"When we make a child 'share,' it is not sharing."
I have proof that there is no life on Mars. It isn't on my teenager's
cell phone bill.
3. Spirit Whisperer Contemplation [back to top]
Imagine that you are an open letter to your children. What messages are
you sending? What is being read? Are you corresponding with intentionality?
Subscriber comments, ideas, and concerns are valued. Email your
comment to IPP57@aol.com
Spotted on a Ford Taurus at a truck stop on I-94 near Battle Creek, MI:
REAL MEN ROCK
5. Make a Difference in Your Community [back to top]
IT'S NOT TOO LATE!
Take a giant step toward helping the parents in your community. Become
a skilled facilitator of the Parent Talk System by attending our February
Training of Trainers Seminar.
Join the growing number of people from around the world (USA, Mexico,
Spain) who are learning how to help parents raise responsible, caring,
confident children. We will help you learn to put the highly effective
PARENT TALK skills into the hands of parents in your church, school, or
You will leave this three-day training with the skills and confidence
to touch the hearts and minds of parents in your community!
Parent Talk System Trainings:
1. Ithaca, NY
November 10, 11, 12, 2003
Trainer: Chick Moorman
Contact: Gina Tzizik at email@example.com to request a detailed brochure and registration materials. Please include
your mailing address.
2. Grand Rapids, MI
February 5, 6, 7, 2004
Trainers: Chick Moorman and Sarah Knapp
Contact: Chick Moorman at firstname.lastname@example.org to request a detailed brochure and registration materials. Please include
your mailing address.
6. The Wisdom of Children [back
"You should never pick on your sister when she has a baseball bat
in her hand."
----Joel, age 12
60% to 80% of adult sex offenders begin offending as adolescents.
Found in the background of most adolescent sex offenders is a history
of physical abuse, sexual abuse, neglect, or family violence.
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8. Article: "You Might Be Right,
But I Don't Think So" [back
By Chick Moorman
"Austin, will you help me set the table?" I inquired, as I
took a bowl of
corn out of the microwave oven and placed it on the kitchen table.
"Sure," he replied, and he headed out of his bedroom in my
returned to preparing the rest of our meal.
"Here," I told him, "you can start with the plates."
I handed him three
plates to add to the bowl of corn, which was the only item on the table.
The task completed, Austin returned to me at the sink area and asked,
I was about to say, "You decide," one of my favorite Parent
when I noticed the bowl of corn had been turned upside down.
"Austin, you spilled the corn," I said.
"No, I didn't," he immediately shot back.
"Austin, you were the only one over there."
"I didn't do it."
"I understand you don't think you did it, but it couldn't have been
else. Austin, it's not a big thing. You're not in trouble. You're not
person. The problem is easy enough to fix. No one else was even over there.
So you must have done it somehow."
"Grandpa, I would have known if I had done it. I didn't do it."
"Austin, stop and think for a minute. The corn was sitting upright
you put the plates down. You walked over and distributed the dinner plates.
When I looked back over there 30 seconds later, the corn was upside down.
You must have done it inadvertently."
"I don't know why you don't believe me. I didn't do it."
"Are you 100 percent sure?"
"Would you be willing to consider the possibility that you might
"How about a 5 percent chance that you did it accidentally and didn't
"I didn't do it. I would know if I had."
This was not the first such incident of this nature involving my
11-year-old grandson. Austin was also not the one to put the empty milk
carton back in the refrigerator. He didn't leave his bike in the driveway.
Someone else must have put the TV channel changer in his room. He didn't
spill sticky stuff on the kitchen floor or miss the center of the toilet.
Also, he wasn't the one who used up the toilet paper without replacing
roll, even though no one else was home at the time.
Austin doesn't lie. But he does go unconscious sometimes. After
experiencing several incidents similar to the corn caper, I have come
believe that Austin sincerely believes he is not responsible in these
cases. More troubling to me than the unconscious behavior that leads to
denial is his disinclination to admit that there is even the slightest
chance he could be wrong.
Austin is a bright boy. He knows a lot of information about a lot of
things. So he thinks he knows what is right, what is best, and what should
be done as well as what happened and why. His stance in life is that he
right and others are wrong. He strongly resists moving from that world
I believe being right doesn't work. Interpersonally, it is not an effective
maneuver. So after the upturned corn incident, I set out to help Austin
appreciate the value of an open mind and suspended judgment.
I also believe that if you want a behavior, you have to teach a behavior.
So I decided to teach Austin language that would communicate the
possibility that he may not be right and that would demonstrate an open
I brought out the easel I use for seminars and turned to a clean page.
numbered from one to five and wrote the following sentences:
1. "There's a possibility you could be right, but I don't think
2. "I think I'm right, but there's a chance you could be."
3. "That might be true, but I sincerely doubt it."
4. "I'm not 100 percent sure, but close."
5. "I suppose it's possible, but it's not likely in my view."
6. "The chances of that are slim. Real slim. So I don't think so."
After explaining what I was doing and why, I challenged Austin to memorize
the sentences. When he thought he had them, I quizzed him by calling out
numbers; I said the number and he said the sentence. After seven minutes
this drill, he knew the sentences by heart.
During the next three days I implemented the second phase of this project.
At random times I would call out a number, and he would voice the
corresponding sentence. At the end of the three days, it was impossible
Then came phase three. When I spied french fries on the floor under his
chair during dinner, I said, "Austin, you dropped some fries."
"No, I didn't," he replied.
"They're under your chair, and I believe there's a good chance that
are yours. And please give me number three."
"That might be true, but I sincerely doubt it," he reluctantly
When I noticed that someone had left the garage door open, I asked him
he had forgotten to close it.
"Nope. It wasn't me," he said.
"I thought I saw you putting your bike away a few minutes ago. Maybe
thought you closed it and didn't. And let me hear sentence number five,"
"I suppose it's possible, but it's not likely in my view,"
with a disgusted look on his face.
After several similar incidents, I asked Austin how he felt Project Open
"It's not working," he said. "I only say those things
because you make me.
I don't really believe them."
"Are you sure?" I questioned. "I think I've heard you
use those sentences a
few times without my even prompting you."
"You might be right," he said, "but I don't think so."
Chick Moorman is the author of "Parent Talk: How to Talk to Your
Language That Builds Self-Esteem and Encourages Responsibility" and
Whisperers: Teachers Who Nourish a Child's Spirit." (Available from
Personal Power Press at (toll-free) 877-360-1477.)
There are occasions when you absolutely know you are right. You know
you're supposed to turn north, and your partner thinks you should turn
south. You know the White Sox played the Dodgers in the 1957 World Series,
and your partner thinks it was the Yankees vs. the Dodgers. You know the
vacation is going to cost only fifteen hundred dollars, and your partner
thinks it will cost double that figure.
It is at times like these that it's important to keep in mind the adage,
"Being right doesn't work." Being right, or acting as if you
creates emotional separation and puts distance between you and your
partner. Comments like "You're wrong about that," "No way,"
impossible," 'You're mistaken," and "You can't be right"
not only make you
right, they make your partner wrong. When you make your partner wrong,
don't build goodwill, connectedness, or happy relationships.
If you liked this passage, you will love the book "Couple Talk:
How to Talk
Your Way to a Great Relationship" by Chick Moorman and Thomas Haller.
(toll-free) 877-360-1477 to order your copy today.
10. Question and Response [back
My mom bought my husband and me the book and cassettes, "Parent
enjoyed reading the book and are having some deep conversations about
have one important question. When do you draw the line? For instance,
daughter chooses a behavior, I use the Parent Talk you suggest, and she
still chooses to misbehave. In this instance she knows what she is doing
inappropriate. When do you draw the line?
Mother of Three
Hello, Mother of Three,
You can draw the line wherever and whenever you choose. I like to draw
lines early. I am not inclined to remind a child five times that throwing
truck across the room is inappropriate. I say once, "Trucks are for
on the floor or for carrying cargo." If it happens again, I say,
choose to throw the truck, you will be choosing to have the truck in time
out (on the shelf) for the rest of the day." If the truck is launched
after that PARENT TALK, I say, "I see you choose to have the truck
out." Then I take action by picking up the truck and putting it away.
important tenet of the Parent Talk System is to talk less and act more.
and your husband get to decide the correct amounts of talk and action
Your mom must have seen me at one of my seminars.
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To find out more about workshops, seminars, and keynote addresses
presented by Chick Moorman contact him at toll free, 877/360-1477 or email IPP57@aol.com
Copyright 2003 Chick Moorman Seminars, all rights reserved. Share
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