Recently I was let in on a strategy on how to state a case or perhaps even get another person to come around to your way of thinking without theirÂ sensibilitiesÂ being offended. The idea is to get people to think rationally about a subject without them realising that you are leading them in a direction they may not have considered.
The trick is to broach the topic in the form of a question that you quite likely have the same opinion on. Once you are in agreement youÂ steerÂ the conversation, maybe even in the form of another question, in the direction in which you want it to go. Successfully bypassing any undesirable emotional response while leading them hopefully to conforms to your way of thinking.
Making a request to grandparents that they don’t overindulge your children with excessive gifts of toys at Christmas and birthdays is a good example of how this ploy might work. Please see below for the scenario I have created to demonstrate this strategy.
While enjoying a normal conversation you bring up your topic by asking ~ â€œDid you have many toys to play with when you were growing up?â€Hopefully they will say â€œOh no!…â€ And they willÂ regaleÂ you with some stories of the toys they do remember and how excited they were to receive them at the time.
Then comes the next question ~ â€œDid you feel deprived because you didn’t receiveÂ many or did you have fun regardless?â€ In this case you will hope the answer is â€œNo we made out own fun. Children these days have no imaginationâ€¦â€
Then comes the $100 question â€œDo you think children these days have far too many toys?â€ I have never encountered an adult of myÂ generationÂ or above who ever answered no to this. They all think the current generation is spoiled rotten.
At this point you go in for the kill or should I say you come to the point of your conversation, while you have the upper hand, by saying “I have been thinking about this a lot lately. Donâ€™t you think it would be a good idea if perhaps instead of giving lots of things to the children we all limit ourselves to giving one material gift and perhaps put some money in a bank account for themâ€¦.”
What has occurred here is that the parent has extracted a true and logical opinion form the grandparent about how overindulged children are these day. Once they have showed their hand you then play your trump card by suggesting your idea of reducing this overindulgence for your own children (their grandchildren). By this point how could they not think that is a good idea.Â And even if they do realise that they have been lead to this point what can they do without losing face but agree your idea is sound.
I have to say I have been at the receiving end of this strategy more than once. Lead there by a certain person in particular who shall remain nameless. I nearly always twig as to what he is up to, but by then he has me caught hood line and sinker. I have to tell you that I am usually glad to be caught. Why, you might ask. Because I have a tendency to allow my emotions to rule my head far too much and his logic is much easier to swallow. With his cleverÂ manoeuvringÂ I can then justify what for me may otherwise be a difficult emotional decision. I know my weakness well enough to be grateful to him for steeringÂ me away from that frightening abyss.
The beauty of this approach is that if the answers to the questions you are posing are not the ones that cement your case you can abort the mission at any time. No one ever need be the wiser that you were attempting to achieve an objective in the first place.
Today’s Mini Mission
Roundup all theÂ little toolsÂ that are scattered throughout your home. Once together declutter any excess.
Today’s Declutter Item
Stage 2 of the great craft declutter is underway at last. I have opened an Etsy store and have made my first sale. What a fun and creative way to declutter. The photo collage below show my handcraftedÂ productsÂ purchased in that first sale.
For a full list of my eco tips so far click here