In Part One we saw there are two main emotions which drive our decisions; the desire for pleasure, and the avoidance of pain.
We ended by seeing that – depending upon the particular pleasure being sought or pain being avoided – the human ego can begin to play a rather large part.
Have you ever had experiences with negative, difficult people? Perhaps that nasty person at the Registry of Motor Vehicles, the indifferent teller at the bank, the prospect who’s listening to your sales presentation with a challenging stare on his face, the uncivil civil servant, your difficult boss, employees, many, many others?
While there can be various innocent and excusable reasons why someone is unhelpful, often, when they’re downright nasty or unaccommodating, it’s because they are flexing their muscles of power over another. And, they’re into power because it brings pleasure to their ego. Often because it’s the only power they have in their life. Sad, but too often true.
What about pain? I’m not talking about just physical pain. I’m talking about emotional pain.
What kind of pain would a person want to avoid?
How about the pain associated with getting fired? The feeling of pain that accompanies change or having the risk of taking initiative – especially when that’s not usually a requirement of that person’s job? What about the pain that comes with embarrassment? Looking bad – the pain of “loss of face?”
In much of this, the ego comes into play. You don’t want to look bad to others or feel badly about yourself, do you? Who does?
People interact with us in a certain way in order to gain pleasure or to avoid pain. Much of that centers on the ego. When you help them to feel good about themselves you’ll bring out the best in them and usually get the results you want.
In his 1956 classic, How to Have Confidence And Power In Dealing With People, Les Giblin wrote; “What counts is attaining personal satisfaction without trampling on the ego of the other person.”
I love his definition of “Human Relations.” According to Mr. Giblin, “It’s the science of dealing with people in such a way that your ego and their ego remains intact.
Yep, when it comes to Winning Without Intimidation, the ego (the other person’s) rules!
Honor them and their ego, genuinely and kindly – while helping them to avoid plain or get closer to pleasure – and you’ll be amazed at how simple and easy it is to bring them over to your side of the issue.
Oh, by the way, am I saying that the human ego, in and of itself, is a bad thing? Not at all. And, well discuss that in the next article.