Relationships Are the Core
September 11th, 2013
by Katrina Brooke
What is the most important ingredient for motivating children to develop personal responsibility and the skills/characteristics to become high achievers?
Every year…as kids return to school…people begin to ask this question. Some believe the answer lies in developing improved teaching methods and more advanced curricula. Others contend that the solution involves improving the types of tests administered to students. At Love and Logic we believe that the single most important factor affecting children involves the quality of relationships they experience with important adults in their lives. In fact, we believe that there will never be enough rewards, consequences, or techniques to get kids to behave and learn responsibility if we are not first developing positive relationships.
Rules provided without relationship result in rebellion.
Consequences given without relationship lead to resentment.
Rewards without relationship feel like bribes.
When most of us recall the adults from our youth who had the biggest positive impact, we think of those who:
- Had high expectations and communicated those through loving limits.
- Focused mostly on strengths…not weaknesses.
- Spent a lot of time with us.
- Didn’t tell us what to do but rather guided our decision making.
- Were empathetic when things went wrong.
- Modeled healthy, assertive behavior.
- Held us accountable…yet loved us even when our behavior wasn’t lovable.
Evident from this list is the fact that adults who enjoy the very best relationships with children are viewed as powerful and loving at the very same time:
As this school year unfolds, let’s make it a goal to be this type of adult for the wonderful children we know and love.
Thanks for reading! Our goal is to help as many families as possible. If this is a benefit, forward it to a friend.
Dr. Charles Fay