It turns out that my Uncle Aaron reads my blog!!!! He checks my facebook weekly for my new post! I am quite delighted and surprised because I never knew I had a secret fan. (Hehe, thanks Uncle!) Anyhow, my uncle recommended a book called, “Born To Win” to me, and he gave me his copy from 40 years ago! Currently, I’m still in the process of reading it but it’s very interesting. I am actually taking notes as I read it. Haha. It is a book on psychology, and there are many experiments and exercises you can do that allows you to become more aware of the person that you are.
There are two topics that especially stood out to me, and I want to share it with my readers.
Discounting is when you make the person feel like he/she is insignificant. It can be a lack of attention or negative attention that hurts emotionally or physically. Usually, it occurs when a person feels ignored, teased, diminished, humiliated, physically downgraded, laughed at, and so on).
I have a perfect example.
Me: What type of food do you like to eat?
Dad: Are you stupid? Obviously I like anything that taste good!? Why do you ask such pointless questions?
Me: I just wanted to know if you had a preference.
Dad: You waste time thinking about useless things, that’s why you’ll never succeed.
Thoughts that were running through my head:
“I just wanted to start a conversation. Why should I even bother? There’s no point talking to you.”
“Wow, I feel so sorry for you. All you know how to do is make people feel worse about themselves.”
“You’re such a jerk.”
I think in general, we all have to be more mindful of the things we say to each other. Do you often discount or feel discounted? Sometimes we’re unaware of our behaviour and do not realize that our words/actions can really hurt another person.
Before you say something, ask yourself if what you say will make someone feel worse about themselves. If so, can you say it in another way? Or perhaps, do you have to say it?
Psychological trading stamps
Think of it like a stamp collection. Psychological stamps are like the thoughts we keep inside when an issue bothers us. For most of us, we tend to have a collection because we do not usually act on our displeasure.
Collecting stamps –> Growing resentment –> Justification for behaviour
Once we have a collection, we eventually cash it out for a “prize”. The prize is really the justification of our behaviour.
*Son walks into the house with muddy feet*
*Mother cleans it up without saying anything*
*Son repeats this for a few more times*
*After the 10th time, the mother explodes*
THAT’S IT. I’VE HAD IT WITH YOU. I AM NOT F***KING CLEANING AFTER YOU AGAIN.
The last statement is the “prize”. The mother feels like her behavior is justified because she has collected so many stamps. The mother feels like she has coped with enough and the son deserves what he gets.
However, potentially, this could have been avoided if the mother had told her son how much dirty feet bothered her THE FIRST TIME IT OCCURRED. Since she decided to remain silent, she started collecting stamps. Eventually, it was too much and she exploded.
Have you ever exploded on anyone? Could the situation be prevented?
All of us collect stamps. Some, more than others. It’s not a good thing though.
Last but not least, here’s a trait checklist. Use a check mark beside those that fit your self-image. Use a cross to mark those that do not fit.Use a question mark to indicate the ones that you’re unsure about.
____ Like myself
____ Afraid of or hurt by others
____ People can trust me
____ Put up a good front
____ Usually say the right thing
____ Feel bad about myself
____ Fearful of the future
____ Dependent on others for ideas
____ Waste time
____ Use my talents
____ Think for myself
____ Know my feelings
____ Don’t understand myself
____ Feel hemmed in
____ Use time well
____ Can’t hold a job
____ Trust myself
____ Usually say the wrong thing
____ Enjoy people
____ Don’t enjoy being the sex I am
____ Discouraged about life
____ Don’t like to be around people
____ Have not developed my talents
____ Glad I’m the sex I am
____ Often do the wrong thing
____ Involved in solving community problems
____ People like to be around me
____ Competent on the job
____ People avoid me
____ Disinterested in community problems
____ Enjoy work
____ Enjoy nature
____ Don’t enjoy work
____ Control myself
____ Enjoy life
____ Trouble controlling myself
____Don’t like myself
What do you notice? Anything that surprised you?
All in all, this book is quite theory-based BUT if you’re interested in knowing more about yourself and others, it can enlighten you.