Enchant your speech - what words affect others?

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Does magic exist? From an early age, children are taught that the truly magical words are not "abracadabra" and "hocus-pocus", but "please", "thank you" and "sorry". Their use shows personal culture, often helps in life and creates a positive image - but there is no magic in it, only socially accepted rules and patterns. Meanwhile, there are indeed words that we use every day without even thinking about them, and which in an enchanting way can turn our statement into a great tool of influence on others (or a huge flop). What words affect others?

When I tell you, you'll think of a white bear ...

... but will you forget when I tell you not to think about him? Research in this area has been done by many psychologists, reaching the conclusion that we can consciously think one thing, but our brains "follow" their own paths, often in spite of us. This is where the first magic word can be found, which we use every day, many times, sometimes (especially at the age of two) repeatedly.

Before we start - try not to think about the white bear right now. Came in your thoughts? Don't worry - it appears in most cases, as Daniel Wegner, a psychologist from Harvard, has already checked many times. He gave his subjects exactly this command, then asked them if the polar mammal had really occupied their minds even for a moment. This popular experiment proved the basic principle - the human brain reacts a little differently to the word "no" than we would like. When we give him an order or give him information in the form of a negative, he must first make a theorem to be able to deny it later. Therefore, using the example of a bear - in order for the brain not to think about it, it must first think - in order to have something to negate. Another example? When you tell someone that you are not feeling very smart, they may reply, "How wise you are!" or "no, you're not stupid ..." - which of these sentences will convince you more?

The word "no" affects not only the subconscious mind itself, but also one of the common characteristics of the human species, which is defiance. Just look at children and adolescents who rebelliously do exactly what their parents told them not to do. It seems like we should be more prudent as we grow up - but unfortunately we don't change that much. Just refer to a quote from one of Disney's most popular fairy tales - "All men think that" no <> yes ", and get out - take me, I'm yours." The heroine of the cartoon was right, both in terms of men and women.

Since the word "no" is governed by such intricate mechanisms, it is worth knowing how to use them. The easiest way - not to use. Indeed, in many cases it is a good idea to take a moment to think about your statement and to formulate it in such a way as to avoid the negative. Instead of "don't be nervous" say "take it easy" instead of "you don't look bad" - "you look very good".

At the same time, the word "no" offers great opportunities if you learn to use it well. The simplest example has already been indicated here - it is "don't think about ...". How can this be used? When someone says that he or she does not have time to meet, the answer "don't think about how nice it would be to relax" has an effect that is exactly the opposite of what the message was, but also - exactly as the sender of the message assumed. It's also easy to leave a good impression on yourself without looking like a conceited person. During business meetings, it is good to say "of course, I'm not the only specialist" or "my knowledge is not perfect, of course." A group of trainers conducted a similar experiment, telling their audience that they are good, but not the best specialists. When, after a few sessions, the participants met with other presenters who asked for their opinion on their predecessors, most of the audience said that they were the best specialists in their field. Abracadabra…

The word-natural

In relations with other people, especially those we care about, we try to be as nice and polite as possible. Therefore, giving negative feedback comes to us with a lot of difficulty, and we try to sweeten someone with an additional positive opinion. That's why people often say "you are a great friend but you annoy me", you work great but your results have dropped recently "or" you are not fat but look a little plump in this dress ". Imagine hearing any of these messages. What's in your head?

The word "but" - the second of the magic three - has a peculiar quality, namely, it is like a natural for the part of the utterance before it. When someone hears "but" already knows - more or less consciously - that he will hear something that does not quite match the first part of the statement. Even if the questioned person confirms that the entire statement is actually positive and only a small fragment is negative, he will subconsciously remember only the second part and the relevant feelings will remain in his memory.

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The word "but" (and its synonyms) is a great tool for giving negative feedback in such a way that the person accepts it without feeling offended or upset. How? At the lowest level of advancement - just change the order. The examples given above would therefore be: "You make me nervous today, but you are my best friend anyway", "Your results have dropped recently, yet you are a great worker and I believe you will work on it" or "This dress fits not well, but you are not. that's why it's thick! " (the latter will not always work for a stereotypical woman - author's note).

At a higher level of advancement, "but" gives us an even wider range of possibilities. For example, you can imagine a situation in which the undermined boss begins to accuse the project manager that the task for tomorrow is still not ready, so it is very likely that there will be a delay. Answer? For example, such "indeed the project is only halfway done, but we are working hard on it to get the last button done by tomorrow". You do not deny it, you admit the boss is right, that is, you do not challenge his authority, and at the same time you leave him with the thought that the work is in progress and that he will receive a perfectly done job tomorrow. Hocus-pocus ...

Don't get tired, just do!

Imagine a jumping box - remember it from physical education classes? Tall, crude, hard to jump over. If you have it in front of your eyes, try jumping over it. Now!

Managed to? Perhaps so, although in many cases it is a hard nut to crack. But if you haven't jumped over the crate - imagine it again. And jump over her - now! Was it easier this time?

What words affect others? Learn the magic word number three, featured in all sorts of persuasion guides and training, is "try it". It seems to be positive, even allowing you to do something - but not entirely. The human mind, the unconscious one, thinks that if it has to try something, it means that there is some obstacle in front of it. Sometimes to overcome, sometimes not - important that it hinders action. In order for a person to understand our command as actually permitting, both on a conscious and unconscious level, it must be given outright. Importantly, with the word "try" you can also program yourself.

Therefore, if you want to do something or want someone else to do something - tell them directly. Don't try to clean the apartment, just tidy it up. Don't say "try to learn today" but "study today, please." It often seems to us that the word "try" softens the statement and makes it seem less categorical, thus losing the power of persuasion. You can build a message nice and polite (the word "please" is always fashionable) without making it difficult for yourself or others. Unless such a handicap is our goal.

Sometimes we suggest that someone do something even though we don't really want them to be active. Then the word "try" comes to the rescue, programming the interlocutor to fail. As? "I understand you don't quite like my work, so try to improve it" or "try to beat my offer." Maybe the interlocutor will try, maybe he will even succeed - but it will probably be a bit harder for him. Abracadabra…

The words we use in our statements are very important. The above examples are the most common and the best researched by social psychologists. Of course, it is a bad idea to rely solely on the secrets of your subconscious mind, especially if you have not yet practiced how these "anchors" work. It is also worth remembering that the conscious use of words is an excellent technique of influencing, but it should be used in moderation. Striving for your own thing is one thing, manipulation - quite another.