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Natural and Logical Consequences for Behavior

Overview

Positive consequences reinforce and strengthen a behavior, while negative consequences help reduce or eliminate a behavior. Learning through experiencing consequences is much more powerful than through a lecture or punishment. Using consequences for misbehavior is an effective teaching method for dealing with behavior problems in children and teens.

Natural and logical consequences can help with behavior change.

Natural consequences.

These are the experiences that naturally follow a choice or behavior. For example, going out in cold weather without a coat naturally leads to feeling cold.

Logical consequences.

These are consequences chosen to follow behaviors that violate the acceptable behavior within a family or other group. These consequences are set up to logically follow when a person breaks family rules, values, or acceptable behaviors. For example, a young child who throws a toy may be required to take a time-out to calm down and think about their behavior. An older child might lose a privilege for unacceptable behavior.

Credits

Current as of: September 20, 2021

Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:
Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine
Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine
Louis Pellegrino MD - Developmental Pediatrics

 
 

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