applies to both physical and mental keepsakes. Are your thoughts and possessions promoting positivity? Or do you need to let go of some outdated beliefs?
Here is a case in point.
For years I have had a little statue describing an ancient morality. The tiny statue that sat on my desk portrayed three little monkeys. One had hands over the eyes, another with hands over the ears, and a third with hands over the mouth.
The message was to see no evil, hear no evil, and speak no evil. The philosophy portrayed in the little figures is that good is found … >>>
The Discipline Without Stress methodology makes classroom discipline much easier. It empowers students through the use and practice of The Levels of Development.
Think about what you would do in each of the following scenarios that are typical in a school setting. After, we’ll discuss how Discipline Without Stress makes each incident less stressful.
Scenario 1: The school dress code says that students may not wear hats in the building. Your student is refusing to take off his hat. Most teachers say that they have no specific procedure to handle this situation.
Scenario 2: A student refuses to hang up his coat in the coat closet. In this situation, many teachers say they would take the coat and hang … >>>
Your words are powerful. In fact, I often say that people do good when they feel good. This is true of adults and children. Children who act on Levels C and D of the Levels of Development chart feel good. While those who act on Levels A and B have more negative feelings. What are you doing to help others do good? Is your language uplifting others? Or are your words bringing people down?
Yes, your words are powerful and what you say often has a big impact on others. While many people don’t intentionally say outright mean or nasty things to others, they may use other subtle words or sentence patterns that disempower others.
Most people are on a quest for happiness. We want to be happy, and we want our children to be happy. As a result, to hopefully ensure the happiness of their children, many parents give them things. Before I go any further, let me clearly state that the following point is NOT to stop giving items to our children; it is to point out how HAPPINESS is EARNED, not GIVEN.
Unfortunately, many young people today are learning to have an “entitlement” mentality rather than a happiness mentality. For example, many teachers give kindergarten and early grade students stickers or other items for doing what the teacher requests. Parents also bribe youngsters by saying something like, “If you do this, then … >>>
We all want our children and students to do well in school. But there is a big difference between memorizing facts and true learning. Unfortunately, because of the proliferation of standardized tests, many students are merely memorizing facts for a short period rather than engaging in real lifelong learning.
The good news is that you can help students make meaningful connections between what they study in school and what happens in real life. A good start is to have young people learn the Levels of Development.
Here are 5 tips parents and teachers can use to promote learning in today’s youth.
1. Self-testing and asking “Why” questions are excellent ways to improve learning. To see if a student truly … >>>
Being able to attain your personal definition of success requires many things. When asked, many people cite perseverance as being a key success factor. While perseverance is important, there is something even more vital.
More than education, more than experience, more than training, a person’s level of resilience will determine who succeeds and who fails. Resilience is a cousin of perseverance.
A person can increase his or her level of resilience, and thereby increase their chances of success, by developing mental and physical habits that foster a positive mental state.
How to Develop Your Resilience and Attain Success
A body of data, including studies of identical twins, suggests that certain personal characteristics that foster resilience may be at least partly … >>>
Relationship stress is a common problem. The relationship can be between two adults, two children, and even between an adult and a child. The quickest and best way to ease relationship stress is NOT to try to change the other person. Instead, change something about yourself first.
If you are convinced that another person is wrong and they are the source of the stress, there is always the chance it could just be a case of “mistaken certainty.” Or, perhaps, the two of you just have significantly different belief systems. Or, perhaps, it could be the case that “I know you believe you think you understand what you think I said, but I am not sure you realize that what … >>>
Focusing on child discipline is something parents and teacher do every day. But sometimes it seems no matter what you do or say, the child never learns to change their ways.
Here’s a secret: Whenever something a child does bothers you, whether at home or in the classroom, the solution is to teach a procedure. In fact, teaching a procedure is one of the best ways to focus on child discipline.
For example, if students all run to the door at recess, teach a procedure for exiting the classroom. If your child continually leaves their clothes on the floor, teach a procedure for dressing and undressing. You really can teach a procedure for virtually anything.
Of all the things that cause stress in people’s lives, relationships rank high on the list. Whether it’s between adults, family, friends, or children, relationship challenges are inevitable.
Here are three tips for significantly improving relationships and making them less stressful.
1. Give Affirmations
A simple acknowledgement can have dramatic results. This is especially important with young people. They want to assert their independence and autonomy. Just acknowledging that you have HEARD their point of view, regardless of agreement, can have a profound effect on how your growing young one feels about the relationship.
2. Use quality listening time.
Quality time is quality-driven, not necessarily quantity-driven. Simply give your full attention to the person speaking. By using eye contact, a … >>>
Promoting good behavior is something both teachers and parents want for the children in their lives. And it’s always easier to do when the teachers and parents work together.
Following is an email I received from a teacher about students, parents, and good behavior.
“I am interested in implementing your ideas in my classroom. They make such sense to me, and I am very excited! What do you recommend for communicating about student behavior with the parents? In previous years I used a behavior classroom chart and a six-weeks calendar where daily behavior is recorded and sent home each day. I do not want to use that system any longer. However, I will have parents who will want to know … >>>