Influence - It's an art form. - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 07-24-2015, 01:45 AM
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Influence - It's an art form.

Influence is a skill, one that takes a great deal of practice and examination. It requires isolation of elements of that skill - just as one isolates scales and chord progressions on the piano. There are different aspects and nuances that come from practice. And, without having reading material, you can't even know what to practice or where you're going wrong.

I want to see change in the world in terms of the rights of animals. However, I fear that the common approaches are usually counterproductive, and gravely so at that. People tend to see vegetarians and vegans as though we're some sort of freaky cult, yet the concept of not needlessly harming animals is about as simple and rational as brushing one's teeth. We point fingers at those who eat meat, and point out their irrationalities. Yet, I know for a fact that I've had to take a good look in the mirror to see my own shortcomings in the realm of persuasion.

I've been reading several books recently, and their methods of influence are all mostly in the opposite direction of how it generally gets done.

Here are a few of those books:

How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie
http://www.yourcoach.be/blog/wp-cont...nce-people.pdf


This book, while it is a bit old-fashioned, has already improved my interactions with people dramatically. It's a process that requires practice, patience and a lock on your instincts in terms of wanting to just say something. It's a very good read. A disturbing note: Charles Manson used it to manipulate women into killing on his behalf. Warren Buffett went through the program associated with the book and still keeps his diploma on the wall. Key point? You can't win an argument. Why? Because it makes people insecure in admitting defeat and raises so many defensive instincts. And, what do we fricking do all the time to get our point across? Argue. There are much more powerful ways to influence people...

The 48 Laws of Power by Robert Greene
http://48laws-of-power.blogspot.ca/2...ne-master.html
An abridged version.


This one is written from a somewhat amoral perspective - it's all about political maneuvering and influencing people around you to gain some social strength - this makes you far more influential. What good is arguing when you just shut someone down, someone who perhaps has a great deal of social influence and then responds that resentment of arguing by spreading the word to others? This one has helped tremendously in general.

The Art of Seduction by Robert Greene

Also written from an amoral perspective, this discusses the process of seduction, and not just sexually. How do you make not harming animals seductive? I think that's a golden question, but I have a few vague ideas so far. Read the books and get your own ideas as well.

Of course, you can find all of these on Amazon.

Beyond that, however, we should aim to improve our overall influence. There are more books out there that I plan on reading. I'm working on simply developing my ability to influence people - for the better. Influence is a skill, and it's not one that I think we can justify not practicing.
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#2 Old 07-24-2015, 12:01 PM
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However that we relate to people has effects on our own selves, so as long as it is good influence (and then we still do need to learn to know what is and isn't good) then our own journey will remain good and/or progress.

Caring about our health is caring about our very state of being and future which is a very good thing to be seriously concerned about making the most of.

 

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#3 Old 07-24-2015, 01:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Enthios View Post
However that we relate to people has effects on our own selves, so as long as it is good influence (and then we still do need to learn to know what is and isn't good) then our own journey will remain good and/or progress.
Of course. Taking a pragmatic approach to human psychology can indeed reveal amoral methods in influence. However, having good will at heart is something that people will read in your body language and facial expressions, and thus, you will have the greatest influence by maintaining your good will.
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#4 Old 07-24-2015, 01:51 PM
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Good will is definitely going to be at hand if you apply influence toward "helping to change the world in terms of the rights of animals".

Caring about our health is caring about our very state of being and future which is a very good thing to be seriously concerned about making the most of.

 

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#5 Old 07-24-2015, 03:10 PM
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Good will is definitely going to be at hand if you apply influence toward "helping to change the world in terms of the rights of animals".
Hell yes it is! That's why I don't feel much concern about posting these sorts of resources in a place like this, since this stuff can easily be used for evil in the wrong hands. Though, evildoers are likely seeking this sort of information anyways.

It'll also help you see how evil is perpetrated so effortlessly by the manipulators, which helps you actually see what's really going on, which sort of puts things into a more realistic perspective. And that is what helps you deal with the reality of the situation.

I know I feel much stronger for having read these books.
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#6 Old 07-24-2015, 03:28 PM
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Apply that knowledge toward media manipulation and note the difference between what people are being led to believe (through influence) and what is actually going on. ...In so many areas of our life. So many believe what they are told through media and it is so often manipulative propaganda.
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Caring about our health is caring about our very state of being and future which is a very good thing to be seriously concerned about making the most of.

 

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#7 Old 07-24-2015, 03:53 PM
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Quote:
However, I fear that the common approaches are usually counterproductive,
I'm with ya on that one, except I'd replace "usually" with "often".

It can be hard to evaluate our tactics, because too often we're fighting the wrong fight. Winning, beating our opponent, humiliating them, destroying them ... those shouldn't be the goal.

I have a friend I met in college that is completely unlike me in some ways, especially politically. But we genuinely like each other. We joke that we're each sure the other will come to his senses Real Soon Now.

Because I enjoy his company I've never unloaded on him in the "crush, destroy, WIN!" sense ... which is not true of how I treated way too many people. I didn't hide who I was and he didn't hide himself either. But we'd talk about things without trying to utterly annihilate each other ...

Guess what? I WON, in the long run. My friend teaches at a university in Nebraska, two Human Development classes, Study Skills, and DIVERSITY!?! Him 26 years ago would argue vehemently with the things he is now TEACHING. I feel our interaction has something to do with that. I voiced my ideas and made my case uncompromisingly, but respectfully, allowing him the room to consider and grow.

-------------------

We should be careful to differentiate between influence and manipulation. That's why I used "respectfully" up there. Tricking people isn't respectful. The "seduction" nonsense is best left alone.
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#8 Old 07-24-2015, 07:04 PM
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Dave in MPLS - nice to see someone from my homeland! I'm glad to hear that you had a positive impact on your friend. I believe that one of the key aspects involved in that is the fact that it sounds like you both openly listened to each other, which lead you both to go think about what each other had thought about and it eventually lead one person to a better path. Listening carefully to someone is important in making progress in a discussion - actually part of the first book I suggested.

In terms of influence, I want to share the good and the bad. Why? Because a lot of people use the bad aspects of manipulation against us. It's a lot easier to fight against an enemy that you can easily recognize. I'll admit, learning about the ugly side of manipulation can be a bit of a slap in the face and can be hard to listen to.

But it's well worth it - you'll know more and you'll know what you're up against. I started with How to Win Friends and Influence People because it's in a much more positive tone and isn't so deceptive, and actually tells you that you should just admit when you're wrong yourself, and right away!

This stuff is just a start, but I know I have my work cut out for me in learning about this stuff in general. I have a lot more reading left.
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