Where communication becomes meaningless It is these things we do because we have to do them. You cannot stop them if you wanted to, but they serve no purpose anymore. They are just rituals. Sometimes there is communication and you don’t know if it is sincere. If somebody wishes you happy ne year, it could be because they mean it but it could also be just politeness. Because you don’t know if it is sincere, wishing somebody happy new year has lost it’s meaning. When I see a colleague on January second I have to say happy new year. Maybe I mean it, but there is no way of knowing it is sincere.
Now social people will object to this. They will be offended and say that they really mean it. But these socials will also say happy new year to that colleague that they hate. But socials really have to believe in these rituals, they have to believe it is sincere. I think this is because when people wishes them a happy new year it gives them a good feeling. If they believed it to be a lie they wouldn’t feel good about it. They fool themselves so they don’t have to face the fact that people are lying to them. That a lot of the attention and compliments they get are just meaningless rituals.
Think for example about valentine’s day. I skipped it once and my wife was very upset with me. The next year she reminded me so I wouldn’t forget. So she must know I only do this because she tells me to and to avoid a fight. But then comes valentine’s day and I give her some gift. And she gets all woozy and weepy and happy. Now she feels happy and loved. It really amazes me. She knew it was under pressure that I gave her this gift. And still she felt loved and appreciated when she received the gift. She could have known that it was just a ritual.
How does the mind of the social work here? On the one hand you can force somebody to buy a gift. And on the other feel loved and appreciated when you receive it. How can you fool yourself when it is so obvious? What does it say about the other rituals when it is not so clear that you are dealing with a lie. Is it possible that somebody can lie to himself? My guess is that the social really thinks it is sincere despite the evidence against it. So I asked my wife “why do I have to buy a gift when I go to a birthday.” In my opinion you do it because everybody does it and if you don’t do it people will hate you. But she said you do it so the other person feels appreciated. It is a token of friendship. But wait, I just told her why I HAVE to buy a gift. I do not have a choice, it is mandatory. How can something that is mandatory be a token of friendship. I off course did not convince her.
It keeps amazing me, these social artifacts. How people respond to them as if they are genuine, even if they clearly are not. But it is impossible to stop. You could think they are silly, but if you stop wishing people a happy new year or a happy birthday it will not take long before you become an outcast. So if you want to play with they socials you just have to play along with it.
Most socials are really insecure and therefore they seek confirmation all the time. Be gentle when you see this insecurity. Rudeness here can fast track to a fight.
For example my wife asks me which dress she should wear. Most of the times I do not care at all what she wears. But if I would say this, even if I would say it very gently I would be entering a minefield. A wrong answer would be, for example, “Anything is fine by me, I think you always look lovely”. Sounds friendly, but it leads to trouble. So I answer her question with a lie. I do not care at all about what she wears so I make something up. “Why don’t you try the yellow one.” Don’t expect it to be over though. You might have avoided a fight, but you are not there yet. She could answer “Really? Don’t you think the blue one is better.” You could say “The blue one is very nice, that could work”. Never say “whatever, the blue or the yellow it doesn’t matter”, because to her it does matter. It might take some time but if you just keep answering the questions it will eventually end and you will have avoided a fight.
I really don’t get it though. Why don’t they know what they like. Why the doubt? Just put something on and be over with it. What does it matter. If I had to make a guess I think it is the opinion of others. The socials are always busy with the opinion of others. And you can never be sure what others think. So that would lead to a lot of insecurity. Constantly guessing what others might think.
Because of the clothing example you could think it is a girl thing. Maybe girls are a bit more insecure, but men are still very insecure. They might not ask you beforehand for you opinion but they still value the opinion of others very highly. Because of this men tend to overcompensate. Just to be sure they get the approval of others. They might want a tv and they are deciding to have one with or without the 3D feature. He knows he will barely use that feature and it cost about three times as much. But they need to make sure their friends think highly of them so they go for the 3D tv. Afterwards they will beg everybody for confirmation. First they will bore you with the specs of the thing and then they will ask “So what do you think of it”. And then they will look at you with those expecting eyes waiting for that bit of confirmation they so grave. You will just have to say it is great otherwise he will probably won’t sleep at night. Suppose you you just shrug when you see the thing. Afterwards he will probably be upset and convince his wife that I was just jealous but I didn’t want to show it. So guys are really insecure too, the packaging is just different.
I think the need for confirmation starts with the fear of other peoples opinions. Other people must think you are cool and look good. I don’t get it. Why is the opinion of others so important. Why does somebody else have to like my tv? I am the one watching it, not them. And I certainly wouldn’t spend extra money just to get the approval of others. Well, that’s not entirely true. I pretend to be a social so I have to play by their rules. But it won’t affect my self esteem if somebody has a bad opinion about me. I maybe don’t get it, but if it works it works. Some compliments can work very well in these situation. You will definitely look more social and they will like you more and that helps you blend in.
The green poison of many relationship. You know the stories of relationships gone bad because one of he partners was very jealous. It leads to fights and the other partner will feel smothered. But no jealousy at all in your relationship will be bad as well. If my wife thought I didn’t care whether she is with some guy or not she would be very upset. And she will even like if she thinks that I am jealous. In all the relationships I had the women expected me to be a bit jealous. I think that some jealousy in a relationship is necessary.
Because I am not really connecting with people I do not get jealous. The worst that can happen is that she will leave me. And I can live with that. If she does not want to be with me no more, to so be it. My guess is that the basis for jealousy is the fear of being alone or the fear of abandonment. Socials can’t stand being alone for to long. And abandonment is something that is really a big thing for them. Abandonment is I guess a mix of loneliness and rejection. And rejection means not being liked. And for some reason socials really want to be liked. It is really a big thing for them. I think it has to with self-esteem too. The opinion of others is a really big thing for socials. And abandonment sends the message that somebody does not think very highly of you. Jealousy triggers the fear of abandonment. And abandonment leads to a feelings of loneliness, rejection and low self esteem. I do not get lonely so I have no fear of loneliness. And I do not really care about the opinion of others. So I guess that is why I do not experience jealousy.
At first I thought this was a good thing. I heard about jealousy destroying relationships, so I assumed that not being jealous was a good thing. I was wrong. It appears that women will test men to see if they display the right amount of jealousy (maybe men do too). At least the women I was with tested me. They would, for example, tell about an ex-boyfriend she met at the mall. That they had a nice conversation etc. Then they would see how I reacted. And I didn’t react as I should have. I asked some questions to appear interested. Ask what they talked about for example. When I didn’t get jealous two things could happen. They were upset because I didn’t care or they would continue testing me. Maybe trying a bit harder. For example talking to a boy at a party while ignoring me. Being ignored doesn’t bother me at all so at first I would not respond to this. Eventually she would get upset with me.
This lack of jealousy would be interpreted as a lack of love. Which is maybe somewhat accurate, although I think I love her, but maybe not in a way I can easily explain to her. She would think I didn’t care for her. If kept on this behavior the relationship would cool of and probably end. So I needed to change my behavior. It was necessary to for me to display some amount of jealousy. You could say that you don’t like it when they keep contact with ex-boyfriend. Maybe ask whether she would consider ending these relationships. Don’t push it, just let her know you care. The challenge here is to show the right amount of jealousy. If she says in a teasing voice while smiling “your jealous” then you have hit the jackpot. Then she likes the jealousy, the feeling of being wanted.
Jealousy is a strange thing. People like to be trusted and therefore you should not be jealous. But they also want to feel wanted and that is why they like it if you are jealous. So it is balancing between jealousy and trusting. To make it even more challenging every woman (and man) needs a different amount of jealousy. But if you get it right it works really works well. The right amount of jealousy could work even better than saying outright you love her(or him).
Paradoxically this is a thing a share with the socials. Socials often try to please others and thereby neglect their own needs. I also try to please others quite often but I do it for completely different reasons.
Socials are obsessed with being liked and status. Because of this they often try to please others. For example they try to please their parents because they seek their approval. Or they suck up to their boss to get that promotion they want. Socials do this all the time. Because of this socials have a facade of their own. They try to be someone that is better and more liked. Look at the picture that is portrayed on most facebook pages. There you will see all kinds of people with very interesting lives. People sell themselves on these social media.
But I find myself also pleasing others. Which would appear odd for somebody who proclaims to be asocial. My problem in this is is rooted in two problems. The first is that I chose to keep my asocialism a secret. I think that benefits me more than being openly asocial. If people were to know that my behavior is not genuine they would be appalled. Socials have a very strong reaction to a lack of empathy and asocialism. Therefore I have to act as a social and that means playing that game of pleasing others and keeping up appearances. For instance to keep my job, to fit in as a neighbor etc.
The second problem is that I am very different from other people. That makes it impossible for me to blend in and be genuine at the same time. If I am honest about who I am and what I feel people will hate me and reject me. So to blend in I have to mimic emotions. Genuine sharing is out of the question. What remains is keeping up appearances and therefore pleasing others. It is irritating that I have to be like this. But to me it seems to be best solution for my situation.
And than there is off course the fact that I prefer to be alone. Being among others is 99% pleasing others. I do this because I have to. I need to make I living and from a practical standpoint cooperating with others is often beneficial. I have done this for quite some time. Acting and mimicking is something that comes naturally nowadays. It took some time though. I made some mistakes in the past and it took time to learn how to be social. Now I think people hardly notice that I am not genuine in my emotions.
And so a paradox is born. Someone as asocial as me finds himself pleasing others on a regular basis. I stated before that socials are crazy but asocials come with their own kind of crazy I guess.
Do you know that promise that people like to make “Let’s not keep any secrets, really no secrets at all”. What do people think when they want you to promise something like this. I think it can be one of two things.
First it could be that the person wants you to be honest while at the same time keeping it’s own secrets. I have no problem with that. You keep your secrets and I keep min. And we do this honesty facade. I do this all day, one more wont hurt me. I still do not really understand why people would like this promise. Could they be so naive it could actually work. Maybe people know there is just a small chance it will work. But it bears no cost to make this promise. So why not make this promise. Odd but possible.
The other possibility is scarier. It could be that this person is really serious. That is just plain creepy. Why would anybody be willing to be truly honest. It could be that someone really think you can tell all these gory secrets and think it is ok. You promised right, so now it is ok to tell these dark things about yourself, wrong!. This shows the lack of some really essential social skills. People really can’t handle the truth even if people promise to be truthful. If you don’t believe me try having a serious conversation about picking your nose and eating those boogers. Hey, you promised to be honest about everything.
There is off course the possibility that this person does not have any gory secrets, no dark fantasies and does not even pick his or her nose. Such a person would be creepy and boring at the same time. But making a deal of honesty with this person is just unfair. Can you imagine telling your darkest secrets and in return getting nothing. Or you could keep up the facade. But can you really lie to such a person, such a saint. Off course you can!
Make that promise if you must, but keep your secrets to yourself. And whatever you do, do not make the mistake of refusing to make this vow. That will get you in to a lot of trouble. Yes socials are crazy. The must know that you will not tell your darkest secrets when you make such a promise. But refusing to make this promise because it is pointless will get you in to a lot of trouble. Remember, when dealing with socials don’t try to understand them, follow the rules!
Often I dream away in my inner world. When I sit in the train or when I am at a birthday-party, my mind wanders away. This inside world is more important to me than the outside world. It is the world where I am me. This inner world is not always a nice world, but it is my world. This is my place. The place where I am me.
The outside world is about keeping up appearances. It is about being something I am not. It is the obligations I have to fulfill to make it in this world. It is all about survival. It is putting on that fake smile and feigning interest in other people.
It is keeping my colleagues happy. Going to that birthday party of my mother because that is what I am supposed to do. The outside is all about doing what one is supposed to do. I do not feel comfortable in that world.
The inner world is the world where I live. I mean by living that which is more than just survival. My inner world is about my needs and my fantasies. It is my home.
The inner world is not something that is exclusive for the asocial. Socials have an inner world too. The difference I think is that socials also feel at home in the outside world. They are able to enjoy a birthday party for example. For the asocial the outside world is a necessary evil . The outside world is about survival and the inside world is about living.
One of the best trick I ever learned was the empathic answer. The empathic answer works way better than the autobiographic answer which I used a lot up until that time. The autobiographic answer is framed from our perspective. I somebody tells you that his dog died you could answer from your own experiences. That you experienced the same thing. Or you could give a solution to the problem. Maybe this person could buy a new pet. What the autobiographic answer does is impose your views and opinion upon others.
When giving an empathic answer, you do not judge. You just sympathize with the other. You could say that the other must feel bad about losing his pet. There are a lot of ways to give empathic answers. But I will focus on two of them. First “that must feel bad” or “that is nice for you” or something similar. The second is the phrase “I understand”. It works like a charm.
The nice thing about the empathic answer is that you do not really need to listen. You need know whether the message is positive or negative. But that’s about it. You just give lame responses like “that really nice”. “good for you” and of course “I understand” and “hm hm”. You don’t really need to listen at all. Your mind can wonder to that lovely inner world.
But here’s the greatest thing. When you give empathic answers people will think you are a good listener. When you really make an effort to listen and give your opinion and solutions to the problem socials will think you are not taking them seriously. So less effort means people think you are trying harder. Socials are insane, but if it works it works.
It also works very well when you have an argument with your spouse. They will say you did that and that and that made them feel so and so. There seems no easy way out of this. A fight will follow, and you will probably lose that fight. But there is an easy way out. Just try it “I understand”and “that must have been hard for you”. That will most likely end the argument. And for understanding you earn credit. So much credit you might even be able to continue the behavior that upset her. These arguments are often very silly. But don’t bother trying to convince you spouse of the futility of the matter. Follow the recipe, it will work.
The empathic answer is, to me, a very strange thing. But it seems to work so I use it often. Surviving the social world is often not about understanding socials, but just doing what works. Say you understand something without having a clue what somebody is talking about and they will think you are a good listener. Socials are obviously insane, but I accept the world as it is and I try to survive.