The ANASAZI Way vs. Behavior Modification

Early on ANASAZI founders Larry Olsen and Ezekiel Sanchez made a basic discovery…young people made deeper and more lasting changes in the care of those who were not trying to change them—those who simply loved them.In this environment, young people made choices guided by the consequences of their choices for those who loved them. In other words, their hearts began to change. The opposite was true when someone was only trying to manage or fix them. In this case, young people made choices either in resistance to pressure or to avoid consequences or get rewards—which occasionally invoked a temporary change of behavior, but not a change of heart.

Because of who we proclaim to be and the position we hold as “helpers” on this earth, we have a sacred and delicate responsibility to care for those entrusted to us. At ANASAZI, the Making of a Walking, we have determined that this sacred responsibility cannot be carried out with effectiveness unless the ingredient called love is found in our hearts. Love is what keeps us awake during dark hours of the night asking for light to give others. Love makes sacrifice a worthwhile guest.

— From THE ONE WHO STANDS WITHIN, by Ezekiel C. Sanchez “Good Buffalo Eagle”

The ANASAZI Way is to live for those who are in our care—and by doing so, we invite others to do the same. It is only in the face of love that we see the impact of our lives on others and as a result become responsible—anything else only gives us an excuse. And it is only when we become responsible for our lives that we can make real changes.

At ANASAZI we focus on creating an environment that powerfully invites a change of heart. There are no behavior modification techniques or interventions and there are no point or level systems—just a day-to-day walking on the land with the Creator, Mother Nature, and people who love and are ready to help when a young heart is willing.

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