Sunday, March 23, 2014

Stop being a little bitch

Advice for men. All three points are solid.
Stop Explaining Yourself

This might be my biggest pet peeve. Especially when I catch myself doing it. A lot of guy’s first instinct, when they say something that isn’t met with immediate praise and acceptance, is to start rationalizing what they said. This screams weakness and lack of self-confidence louder than anything else I can think of.

To continue my stream of personal training examples, yesterday I informed a lady that I’d no longer be conducting sessions after 6PM. I knew this was a situation where I might jump the gun and offer a big explanation up front, so I prepared myself. I started by simply stating, “No, going forward I can’t do Thursdays at 8PM.” Rather than explaining why or try to appease her initial reaction—I waited. Of course, she asked me why, and commented how perfect it worked out for her at that time. I responded by saying I simply decided not to do late sessions anymore. I may have lost a client, but I was prepared for that outcome and didn’t let my instinct to please everyone get in the way of what I wanted.

If you don’t get instant validation of something you say, that’s okay. Leave the burden on the other party to ask a question or make a counter argument before you start droning on and defending what you said.
This doesn't mean that you can't ever explain yourself to someone when an explanation is requested. It means that it is not the default action. The default action is the announcement. If an explanation is requested, you can decide whether or not offering one is necessary in the situation, but you should not offer one up front.

In most cases, no one gives a damn why you are doing something, they only want to know what you are doing. To offer up an unsolicited explanation is implicit approval-seeking, which both men and women quite rightly see as weak and a display of low value.

12 comments:

Doom said...

I do catch myself doing that. But rather than digging out, when I do it, I dig in, double down, increase the angst felt. And... mostly enjoy it. An angry person is easy to work with. Don't push them. Push them off the cliff, throw them an anvil as assistance, then find their shattered body at the foot of the cliff and kick it. But always with a smile, and a nod to their... self importance. All while telling them that it's for their own good. Yum!

I do hate myself for it, sometimes. But... meh... not really. That's as close as I get to lip service. I've made more friends, and brought more people around, this way than it seems possible. *smile*

Dexter said...

This doesn't mean that you can't ever explain yourself to someone when an explanation is requested.

But first be sure to offer some ambiguous evasions -- "It's complicated..." =)

LibertyPortraits said...

Dale Carnegie's famous book made me realize the truth of this post. Most people are not interested in what you have to say, they are almost always most interested in themselves. Thankfully, like the market, people like Vox blog their thoughts and we get value from the posts. I am writing this comment because I think what I say is important, but who cares, really?

Laguna Beach Fogey said...

This is very sound advice. It's best to observe the 'Three Second Rule' when making such announcements. If they don't ask why within that time frame, move on the the next order of business (e.g. "Now, do you have anything else...?") or ask them kindly to leave the room because you have work to do.

JP said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
tilikum said...

good rule for an ascendant Beta.

LP 999/Eliza said...

Very helpful post! I would label this matter as people pleasing/approval seeking and the seeking a medal of honor as well.

Wyndie said...

I was at a dinner party and during course of the discussion, I commented that the problems we were seeing in our community were caused by the feminization of America. A female Methodist pastor who wad there told that that the statement offended her. I simply told her " it is what it is".

Wyndie said...

I was at a dinner party and during course of the discussion, I commented that the problems we were seeing in our community were caused by the feminization of America. A female Methodist pastor who wad there told that that the statement offended her. I simply told her " it is what it is".

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