When it comes to having an influence on others, it’s not only what you say, but also how you say it, as well as all the things you don’t say.
Words can be extremely powerful and influential. Every word spoken to another, especially a child, carries with it an underlying message about the person and his or her relationship to the world.
It’s the same for the non-verbal messages you give. Everything you do without using words can influence the other person and cause a response, whether positive or negative.
Once the other person internalizes a message, it becomes a belief that can affect many aspects of their life. Knowing this, you can certainly influence students to operate on Level D of the Levels of Development.
Influence in Action
Why does this happen? Because the body, mind, and emotions fully intermingle, and each is understood in terms of the others. Feelings, learning, and physical behavior all work in conjunction and are inseparable. Therefore, a change in behavior is as much emotion based as it is cognition based. That is, it has as much to do with feelings as with knowledge.
The human mind thinks not so much through the use of simple language but through the heavy use of pictures, images, and visions. As such, one of the best ways to influence others is to empower them with positive images. For example, if you want to influence students to conduct themselves appropriately, you should make use of positive images of what responsible people do, as opposed to images of punishment for irresponsible behavior.
Even if the student is not conscious of the belief, it will nevertheless influence future expectations and experiences. For this reason, use positive and affirmative language when speaking to children. Additionally, ensure your body language and tone of voice complements your words. It will empower them and help them foster self-love and positive self-esteem.
Tip: Rather than thinking of your power to control, think of your power to influence and enable.
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