So last time I mentioned the Satir Categories, well the Blamer. So here a little more on these categories. What I think is interesting about Virginia Satir is that she was a family therapist, so why mention her in the context of work? Well we often spend more time at work than with our families so work becomes our family. Sobering thought.
Virginia Satir was one of the people modelled in the early days of NLP. She was a highly effective family therapist. Virginia identified, in her book People Making, the following behaviours; they are not exclusive to dysfunctional families. We can notice them everywhere.
Virginia had four behaviours that were responsible for many conflicts and one used for resolving conflict and bringing people together.
There is an NLP Presupposition or Operating Belief ‘Mind and body are part of the same system and what effects one affects the other’. For example if you hunch up when sitting at the PC and trying to meet a tight deadline, you will feel stressed and then that stress will manifest itself physically in your shoulders, back, or elsewhere. Our bodies react to whatever changes our minds go through and vice versa.
Your body gives signals to other people and sometimes people will read these signals incorrectly. However when you create a smokescreen and gloss over your problems in your mind, others will intuitively know that something is incongruent and their reaction to us may not be the one we intended, they might ‘write us off’ or they might ‘treat us in a way we didn’t want’.
Distracters seek attention to compensate for their feelings of loneliness or inadequacy. The positive intention (‘all behaviour has a positive intention’ – another operating belief) behind this behaviour is to protect them from facing up to things. Distracting behaviour includes removing a hair from your jacket while talking, sabotaging a conversation by making a joke, interrupting a conversation, frequently changing the subject. There are many types of distracting behaviour that people use to deflect attention from a subject that may be reminding them of their feelings of loneliness and inadequacy. (Over time this becomes a pattern and they are not consciously aware of what they are doing)
The placater is out to please – talking in an ingratiating way, never disagreeing and always seeking approval. Feelings of an inability to cope alone create a martyr or ‘yes man’ (or woman!). A placater is often the first person to accept blame when things go wrong. (Over time this becomes a pattern and they are not consciously aware of what they are doing)
See the previous blog post;)
Computer-like behaviour is very correct and proper but displaying no feeling. The voice is dry and monotone and the body often very still and precise in its movements, which are at minimal – masking a feeling of vulnerability. (Over time this becomes a pattern and they are not consciously aware of what they are doing)
And there’s the Leveller but that’s for next time
My youngest grandson was playing next to the slide, being the dare devil (polarity responder) he is, he decided it would be more fun to climb up the slide rather than slide down it. He started up it. No sooner was he on his way, a boy about his age came running over to him and started to put him to rights, ‘you can’t do that. You’re not allowed, stop it now or I’m going to go tell my Mum.’ My grandson jumped down from the slide and thought about what he was going to do next. Interesting thing was that the telltale began to follow him. Whatever my grandson did, there he was with a new threat to get his mum if my grandson didn’t do exactly what he said. The telltale was going to make sure others followed the rules even though he had no direct authority. And if he could out them for not following the rules, he might just turn out to be the ‘good’ one in the eyes of the ‘boss.’
When it comes to your working life, you need to be emotionally mature and able to act professionally in every situation so that you can be viewed as mature or professional by your managers and bosses. If you act like an immature child, it’s likely that management will see you as immature, and treat you accordingly. I’ve noticed curiously that in organisations where the words professional or professionalism are bandied about that’s where the concepts of professional or professionalism are applied least. (And the words are also used to blame others for people’s own shortcomings).
What does this mean at work (or life in general)? In both of these cases, the behaviour got the person something (the swing to themselves, the power to influence the boss). The problem is that in the end these children had no one to play with. Well no one who is into healthy relationships.
NLP uses something called the Satir Categories based on the work of Virginia Satir, one of the categories (more about these next time) is called –
Blamers find fault – never accepting responsibility themselves, always blaming someone or something else. They feel unsuccessful and lonely. They will sometimes have high blood pressure, (or other disorders and/or feelings of inadequacy) and come across at times as aggressive or tyrannical. They will tell you what is wrong with things and whose fault it is, and in doing so become powerless to do anything about it. By blaming external factors they have absolved themselves of responsibility. (Over time this becomes a pattern and they are not consciously aware of what they are doing)
In respect of work (or life in general) ask yourself
• Are you doing things that may be costing you ‘friends’ or just people to get on with (who are mature and responsible)? If so, what could you be doing differently to ‘play nice’ with those around you?
• If you come across one of these patterns in your playground (at work), what do you do?
Say ‘No.’ They probably won’t like it, but they’ve got to learn eventually that real adults ‘share their toys’ and play nice with others around them.
Unless you want to do the same job for the rest of your life, get the same results as you always have done (which blamers inevitably do) no chance of promotion, then it’s a good idea to pull your socks up, grow up, and prove that you are emotionally mature enough to handle moving up in the company to a better position.
Maturity plays a large role in many different aspects of life. To achieve in your career or work environment, it’s important to be mature and surround yourself with similar people. If you have the misfortune to work in a place where there is a lot of gossip, messing around and other immature behaviour going on, it may be hard to succeed or achieve your aims in your job. Even worse, you might become a part of this behaviour and lose any sense of professionalism that you had in the first place. Having fun at work is completely possible and a legitimate desire for many people. It’s important to realise that there is such a thing as having too much fun that then leads to your success being hindered by your actions and behaviours.
The best work environments are those where there are no tangled webs of gossip and relationships that keep people from being productive. These behaviours show signs of great immaturity on the entire company’s part.
Like the girl at the soft play area recently where I was with my grandsons –
As soon as we walked into soft play area we saw this – near the entrance is a tyre-like swings, but now they are more like a shell in which 2 children (sometimes more can sit). Children just love them, it gives the illusion of control and a swing that moves on a pivot above, so little actual physical exertion required. These are popular a bit like bike or rowing machine in the gym where you can watch TV, until the bully shows up that is. In this case, the bully came disguised as a cute little girl immaculately kitted out and wearing a ‘butter wouldn’t melt’ look on her face. She marched pertly up to the swing (past the whole queue), took a look at the two sitting in the swing and began push the child nearest to her out to make room for herself. Eventually the ripple effect of the force caught up with the other child and he fell out of his side of the swing. Ignoring the fuss around her, the bully looked quite content, but quickly realised she didn’t have full control of the ropes. Two more swift pushes and she was all alone in the swing, a smug smile on her face and two crying victims on the ground next to her. She was going to get what she wanted regardless of who was in her way. Some bullies never grow up and take their bad behaviour to work.
What is interesting is that in applied psychology we talk of the ‘secondary gain’ or ‘positive intention’, the unconscious ‘reasoning’ behind why we do something. The thing that our action gets for us, sometimes however whatever that is that we get is non-apparent as we grow up, grow older, become more mature. At some point in our life this behaviour, or maybe what is now seen as a dysfunction worked for us. It got us something (or at least the illusion of a pay-off), but as we grow older, as adults eventually these behaviours cost us more than they actually get us (although we may not see this at the time).
There is a technique called the New Behaviour Generator please contact me if you would like a copy of how to do this- contact me via http://www.rosieohara.com or http://www.developingworks.com or phone 07796 134081
Are you clear about what you want to do in life? Really clear?
Do you have an overview of concepts? Such as lots of buzz words, good ideas and very much ‘yes I’ll do that’, but without putting much thought into it?
Or do you have lots of ideas and thoughts and kind of plans and you seem ‘not to really get anywhere’? A bit stuck.
May be you need a plan?
Planning, explaining saves fire fighting. A plan will avoid so many problems and get you what you want.
Answer all of the questions below. Get someone else to read the questions out to you preferably and to write your answers down. You can think better that way. If some of the questions don’t make sense, then go onto the next question, just leave that one out. When you’ve finished, then sit together and start to work out what you could do and where you need to go to ask more questions.
What do you want and where do you want to be?
Where you going / what are you working towards?
What problems do you want to avoid?
Do you know anyone else who has done this kind of thing? Would it be okay to ask them for some info on what the pitfalls were? Any tips they might have?
What will this (thing you want to do) look like?
What will this (thing you want to do) sound like?
What will this (thing you want to do) feel like?
How will you feel?
Do you need any support?
What sequence of steps or stages will you need to put in place to achieve what you want?
What will this help you to avoid?
How will you divide what you want into small enough chunks or steps so that each one is do-able?
What else needs to be there for you to achieve this (thing you want to do) and for you to know that this (thing you want to do) is really right for you and your family?
Is this (thing you want to do) right for you in all circumstances in your life?
Is this (thing you want to do) appropriate for your personal relationships?
What will this (thing you want to do) give you that you might not have had before?
What will having this (thing you want to do) cause you to lose?
Does any part of you object to putting all of this in place? (If so how will you deal with that?)
Is it within your power or ability to achieve this?
What is the first step?
Can you take this first step?
Off you go…… after all what’s stopping you?
Questions please contact me by email via ww.rosieohara.com or http://www.developingworks.com or phone +44 (0) 7796 134081
Emails are missing out emphasis, irony, humour, anything that is included in telephone and face to face conversations, they are also often written in abbreviated form and can be sent off in the heat of the moment and even worse……….. they are tantamount to worldwide publishing within seconds, one click of the mouse and your comments can be sent worldwide and if you continuously forward previous emails on, someone, somewhere might read something you didn’t want them to read.
And text messages well can u txt? And cn u read txts? And I don’t even know if I’ve missed out the right bits.
With texts and emails it’s also possible to send them to the wrong person, by clicking the wrong button!!!!! And think about what happens if you always leave the previous message in there, I once became privy to some information that was classified and I only knew because I printed the email out.
Some NLP thoughts on emails – emails can work really well for someone who is visual – in NLP terms that means someone who has a Visual Preference, they say things like “I see what you mean”, “show me …..”, I need to clarify my ideas”, “send me the document” or “please write it down and give it to me”. Emails can also be a killer for them, because suddenly something jumps up on the screen and there it is in front of them in black and white, or colour and they can see it! What you say to them will not always hit home.
Now if someone has an Auditory Preference – so they like to talk, like to chat on the phone, ask you “to talk them through it”, say something ”rings a bell”, think you are or are not “singing from the same hymn sheet”, then an email will possibly have little or no effect on them.
People with a Kinesthetic Preference like to do or touch, so they would possibly rather have a letter they can touch on nice paper, or even like to go for walk with you and if they like taste and smell would rather chat over a coffee or breakfast. Mmm emails not much good for them.
Other things to take into account, you have absolutely no idea what frame of mind your recipient is in when they receive the email or where they are (I recently sat next to a guy at a business dinner who was reading his emails during the after dinner speaker’s speech [a serious speech about transport]). If your recipient is the wrong frame of mind for receiving your email then you have a problem.
My tip if you want to say something important, earth shattering, vital – send a short email and ask can I ring you, can we meet and do that and then give them something in writing. Bad news by email is bad, very bad, unless you really want to annoy someone, or they generally ignore you anyway.
So think about what you write and how you phrase what you write. Are you really clear about what you write?
This week I had an email about someone who wrote “I am busy delivering” and someone who has a “condition”. So I took a deep breath and wrote – “Now I guess you are “delivering” training (unless you have become a midwife or a milkman?) and I’m sorry I have no idea what this “condition” is” – upshot we had a 45 minute telephone call in which all was explained to me and I mean all. I had a better understanding of why something had not happened and the other person remembered you can tell me all kinds of things and I will understand and I got some really useful business tips from the person with the vague and hastily written email.
NLP talks about how we shape our world, (you know we don’t live in reality? That we form our own idea of reality?). In doing this we delete, distort and generalise, more on that later (Words and Wheelbarrows!)