Feature: Parenting

Broken Windows - A Family Metaphor

Author: Lorraine Esposito
Published: October 04, 2012 at 10:18 pm

Meaningful DetailsBroken Windows Theory was first put forth by James Q. Wilson to help reduce crime in major cities. In short, this theory suggests that serious crime decreases faster when greater attention is focused on quality of life issues rather than on crime itself. It seems to work. New York City saw a decrease in serious crime by adopting the broken windows approach in the 1980s and 90s. Now the Detroit Police are giving it a try. From crime to cancer treatment, and even deciding where to locate your business, quality of life details prove significant.

“Because the quality of life category carries such heavy weight in our study . . . states that do well here have a big jump on the competition.” CNBC’s Top States for Business Study

Metaphor for Families
Arguments, deceit, and other family problems represent the serious “crimes” we want to avoid in our families. Quality of life issues are the small glitches in the fabric of the home environment. Things like torn furniture, stained carpets, squeaky doors, and burned-out light bulbs that decrease the quality of life for everyone.

Sweat the Small Stuff

Kristine Carlson’s book, “Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff for Moms,” suggests doing way with worry over the details that ultimately don’t matter. While I agree that parents must prioritize the ways in which they spend energy, I disagree that details don’t matter—a spotless home may not be necessary, but a cluttered home matters a great deal.

Continued on the next page

About this article

Profile image for coachlorraine

Article Author: Lorraine Esposito

Lorraine Esposito is a Professional Certified Coach (PCC), Mentor Coach, nationally recognized author, and coach training instructor for the world’s largest coach training organization. She has been featured in broadcast, print, and online media and …

Lorraine Esposito's author pageAuthor's Blog

Article Tags

Share: Bookmark and Share