One thing I'm trying to do more of is to say the word "don't" a lot less.
I've learned along the way that instead of saying "don't do this" or "don't do that", it's more effective to give the person in front of you an alternative action. For example, how often do the following work:
We are creatures of habits. And the research will tell you that in order to stop a habit you have to create a new one.
Just think of when a toddler is crying. Children usually "move on" when you give them a candy, tell them a joke, etc rather than tell them "don't cry".
The same with someone you know being stressed. Have you ever successfully told someone who's stressed not to be stressed? I haven't. And I find that patient under stress respond better when I explain that to them. They get the point and look for alternatives.
And in coaching, if you're trying to get an athlete to perform a skill in a different manner, rather than saying "don't do ____", it's a much better (motor learning) approach to directly give them the alternative instead. Otherwise they'll continually cognitively focus on what not to do.
Fighting fire with fire. It just doesn't work out well. So in essence, I'm not necessarily saying don't say don't. Instead what I'm suggesting is to do this instead. And "doing this" meaning find the alternative.
I created this blog to share my thoughts with others. It is not intended to be used for medical diagnosis, medical treatment or to replace evaluation by a health practitioner. If you have an individual medical problem, you should seek medical advice from a professional in your community. Any of the images I do use in this blog I claim no ownership of.