Open Temperological Institute

The articles and fragments from the books

Chapter 2.5 from a book The Mind of a Winner

(The EFSI Intro Seminar)

Placing "above" and "below"

Author: Sergey Kronin

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2.5.1. What is "social placing".

We are coming to consider one of the basic aspects of competent communication – the principle of placing or the position which a man takes up during any conversation. Probably you have noticed that it is always very easy to distinguish a socially established person who holds prominent position in a manner of behaviour, speaking, movements and sitting. Perhaps you remark some unusual state inside yourself when such man is entering the room: there is arousing an impulse to brace up, nearly to stand bolt upright. An internal vibration is beginning, strange inner excitement. It means that this socially established person excites very specific and character reaction in people around him only by his appearance. Moreover, the reaction is coming even when this person does not say a word: something in his external makes impossible to ignore or to disrespect him. Such man inspires respect by his movements only. The most amazing thing is that everyone is able to produce such effect! It is necessary just to know how it works, to know the basics on which it appears. So, at the beginning we will talk about what actually gives the skill to operate on people around in such way during communication.

If someone looks on the communication of two men and tries to check the moment when some crucial point in the talks comes, when initiative moves from one of them to another – he will easily find that at that critical moment as if the roles are given parts. One man who holds initiative is getting cool. In some measure he starts to analogize with before mentioned persons. On the contrary, another one begins to bustle and "thrill". Though it may seem strange or hurtful for logic and intellect, but exactly nonverbal positioning is the key moment of communication, it is that entry through behaviour and appearance into the image of the leader who has a great internal dignity. It may be said that communicative game is going precisely for this right of entry into this state. The case is not in mind, erudition, scholarship, or correct composition of speech. Finally everything is settled by the ability to express this position nonverbally therewith own body.

Explanation of this situation that may seem paradoxical for cultured minds is not in the fields of logic and ware interconnections but on the level of unconscious, so to speak in its bosom. Whatever we talk about the high nature of a man, to a same degree he relates to the animal world being amenable to basic rules of its "low" nature on the level of instinct. It means that the man, as every creature, going round about his mind, receives his own "special code" of signals from beings around him, and obeys these signals as well. Therefore, a man whatever strong minded, cultured he is, not always can act beyond instincts, downloaded by nature. Sometimes he may be successful in mastering of some known instinctive impulses as survival instinct, sexual instinct etc., but it is impossible for him to overcome more delicate, hidden and mostly unknown "games of unconscious".

Thereby, let’s remember that each animate being that uses to live in community of similar beings, always differs in some way a leader from others. He gives the leader full mastery, goes away from a struggle and acknowledges his dominance. We may constate the analogical fact on the level of unconscious motives of human behaviour: even the ordinary communication includes the principle of identification of the leader who strikes the keynote of whole interaction.

Naturally, one may ask how a man unconsciously identifies the leader in other man, differs him from others. What is the main signal on the level of unconscious interactions (exchange of nonverbal signals) due to cast the roles of interconnections?

If we address to the history we’ll find that through the ages the nurture of people of the governing classes, pertaining to the manner of interacting with others, was fundamentally different from the behaviour for which the people of lower-class were educated. The example of Russian aristocracy is very demonstrative. From the early childhood the main principle of education was the requirement "not to bow", reducing to an absurdity "not to bow even to the bullets". Modern man may find it as a whim or not more than the expression of dignity, but "skill not to bow" is indeed the mechanism that helps to distinguish the leader from the others.

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