Paint Verbal Pictures for Better Discipline

The old saying, “A picture is worth 1,000 words,” is so true, especially when it comes to discipline.

Let me give you an example of ineffective discipline.

I was in an airport, and there was a gate agent standing at the gate. A small child was standing near the entrance. The gate agent looked down at the child and said, “Don’t go down the ramp.”

Guess where the kid went? You are right! Just a few moments after the gate agent finished his sentence, the kid went down the ramp.

Why do kids always seem to do what you tell them not to do? It’s because the brain thinks in pictures, not in words. “Don’t” isn’t a picture, so what did the child at the airport really envision? Going down the ramp.

If you say to child, “Don’t wet your bed tonight,” guess what will happen? But if you say to your child, “Try to keep your bed dry tonight,” you’ll have a better chance of having your desires implemented. Remember, even adults process information best when it is in picture form.