ACoAs MANIPULATING Self & Others (Part 2c)

se;f-con 

PREVIOUS: Manipulating OURSELVES (2b)

SITEs: ‘How Do Alcoholics Manipulate Others?’
Manipulation: Why are Addicts so Good at It?


REVIEW
: Over-controlling ourselves #1-5
ALL post on Es in May & June 2011  and  Jan 2012  (go to Menu)

DEF: Con / conning – to persuade by deception, cajolery….

a. Action Manipulation (Part 2b)
b. EMOTIONAL self-manipulation
Most human emotions (Es) are located in the Child Ego State, with some – the more mature ones – in the Healthy Parent, & none in the Adult state, which is more like a computer.

However, our WIC will try to avoid all Es – mainly old pain stored in our body (muscles, organs, brain chemicals…) which have not been processed out by doing trauma release work via crying, pounding, shaking…. As kids —
— we were not allowed to safely express ALL our feelings
— we never learned from family how to process Es, via ‘understanding’ & labeling them correctly
— we were not comforted or validated, so we don’t have a right to be acknowledged or soothe ourselves
— we don’t have an internal monitor that governs our reactions, which must come from the UNIT – the healthy adult & loving parent components

As a result:
— We keep putting off the Es we are aware of, including any which crop up as a result of life’s interactions (painful or happy ones)hide from Es
— AND stay unaware of the backlog we’ve hidden from ourselves. We may be shocked & ashamed of how we act them out.
So, by allowing the WIC to con us into not acknowledging & getting our feelings out, old & more recent Es keep piling up. At some point the kettle boils over & we explode or we implode, turning the Es inward into paralyzing depression

Since our WIC is choking on all the unprocessed pain we’ve accumulated thru the years – when we’re triggered by a person or event similar to our early experiences –
• Either we go numb, & compulsively find things to distract us, often for hours on end (TV, Facebook, self-pleasuring, sleeping, isolating, drinking, spending, cleaning, exercising ….)
This is a way the WIC cons us into not recognizing Es, assuming it’s not safe to do so – while in fact that just makes us more stuffed up (like not being able to breathe from a bad cold), & therefore more weighed down, more distressed.

raging EsOR our Es go from 0 to 100 (instant rage, overwhelming sadness, depression, hopelessness, OR ecstatic fantasy highs), & over-react internally or to people around us without considering the consequences to ourselves or others.
The KID just wants to vent, convinced that if it doesn’t it will burst. It doesn’t want to be reined in – assuming that any restriction represents being told to not have its feelings – the same as in our childhood.

• AND, Some of us are more emotionally oriented (dramatic Ennea 4s, Water Signs….). We are flooded with Es & assume we can’t modify or keep them in.
But in Recovery we learn that intense Es come from sitting on decades of pain – no matter what our Natural type is. And we come to understand that impulsively venting them willy-nilly is neither healthy for us nor an acceptable way of treatingdramatic others. Attacking, blaming, snarling at, insulting, yelling at, cold-shouldering…. may feel ‘normal’ to the WIC, but it’s actually acting out, ‘throwing up’ & copying one or more of our family members
on to innocent victims, who are not responsible for our damage, & can’t heal us, OR
on the original perpetrators, trying to force them to acknowledge our suffering & their abuse – to no avail.

RECOVERY Growth
This is when using “influence/ persuasion” (normal manipulation) is required. The WIC has been running our inner world all of our life, which has given it a sense of power, no matter how illusory.  Now we’re saying – No – do it this new way, & the kid says “F-U”.  So we need to find different ways around the resistance to disobeying our early training.
WALL 2<—- > Find the chink in the wall of defense mechanisms, BY:
• Providing logical & accurate arguments to counter the cognitive distortions (mental cons / mind-games) of the WIC or PP
EXP: “You don’t have the power to harm another person (parents) by just feeling your feelings – in an appropriate place & in a safe way” //  “You cannot be both damaged (fixable) & defective (un-fixable)”

• Making a bargain with the WIC for something legitimate it wants very much, & so will give in a little to get it
EXP: I’ll take you to the movies/comedy show/ dance…. if you quietly let me do my Adult work first. THEN – you, the grownup, must keep your promise as soon as possible – or you lose all credibility.

• Regularly using exercises for the Right Brain, to bypass or reprogram the Left Brain’s negative thinking, along with using new info, insight & understanding (Left brain)
EXP: meditation, drawing, music & dance, prayer, making collages…..& things like Brain Gym & Bio-Feedback to reorganize & restore the natural balance of the mind.  Studying & then using NLP for ourselves is helpful in correcting actions, beliefs & emotional reactions  (MORE...)

AND Inner Child visualizations (try out several from Yahoo listings – to find the ones you like)

A THOUGHT: See if this article for parents can be applied to you & your Inner Child “How to stop manipulative Behavior”

NEXT: Manipulating OTHERS (Part 3a)

ACoAs MANIPULATING Self & Others (Part 2b)

child in charge 

PREVIOUS: Manipulating OURSELVES (Part 2a)

DEF: Con / conning – to persuade by deception, cajolery…..

REVIEW posts: “Weak decision styles (1-3)
// Why Are you Stuck? // What to DO when confused
// Actions – Healthy opposites

 

INNER CHILD Ego State
WIC’s manipulation
As laid out in other posts (ACoAs & S-H), the WIC is so used to having to do everything itself, with little or no resources & info, that it believes it still has to be that way – even tho it’s terrified & full of self-loathing. What an awful double bind!
Originally, being in a powerless situation as children we got a little sense of power & control by doing everything for ourselves AND doing without. So NOW – the WIC will try to sabotage any attempt by our healthier Voice (True Self) to take over, in order to stay attached to the PP!

OUTSIDE: The WIC cons us about our dealings with the whole world, especially at work —
— that showing up/ being visible means that we’ll be judged
— that we have to work extra hard & do the impossible to not get fired
— that we have to know everything, or we’ll be humiliated
— that being ‘perfect’ is the only way we’re allowed to live
— that we have to give others whatever they want so they won’t leave..

FALSE: ALL forms of self-conning are lies! We need to regularly remind the WIC that he/she —
— is NOT the one who is supposed to work, that’s only for the adult
— is NOT seen by other adults, they only see the grownup-us
— is NOT responsible for the company’s agenda, the demands of bossed, the plight of co-workers…..
— is NOT supposed to be in charge of every-day functioning. That’s the job of the UNIT – Healthy Adult/ Loving Parent.he world.

INSIDE: The WIC cons us with Self-Hate, to not have to be our own motivator & be in charge of our life –
— I’m stupid, stupid, bad, bad, wrong, wrong, weak, weak…..
— I don’t know how to do anything, & too dense to learn
— No one loves me, and no one ever willS-H results
— I can’t love anyone, I don’t know how to connect
— No one is safe & I can’t trust anyone

— No one will ever help me or be there for me
— I’d be better off dead, they’d be happier
— I’m boring, in the way, too much trouble
— I’ll never safe, happy, have my dreams
— I don’t have a right to ….
— If I let go of them I’ll die -OR- they’ll die!
— I wouldn’t recognize a healthy person if I fell over them
— I have to rescue them. I’ll do anything to make them feel better, not feel abandoned, stop drinking, be happy…..

SELF-‘conning’ is a long-standing pattern of functioning from the False Self, & both forms of sabotage (a. actions & b. emotional) come from the PP & the WIC

give up on actionsa. ACTION/practical
As mentioned in other posts, even when we try to move toward a legitimate goal,
such as physical self-care, talking to the Wounded Child, going for a better job….
we may take a few steps in that direction, & then either we hit a snag (don’t get the response we want from others…)
or we blank out, get sidetracked, feel too tired, “why bother’….& give up.
<——–
So – yet again the WIC has conned us into NOT leaving ‘home’, even tho that home is now mainly in our head. It keeps us from starting or sticking to healthier ways of functioning.
TOXIC RULE: “I must always struggle but never get there”

After a few attempts we hit a brick wall & can’t go any further – but rarely know why. No matter how many times we try, it seems impenetrable, no way to break thru!
To continue toward any positive goal would mean S & I, & that can trigger terror in the kid, so much so that it prevents us from even trying to push past the resistance. Actually getting to our goals would represent a disconnect from everything we’ve ever known. This can create a feeling of separation-anxiety, by re-experiencing our childhood sense of devastating aloneness.
AND according to the Toxic Rules, it would meWALL 1an having ‘the gall to focus on ourselves’ instead of everyone else (really our parents) – which the WIC can not bear to risk.

• One reason we don’t break thru the ‘resistance wall’ is IF we haven’t developed a strong enough (or any) rapport between the WIC & our UNIT.
• Another is IF we don’t allow ourselves to feel, because we  haven’t learned how to cope with intense emotions. To do so would require doing a lot of emotions-release work, sharing them in the right place so we’re not alone with the pain, along with soothing & comforting the Child in ways that suit us.

The PP is so strong in us & the WIC so devoted to our early training that – in the early stages of FoO recovery – we cannot go directly toward worthwhile goals. So we need to find indirect ways to approach both — the way we talk to the WIC, & how we go about taking healthier actions (More in Part 2c)

NEXT: Manipulating OURSELVES (Part 2c)

ACoAs MANIPULATING Self & Others (Part 2a)

heart-conned

PREVIOUS: Manipulation & Needs (Part 1)

SITE:   8 Negative Thoughts That Manipulate Your Mind

REMINDER: See ACRONYM page for abbrev.

 

ACoAs MANIPULATING OURSELVES
While we think of ourselves as victims – which we were as children BUT are no longer – we are now victimized internally by our Negative Introject as well as our damaged Adapted Child, who desperately clings to the old ways. Fed by the PP & constantly reinforced by the WIC, Self-Hate carries a powerful energy – to prevent us from being able to S & I, in order to have a better, more satisfying life.kid-whipped

Even in Recovery, some of find it very hard to shift out of paranoia, self-destructiveness, hopelessness & procrastination. These & many other ‘character defects’ are expressions of our WIC, who is looking for parents to take care of her/him, & is adamantly opposed to having our own positive UNIT be that caretaker! (inner parent & adult). In truth, the WIC only wants the original parents – to love us unconditionally.

A kids, because we were continually around addicts, abusers – Wounded Children themselves – in our most vulnerable years, we had no choice but to absorb their distorted view of us, themselves & the world. Most of what they passed on to us are manipulations – anything to not look at themselves or take responsibility for their words & actions. Sadly, we are doing exactly the same thing – which many of deny & are insulted at the very suggestion.

WIC-PP alliance
Program & others Personal Growth modalities tell that all Recovery & emotional maturity is “an inside job”, yet many of us keep focusing outside of ourselves. So, while we only think of Manipulation as something done to others, for us as ACoAs, the most intense manipulation is internal, coming from the PP who controls the WIC, who in turn constantly tries to convince our rational self of what the PP is saying. The PP is especially loud when we try to take the power away from it – to take care of ourselves, by loving our Inner Child (wounded & healthy parts) in all the ways our original family never could.

PP’s Manipulation (Negative Introject)
Everything the WIC believes originally came from the people we grew up with. Now the PP is in our head, continuing the barrage of lies. To keep us attached to the toxic family system, it uses every dirty trick in the book to paralyze us.  It’s made up of the ‘us/we’, a composite of the adults who programmed our thinking & outlook on life.
It says to the WIC:
— you’re crazy, over-reacting, too sensitive
— you don’t know what you’re talking about
— you can’t do it without us, you’re too weakStep on the WIC
— WE NEED you, only WE count, we’re suffering
— you don’t really feel that way
— you’ll be sorry when we’re gone
— you’re ungrateful – look at everything we’ve done for you
— it was never that bad, you’re just being a dram queen/king
— you owe us, we did the best we could

PROBLEM: Physically an Adult, but still emotionally immature:
1. We believe these manipulative lies, so we consistently, persistently don’t counter the lies the WIS & PP are selling, perpetuating our S-H
2. In reality we do have intuition, we’ve accumulated a great deal of knowledge & experiences, had moments of clarity, have very real choices & opportunities…. which the WIC ignores, forgets or completely negates
3. There have been a few people who have helped us along the way, we have had a few pleasurable moments, there have been a few opportunities to heal & grow, but we undervalue or deny them completely! And for some us – there have been more than a few. Yet we let the underlying Toxic Messages keep winning out.

REVIEWA-P-C
It’s important to remember that we all have an Inner Parent, but for us as ACoAs & addicts, one part of this Ego State (voice) is usually contemptuous & cruel, while another part may be kindly but weak, both sides neglectful in important ways.
“Introjections involve attitudes, behaviors, emotions & perceptions that are usually gathered from influential or authoritative people in one’s life. They are neither digested nor analyzed; they are simply adopted as a part of one’s personality as concepts that one considers should be believed or behaviors that one thinks ought to be followed.” (MORE…..)

Freudian: Introjection is “The internalization of authority” – the demands & expectation of our parents, & so by extension society, which become part of our personality structure. This creates a conflict between externally imposed rules & our own repressed, socially unacceptable, desires & needs. However, (except for psychotics / sociopaths / malignant narcissists), the super-ego provides an endless self-policing process, to reinforce family restrictions long after the original authority is changed, unavailable or gone.

Object Relations Theory: D. W. Winnicott said that when we use the defense mechanisms of projection or introjection …. we (temporarily) hand over omnipotence to another person, letting them be our manager – even tho they may never be aware of it!

A classic example of Introjection is Butters Stotch, in SOUTH PARK, who seems to have completely internalized his alcoholic father’s frequent use of grounding as a punishment.

Review POSTS: Negative Benefits // Emotions & the Body // Dealing with the PP (healing)

NEXT: Manipulating OURSELVES (Part 2b)

ACoAs MANIPULATING Self & Others (Part 1)

controling manipulator

PREVIOUS: Multiple Intelligences

SITE: “Steve Jobs – biography by Walter Isaacson  & Commentary by Dave Smith

NOTE: See ACRONYM page for abbrev.

 

DEFs : Manipulation (M) is made up of a series of statement &/or actions, always indirectly trying to &/or succeeding in get our needs/wants met, in round-about ways

Normal – must be used sparingly, & only when there is no other legitimate option. When used for good, one can try to manipulate others to help a worthy cause, but even when well-intended, for M to be effective it has to target people’s weak spots.

Unhealthy  – Because M is never straightforward, it can be really hard to spot, especially when used by an experiences & skilled perpetrator, for strictly selfish reasons (narcissistically). The controlling aspects are sometimes very subtle, so can easily be overlooked or denied – our awareness buried under obligation, love, guilt, fear of abuse, FoA & long-term exposure.

Severe – A perpetrator / bully forcefully controlling another group or individuals who feel or are actually powerless to resist (child, battered spouse, sex slaves, gang members, war victims…..) to satisfy the manipulator’s ‘sick’ needs

PURPOSE – For ACoAs, addicts & other wounded people:
M. is used to try getting needs/wants met by a variety of underhanded tactics, to extract from other PPT something they may or not want to give
OR trying to force PPT (person, group, environment) to provide something we need/want which they actually do not have to give
AND which in many cases we can provide for ourselves OR find a more direct way of obtaining something we lack – but from a more appropriate source

Re. NEEDS: It’s important to note the 2 major catmental fitness pyramidegories of needs.
Most of the time (without deep FoO work) we compulsively,slavishly insist on reinforcing the pattern set out for us by our unhealthy upbringing. This insures that we stay deprived in the same ways we did as kids.
Normal needs
a: Those which EVERYONE has, & which we can’t get rid of because they’re fundamental to our humanity

b: Needs specific to YOU, based on your native personality
EXP: need to be/live near water, or near other outdoor nature // need to be artistic/creative // need to be orderly/organized….

c. AND to some degree your specific needs in response to childhood PTSDnegative experiences & severe trauma, endlessly repeated

EXP
: need to live in one location for the rest of one’s life after moving 10-20 times as kid // need to not be around crazy/angry people – at all, ever! // need for a great deal of predictability….

Unhealthy ‘needs’/compulsive desires —
• to please & be approved of by parents who can’t be pleased
• to stay in unhappy, unsuitable or abusive relationships, jobs…. for fear of having to feel abandoned & obey Toxic Rules
• to hang on to negative thinking & actions, believing it’s ‘safe’
• to keep using addictions (sex, food, spending, internet, chemicals….)
so we don’t have to face the pain underneath
• to keep trying to fix other people, especially those who don’t want to change/grow/improve
• to keep chasing people who don’t want to connect with us, always finding the one person in the group who will reject us
• to always be one-up on others, to show off, to act superior
• to grab & hang on to position, power, status…. at any cost to others
• to always be the center of attention   (Add your own)

MANIPULATIONsqueeze my brain
M= serving a hidden agenda, in an attempt to coerce another person into giving in. Perpetual manipulators present themselves as strong & in control, but have a great deal of insecurity under the facade & a deep sense of personal powerlessness about getting their needs met – directly. They can’t connect to or keep healthy, loving relationships

vs Influenceinfluence
This is used on other people to advance our goals – a mark of normal social interactions – in general & a way of functioning effectively in the world – personally. It uses direct, honest communication, recognizing the integrity, boundaries & rights of others, including the right to not go along with the attempted persuasion

vs Boundaries (Bs)
Knowing our rights & personal needs so well that we can set Bs byB invade telling others what’s acceptable & what’s not – in our interactions with them. Like with influence, it’s also direct, but it’s a way of getting our needs met without depending on other people’s help or co-operation. It comes from having permission to provide for oneself, & having access to choices
vs Personality Disorders (PDs)
In PDs, manipulation is a defensive style which permeates a person’s every interaction, even tho they may hide their true intention, & act in ways that look ‘normal’, which in itself is a manipulation.

NEXT : Manipulating OURSELVES (Part 2a)

TYPES of ANSWERS (Part 2)

answer types 

I’M MUCH LESS CONFUSED
when I know what kind of answers I’m hearing

PREVIOUS: Types of Qs (Part 3)

QUOTES: “You can tell whether a man is clever by his answers. You can tell whether a man is wise by his questions” ~ Naguib Mahfouz, Egyptian writer

“The reason I talk to myself is that I’m the only one whose answers I accept.” ~ George Carlin

3 WAYS to RESPOND
UGLY – not responding at all.
• ‘Legitimate’ only if protecting yours3 ways to answ.elf or someone important to you, a legal matter or matter of national security.
• Uncomfortable – not responding when asked an impertinent, rude or sensitive Qs

BAD – forcing the person asking the Q to work hard to figure out what the answer actually is. Not getting to the point, making things too complicated, or leaving out vital info…. leaves the listener confused, uncertain & frustrated – even if they finally figure out what the point was.

GOOD – making clear, declarative statements right away.
Especially in business settings, the most effective type of answer summarizes the bottom line succinctly first, and then gives supporting or background information if needed.

Categories of Responses:
Direct Info (“I won’t be able to go with you on Wednesday”)
Yes (“Yes, I do need to know what time you’re leaving…”)
No (“No, I don’t understand what you’re asking…”)
Maybe/ I’m not sure (“I might not be able to finish that in time…”)
Tip – with this last one, it’s always a good idea to continue with “…but what I do know is…” (Chart)

PROCEDURE for Answering
• Consider any Q an opportunity to provide information about yourself
• Pause a couple of seconds before responding, even if you know exactly what you want to say, to put your thoughts in order – to be clear & avoid misunderstandings
• Ask for clarification if you don’t understand the Q
• Be positive, don’t be afraid to say how you feel, or mention your skills & accomplishments – if relevant
• Ask the questioner if they understood your answer. Don’t be afraid to clarify or repeat your point

RESPONDING to:
Qs of Fact or Procedure
The purpose of these Qs is to gather/share knowledge, & the answer is a matter of rule, requiring evidence & reasoning. There is either a right & or a wrong answer
types of responsesQs of Judgment
Because these Qs lend themselves to debate in order to identify the best solution, answers require evidence & reasoning through multiple viewpoints. There’s no one correct answer, only better & worse ones
Qs of Preference
Answers are a matter of preference, calling for subjectivity, since the purpose of these Qs is to elicit opinions & personal tastes (Dr. L. Elder & Dr. R. Paul)

* * * * * * * *
MAIN TYPES of Answers
AVOIDING
When asked a ‘difficult’ or sensitive Q that would reflect badly on the responder or their ‘party’, tactics can include answering a Q with a Q, trying to draw attention to some positive aspect of the topic, totally changing the subject… Politicians are especially well-known for using this style

DIRECT & HONEST
This is what the questioner is looking for when asking a Q. Usually given in declarative sentences.  “Keep it simple —”

DISTORTING
Distorted answers tend to be based on a responder’s ‘understandinSdistorted answ.g’ of social norms, stereotypes & other forms of bias.  Different from lying, people may not realize their answers are influenced by prejudice, or they exaggerate to seem more ‘normal’ or successful.

LYING
Ultimately a form of protection, no matter how unnecessary, ‘unhealthy’ or harmful. A questioner may be able to pick up on a lie based on how plausible the answer is, but also on any non-verbal communication used immediately before, during &/or after the answer is given.

OUT of CONTEXT
The respondent will say something totally unconnected or irrelevant to the Q, or try to change topics. The answer may seem ‘logical’ to the speaker because what lead up to their answer is silently processed in their head, but all that’s verbalized is the end result – so it won’t make sense to the questioner, not being a mind-reader. In all such cases – if the issue is important enough – it’s necessary to focus the rssponder back to the original Q by repeating or rewording it

PARTIAL – People can often be selective about which questions or parts they wish to answer. This can cause confusion or distortion

REFUSING – The respondent may simply refuse to answer, either by remaining silent or by saying, ‘I am not answering’

STALLING – Althoscary Qsugh similar to avoiding answering a question, stalling can be used when more time is needed to formulate an acceptable answer.  One way to do this is to answer the question with another question.

NEXT:

TYPES of Questions (Part 1c)

5 simple Qs

ASKING Qs THE RIGHT WAY
is a way of respecting someone

PREVIOUS: Types of Qs (Part 1b)

SITE: “Mutual Inquiry: 8 Steps to Deepen & Shift Thinking”

QUOTE: “Most misunderstandings in the world could be avoided if people would simply take the time to ask, “What else could this mean?”  ― Shannon L. Alder

TYPES of Questions (Qs) – mainly from the “Q Tool Kit” (cont)
PLANNING
Qs that require thinking about how to structure the search for info, where to look & what resources will be needed, such as time, location, people…. It’s standing back & looking at the big picture before starting out. It also includes looking ahead to identify possible obstacles & consequences (“ Who ha written the best boo on this subject? // What clothes will I need for this trip? // MORE….)

PROVOCATIVE
Qs that are meant to challenge, push or throw conventional wisdom off-balance. They give free rein to doubt, disbelief & skepticism, often used in satire, parody or as an expose. These Qs are not always welcomed. They’re like the court jester whispering unpleasant truths in the king’s ear. The fool could often get away with Qs never allowed a legitimate member of the council, but he might also lose his head if the monarch took offense. (“Where’s the beef? // What’s you point?”)

probing QsPROBING
Qs that look below the surface to the heart of the matter, every Q answered leading to another one. Continually searching for more insight, the best results come from a convergence of 3-4 relevant elements of a subject, to get something far more pointed and powerful (“What made you want to go to the Middle East”? // MORE….)

Best used when dealing with someone who is evasive, or when trying to understand a specific issue. They’re usually CLOSED, looking for clarity about what someone’s saying, or good for getting to the root cause of a problem – by drilling down fast. Probing the cause of a problem may require going down several layers. Asking “WHY” after each answer – 5x – can be very revealing. Most people don’t consciously know they have deeper & deeper ‘reasons’ until asked.

REQUESTING
Qs specifically to gain for permission, or assistance:
“Would you lend me $20?” // “May I leave the room?”// Can I have that last piece?” // “Can I take my holiday from 12/12 to 1/12?”

RHETORICAL
Qs that don’t require an answer, & can be in various forms. It’s often
used by public speakers to get the audience to think. (“Who doesn’t hope to stay healthy in their old age?”) or a comedian engaging with the audience (“… or is it just me?”
Can be used to make a point, show off the questioner’s knowledge, or corner someone in an argument. The questioner is not looking for an answer, since they already knows it, but have an alternative motive.(“What time do you call this?” // “Why are you so stupid?” // “Are you kidding me?)
They can be in the form of the Disguised Imperative – a Q highlighting a demand, & usually requires an action rather than an answer. (“Do we wear our muddy shoes in this house?” / “Are you really going to wear that tie?”)

sifting QsSORTING / SIFTING
Qs that allow us to manage the large & sometimes confusing amount of info available, culling & keeping only what’s pertinent & useful. Relevancy is the main criterion that determines what’s saved & what’s ignored (“How much of what you told me actually happened / really important?”)

STRATEGIC
Qs that focus on ways to Make Meaning. They are raised during the actual hunting, gathering, inferring & synthesizing of info when researching a subject. Along with Planning Qs, the researcher must use a variety of tools & strategy while working in unfamiliar territory (“What do I do next? What thinking tool is most apt to help me with this problem?”)

TELLING
Qs that are built with such precision that they provide sorting & sifting during the gathering or discovery process. They help to gather only the very specific evidence required, focused only on those facts which throw light on the main issue at hand (“ Based on crime rates, property tax rates, employment possibilities & housing conditions, which of the 3 cities X.Y.Z. would you choose to live in?”)

UNANSWERABLE
Qs that serve like boundary stones, helping to tell us when we have pushed insight to its outer limits. When exploring Essential Qs (most of which are ultimately unanswerable) we may have to settle for just “shining a light” on them. The Truth may never be found, but may extend the level of understanding & reduce the intensity of the darkness (“What is God? // How soon can I let go of my pain / will I get well…. ?”)

Combine OPEN Q with SILENCE
Knowing when to be quiet, when to let the other person pause & then continue.silent Qs
It give the potential responder a chance to reflect, & then offer any additional thoughts that may surface. It’s particularly useful when wanting to encourage deep meaningful communication from someone.
However, to get the most out of a conversation it’s important to reassure the person that your silence is not a pressure to ‘perform’ or to have the ‘right’ answer.

NEXT: TYPES of ANSWER

TYPES of Questions (Part 1b)

Qs re ME 

I WANT TO FIND OUT
all I can about myself!!

PREVIOUS: Types of Qs (Part 1a)

SITE: The Incredible Power Of The Right Questions

QUOTE: “Usually it’s the things you don’t know or don’t want to know that cause you the most trouble.”

TYPES of Questions (s) – mainly from the “Q Tool Kit” (cont)
FUNNELING
Qs that channel the respondent’s answers with a series of Qs that get narrower at each step, starting with open Qs, & ending with closed ones, or vice-versa:
a. From SPECIFIC to BROAD (Deductive)specifics first
Starts by asking a person to remember as many specifics of a situation as possible, & then work toward more general observations (“You saw that hit-&-run accident. What can you tell me about the man & his car?”)
b. From BROAD to SPECIFIC (Inductive)general info first
Here the responder is asked for an overview of a situation, & then using the big picture, try to remember as many specific details as they can (“If everyone has the ability to learn, then why do you think you can’t?”)

HYPOTHETICAL
Qs designed to explore possibilities & test relationships. They usually project a theory or an option out into the future, wondering what might happen if… Especially helpful when trying to decide between a number of choices, trying to solve a problem, or deciding if hunches, suppositions or hypotheses have any merit (“What do you think would happen of you let yourself be successful?”)

INFORMATIONAL
Qs designed to gather facts, searching for needed in a specific context, re some aspect, concept, issue, or problem. They ‘power’ all learning. (“How many inches in a mile?”)

INVENTIVEinventive Qs
Qs that turn findings inside out, upside down. They adjust, alter, distort, modify & rearrange bits & pieces of info – until they produce a Eureka moment – the discovery of something brand new (“If I combine these 5 yarns, I wonder if it would make a beautiful sweater?”)

IRRELEVANT
Qs that are made to distract, sidetrack or divert from the task or conversation at hand. This may be a tactic to keep others off-balance, get away from a sensitive topic or protect the speaker from being caught out. (“So, what did you say about the weather?”)
However, this type of Q can also be beneficial, since the creation of new knowledge almost always requires some wandering off course.
“The search for Truth requires the courage to venture out and away from the familiar and the known ….” From Moby Dick (”How can we understand the unconscious”?)

IRREVERENT
Qs that explore ideas or facts generally considered off-limits or over-the-top.. They challenge far more than conventional wisdom, holding no respect for authority, institutions or myths, leaping over, under or through walls, rules & regulations. They are considered disrespectful, or at the very least impolite, but are often used in comedy routines (“Why is the Emperor not wearing any clothes?”)

LEADINGleading Qs
Qs that are phrased in such a way that sets up a person to answer the way the questioner wants – to agree with their point of view or pointing the listener in a certain direction. It’s not always done deliberately but is an easy trap to fall into.  EXP: “How much do you think this investment will grow?” indirectly implies it will grow, the issue is only how much. If the responder doesn’t catch the logic error, they’ll likely give a biased response.

OPEN -ended
Qs that allow for much longer responses (than Closed ones), so are potentially more creative & informative, encouraging responders to be in control. They’re not ‘Why’ Qs, but rather ‘What or How’. They deal with unresolved issues not been finally determined, so ask the responder to reflect, give opinions & feelings. (“What are your personal strengths & weaknesses?”) (MORE…..)

ORGANIZING
Qs that group info into categories, forming logical structures. Finding patterns & relationships among & between collected fragments of info to create meaning & understanding. Whenever new valuable info surfaces, it can be added correctly to ta structure already in place. (“How can I make sense of all my confusing thoughts? // what categories do they fit into?”)

questionnaireQUESTIONNAIRE
Qs in list form, for research or survey designed to gather specific info. They have 4 basic purposes: (1)  to collect the appropriate data (2) make data compare-able & suitable for analysis (3) minimize bias in formulating & asking other Qs (4) make Qs engaging & varied (“Please fill out this Questionnaire about your dining experience”)

NEXT: Types of Qs – Part 3