Taking The Fear Out Of Discipline

We tend to connect fear with discipline. We want to force it upon others.

We say,”Do this, or bad things will happen”, and everything runs perfectly. Does it?

Discipline is needed in most learning, especially  in training. You can’t have your student looking off into the sunset and saying, “I’d rather do something else”, because nothing would be learned. The key to having a student, animal or human, who works hard, pays attention, and has manners, is to make a good deal.

Work requires discipline. Your employer is paying you to work and if you don’t have the discipline to do this, you’re fired and someone else will come along and take your place. This gives you responsibility.

So, don’t make the learning feel worthless or like a waste of time, and never use intimidation to get respect and discipline. All you will receive from that is a traumatized student who may not be able to learn anything, because he or she is simply so afraid. Instead, replace fear with responsibility, and a reason to take the responsibility seriously.

Honza Blaha with his horses at liberty and bridleless

Discipline will come on its own if you have a mission behind what you are teaching. If you have a horse who won’t go in the arena, don’t whip them. Go outside! Make the learning interesting. Go on trails, give them a job, on a ranch or somewhere else, and challenge them.

No one wants their students walking all over them with no respect – that’s understandable. But instead of becoming angry and ingraining fear, plant some motivation.

Find your student’s interests, and when they ask, “why should I?”, have an answer ready. Give your student a reason, a goal, plenty of support, inspiration, and motivation. Discipline will come with that.

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