Long Term Benefits of Positive Reinforcement
By J. Richard Kirkham
Over the years of tutoring students with behavior challenges, I've noticed a pattern of negative reinforcement by both parents and teachers in an attempt to diminish or stop such behaviors. Let's review some basic behavioral reactions from all human beings. This includes both adults and children since these are basic behaviors.
Why are these behaviors primarily negative? Let's consider the way we were raised. I've actually had successful, intelligent parents tell me and I quote one person: "My wife and I don't believe in rewarding expected behavior."
- Children and adults avoid negative stimuli. This includes but is not inclusive to spankings, getting yelled at by the boss, or even disapproving looks.
- Children and adults attempt to receive positive stimuli. This includes but is not inclusive to hugs, getting complemented by the boss, or even approving looks.
- In the absence of any stimuli, and when feeling a need for attention, children and adults will attempt to create situations whereby responses by authority figures or peers is provoked. In most cases I've witnessed, in both children and adults, the activity to promote this stimuli tends to be in the form of a negative behavior issue. Again, this applies to both children and adults from throwing paper airplanes to antics at the water cooler at the office.
What do you believe my former student will do when he/she feels a need for attention? Do well on a test? No, that's expected. As is behaving in class, in public and basically acting in an appropriate manner in all situations.
I've seen the same attitude in over 75% of the parents who hired me to consult with them over email or tutor their child and it's not the parents fault. Most parents don't have a background in teaching, counseling or psychology They raise their children, in most cases, the way they were raised. Getting the occasional tip from another parent or television. If the technique the parent uses even temporarily hinders a behavior. They feel successful.
For the most part, if the child has no extreme behaviors, the parents techniques raise a socially acceptable child with average goals in life, but at what loss of potential?
Let's look inside the mind of a child through adulthood. Let's presume he/she has average self-trained parents who understand the benefits of positive reinforcement, but are, for the most part unsure how to execute it and therefore are sporadic at best. Here's a scenario:
This can escalate further but generally doesn't. Do you now understand, however, why we act out in a negative manner in order to get attention? We keep the traits in us which are reinforced, whether this reinforcement consists of negative or positive stimuli.
- John gets an A on his test. Parents praise him.
- The next class John tries hard though he gets a D. Parents admonish him.
- John gets another D in the same class. Parents ground him.
- John gets yet another D parents take away his hand held gamer.
- John stops trying in the class.
- John resorts to acting out for attention in that class.
- As his peers grow accustom to his behaviors John escalates them in order to receive the same amount of attention.
- The parents finally have a meeting with the teacher of that class to find out why John gets into trouble in that class.
Let's now examine some parents who, through classes, study or perhaps even buying my book understand the importance of consistent positive reinforcement.
Regardless of the results, John still has his support group and is not alone. Which means I probably won't get the "you're my last hope" call. Let's carry both these scenarios into adulthood...
- John gets a D on his test.
- A compliment is followed by constructive questions.
- John changes his study habits.
- John still gets a D.
- The parents hit a heavy bag, power-walk and release their stress in constructive ways.
- A compliment is followed by constructive questions.
- The parents have a meeting with John's teacher for the class.
- The teacher works with John.
- John probably does better on the next test.
Primarily Negative Stimuli
John graduated high school with Bs and Cs. He's working at a grocery store. He bags groceries and is a hard worker. He does what he's told at work because he doesn't want to get into trouble. He shows up to work regularly and has had a few raises.
Scenario with Primarily Positive Reinforcement
John graduated high school with As and Bs. He started out bagging groceries. John knew he could do better than that. He worked hard utilizing the same positive reinforcement techniques his parents had utilized with him to improve his self-confidence. The customers, coworkers, and management appreciated his positive attitude and hard work. John asked questions and was not afraid to try or suggest new ways of performing daily tasks at work. He's now the manager of the grocery store with a very busy schedule as he is taking college courses in the evening.
Though John's character is fictional, the results are not. Self-confidence and a lack of fear to attempt to achieve tasks without negative reprisals due to temporary lack of achievement is a must for the building blocks for both leadership and innovation. Without consistent positive reinforcement the child's chances of realizing this self-confidence to perserveer and to develop and initiate new ideas and methodology is greatly restricted.
Let me conclude with a quote from my book: "Do you want your child to want to do the right thing or be afraid to do the wrong thing?
J. Richard Kirkham is a dual certified teacher and martial arts instructor. He has expertise in alternative teaching methods and positive reinforcement methodology. He's written several books in the printable electronic format and has made downloadable videos and DVDs. One of his ebooks he put his heart and soul into is "Tutoring and Positive Reinforcement Techniques and Methodology for all Parents and Teachers." Purchase of the $9 ebook also gets you one month of free personal email consultations with Mr. Kirkham to personalize your child's program.
FasterEFT for Change and Transformation
Many of us who wish to really help people begin our journey with trying to help someone in our family who has problems or an illness. Or we want to work on ourselves.
We seek healing methods, modalities and tools. Anything that would work to make us feel better. This search often becomes a passion about helping others in the process of our learnings as well. We take courses, get certifications of all kinds and soak up all kinds of philosophies and tools. We go from one course and certification to another because it's just not quite "IT." Not quite what we've been looking for.
FasterEFT is a methodology developed by Robert G. Smith after many years of studying and working with thousands of people. It is a collection of new cutting-edge techniques and processes that integrates the most effective elements of EFT, BSFF, NLP, spiritual understanding, science and the mind’s great ability to transform itself. One of the greatest aspects in FasterEFT is that it is fast, direct and to the point. FasterEFT can quickly transform how you represent your past, shift your emotional disruptions and restore your physical health.
FasterEFT addresses the entire mind/body system which includes what you think and how you process your thoughts, along with the body’s response. It is a self-empowering system that gives you control over your past, present and your future. It will show you how to design and transform your life right now.
This is one of the most direct and simple but profound methods of healing out there. It has been proven to outperform years of therapy and other modalities out there. It gets to the point and helps people make changes fast! It also empowers people to continue the work on their own and not be dependent on therapists or practitioners to take responsibility for their own healing.
FasterEFT is a universal healing system that can help you release:
• Anxiety • Low Self-esteem • Fears • Phobias • Creative Blocks • Weight • Depression
• Grief & Loss • Cravings • Headache • Relationship Problems • Insomnia • Bad Habits
• Disease • Allergy • Pain • Fatigue • Trauma • Addictions
FasterEFT will also help you improve:
• Weight Control • Energy • Performance • Sleep & Relaxation • Immune System
FasterEFT addresses the core of these issues and works fast!
This is what most are looking for. Search no more. Learn how to release and let go of past traumas and limiting beliefs that hold you back from the life you want.
Recommended for you...
Holosync is the most powerful meditation, personal growth and mind development tool available. Meditating with the aid of Holosync is effortless and deeply relaxing - plus it enables you to make quantum leaps in awareness and emotional health...