Monday, February 11, 2008

Positive Reinforcement

I have recently had several episodes where I have had to encourage and reinforce positive actions. This is not only in the area of business but at home and socially.

I find that with negative consequences people either want to go in the opposite direction or run from the responsibility or strike out in retaliation or even worse enable the situation of negative behavior.

If you are an enabler, you are the one who knows that the situation is not good but you in some way help to keep it going. I have several examples but this is at the top of my mind: a son is having marital problems so asks to move back in with his parents. The parents assuming they are doing the right thing allow him to move in. This enabling situation allows the son not to work on his marriage by allowing him to escape into someone else's environment and ignoring his own. It is time for the son to face up to his responsibilities and take care of his problems, whatever the outcome.

Retaliation. This is definitely not a great way to take care of a situation. I do not believe it is necessary to give an example here as probably all of us at one time or another have done this. I have learned through experience that this action solves nothing. Perhaps you say I felt better by doing so. Did you really? In my experiences, the after effects were not pleasant either.

Perhaps we have forgotten the golden rule. J.C. Penney used it and was the motto for his stores. Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. I believe if we looked at our situations or experiences in this way the outcome would be much more pleasant. If you treated someone in the same way you want to be treated would it not be a pleasant experience?

Try utilizing the golden rule in your life, business, and social situations. You may be the example someone else was needing to have positive reinforcement in their life.

Carole DeJarnatt
Alliance Advisors, Inc.
Alliance Success Group

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