Behavior Modification – Not Just for Kids


Often we talk about behavior in children and how to adjust their behavior to our societal
expectations.  Behavior is simply the display seen by others that is a reflection of our personality, which in the end determines our natural responses to situations.

Behavior modification is not just for kids!

Here are some terms that you may have heard by your peers, or even received on an evaluation at one time or another in your life.behavior

  • Shows Effort
  • Developing 
  • Improving
  • Social
  • Evolving 

When you were described this way, did you take it personally?  Did you immediately climb into defense mode?  These terms are not helpful because they do not breakdown the traits and skills necessary to elicit improvement.  Although they were labeled as “constructive criticism”, these are words that cause frustration by all parties.   

These words while not negative do not leave enough room for a person to determine what needs to change.  Many of the words on this list will have a specific skill listed after, such as developing team work, which will give a hint into the desired behavior.

In order to turn current behaviors into behaviors that produce success.  Start with the behaviors that are constantly praised and work backwards to the behavior that produces it.

Let’s start with team player.  To be a team player there are several key skills that are required: clear communication, active listening, participatory in the process, and time management to start.  All of these are skills that can be improved; however, they produce valuable behaviors that lead to success.

It doesn’t matter if you are the manager or the manager of one, yourself, this simple exercise in breaking down the behaviors of success to the skills that can be improved upon will produce valuable results.  In the end, it is not about the label it is about the results that behavior can produce. 



2 Responses to “Behavior Modification – Not Just for Kids”

  1. Bob Lang, LPC, LAC March 18, 2014 at 7:38 pm #

    Empowering ourselves to change and modify old habits and behaviors is all about reprograming the conditioned responses we have learned. By integrating the reactive and rational parts of our mind we can become successful in transforming obstacles into opportunities, barriers into breaks and limits into the life lessons that make a difference.

    • jen March 20, 2014 at 12:48 pm #

      Isn’t it interesting that our conditioned responses are usually formed as a defense, or mechanism to shelter in a place we feel safe. Yet, when we can rationalize we realize that the behavior itself became the wall that forms the obstacles and barriers. I love how you say, “empowering ourself to change and modify old habits,” as we must first take the responsibility that the reaction we are having is ours to own, ours to reprogram, and most certainly ours to re-learn. Thank you!

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