Some Scouting problems are just nettlesome…
… they aren’t discipline problems, or particularly disruptive, just nettlesome, irritating, like stinging nettles.
Everyone thinks it’s the Scoutmaster’s responsibility to fix nettlesome Scouting problems, truth is it isn’t, at least not directly.
Most Scouters run into a situation like this, it bothers them, and then they create a rule thinking this will fix things.
Rules are powerless to change underlying attitudes, they can only compel compliance. Once rules are made you put yourself in the role of policing them, judging consequences, and then dishing them out. Once you go down that road it takes over your thinking and you end up squandering your energy on a useless enterprise.
Remember the aim, to develop character using the patrol method. Assume that you are powerless, don’t make rules or think that you have to resolve every nettlesome thing that happens.
Make a habit of praising Scouts publicly by name when you see good behavior, ignore nettlesome behavior, and champion the Scout oath and law at every opportunity.
In This Podcast
[0:18] Trails and cots.
[1:09] Mailbag, Intro
[7:01] Nettlesome Scouting problems.
Get the song Sasquatch by Bucky’s band Los Festingos.
Get my book The Scouting Journey
Get my book So Far So Good