A simple saying to describe our most basic animal training principle could be, “Feed (reinforce) the behavior you want; don’t feed (don’t reinforce) the behavior you don’t want.” Along with our focus on establishing dialogue, building trust, and empowering animals, the relevance of this approach to human relationships resonates with this story:
A Native American boy was talking to his Grandfather. “What do you think about the world situation?” he asked. The grandfather replied, “I feel like wolves are fighting in my heart. One full of anger and hatred; the other is full of love, forgiveness, and peace.” “Which one will win?” asked the boy, to which the Grandfather replied, “The one I feed.”
In this two-session presentation, we will first merge our understanding of the ABCs of learning and behavior with key obstacles and solutions to effective communication described in the book “Crucial Conversations” by Patterson, et al. In the second session, we will consider the importance of feedback, and how to give and receive feedback more effectively.