Motivational speakers fly all across the United States to motivate employees of companies to be more productive. Coaches motivate athletes to perform better, parents and teachers motivate youth to apply themselves better in school. Motivation has always been a useful tool and now, more than ever parents and teachers are searching for new ways to motivate students who are saying, “I don’t care”, “I can’t” and “It doesn’t matter anyhow”. The new attitudes of these students is causing teacher burnout at a faster rate than ever before and more teachers are quitting to find more meaningful work. Our youth have never been so unmotivated. Has something changed to cause this? As a Family Counselor, I began to see a change of attitude when schools began expelling bullied children who were fighting back. The new attitude was “hopelessness” instead of “helplessness”. When we feel helpless, we have plenty of energy to fight back; when hopelessness, we have no energy and move toward despair. Suicide is committed by hopeless, not helpless individuals. Bullied children were becoming resigned to believing that they “deserved” the torment. Former methods of helping bullied children cope and recover were no longer effective. Using a new model of hopelessness–humiliation–shame became a more effective treatment. Then I began to notice what I called the “Hopelessness Syndrome” was present in other behaviors, especially in children. This change gave birth to methods I began using to motivate both youth and adults whose behavior was failing performance standards.
I say to you if you are a parent of a child who says, “I don’t care” as their performance in falling below former standards, do you think your child likes saying this? No, he or she finds the self controlled by forces beyond their control. I can help them get back on track because I have worked with this “Hopelessness Syndrome” for many years with other populations. I understand the dynamics. Call me now at 800-989-8037 while space is still available and bring your child in to see me. This is not behavior that responds well to conventional motivation methods.