Tuesday, July 17 , 2018, 6:57 am | Overcast 65º

 
 
 
 

Bill Cirone: Starting the Year with a Can-Do Spirit

As a new year begins, we often advise parents to consider starting off with a clean slate, erasing anything contentious that might have happened with their children since the beginning of the school year.

If children faced challenges with studying or with homework, and if that had been a source of conflict, it can make a difference if parents and children simply agree to let those memories fade. It really helps to start fresh.

Coming at a challenge from a different perspective can lead young people to better performance and, more importantly, increased motivation to do even better. With the old “baggage” eliminated, it’s much easier to focus on how to move forward.

It helps, too, if parents remember to love their children for who they are, not who they want them to be. Children need space to grow, to succeed and even to fail. Sometimes learning from failure is the best lesson of all because it strengthens resilience, a trait that is very difficult to teach but often makes the difference between success and failure in the future.

If discipline is necessary, it’s important that children know their parents disapprove of what they did, not who they are.

These approaches help redirect negative behavior and channel energy in a far more productive direction. Plus, time and again it’s been proven that fear and despair can sap a child’s ability to do well, and that a positive attitude can enable a child to stretch to higher levels of performance.

Much like their children, adults can benefit from letting go of negative experiences that drain their energy. Starting over with renewed enthusiasm and a can-do approach can apply to dealings with schools and teachers, and even with school district policies and procedures. It can also improve the outcomes of future interactions. Think of the powerful energy a positive approach can send to all involved, helping forge better relationships and stronger partnerships.

There is a feeling of renewal that comes from letting go of problems from the past, and making peace with the challenges that lie ahead. For both young and old alike, in all sorts of circumstances, it’s an approach that can make real progress possible.

So as a new year begins, let us all resolve to move forward together, in partnership, to help create the best possible outcomes for our children and families. It’s well worth the effort and can help make 2014 a very good year for all.

— Bill Cirone is Santa Barbara County’s superintendent of schools. The opinions expressed are his own.

Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made through Stripe below, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments and a mailing address for checks.

Thank you for your vital support.

Become a Noozhawk Supporter

First name
Last name
Enter your email
Select your membership level
×

Payment Information

You are purchasing:

Payment Method

Pay by Credit Card:

Mastercard, Visa, American Express, Discover
One click only, please!

Pay with Apple Pay or Google Pay:

Noozhawk partners with Stripe to provide secure invoicing and payments processing.

  • Ask
  • Vote
  • Investigate
  • Answer

Noozhawk Asks: What’s Your Question?

Welcome to Noozhawk Asks, a new feature in which you ask the questions, you help decide what Noozhawk investigates, and you work with us to find the answers.

Here’s how it works: You share your questions with us in the nearby box. In some cases, we may work with you to find the answers. In others, we may ask you to vote on your top choices to help us narrow the scope. And we’ll be regularly asking you for your feedback on a specific issue or topic.

We also expect to work together with the reader who asked the winning questions to find the answer together. Noozhawk’s objective is to come at questions from a place of curiosity and openness, and we believe a transparent collaboration is the key to achieve it.

The results of our investigation will be published here in this Noozhawk Asks section. Once or twice a month, we plan to do a review of what was asked and answered.

Thanks for asking!

Click Here to Get Started >

Reader Comments

Noozhawk is no longer accepting reader comments on our articles. Click here for the announcement. Readers are instead invited to submit letters to the editor by emailing them to [email protected]. Please provide your full name and community, as well as contact information for verification purposes only.

Daily Noozhawk

Subscribe to Noozhawk's A.M. Report, our free e-Bulletin sent out every day at 4:15 a.m. with Noozhawk's top stories, hand-picked by the editors.

Sign Up Now >