Psychological warfare is the use of propaganda and psychological manipulation to influence a target audience toward the accomplishment of a political, economic, or military goal.
I am severely saddened and a little bit disturbed that the United States of America, with all of its might, has used psychological warfare against its own people. This psychological warfare has been going on for so long that “We the People” have forgotten all about it and allowed it to continue. If a country was being used as a guinea pig in a psychological warfare experiment, and the results were not favorable, the experiment would be discontinued.
The question is this, are we the guinea pigs? I don’t know! But upon researching the concept of psychological warfare, I have concluded, “well, we sure might be.”
From the birth of the United States of America, right up to the present day, we the people have been subjected to an ongoing psychological warfare program, and the war will never end. The war will never end because we are unaware of the full extent of the loss of freedom that has occurred and is still occurring.
From my own investigations into the topic, I do not believe the psychological warfare program is only taking place in the United States, but also in other nations in the world. Secret documents have been leaked to an international news agency revealing that countries like Russia were also singled out for their participation in a psychological warfare program. I’m not making this up, I have read a ton of these leaked documents that a national news agency obtained from one of the countries being subjected to psychological warfare.
Psychological warfare also happens in our ordinary lives. Those who practice psychology know it is possible to conduct surveillance on a person based on subtle clues provided by that person. A common example would be when someone is looking around at the paintings at a museum and then later that person gets hit by a spell that was cast against that person just because they looked at a bunch of paintings.
As I said before, psychological warfare is nothing new, it was being practiced long before I was born, and I didn’t grow up with the computer. But the computer sure made it a hundred times easier to practice psychological warfare, and made it harder to detect as well. We need to be aware that we have been heavily programmed by the government and television while we were in the womb – yes, while we were in the womb.
A major reason why it had to be done while we were in the womb is that we are all born with a superpower called intuition. The government and television program people in that area of the brain the least because that is where people are stronger than them. The rest of the brain has been hard at work since before we were born.
This psychological warfare program is used in all of society’s sectors. An example would be in the media. Investigative journalism has been around a long time, but recently a lot of investigative journalists have been silenced because of the psychological warfare program. The reason behind the attack on the media is that the psychological warfare program is nothing more than an attempt to sustain the illusion of a strong, powerful, invincible USA.
I have also researched the Pentagon and have read about a few situations where they have acted out psychological warfare programs by using the services of individuals who have been trained in the art of covert warfare.
I will not go into the process of the psychological warfare program in any great detail, as I am a writer, not a trained psychologist. However, this book will cover the various branches of psychological warfare. This is so you will be aware of the truth and be able to avoid psychological warfare programs, thus reducing any damage that they may cause you. It is up to you to decide what to do with this information; whether you will simply ignore it, or whether you will react to it positively and vigorously.
The psychological warfare program, though it is a covert program, is not a secret to journalists. While people like ourselves may feel naïve about some of the things we have heard and read regarding psychological warfare, spies think about us, “Hey, we all know about you.”
I’ve met with many reporters who have covered the psychological warfare program, and none of them are aware of any of this information. You would be surprised by the number of people who are aware of this information, and they only talk to other individuals who are already aware of it – they don’t talk about it to the public.
Be aware that the psychological warfare program is always just around the corner – nothing can be taken for granted.
I am of the opinion that the psychological warfare program is being carried out by people in our own government. These people are professionals in covert warfare, and they are professionals in psychological warfare as well.
It is up to you to decide what you will do about the psychological warfare program. React positively or react negatively. How you choose to react will have an effect on your life and the fate of your loved ones, so to speak. The psychological warfare program is so subtle that it is virtually impossible to avoid. Even the most experienced and dedicated truth-seekers may still be subjected to the psychological warfare program.
There is one thing I do know. Our only hope is that we can change the way we react to things for the better.
It is our duty to make positive changes in our lives; create change.
CHAPTER 1: WHY YOU SHOULD KNOW THE ART OF PSYCHOLOGICAL WARFARE
All people have a dark side. Some people just suppress that side and don’t explore all the power it has to offer. You, on the other hand, have decided to explore and even enrich your dark side.
Many benefits await you. Human beings are naturally ruthless and competitive creatures. The only ones who succeed are people who are willing to violate morals and ethics to get to the top. Now that you have decided to do this, you will get to the top too. You will only fall behind and lose in life if you don’t become cutthroat and shameless about going after what you want.
But in our society, we have to at least pretend to follow the current social code of morals and ethics. Otherwise, people will judge us harshly and avoid us. They won’t be as willing to like you and to help you out. Your psychological warfare training will not work if people start to dislike you and avoid you. Therefore, you must create a façade that totally obscures your dark side. You must hide behind an elaborate and beautiful façade that fools people into liking and trusting you. It is the only way to get away with psychological warfare.
Create a Foolproof Façade
So how do you create this lovely, warming façade that fools the world? How should you look to others? How do you hide what you are really up to? How do you make people believe that you mean only the best and that you are not ruthless and self-serving?
Well, deception is part of it. But so is denial. And so is confidence. You can create a very convincing façade if you blend these three elements into your outward projection of yourself. You will create a façade is so convincing that you will have everyone fooled.
It’s OK to lie about yourself and present yourself deceptively if it builds your image. You can use deception to make yourself look good to others.
Just make sure that your lies are not blatant. You want to mislead people by making yourself look good, but you don’t want to lie and look pathetic should you get found out. Always tell at least most of the truth when you talk about yourself.
Let’s say you are on a date. You want to make the best impression but you don’t have a great job. You don’t want to lie outright about your job as you might get caught. Instead, talk up your job and use words that exaggerate the importance of your position.
Focus on your strengths when you speak about yourself, too. Try to show off your strengths. Don’t show off your weaknesses. Downplay your weaknesses to make yourself look better. The better your outward image is and the more positive of a character you appear to have, the more people will like you. Then you will have better luck with people.
Denial can help you appear innocent. There are many aspects to denial. You should combine deception and denial in order to fool people into thinking that you are incapable of wrongdoing.
The victim card is a good one to play. Deny that you have ever done wrong and pretend to be an innocent victim to justify your actions.
You can also pretend that you didn’t know what you did was wrong. You made an honest mistake. Now, you’re repenting and consumed with guilt. Deny that you are immoral and pretend to be the grieving sinner. People will feel that you have a good heart, even if you have messed up in the past. They will forgive you and admire you for your bravery.
You can also just flatly deny that you have done what others say about you. Act shocked when you hear stories about yourself. Then tell people some stories of your own to discredit those who talk badly about you. Deny that you had any involvement in any wrongdoing in the past.
Confidence is the key to creating an innocent and believable façade. In fact, confidence is the key to getting others to like you. People are attracted to those who possess healthy confidence and ego. If you project confidence, you will draw people to you. And then your façade will definitely work.
Have you noticed that vain, narcissistic people are usually the most popular and well-liked? This is because they are totally confident and don’t let others ruffle their feathers. Basically, they have such thick skins that nothing can stir up their insecurities. They are bold and passionate about who they are and what they want. You need to become this way.
Confidence is not just something that you must possess. You can fake it. Faking it will actually make you confident over time. And you can convince others that you possess lots of confidence, even if you really don’t. Start acting confident today. It all lies in body language and speech. If you walk with a straight spine, look people in the eyes, and speak first, you will appear far more confident. You should also speak very directly and avoid stuttering or being inarticulate. Doing this will make you appear as if you have nothing to hide and nothing to be ashamed of, which will inspire trust and admiration in others. This is partly why confidence is so attractive. You may also establish dominance over others by being confident, which gives you that authoritative edge that is so beneficial in persuasion.
You can also take being confident a bit further. Being cocky may go against your nature and your sense of modesty, but it’s really the best way to charm people. Yes, people claim that they are put off by cocky people, yet look who gets the most women or men. Being cocky is not the same as being confident. But it can work for you. Putting on a charmingly cocky façade is a great way to make people feel attracted to you. They won’t know why, but they will feel inexplicably drawn to your suave and vain nature. Be sure to brag about yourself, while also complimenting others. Shamelessly talk to people, forcing your nature on them and never taking no for an answer. Don’t ever speak doubtfully or belittle yourself.
Confidence also helps you justify what you do to yourself. If you believe that you are a great person who deserves the best and that there is nothing wrong with what you are doing to others, then you won’t give away your secret dark side out of guilt, doubt, or hesitation. You will simply act on your desires boldly and shamelessly.
Shockingly, people will believe you more often than not if you act like you are in the right.
CHAPTER 2: WHAT IS PSYCHOLOGICAL WARFARE THEORY?
The term “mental fighting” or “psychological warfare” is utilized to mean any activity which is rehearsed with the intention of inspiring an arranged mental response in other people.
It is utilized to initiate admissions or strengthen dispositions and practices ideal to the perpetrator’s goals, and often includes dark activities or bogus strategies. It is additionally used to pulverize the confidence of foes.
There is proof of mental fighting throughout recorded history. On many occasions, mental fighting endeavors have been utilized widely. Today, the web causes numerous battles of disinformation and falsehood, perpetrated by operators in any place on the planet.
Tactics of Psychological Warfare
Perpetrators of psychological warfare are advised to choose not just ONE of the techniques available, but SE9ERAL at the same time, organizing them into a campaign that will mutually reinforce one other.
This is a key point, and you would do well to note it, because, in order to accomplish true psychological warfare, it requires more than one person’s involvement. It then becomes one of the classic meanings of the word “conspiracy.”
Conspiracy—An agreement to perform together an illegal, wrongful, or subversive act.
Subversive, in the context of this document, means:
A destructive, aggressive activity aimed to destroy your will to resist being forced into conforming with an enemy’s view of who they want you to be, how they want you to act, what views they want you to have, and what decisions they want you to make.
It is a military term in its basic origin and is considered a war tactics.
Since psychological warfare requires a campaign in order to have any chance of working, you can see that this would usually involve more than one person trying to subvert you into giving up your will to fight. And at that point?
You have a conspiracy.
This is why one of the first things trotted out by psychological warfare supporters when they or someone they work for comes under fire publicly for illegal, immoral, and undeserved acts are to call them a “conspiracy theorist.”
See the thing is, in most cases, the people that trot out the Conspiracy Theorist term know for a fact you are telling the truth. Or at least that you are too close to the truth. Their first priority in a well-publicized situation is
to try and prevent others from realizing that it’s true. The goal is both to discredit you by any means possible, and to distract from the hard, cold, truth. Their second priority is to try and wear you down so you’ll stop. It’s always a two-pronged approach that, as you can see, lines up perfectly with their own guidelines for psychological warfare.
There exists in every person, a completely accurate perception of what IS, at any given point in time. And things can change very fast—but so do you.
You don’t live in a void. Other people are always doing this, that, and the other thing. It’s just the way it is. Take a “feeling of having done something wrong.” You will usually have both the feeling that you have done something wrong, and the feeling that THAT idea is wrong. They can both be TRUE in that they both exist, but they cannot both be true as to accuracy.
As long as both are present and part of NOW, you see what is, so you will see perceive BOTH because they exist.
Food for thought.
And remember, it is exactly that kind of effect on a target’s mind that is sought by psychological warfare tacticians.
You have a problem. You can’t decide.
You can’t tell what is true. Or how about this one…
Think that is a “good policy” to have?
No, actually it’s not—not as a policy, that’s for sure. It’s actually quite subversive because it pre-supposes that you are an idiot who can’t tell the truth about something, or that you are an idiot who just accepts whatever passing data crosses your path instantly as truth. Either or both must be taken as a given to even pre-suppose a NEEDING to “question everything.”
Well, here’s what my answer might be, to the person that invented that particular subversive policy:
OK. Why should someone “question everything” when they don’t have a question in the FIRST PLACE?
Sometimes there are things to question, but that’s not the same as actually being uncertain and needing to question in order to find the truth. It’s more of a rhetorical question.
I’ll give you a question that isn’t a question, because neither you nor I have a question about what I’m going to ask. Some like to call this particular rhetorical question “the real question.”
Question: Why are you trying to sell to the rest of us that we are inherently blind, wrong, and ignorant and needing “fixing”?
Everyone’s words don’t need to be questioned as to their truthfulness, but YOURS most certainly do.
Other Tactics of Psychological Warfare
Basically, all tactics of psychological warfare include using mind games on enemies. These are some modern tactics that are extremely dangerous and destructive, however they can be used in any situation:
(1) Heart reaping: This is a tactic where the enemy is successfully distracted from his mission by hearing a suggestive conversation that is directly related to the topic of the mission. His body and mind are disturbed because the nerve synapses will light up and the brain will focus on this feeling.
(2) Long-Distance Suggestion: The act of using expectations to build faith that the mission is possible and that time is on their side. They will exhibit a feeling of unwavering courage.
(3) Human Trafficking: To get the enemy from his position into ambush tactics, illegally recruiting and changing the mind of the enemy.
(4) A Vigilant Disciple: A technique that makes the enemy despair and abandon his mission.
(5) Psychological Intelligence: This is a technique that uses the enemy’s mind against him. It, like other psychological warfare techniques, uses surprises to distract the enemy and cause him to abandon the plan, but this also can actually defeat the enemy. This furthers the psychological warfare tactics to keep the enemy’s mind positioned in any unexpected situations, or just to mess with their mind and make them doubt themselves in their mission.
(6) Mind Reading: Another tactic is called mind reading where the enemy is told to think of one thing and the person doing the reading will be able to see what the enemy is thinking by indirect reasoning. This technique could possibly work on the mind of an enemy that has advanced technology. This could come from a futuristic alien or any kind of scientific advancement.
This is most effective when the enemy’s mind is open to the mind-reading. It will also work best on enemies who are naive.
(7) Monitoring Profile: This is a process where profiles of the enemies are monitored in every way possible until it is possible to predict their movements. This is done using a camera or any other type of viewing device.
(8) Social Engineering: The idea here is to manipulate information and excite the enemy and distract him from the goal of the mission by using a series of propaganda and ideological beliefs.
Psychological warfare tactics will most likely evolve just as humans are constantly evolving. Technology and science will probably come out with a versions of this stuff. The idea is to keep disrupting your enemy’s mind and stop the mission from happening until the enemy is gone.
CHAPTER 3: THE GREATEST EXPONENTS OF THE ART OF PSYCHOLOGICAL WARFARE
Learn to Analyze Friends, Coworkers, Lovers
Learning to apply psychology to friends, coworkers, and lovers is primarily a matter of boundaries. Each person might have different interests in their possible angle of manipulation. Each of us plays a number of different roles throughout our lives. In one role, we are called to be a family member. This might refer to your given or born family, or it might refer to your chosen family. “Chosen family” refers to the people who you include in your life to the closest degree. This might include friends or other people to which you have chosen to be closest.
Coworkers include people we are often required to be around. Some lucky people get to choose who they work with, but most of us are required to work with people at random. Friends are a category of people who we choose to spend our time with, mostly doing enjoyable activities. Lastly, lovers include those with whom we choose to be romantic.
When dealing with friends, we must establish the types of boundaries we want to have. Friendships should bolster your health and overall well-being.
Coworkers are a little trickier because these are not people we necessarily choose to be around. Having a good relationship with coworkers means that you are able to be pleasant and nice and effective in the workplace, while not asking too much about the intimate details of their lives.
Family is yet another category of people with whom we must figure out our relationships. In some cases, a relationship with family members is not possible or necessary. For people who grew up with abusive parents, it can be healthy to cut out traditional family members and grow a new chosen family. However, for many people, family connections are deep and important.
Once you have firmly established the different roles for the people in your life, you can start analyzing whether or not the relationships are equitable. You might find that someone has set up the relationship to be more beneficial for them than for you. You might find that you are manipulating someone else!
Confidence and Charisma
Confidence and charisma are ways to both employ dark psychological tactics on others as well as protect yourself from being manipulated. What do you think of when you think about confidence?
Rather than focusing on the modern conception of positive psychology’s confidence, let’s roll back the tape of history a little bit and consider Machiavelli’s style of confidence. Machiavellianism is defined as a cold and calculating ability to work for and towards your own goals, for yourself. It does not emphasize morality or empathy, and it is an essentially cynical mindset.
Nice guys finish last. That’s the mindset of Machiavellianism. It is all about strength. Cynicism helps to frame the world in a realistic way. People are out to get you and they want to stop you from accomplishing your goals. Think about it. There are not many people who are actually just in the world. -ustice is a concept that is very fluid, and it is rarely placed on the right people. The world is filled with predators, people who want to take advantage of other people. The world is filled with con artists, scams, mind control, brainwashing, and darkness.
One thing that many people have to do to reach this state of confidence is address their unfinished business. This is not business in the conventional meaning of the word. This is business in any form, whether it comes from past relationships, things that happened, things that you have been putting off for a while, or many other things. There can be many sources of unfinished business that have to be addressed.
Non-verbal communication is a huge part of your life, whether you realize it or not. Each time that you talk to a person, there are tons of messages that are being conveyed through the slightest body movements. When you are talking to someone, and you are listening to what they are saying, you are using your mind to connect with them. However, your sight, smell, hearing, and other senses also perceive tons of information that is processed automatically.
Self-realization is a term that comes from the humanistic school of psychology. It references the idea that each person has an authentic self somewhere that can be reached through the process of understanding the self and doing work to achieve a more authentic and real you.
Communication is a huge part of being an effective leader, and it is very important if you want to have charisma and confidence. We use words to describe things, people, feelings, attitudes, theories, philosophies, and so on. We can choose many different words to describe the same thing—and this is where the trouble often starts.
You Are What You Think
Ever heard the expression, “you are what you eat”? There is a variation on that phrase that I enjoy, it goes: “You are what you think.” When you think negative thoughts about yourself, you are participating in a sort of self- loathing, self-fulfilling prophecy. If you are always telling yourself that you are lazy and worthless, you encourage yourself to do types of behaviors that you consider worthless or lazy. You start to think about yourself as the worst version of yourself. This is something that needs to be battled against. Positive thinking is much better for your overall health. It will improve your mood and attention span and even your physical health.
CHAPTER 4: WHAT CAN WE LEARN FROM SUN TZU AND MACHIAVELLI?
Ultimately, Sun Tzu and Machiavelli both discuss power. They do this in different ways and have different areas of emphasis, but the bottom line is that both sets of ideas are based on gaining, maintaining, and exercising power. As a leader, power can seem like an abstract concept that is difficult to grasp and put into actionable ideas. Two very actionable concepts appear as key themes in both The Art of War and The Prince—deception, and perception. This chapter explores how being able to strategically deploy deception in a range of situations can lead to a significant advantage for leaders. It also shows how being able to control, influence, and even manipulate perception is a vital part of powerful leadership.
Sun Tzu’s Deception—Updated and Applied
Let’s take a look at some of the ways that Sun Tzu spoke of deception in The Art of War and how these can be interpreted and understood in the modern era.
“When able to attack, seem unable” is one of the most famous sections of
The Art of War.
Essentially, we can apply the idea of “attack” in the sense of “an aggressive or outgoing course of action.” Think of the term “plan of attack”—it does not literally have to be violent. With this new, non-literal definition of attack in mind, what are some of the ways we can apply Sun Tzu’s famous maxim?
One of the key applications of seeming unable to attack is within the personal sphere of career and business. Many corporate environments feature a range of highly coveted promotions that are known about and sought after by many. This is where the concept of “office politics” comes from. Even the most mundane office environment is likely to have a range of rivalries and dramas. Almost anyone who has ever worked in the modern era will be aware of the focus of these dynamics—rivals trying to push each other out, pull off feats of one-upmanship, and look better than their foes.
Guess what? The most effective way to attack is to do so when no one sees it coming. If you are going for a promotion, keep it as secret as possible. If you are not perceived as a threat, as a challenger, you will be off the radar in terms of competition. If you are targeting someone’s job, keep it secret. They will never know your attack is coming and will be unable to defend themselves against your intentions in time.
Large Scale Attacks
The idea of hiding your intention to attack so your targets are unprepared does not just apply on a small scale, personal level. It also works on a larger scale, such as the actions and strategic plans of an entire organization. This concept is easy to illustrate with an example—Apple product launches.
Think about the drama and excitement that comes with the launch of a new Apple product. People speculate like crazy about what the new unveiling will bring. Apple is as secretive as possible ahead of time. Then, on the day of the launch, the product is revealed and usually announced to be on sale within a very short period of time. As a result of this, competitors are on the back foot. They never know exactly what is coming and what they should do as a result. The launch of the original iPhone was a game-changer— Apple did not necessarily seem set to attack the portion of the tech market that they chose. As a result of this, competing firms had no real time to prepare. Look at the fates of Blackberry and Motorola if you doubt this concept.
Another famous quote on deception from The Art of War states “when using forces, seem inactive.” This is truer than ever these days. We live in an era where people are encouraged to broadcast their every thought, plan, and intention through social media. Countless cases of people being caught out in terms of identity fraud, affairs, or going against workplace rules have come to light because of people not being cautious enough. If you work quietly and behind the scenes, you have a significant advantage over those who do not.
One of the key areas in which working behind the scenes can work is politics—both in the electoral sense and in general. Often, politicians focus heavily on preparing their views, appearance, and perception in a way that makes them seem favorable in comparison to a known rival, then out of nowhere, a little-known challenger will make a massive push and catch the favorites off guard. It’s not as if the newcomer started overnight—they likely began to work diligently and quietly a long time before. They just had the good sense to not make a big deal of what they were doing, which would give their rivals a chance to prepare and take countermeasures.
It is not enough to just act quietly—it is sometimes vital to seem specifically inactive. This can be done through sleight of hand. Let’s say, for example, a skill is valued in a workplace. A number of people are working hard to acquire this skill in the hope of advancing up the career ladder. Someone else is also acquiring this skill—but in secret. They not only do this secretly but make a point of seeming uninterested or uninvolved whenever the topic of the new skill arises. This is an example of proactively hiding one’s efforts in order to gain a strategic advantage.
The Illusion of Distance
“When near, make the enemy believe you are far away” states The Art of War. This is a powerful concept that can be applied in a number of fields.
Human beings have evolved to be conscious of the immediate and obvious threats to their safety and prosperity. If something is obviously dangerous and nearby, our guard goes up and our defenses heighten. If something seems like a distant prospect, however, we are less worried by it at the time. Let’s look at modern warfare to see how this works.
Take two modern situations—the conflict in Korea between the North and South, and the ongoing threat of terrorism. In Korea, the threat is obvious and near. Troops are massed on either side of the border and there is a constant awareness of the potential for conflict. Both sides are prepared and ready, and therefore are in something of a stalemate. Terrorism, on the other hand, remains under the radar. There is no formal membership structure. People assume they are safe and then, suddenly, a bomb goes off. The proximity of the threat is unknown at any given time and therefore cannot be adequately expected.
So, what are some of the non-violent uses of strategic deception relating to proximity?
Market entry is one area of business where seeming to be distant can provide an advantage. If you wish to enter a new market, such as a region, then it may be useful to prepare to do so quietly and discretely. If your competitors don’t know you are close to entering a market, their attention is not drawn to it. They are unlikely to assume the market is worthy of consideration as a result of your interest in it.
The Power of Machiavellian Perception
One of the key recurring themes in The Prince is that a leader can get away with almost anything if he appears a certain way in the eyes of the masses. Therefore, almost any true nature can be covered up by careful management of perception. Numerous examples show this is as true in the modern day as it was in the time of Machiavelli.
Countless corporations are adept at using marketing to seem as if they are ethical or praiseworthy while secretly pursuing entirely different motives. Politicians are another prime example of this idea. How many candidates running for office, or even prominent politicians, have claimed to be wholesome and family-friendly and then have been exposed to be engaged in infidelity or some other vice?
Interestingly, even when someone or something’s true nature is exposed, many people will often still rush to defend it. Why? The person or entity in question was so skilled at using perception to appear a certain way while being another, that the false perception is deeply embedded in people’s minds. People hate feeling like they have been duped, so will do almost anything to cling to the false image they held. Think of the countless celebrities who have been caught doing disgraceful acts but still command legions of fans who claim the individuals in question were simply “misunderstood.” Perception is powerful — use it to your advantage.
Keeping a true behavior or nature hidden is harder in the modern era than it ever has been. Think of the countless examples of old photographs or emails giving the game away. Even old data can be hacked and released into the public to devastating effect. It is therefore absolutely vital that anything you wish to remain hidden is kept in the utmost secrecy. Stay away from email, text messages, social media—anything that could come back to haunt you. Conduct your true plans in secrecy and away from any chance of ever being exposed.
While doing one thing in secret, it’s important to leave a trail of doing something different and acceptable in the eyes of the public. Let’s say, for example, as a manager you need to get rid of one of your workers. You know you must plot their downfall in secret. It’s not enough to plot and scheme behind closed doors—you must appear to be very fair, even on the doomed worker’s side, in public. If done skillfully enough, they will eventually feel almost bad for you when you fire them, as you will seem like a true friend who had their back. Really, their demise was inevitable the entire time.
Deception and Perception—Sun Tzu and Machiavelli Combined
Like many powerful concepts, deception and perception are more potent together than apart. If you take away one core idea from this chapter, it should be that it is not enough to actively do one thing in secret—you need to put out false information and seem to be doing something very different in the eyes of the masses.
To really apply the ideas in this chapter, always keep two ideas in mind:
1. Which parts of my current course of action should I do in secret?
2. How can I appear to be doing something different to others?
It’s also important to always remain aware of the variables in any given situation. A form of deception that worked once might not work again.
CHAPTER 5: DANGEROUS DARK PERSONALITIES
The Dark Triad
The “dark triad” is a collection of character traits that are present in every person. However, these traits are more prevalent in some than in others. When they are predominant in an individual’s personality, they can lead to inappropriate behavior, and in some cases, to criminal activity. These traits are the hallmark of manipulators. While it is not entirely known how they form, we do have a good understanding of how they can be fostered.
When one of these traits is predominant in a person, you will find that they are generally disruptive in many ways, but highly creative and energetic in others. Moreover, people who exhibit dark triad traits in high order are generally more skilled and intelligent individuals who have a keen sense of the world around them. This is why they are able to make the most of their desires and push their agenda along.
In some cases, you’ll see them as people who will stop at nothing to get what they want. Other times, you will see them as people who don’t care much about the feelings of others, especially if that gets in the way of their achieving something.
So, if you are dealing with someone who exhibits any of these traits, or heaven forbid, all three, then you really need to watch where you’re stepping. Often, the best course of action is to get away from them. If you try to do battle with people exhibiting dark triad characteristics, you need to be several steps ahead of them. But, be warned that winning a war with these folks may turn out to be winning a war of attrition more than one based on skills and tactics.
Manipulators are all around us. There is no question about that. Some are very easy to spot, while others may go unnoticed. Some manipulators act out of impulse, while others are perfectly aware of what they are doing. In such cases, manipulators may not spare any expense to get what they want. Others may have a little more moral grounding, thereby enabling them to set certain boundaries as to what they will and will not do.
Narcissism is broadly defined as love for oneself. This name comes from the legend of Narcissus, who was in love with himself. From this legend, narcissism is used to define a person who is extremely selfish. While it is true that we are all selfish to a certain extent, the average narcissist is so enamored with themselves that they will hatch whatever schemes they can come up with to place themselves in the spotlight.
Narcissism is typically associated with feelings of entitlement and conceit. These are individuals who seek to be the center of attention at all times while trying to get others to do their bidding. The most rudimentary of narcissists don’t really care how they get others to go along with them. All they care about is that others do what they want. End of story.
More skilled narcissists are able to use many tactics at their disposal to get others to go along. Often, these types of narcissists seem charming and very pleasant.
Yet, it’s all a ploy. Their main objective is to get others to trust them and admire them. As long as they are admired and shown constant displays of affection, they are good with people. The problem occurs when they are not given the feedback they seek. Often, it is a question of having their ego stroked.
For example, a narcissist will become livid if they get no recognition for the work they do. This is compounded if they feel that they have put their best foot forward. The lack of recognition will drive them up the wall. On the contrary, if they are showered with praise and accolades, then all is good. They bask in the glory and seek to move on to the next display of affection and appreciation.
The biggest issue with narcissists is that they are control freaks. Since they feel that everyone must do their bidding, they need to control everything and everyone around them. Consequently, if a narcissist feels that they have lost control of their environment, they are liable to go to all means necessary to ensure they regain full control. If this means destroying people along the way, they may not stop to ponder the effects of their actions on others.
A typical narcissist is formed in childhood, usually as the result of neglect and oftentimes abuse. Generally speaking, kids who go through abandonment and neglect in childhood tend to develop issues with control and lack of affection. If untreated, these conditions can develop into a full- blown narcissistic personality. In adulthood, a typical narcissist may have serious trouble being part of social groups, leading them to isolation. While extroverted narcissists may have a lot of friends early on, they may end up becoming isolated as they struggle to form genuine relationships.
If you suspect that you are in the presence of a narcissist, be prepared for someone who demands a great deal of attention and affection. In addition, they will try to control every aspect of your life. In the end, you will have to either move away or play their game as best you can.
Machiavellianism refers to the teachings of Machiavelli, a renaissance political thinker and strategist. His most famous work, The Prince, is a classic for all students of political science. In this book, he outlines what a prince, or any leader for that matter, must do in order to achieve power and control. Many famous phrases are quoted from this book such as “divide and conquer” and “it is better to be feared than to be loved.”
From this, psychologists have coined Machiavellianism when referring to a character trait in which an individual is cunning and calculating. Highly intelligent individuals can be Machiavellian in the way they act. They can be very methodical in their approach. In the worst of cases, they can be ruthless and will stop at nothing until they get what they want.
This includes using people for their own purposes. Many times, Machiavellians see people as “a means to an end.” As such, they want to use people, and when they no longer serve a purpose to them, they will discard them without any regard for their feelings. Highly skilled manipulators may exhibit a considerable predominance of Machiavellianism in their personality set. If you suspect that you are dealing with such a person, then you are in for a war of attrition as they will not back down easily.
The limits to how far Machiavellianism can go essentially depend on the intelligence or support network of the person. There are cases, such as those of master criminals, who may be unable to figure out schemes for themselves but will employ those who can. This is a good example of how scruples and morals may be quite loose on some folks.
If you are dealing with a Machiavellian person, you may have to choose if you want to be in such a situation or move away from it. Generally speaking, beating a Machiavellian involves total defeat, that is, destroying them completely. For instance, if you’re dealing with someone who is defrauding others, this may involve bringing them to justice. Even then, you might be involved in a complex legal battle that you may not have the will to see through.
The third element of the dark triad is psychopathy. In general terms, psychopathy is an absence of emotion. In particular, psychopaths are unable to feel empathy. They are unable to gauge how others feel. This is why they are incapable of understanding that their actions hurt others. When you look at serial killers and other types of criminals, they genuinely believe they have done nothing wrong as they are unable to comprehend the pain and anguish they have put others through. Think about white-collar criminals who embezzle pensioners out of their savings. They have no remorse over their actions as they couldn’t really care less about those affected.
In some instances, psychopathy is associated with physiological issues in the brain. When this occurs, neurochemical reactions may not take place. As a result, these individuals may be unable to process their emotions leading to flat reactions to emotion.
In other cases, it may be a purely psychological issue as psychopaths tend to have a dissociative personality. Dissociative personality is usually the result of prolonged exposure to abuse and trauma in childhood. Regardless of the type of trauma, a child may develop a dissociation between their feelings and the situations around them. This leads them to cut out their feelings from the mental processes that they carry out. Consequently, a perfectly normal person can develop into a psychopath purely through an abusive and neglectful environment.
If you are in consort with a psychopath, you had better get a good idea of what they are capable of. These individuals may be capable of just about anything. They may not necessarily have any sinister motives, but whatever they do is purely for their own pleasure and nothing else… even if it means inflicting grievous harm on others.
The Dark Triad in Action
Having just one of the dark triad traits fully developed is enough to foster an evil individual. When all three come into consort, even to a lesser degree, the individual may have no morals, scruples, or ethics. While they may not actually become serial killers, they may engage in activities that harm people in the pursuit of their personal aims and pleasures. This may lead to unspeakable acts of horror, crafty business schemes, or a relentless pursuit of power in which people fall by the wayside.
There is no real way to deal with such individuals. It takes a lot of courage and energy to stand up to them. That is why the most common course of action is to get away from them. For example, people who grow up with narcissistic parents often leave home at a young age as they are unable to put up with the behavior of their parents.
In other cases, children of Machiavellian parents tend to have their parents concoct clever ways to run their life well into adulthood. And if someone happens to grow up with a psychopathic parent, they may be in for a childhood filled with abuse.
At the end of the day, the dark triad is present in all of us. We all have some type of manifestation of these traits, though most of us will never exhibit them to a degree that is harmful to others. If you happen to recognize the predominance of these traits in your own life, it is worth doing some introspection so that you can determine if you need to get a better handle on your feelings and thoughts. After all, letting any of these traits run wild may end up consuming you to the point of emotional and psychological exhaustion.
CHAPTER 6: THE PSYCHOLOGY OF DECEPTION, INFLUENCE AND DOMINATION
Deception is any word or action that is capable of making someone believe something that is not true. Fraudulently providing evidence for something that is false, implying falsehood, omitting the truth, and lying are all examples of deception.
Not all types of deception count as dark psychology. At some point in their lives, everyone is going to deceive others to some extent or another. They may do so because they feel inadequate, because they feel embarrassed, or even as a kindness. For example, some studies have shown that many men lie about their height. This doesn’t mean they practice dark psychology. In addition, it is common for people to deceive themselves about a range of issues such as their happiness, their ambition, and their health.
Deception becomes dark when it is carried out with an indifferent or negative intention towards the victim. Dark deception is an understanding that the truth is not going to serve the deceptive aims of the deceiver. The deceiver is going to take the truth and either ignore, hide, or change it in favor of a version of events that suits their purpose a little bit better. Those who employ dark deception do it as a way to harm, rather than to help. They want to foster their own interests, and they don’t care who gets hurt in the process.
There are many different deceptive tactics that the manipulator is able to use. Remember that this deception is the process of hiding information from the victim in order to reach their overall goals. There are four categories of tactics that fall under the umbrella of deception, and any given deception is likely to involve a blend of each of them, which can make it even harder for the victim to figure out what is going on.
The first deceptive tactic is lying. This is the first technique that the manipulator is going to choose as soon as they know that the victim is susceptible to lies and has trouble figuring out the truth. This is often because the victim is someone who trusts others. Or the manipulator may have worked on this victim for some time so that they lower their guard. The manipulator is able to find ways to hide the lies and then explain the discrepancies if the victim starts to notice.
Implication is another form of deception. Implication is when the manipulator suggests something false is true, rather than outwardly stating it. If the manipulator wants to deceive a victim about how much money they have, then they could either lie or imply about it. A lie would be something like, “Oh I’m a successful guy. I’ve made a lot of money,” even though the manipulator knows this information is not true. But when they imply they are rich, they may say something like, “It’s so stressful trying to handle things with my accountant. Trying to get my tax bill down takes a lot of my time.” The manipulator has acted and spoken in a way that makes the other person think they are wealthy, but they never overtly state it.
Omission is another option for the deceiver. This is a failure to mention something – usually a fact that is pretty important – that is true. Omission doesn’t use falsehood in order to cover the truth like the other two options. Instead, it ignores the truth or just leaves it out. Often this piece of information is important for the victim to know about in order to make an informed decision. The manipulator leaves this out to protect themselves and ensure that the victim doesn’t have all the information.
The final form of deception is the most elaborate, and often criminal, form. This is known as fraud. Instead of the deceiver simply lying about something from the past, this kind of deceit involves false stories, documents, and other “evidence” in order to back up their lie. The deceiver will use these things in a subtle way. They would never say something like, “I’m a doctor; take a look at my certificate!”
Instead, they will use some subtle displays to show off to the victim. They will avoid being too pushy with their fraudulent claims because they know that doing this will make the victim feel that something is wrong with the situation.
Fraud is becoming more common than ever because of the Internet. Deceivers often work with professional software in order to make fraudulent documents that look realistic. This can make it really hard to tell whether you are working with someone who is telling you the truth or if they are deceiving you.
When this dark deception starts to enter the realm of fraudulence, it can be a bad sign. It shows that the deceiver is dangerous and they are committed to sticking with dark psychology. They are risking serious criminal charges to do this kind of manipulation, and they are confident that they will be able to do this without anyone really noticing it at all.
The Art of Subtle Influence and Domination
Did you know that you do not have to be overly dominant to succeed? If you can subtly influence someone to do what you want, then you are still dominant because you are getting this person to do something they otherwise would not do. You are still exerting control. But the subject does not realize this, and thus will not be as resistant.
Sometimes, a more discreet and subtle form of dominance is in order. You may not want to flex your biceps and be the one in charge. You just want to get your way with a person who intimidates you. Therefore, you can use subtle influence and persuasion to your advantage. You can be dominant without letting the other person know. This influence can work great with people who are in charge of you, such as bossy family members, elders, and superiors at work. It can help you get what you want without a big power struggle and stressful resistance.
You are about to learn about all three of these methods of influence. So be prepared to gain lots of power. The world is in your hands, even if you are not the dominant alpha that this book is teaching you to be. No one will know what you are doing and you can have dominance without even trying.
Most people operate on a reward principle. You can use this to your advantage by making someone feel that there is a reward in store for them for doing what you want.
Always point out the benefits to someone. Show him what he will gain by doing something. The more appealing you make something seem, the more likely he will take advantage of it
Do someone a huge favor and then call on him or her later to return the favor.
People will do things for those they like. So, gaining the favor and pleasure of someone who is dominant over you can ensure that you get lots of brownie points.
Make Someone Feel Good
There are a number of ways to make someone feel good. When you do so, you essentially make sure that this person wants to serve you to gain more pleasure.
Touch creates a dopamine rush in someone’s mind and creates a strong bond between two people.
Eye contact can also accomplish this. Warm eye contact, rather than staring someone down, and pretending to be submissive by smiling and looking away can make your dominant counterpart feel really good.
The power of words cannot be underestimated. A simple compliment or thank you can go a long way. People love feeling good about themselves, so make sure they feel good because of what you say. Find out a person’s insecurities and play on that by reassuring him that his insecurities are not true. Flatter him by telling him what a great person he is and how great a leader he is.
Also, giving someone a warm cup of coffee or some other hot beverage can really make a difference in how they feel about you. It can subtly influence them to change their thinking about you and to view you as a warm person.
Threatening someone’s needs or sense of safety by pointing out what he stands to lose is an excellent motivator for most people. However, you do not want to overtly threaten someone in order to avoid a power struggle. Instead, you want to act as an advisor serving his best interests. Point out ways that he may lose out if he does not take a certain action. Tell him that you care about him and would hate to see him miss a great opportunity.
You can use this principle of influence to your advantage by making someone feel that he must do something because the opportunity is passing by quickly. Speak to your subject with a degree of urgency and point out that the opportunity is only here for a short time.
Learn what your subject cares about. That way, you know what he has to lose. Then find ways to work that into your persuasion. Most people care about their loved ones, their jobs, and their social status, so you can safely employ those as threats. Tell your subject how he stands to lose something he loves if he does not act in a certain way.
A leading question plants an idea in someone’s mind, getting him to say something or make a conclusion on his own. Leading questions are powerful ways to get your own way.
In yes framing, you get your superior to grant you permission by framing his mind to say yes. You start by asking a series of questions that make him think “Yes.” Once he has said yes, a few times, ask for your favor and notice how he says yes!
The minute you bring up an idea or topic, you automatically put it in someone’s brain. Continually mentioning it, especially in casual conversation, can plant the idea in someone’s brain enough to make him think about it a lot. Then, when he is forced to decide, the idea that he has been mulling over all day will be on the forefront of his brain and he will propose it as if it were his own idea. He will be open to your idea because he thinks it is his own.
Sometimes, physically leading a person in a certain direction exerts a strong influence over him.
Hiding What You Want
Let’s say you work with a stubborn person who seems to have it in for you. To get your way, you want to make it seem like you don’t want something when you really do. Therefore, you get this person to think that you don’t want something and that he or she should choose it.
CHAPTER 7: THE ART OF BLACKMAIL, MANIPULATION AND BRAINWASHING
The next form of mental manipulation is the classic blackmail strategy. Here a manipulator uses an object or piece of information to control the subject. Control mechanisms for blackmail generally stem from the fear of exposure to topics that would cause either social embarrassment, actual loss, harm inflicted on the subject, or their loved ones, or an induced state of helplessness.
While the subject being blackmailed may want to disclose the wrongdoing, they most often won’t because the consequences of telling outweigh the benefits. Experienced blackmailers know to work on a subject’s most sensitive areas.
A classic blackmail line is this:
“If you tell anyone, I’ll tell them it was yours!”
In-Depth Techniques of Manipulation
Projection is easy to pinpoint because it often consists a manipulator being unwilling or unable to see their own shortcomings and avoiding being held responsible for anything they have done wrong in the past. In other words, a person using projection will “project” their negative behavior or actions onto another person by finding a very extended and unreasonable connection between an action of the other person and the action of the manipulator. This form of manipulation is also often used as a defense mechanism and tends to be instinctual for most people.
Denial is a very versatile form of manipulation. There are many different ways that a manipulator can deny their actions or deny the actions of another subtly. They can do this using a method known as diversion. Using diversion, a manipulator will refuse to give a straightforward answer to questions and instead will move the conversation onto a different topic time and time again to avoid the said question. This is a way of denying the answer by not even giving it. A very similar tactic to this is known as evasion; these two tactics are often confused. The difference between diversion and evasion is that while diversion intentionally steers the conversation onto a different but interesting topic, evasion is more an act of giving vague and confusing responses that seem to have no meaning or are irrelevant in the current situation.
There are many different forms of intimidation that can be used by a manipulator to control their victim. The first one we will discuss is known as covert intimidation. This is the subtle, indirect, or implied threats of a manipulator that puts their victim into a defensive mindset. These threats
are often not threatening in a physical manner but rather in a business, social, or economic sphere. These threats are very subtle, and may not be picked up up on by the people around the victim.
Conditioning someone is a process of learning that happens through the use of rewards and punishments in response to or desired or not desired behavior. This can also be called operant conditioning. In this particular form of conditioning, an association is made between a behavior and a consequence of that behavior. This is not to be confused with classical conditioning which is similar but not exactly the same. All of the steps leading up to the end result of both forms of conditioning are the same; the difference lies in the very last step. Operant conditioning is based on voluntary behavior by the individual being trained, whereas classical conditioning is based on the involuntary behavior of the person being trained.
Now we can begin to see the connection between these two types of conditioning with manipulation. If a manipulator knows even the basis of these two types of conditioning it becomes very easy for them to subconsciously train their victim to bend to their every whim.
Stalking and Gossip
Stalking and gossip are very interesting and very dangerous forms of manipulation. When a manipulator stalks their victim, their intentions are very different from normal manipulative intentions. This form of manipulation is more a method of researching the victim. This is beneficial to the manipulator because it allows them to know the victim’s vulnerabilities and insecurities. This form of manipulation is very different from obvious stalking. There is of course a type of stalking in which the stalker wants their victims to know that they are being stalked. This is more a method to elicit fear into the victim.
While gossip is normally fairly insignificant and not the subject of psychological studies, it can also be used as a form of manipulation. False gossip more specifically is used as a form of manipulation.
Seduction is a form of manipulation that is very well known throughout history. It is often connected to attractive women seducing sexually frustrated men, but this form of manipulation can go both ways. It can include the use of conversation as well as sexual scripts. They may also use certain methods of nonverbal communication.
Brainwashing is, without a doubt, the biggest and most complex mental manipulation tactic in a psychopath’s repertoire. If every other technique was bad, this is Game of Thrones Red Wedding half-your-favorite- characters-just-died kind of bad. The kind of bad you have a hard time even imagining.
How Does It Work?
Well, simplistically speaking, brainwashing deals with the use of ideologies or cults to slowly but steadily replace the beliefs that the victim holds on particular topics, with the newfound beliefs that the manipulator wants them to have. Those new beliefs are more in line with the manipulator’s plan. Brainwashing is convincing a subject about a particular issue so deeply that the subject no longer questions it, the same way in which we would view a universal truth such as the sun rises in the east.
There are multiple ways in which brainwashing is carried out; however, some of the most common and most effective techniques are listed below:
Since it is much easier to control people individually than it is to control them when they are in groups, a common tactic to start the whole process of brainwashing is to isolate the subject. The subject is initially put in a situation where they are distanced from their friends, family, and loved ones. This not only makes it easier to control how they think and act, but also creates a form of forced dependency, so the person who is being worked on feels like the only person they can depend on or rely on is the manipulator.
By positioning themselves as their only source of information as well as their only source of support, the manipulator has created an artificial ecosystem that the subject thinks they need to survive. This feeling makes
the subject not only see the manipulator as a hero, but also makes them less likely to allow third-party influencers to influence or question what they know to be right or true. Isolation is critical to the initial stages of brainwashing as it makes the subject more malleable and also ensures that they don’t rebel or act out against the restrictions or the new reality that the manipulator is slowly enforcing on them. Worst of all, if you are dealing with a skilled manipulator, the subject won’t even know they are being isolated and will blame their friends or surroundings for the things that are happening.
Another common ruse is the emotional battering technique. Here the manipulator uses common forms of mental abuse such as bullying, public shaming, humiliation, embarrassment, insulting, and badgering to weaken or mentally destabilize the subject. Once the victim feels like they have no choice but to give in, the manipulator starts to teach the victim how they need to act or think to escape this hellish environment they have been put into.
Mental abuse, however, is also often substituted with physical abuse. A lot of these techniques are commonly used in wartime scenarios or even by police to get the subject to act in the manner desired. Common physical abuse tactics include light therapy, waterboarding, sleep deprivation, and starvation. Subjects are also put in cold, completely silent, or extremely loud situations where the sound balance damages them mentally. These constant physical tribulations have a way of overwhelming the subject and making them more susceptible to the manipulator and the suggestions, making it a critical brainwashing tool, particularly for militaries.
Another fan favorite when it comes to brainwashing is the use of repetitive music. Scientific studies have shown that when a person is in an environment where they not only are listening to a specific repetitive beat but a beat that is in rhythm with the beating of one’s heart (generally at about 45 to about 72 beats per minute), the subject enters a state of consciousness referred to as the Alpha state. (The normal state you are in is the Beta state.) The Alpha state, however, makes you 25 times more susceptible to suggestions and as such is used as a common brainwashing tactic.
Selective contact deals with the social control aspect of cult-like brainwashing techniques. Here, instead of isolating the individual, the manipulator only allows the subject to have access to similarly minded individuals. This creates a sense of false enforcement. The person being brainwashed is surrounded by people who are preaching or stating the same things the manipulator is saying, and this starts to give weight to the manipulator’s words. They must be right because they are all saying the same thing. It’s a lot like social proof or mob mentality. The idea is that if so many people are saying it, it must be right.
Us Versus Them Mentality
The “us versus them” mindset is a common form of brainwashing seen mostly in teenagers, particularly in high school or in specific wings of colleges such as frat houses. Here the subject seems to be given a choice: Do you want to be with us or do you want to be with them? The choice is meant to create a sense of loyalty or obedience. Now the manipulator can ask the subject for just about anything, and because the subject thinks they need to do it to stay in the group, they are much more likely to comply.
Incessant Push and Pull
Another familiar tactic is the push and pull scenario. Here, the manipulator plays good cop, bad cop on a routine basis to upset the subject’s sense of normalcy. On one hand, they are being loved and adored, while on the other hand, they are being abused or demeaned. The manipulator uses positive reinforcement when the subject is doing what they want them to do, and then when the subject steps out of line, the manipulator comes down on them with negative reactions to get the subject to associate those actions with negative consequences.
CHAPTER 8: MANIPULATIVE POLITICAL PROPAGANDA AND MEDIA TACTICS
History has given us some amazing examples of propaganda, and two of the most striking forms originate from the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany. The two nations used effective methods of
propaganda to influence their citizens into believing that they had the correct side of the story. They bombarded the population with varying forms of propaganda designed to persuade them to toe the party line.
Here Are Some of the Ways the Soviet Union
1) Schools and youth organizations: They formed a program named the Young Pioneers for children aged between ten and fifteen years old, which taught their members to oppose the enemies of socialism.
2) Media: Poor people in Russia had no way of accessing any form of entertainment, so the Russian propaganda machine used this fact to “educate” them and keep them informed.
) Propaganda trains: They authorized the use of propaganda trains filled with printing presses, projection equipment, radios, and public speakers to preach to the masses.
4) Posters: They regularly depicted the “new man,” who believed that hard work and severe discipline were the best methods to overcome the more basic instincts of mankind.
5) The printed word: Russian people were only allowed to read newspapers that were favorable to the Communist cause.
These methods were designed to encourage Russian people to band together and oppose any form of rebellion. People listened and watched the propaganda together and formed like-minded groups. Punishments for non- conformists were swift and harsh. It was impossible to tune out the noise of propaganda, as it was literally everywhere.
Propaganda in Nazi Germany
The emergence of Nazi Germany took political propaganda to a new level. Hitler was a master of propaganda, and he appointed -oseph Goebbels as the head of his campaign to ensure the Nazi Party was seen in a positive light. He was also tasked with ensuring the German people had no access to harmful information regarding the Nazi movement.
The production of powerful propaganda films furthered this display. The films were made to highlight several issues and bring them to the nation’s attention:
The greatness of Hitler and his vision for the future
The jewish people: The Nazis used beautiful and artistic posters to promote the hatred and fear of -ewish people and other non- conformist groups. They used beauty and art to mask the ugliness and hatred of their message.
The way forward for the future: They promoted the idea of a “master race” that began with “perfect children.” Any imperfection was an insult to the Nazi vision of perfection.
The mistreatment of Germans in Europe: As WWII became imminent, the Nazis recognized the need to demonize the rest of Europe. They did this by highlighting how badly migrant Germans were being treated in Eastern Europe.
While films like Triumph of the Will (19 5) addressed serious subjects, Goebbels recognized the power of entertainment propaganda.
He also recognized the power of saturation.
They used symbolism to its full extent. The use of the swastika, the salute, and uniforms made sure that people in the street recognized the power the Nazis held. While Hitler understood the importance of grandiose titles for his henchmen, he was astute about his own title. He refused to be called
President, as he claimed the title was too “august” for him. This appealed to the common person, and Hitler garnered popular approval with this move.
Nazi Germany was a prime example of mass brainwashing. The Nazis used a barrage of information, images, and events to create an environment of hatred and reverence.
Political Propaganda in the US
As one election passes, the preparations for the next one begins. We are constantly being told to give our vote to one candidate or the other for different reasons. While this is a fact that nobody can escape, are we hardwired to believe the propaganda, or are we capable of making an informed vote?
Recognizing the techniques used is the first step to becoming a savvier voter. Let’s examine some of the more popular ways that politicians have used propaganda while angling for our vote:
We need to travel back to 1952 to witness one of the earliest ad campaigns for a presidential candidate. “Ike for President” was a catch song used to promote Dwight Eisenhower. In 1960 -FK also used a catchy song to head his campaign.
The Bandwagon Technique
This is a technique that appeals to the masses and makes people feel part of a movement. This type of ad plays on the insecurities of the masses and the desire to belong.
The Testimonial Technique
Also referred to as the “endorsement” technique. These can include endorsements from political hard hitters, media outlets, sportsmen and women, and celebrities.
When a candidate is trying to appeal to a base feeling of patriotism, they will use all-American symbols to stir the emotions.
These are statements that use vague words and phrases to influence the public. They have no real meaning; they are mostly emotionally appealing and are designed to have a positive effect on the general population.
The Plain Folk Technique
This is when politicians try to appeal to the man on the street. They may have had Ivy League educations and never known what it is like to “miss out,” but politicians know how to appeal to the common person.
Stacking the Cards
This type of propaganda may sound harmless, but it can be devastating. The perpetrator will highlight their personal accomplishments and triumphs without addressing any of their failures. They will then proceed to trash their opponent and drag their name through the mud.
Media Manipulation and Subliminal Influencing
Media is all about influence. Everything you see in the media is designed to influence you. However, have you ever wondered if the media is also manipulating you? Some believe that the media is more a tool of manipulation than influence. What if these people are “onto something,” as they say on social media? According to Wikipedia, media manipulation is “all about techniques in which partisans create an image or argument that favors their particular interests.” Basically, the media can create a certain perception of an issue, a person, a group, or anything to the public. The public believe it because the media is supposed to be the ultimate source of factual information. The media does this through the use of subliminal messages.
Anybody that consumes media content is susceptible to media manipulation and subliminal influencing. For years, subliminal messages have been regarded as one of the dark arts used in persuasion and manipulation. Advertisers, marketers, politicians, and the media are believed to use subliminal messages to manipulate and modify people’s behavior. But how effective are media manipulation and subliminal influencing? Do subliminal messages actually work?
It is believed that the media subliminally influences consumers’ perceptions by deliberately using communication techniques that are engineered to generate specific responses. The aim is to get people to do things that they ordinarily would not do. In short, both the perception and response to subliminal influencing happen in the subconscious mind.
Visual subliminal messages in the media are either sub-visual or embedded. Sub-visual cues are flashed very quickly in media content, so quickly that you cannot perceive them. Embedded messages are static visuals in plain sight, with an unchanging environment. They are often used in advertisements. An example is the dollar bill in some KFC burger ads. Auditory subliminal messages are either sub-audible or backmasking. Sub-audible messages have low-volume sound inserted into high-volume audios, such that you cannot hear them. Backmasking is a visual-audio message recorded in reverse so that the actual message is hidden when it is played forward.
Now, how exactly do these messages influence your behavior? One of the proposed theories is that subliminal priming works to distribute activation in the semantic network. Humans have semantically connected links of concepts in the brain, and each concept exists in a bigger network of interconnected concepts. Take Microsoft as an example: When prompted about Microsoft, you will probably think of Bill Gates, computers, Windows, etc. Microsoft is often associated with innovation. So, if you were to briefly flash a Microsoft logo to someone and then ask them to complete a task, they are likely to be more innovative in their approach because their subconscious has picked up on what Microsoft is associated with.
Because subliminal messages are targeted at your subconscious so that an advertiser, politician, and other people can influence you to do things that you ordinarily may not agree to do, they count as a form of manipulation. This explains why people think the media is all-powerful. They understand the power the media has and how they use that power. Media manipulation and subliminal influencing should be considered unethical and treated as such because they perfect the art of exploiting a person’s unawareness.
CHAPTER 9: WHAT IS PSYOP?
Definition of Psychological Operation
The term “psychological warfare” is often used interchangeably with “psychological operations” or “political warfare.” The techniques are similar, but the terms have distinctive meanings.
According to the United States -oint Chiefs of Staff, psychological operations are synchronized and coordinated activities, planned by military leaders, targeted against enemies, that are designed to instill in their target audiences the desired reaction in support of a military operation or larger strategy.
Psychological operations (PSYOP) is considered a sub-set of psychological warfare and are designed to influence human psychology to the point of view of change and or action in support of an agenda. The objective of military psychological operations is to induce or reinforce foreign beliefs and attitudes favorable to the originator’s objectives.
The term is often used by the military to refer to the use of propaganda techniques including leaflet drops, radio broadcasts, and loudspeaker broadcasts.
Psychological Operation in Everyday Life
Here are simple examples of the techniques used in everyday, ordinary life. Think about how a police officer will direct traffic. They will position themselves on the street corner. They will direct you where to go.
Think about how a police officer will stand on the corner of the road. He will be seen frequently enough to seem like he is doing something. He will seem busy. He will also direct traffic off the road and into the parking lot. He will direct traffic to a specific parking area for a specific person, like the President of the United States or a celebrity.
These people are practicing a time-honored technique that has been used by this group of special people; those who were trained in psychological operations.
Think about how you may be directed to the parking lot in an airport or for a big event. They will direct you and change your way of thinking. You will be directed another way, to where they want you to go.
The Psyop Person
The psyop person may look the same as someone you know or any normal person. The person may be someone from your workplace or your friend. The person could be a co-worker. They could also be your leader. The person may be working under an identity, a so-called personality, or even a new appearance (such as a new hairstyle and new facial hair).
They could be a person of influence in your religious and your spiritual activities. They could also be in your police station and your court system. They could be placing themselves inside your armed forces and the military.
They can be ministers, pastors, police officers, tax collectors, doctors or nurses, lawyers, judges, teachers, social workers, and many others of importance.
The psyop person is someone who is disguising themselves as a normal citizen. They are not a real citizen and they are just playing at being a citizen.
They could be someone you have known for a long time. They could be your friend or acquaintance. You may trust them. They may have asked you to trust them. They could be someone who has been building a relationship with you for a long time. They could be your counselor, a working partner, your confidante, or even a close friend.
They could be someone you work with who you know to be one of the good guys, but who has actually been altered to believe something different.
Consequences of Having a Psyop Person Around You
When you have a person who you know and trust, who is planning to cause you harm, you may not see it coming and you will not be able to avoid it.
The person who you know and trust will explain why they have to hurt you in order to further their agenda. They will explain how they “have no choice” and that you “would understand” if they explained the reasons.
When you believe that your loved ones have done something harmful to you, what do you do? You want answers. You want to understand what happened. You want your voice heard. You want to be informed of what transpired. You want the truth and you want the truth to be known. You don’t want to be deceived or lied to. You want to be acknowledged.
If you are close to a psyop person, they will want you to remain close to them and they will want you to remain as you are.
Ways to Overcome a Psyop Person—Face the Psyop Person and Speak the Truth
When a psyop person speaks with you, they will try to lie to you. When a psyop person is lying to you, they will be nervous. When they know that you know, they will become nervous and they will try to hide mask their nervousness. This will be a giveaway that they are hiding something.
If the psyop person wants to harm you, they will be more aggressive when they hide mask their nervousness. This will also betray them.
Another thing will be when the psyop person speaks words that are not related to your conversation (words that are irrelevant). When you speak to a psyop person and their response veers away from the “main” conversation, this will betray them as well.
CHAPTER 10: WHY DO PEOPLE JOIN CULTS? HOW DO CULTS WORK?
What is a Cult?
Ask 10 people and you will receive 10 different answers.
For some, it’s the mindless groupies of a rock or sports star who hang off their every word.
For some, it’s a religious sect that chooses to worship in a non-traditional way or at non-traditional times.
For others, it’s an umbrella term that encompasses a variety of supposedly dangerous non-traditional beliefs or ideologies that are considered to be in some way damaging to the followers of that belief system.
I prefer to think of a cult as one person who has found so-called “truth” and then, spreads the word, not to seek criticism or further knowledge, but to bring everyone else in line to have the same belief system.
Cults are a breeding ground for easy prey. They target people who are desperate to escape from their lives, to be part of something bigger than themselves.
They are led and fed, fed and led. They give their lives to their cult and, if they were never to leave, they would never have to think for themselves again.
People crave leadership, they crave instruction.
How Cults Work
Instead of demanding that people think for themselves, they change the definition of leadership and teach people that to be happy and healthy, you must become just like their cult leader.
The leader instructs people to be followers, but also to be the teachers of the next generation; to tell the new generation that their leader is always right. You cannot question or doubt a leader. No, I don’t think it’s even possible.
By the time the teaching has finally filtered down through the generations of a cult, the last few generations have been lured to think like perfect little minions and pledge their lives to a leader they barely know. And the cycle continues.
This is the nature of cults; they slowly increase their membership with each new generation that is taught the same way of thinking from the teachers. And a leader will push their membership up further and further as they grow.
A cult is, therefore, one person who has the power and the means to make sure that everything they believe is disseminated on a wide scale so as to become larger and larger and become as “true” to a society.
Why Do People Join Cults?
From the outside looking in, there are four main reasons:
1) The hope of a better life
4) Closeness to a higher power
As humans, we need optimistic belief systems to help us get through the strains of our day-to-day lives and we are drawn to strong personalities that lead to a sense of togetherness, security, community, and safety.
People love to be part of something special and they will pledge their life to that special thing, be it a sports team, a religion, or a cult.
Correlation between Cults and Brands
There are many cults born from the corporate sector, i.e. a brand that is sexy and cool at first glance, but once you get into the details, it may be highly conducive to a certain type of group that the CEO secretly wants to grow.
The cult leader will have a vision and plots to implement that vision at all costs.
If you are a small independent company, you can choose to watch your competition and copy what they are doing in order to grow your own customer base. This is fine.
But if you are a large corporation, you may be in a position where you do not have that luxury.
As you grow, so too must your market. If you have a cult-like style of management that you have chosen to propagate, you will be stuck with this model of management forever and you will never be able to change.
Corporate cults are, therefore, highly dangerous. They lead to a defeatist attitude for employees.
Brands are more of an ideological system; a religion more than they are a product. If you think you cannot let go of any belief system that you’ve embraced, you are probably trapped in your institution.
Brands and Self-Concept
In 2004, the “real beauty” campaign was launched by beauty brand Dove with the purpose of redefining the beauty concept by taking into consideration that in real life there are natural variations in beauty. The brand image of Dove was given symbolic meaning by this campaign. Specifically, by consuming the Dove brand, women had the opportunity to communicate to their social environment that they shared Dove’s notion that our current society’s beauty values need to be reconsidered and reformulated. As this example shows, a brand is not only a schema or category that directs attention and information processing, but it responds to identity-based motives in that it communicates consumers’ characteristics, values, and attitudes to their social environment.
For example, a consumer can use a brand to express the opinion that the pursuit of a sustainable and healthy lifestyle is important. Consequently, when a consumer observes another person using a brand that is associated with identity-relevant attributes, such as a healthy lifestyle, he or she may make similar inferences about the characteristics, values, and attitudes of the brand user. Because brands provide consumers with a way to express their identity and socially categorize themselves, it is reasonable for consumers to prefer brands that are consistent with their self-concept.
The idea that individuals are motivated to perceive themselves as consistent in their values, attitudes, and behavior is a central idea of early theories in social psychology, such as consistency theory or dissonance theory. In connection with these and more recent approaches, several studies have demonstrated that individuals invest resources such as effort, time, and money to appear consistent and thereby verify their self-concept (self- verification).
To be able to classify and organize their experiences and to guide their behavior, an individual is enabled to this by a consistent and stable self- view. Also, consistent behavior that promotes a coherent environment for social interactions increases predictability by others. For instance, a consumer holding values of sustainability might actively avoid driving a car brand that is linked to power (and gas consumption) and might instead choose a brand that is known for its low gas consumption. By doing this, the consumer provides a small window into his or her personality that others can “peek into” to predict his or her future behavior, which in turn influences their responses to the consumer and makes the environment more predictable for the consumer as well.
To some degree, the self-concept that drives consumer behavior is flexible wherein it will depend on which aspects of the self are accessible in a given context. The accessibility of self-concept components is higher if the components have been repeatedly activated in the past and if they have been made salient more recently. Also, it is not necessarily the case that the self-concept has to be conscious of it to influence consumer behavior.
A self-concept can represent a consumer’s viewpoint (how a consumer sees him or herself) or the viewpoint of significant others (how the consumer thinks others see him or her). As a consequence of this dichotomy, consumers think of the discrepancies between their own self-views and the way others perceive them. In connection with the consistency theories mentioned above, consumers are usually motivated to reduce such discrepancies. Using brands that are in line with their self-view helps to resolve this conflict because such brands bring other individuals’ representations closer to an individual’s representation of his or herself by allowing consumers to publicly display who they are. A consumer who possesses the self-view that he or she is a creative person but thinks others do not share this self-view may, for example (consciously or unconsciously), use brands associated with creativity to signal his or her creativity to others.
The best-known example of a brand application to influence others’ views of one’s identity is the application of brands as status symbols. When you think about it, it seems irrational that individuals would buy expensive brands that fulfill the same functions as cheaper brands. However, this is usually due to subconscious thinking of the fact that since a consumer can afford to buy expensive brands, it symbolizes his or her possession of resources such as money or power. Furthermore, in evolutionary psychology, the use of status symbols is described as a costly form of signaling that men might apply to appear attractive to females.
Indeed, some studies have found that men are more interested in purchasing conspicuous luxury goods that signal wealth when mating goals are primed compared with when such goals are not primed. However, some research opposes this idea and has also shown that this is a short-term mating strategy that is also perceived as such by women. An interesting finding is that the social-signaling function of brands is not limited to luxury brands. For example, green products such as hybrid cars can similarly be regarded as status symbols, but only when it is transparent that these products are more expensive than comparable non-green products.
Most importantly, not only might symbolic brand benefits communicate a person’s actual self-view, but they also provide consumers with an opportunity to express their personality as they would ideally like it to be and to reduce a possible conflict between their actual and ideal self. This idea can be derived from the self-discrepancy theory. It says that consumers can use brands for symbolic self-completion and self-enhancement and that brands can become part of the self. An interesting thought, a reduction in self-discrepancies is related not only to a consumer’s ideal aspects of the self but also to the personality aspects that a consumer thinks he or she should possess.
For instance, a consumer might think that it is his or her duty to take care of the environment, but he or she might sometimes also feel that he or she does not fully live up to this responsibility (discrepancy with how he or she perceives herself). Consumers are prompted to use brands to reduce this discrepancy as well. For instance, they are inclined to purchase products from a supermarket associated with sustainability such as Whole Foods.
Similarly, the feeling of uncertainty about one’s self-concept can motivate brand use. The feeling of uncertainty about one’s self-concept is supposed to yield the motivation to reaffirm the self. In one study, participants were more likely to choose a product consistent with an activated self-view (competence or excitement) when participants felt uncertain about their self-view.
CHAPTER 11: PSYCHOLOGICAL WARFARE AND STRATEGIC THINKING AT WORK AND WITH CO-WORKERS
Not all manipulation is a bad thing. There are times when you might want someone to agree with you on something. You probably don’t want to take it to the extreme and make your victim do everything you want and take over their lives. But there are certain moments when you may need someone to agree with you on something, such as when a vote is going one way or another, if you need help with a project, or something similar.
This chapter looks at some of the different ways you can manipulate the people near you in order to get the things that you would like.
Similarities Are Key
The first thing you should concentrate on is finding similarities between yourself and the person you are manipulating. Nobody is going to want to be around you or do the things that you want them to if they have nothing in common with you. You need to find the places where you mesh together and can form a bond of some kind, if not a friendship.
There are a lot of different ways that you can work to find similarities between you and the person you want to get on your side. First, consider how you will be able to help them out with something they need.
Take the time and have a lunch break with this person, if you work with them.
Work is not the only place where you can start to make a bond with someone. You can bond after work without all of the stresses that come with work.
Of course, you need to ensure that you are doing something that the other person enjoys. You don’t want to seem like a bother or go around just inviting them to things that you like.
Once you are able to build this bond, it will be easier for the two of you to get along and you will be able to convince them to do the things that you want later on.
Give Them a Reason Why
No one will have any desire to help you out unless there is something in it for them. This means that you need to look through the situation and make it work out well for the both of you.
There are two ways this can go. In most cases, when you are being manipulated, both of you are going to get something out of the deal. One person might get the better thing, but you are still going to be rewarded for your hard work.
Then there is the more evil way of manipulating someone. A manipulator may promise something that is going to entice you to help them out. The issue with this, though, is that the manipulator doesn’t actually plan to give you anything in return.
But in most cases, when you want to manipulate someone, you will want to go with the first method so you can keep them as friends in the long run. This means that you need to make sure they have a good reason to help you out.
The words you use in your speech and communication will determine whether someone is going to listen to you or do what you would like. A simple thing like switching around words to make them sound positive can make a huge difference in the way that people associate with you.
Take Small Steps
This means you need to take things slowly. You need to go from step one until the final step without skipping anything in between. But what are some of the steps you may have to take in order to get to your end goal? Here are some ideas to ensure that you are getting people on your side in the right way:
1) Get to know the person—the best cases of manipulation happen once you know at least a little bit about the person.
2) Determine if they will meet your goal—before you put in too much effort, make sure that they are willing to go along with your goal.
3) Start laying the groundwork—now that you have someone who is going to be on your side, it is time to start laying a bit of groundwork to help you out. Let them know a bit about the plan and see if they are interested in helping you out.
4) Show them what they can get out of this process. If they feel like they are going to do the work and you are the only one who is benefiting, they are going to run away and find something else to do. Start out with all of the benefits that they are going to receive, perhaps limiting the information about what you will receive, to ensure that you are getting them on your side.
5) Work towards the goal together—during this time, you both need to be doing the work. While an evil manipulator will require their victim to do all of the work on their own, this is not going to work in most situations, and you should spend time working together with the other person so that you reach the goal.
6) Reap the rewards together—if this goes as plan, you and your partner are going to see all of the rewards possible. This can make your bond closer and will make it easier to influence your partner later on.
When you take small steps together, it becomes much easier for you to get to your goal without having to pull your hair out.
Go for the Emotions
One thing that you should always try when you are trying to get someone to work with you is to go for the emotions. People are more likely to follow and do something when they feel emotional about it.
There are a lot of different emotions that you will be able to play with. It is important to realize that the emotions that people respond to the most are anger, joy, and sadness. In most cases, you might find that it is easiest to manipulate someone if you can get them angry about the same kind of topic as you.
If Your Friends -umped Off the Bridge…
With this option, you are going to try to convince the person that your goals are in their best interests. This is the “everyone is doing it” method of thinking. You want to portray this as something that everyone is doing, or at least that if they do what you want, they are going to be envied by everyone else.
Be the One in Control
No matter which method you are using, you need to make sure that you are always in control. If you let someone else be in control, you are no longer the manipulator; you are pretty much giving this power to the other person. You want the other person to start relying on you, to start coming to you for their questions, or even just for company. This can help to make you into the most important person in their lives.
There are many techniques throughout this book that you can use to make sure you are the one in charge. Establishing this early on will make things so much easier in the long run.
CHAPTER 12: PSYCHOLOGICAL WARFARE AND STRATEGIC THINKING IN RELATIONSHIPS AND THE POWER OF WORDS
Many master manipulators have psychopathic tendencies, but not all are true psychopaths or sociopaths. Some persons do not even understand that they are trying to exert their will onto another against that person’s wishes, though there are those who have the express intent of manipulating others. Psychopaths will actually go out and prey on individuals to manipulate. But again, not every manipulative person has a mental defect, nor does every manipulator acknowledge or understand what they are doing.
Being able to determine when someone is attempting to sway you is a fine art. By learning to master the arts of manipulation, influence, mind control, and NLP, you are also mastering the art of spotting these tactics sooner and saving yourself from undue influence.
The techniques in this book cover an array of relationships, from strangers and new acquaintances, to persons that you may already be close to. The most difficult aspect of these tactics to digest is when they are employed against another person in an intimate relationship. The psychological damage that these techniques may cause to a significant other or spouse who has been victimized or targeted by a manipulative person can last for years. Many persons manipulated in intimate relationships need to seek out professional psychological help to move past this kind of emotional and psychological abuse. And make no mistake, these techniques when employed against a loved one without a doubt can be identified as abuse.
So, how do you keep from becoming involved with a master manipulator before the relationship develops too far? Well, it depends if you are engaging in a relationship with someone who just has manipulative tendencies but means you no harm, or a master manipulator who explicitly wants to control or manipulate you.
Most intentional manipulators have a few characteristics or traits in common. Lack of empathy is normally an ear-mark for a manipulator. They are narcissistic or self-absorbed, and they truly are indifferent to others who suffer for any reason. Their indifference may extend to everyone, and that may make anyone feel special. But special or not, you will eventually be just another person they feel indifference towards. If you experience a little setback that upsets you, a loss, or an illness, take note of your new partner’s actions. Do they state that they care verbally, but refuse to engage with you in person or excuse themselves from you to avoid you during your time of duress? If you notice an indication that they might not care as much as they say they do, pay attention to other signs.
While we are on the subject of their words and actions, another easy way to separate the manipulators is not by what they say, but in what they do. Master manipulators are known for being charismatic and saying all the right words at precisely the right times but rarely do their words and actions match each other. Look for unfulfilled promises, saying one thing and then doing another, and opinions that flip-flop, depending on who else is around to hear what they are saying. Manipulators may seem to be all- encompassing to their partners, but in public, they may tend to stay in the background for the purpose of observing others or completely change their stances, opinions, or ideas to fit others, whom they are engaged with. Watch out for inconsistencies.
Manipulators who intend to cause harm will tell you they adore you, but find small ways to shoot digs at you that may hurt your feelings. If you are currently in a relationship with someone who states that they want to spend every minute of their free time with you, then calls you “needy” or “codependent” when you want to spend time with them, it means that
individual is sending mixed signals that you may try to excuse away. There could be different reasons why neither of you can spend every day together, but there is never a good excuse to indicate that you are the one with issues, particularly when they are the ones who initiated the response from you.
Another consideration is the right and wrong in a disagreement, and what the manipulator will say and do during an argument. Manipulators will fight dirty, insult you, try and use information you have given them against you, and will never plead guilty. At times, master manipulators will deny words or actions that they have said or done, hoping that this confusion will make you question your view or beliefs on events that have occurred. They may continue to speak about things that you have expressly stated, but no longer want to discuss, creating unease in you regardless of your discomfort.
Master manipulators will disregard the emotions you express to them. They may refuse to validate the way you feel or express to you that the way you feel is not accurate or correct. Some manipulative people will start to completely refuse to acknowledge the feelings of their significant others as the relationship progresses.
Despite all of these negative aspects of the manipulator’s persona, many individuals will find that even though they know the relationship is unhealthy, they will continue to engage in that relationship or have an extremely hard time cutting loose from the manipulator. The soaring thoughts that excited you at the beginning of the relationship will make you all the more likely to fear losing those strong emotions, and therefore fear losing the manipulator themselves. You may find yourself increasingly unsatisfied in the relationship, and the loved one may notice a change in your mood too.
Despite your unhappiness, you may find yourself dreading life without them. Your own mood will directly correlate to the mood of the manipulator, and you may find yourself attempting to find favor with this person, even though you have done nothing untoward or wrong. Because of the conflicting and confusing aspects of the relationship, you may find yourself overanalyzing. You may notice an increased state or level of anxiety in yourself, as you are unsure of what is happening or where you stand with the manipulative partner. Apologizing or compromising who you are regularly, whether you understand why you feel the need, feel insecure about yourself in general, or are experiencing feelings of guilt or inadequacy are often strong indicators that you are in a manipulative environment.
The best way to protect yourself from engaging in a manipulative relationship is to be aware of your partner’s subtle manipulation tactics.
CHAPTER 13: PSYCHOLOGICAL WARFARE AND STRATEGIC THINKING FOR ENTREPRENEURS AND BUSINESS
Principle 1: Embrace the War Game of Chess
The metaphor for war strategy is chess, not checkers.
Checkers is a simple game with few possibilities and ramifications for each move. There are few if any differences between the pieces.
And victory is often easily judged in retrospect as having been brought about by a single logical error of the loser.
Chess, on the other hand, is far more complex. There is a much greater variance in the power of the pieces. Pieces can move differently and can work powerfully for or against you in combination. Your king-piece is incredibly vulnerable. When you lose at chess, it’s not always as easy to pin it on a single erroneous move.
The war game, like chess, can be mentally and psychically draining, but you must learn to play it if you wish to protect or advance your self-interest.
I urge you to at least understand the principles of war strategy waged against you or you’ll be completely exploited. Well, you’ll probably be completely exploited anyway, but by understanding the patterns behind the strategies waged against you, you’ll be better prepared to find true peace of mind and have a much better chance of self-protection.
Do not be afraid of the chess-like war game. It’s a lot less intimidating than you may have been led to believe. You have all parts inside of you to be a master at this game.
Principle 2: Embrace Master Plans and Strategies
Many people today have attention deficit disorder (ADD). Having access to the Internet often means that you have ADD. If you own a smartphone, then you have ADD. In today’s age, we are all bombarded with enormous distractions. Thus, no one thinks they have time to think several steps ahead and it’s a rare opponent who can competently think consequentially. Use this to your advantage.
You may find it helpful to think through things in writing. It can be done manually using a pen and paper or a word processing application on your computer, tablet, or smartphone. Keep your brainstorming and plans in hidden locations where your opponents cannot reach them. Thinking things through while writing will allow your plans to reach a much higher level than trying to think through everything in your head.
The strategy doesn’t have to be complicated or intricate. It is simply a series of sub-goals and items which come together to achieve a larger goal. Embrace this strategic planning process and you will become brilliant at war.
It’s important to stay flexible and constantly revisit your plans as the battlefield is constantly shifting, and you must stay adaptable to the moment at hand. Nonetheless, master planning will allow you to stay ahead of the game.
Principle 3: Engage in Small Scale Test Attacks to Assess the Opponent’s Skill and Game Plan
If you sense someone might be an opponent, then it may be worth it to test them in order to get a sense of what they’ve got in them.
Let’s say a new person enters your social circle. If you wanted to do a test attack, then you could pay them a backhanded compliment or mild insult to test how they respond. If they attack back ferociously, then your test attack was successful and you uncovered their true villainous nature before they could surprise you with it. If they respond with grace or apologetic insecurity, then they are likely not a threat to you.
I know the above scenario may sound petty and even vile. But it is done in a myriad of ways all the time. Watch for it. Oftentimes an opponent will test attack you first to see how easily you can be exploited.
When someone comes at you with a test attack, it is usually worthwhile to counterattack them in a similar way. Simply mirror them and this usually does the trick, unless they have a more complex master plan in store for you.
Principle 3: Feign Peace, but Anticipate Attack
Act like a peaceful person and you may be able to avoid large-scale attacks, for opponents won’t view you as much of a threat and will only come at you with a small amount of their might. Thus, when you put on the pretense of peace, you’ll typically be attacked in only small and predictable ways. In other words, the king is only mildly exploiting you, because he can.
You must, however, quietly prepare yourself for being attacked so that you are not caught off guard. There is a fine line here. You must remain psychologically strong, which means anticipating being attacked without becoming paranoid. If you do become paranoid, tthe opponent has won a major psychological battle against you. When you anticipate an attack from an opponent without giving in to paranoia, it tends not to catch you off guard, and therefore its psychological effect on you is next to nil.
When you are attacked after feigning peace, the best defense is usually, again, to mirror the opponent. This typically gets them to back down. You can also choose to gracefully ignore them if you don’t feel the exploitation is very severe.
Feigning peace is ironically a master tactic when it comes to psychological warfare. Master the art of this tactic.
Principle 4: Boldly Attack First, but Pretend You Are the Victim
This is a classic technique of psychological warfare and can go a long way toward psychologically wearing your opponent down.
Come up with a rationale that makes you look like the victim of your opponent, then boldly attack them. It’s best to attack them privately or confidentially so that others will see you as the victim should the opponent try and attack you back.
Often your opponent will be furious and threaten you with many things. Here you can shout in your opponent’s ear that you are already a victim of their wrath and that everything they threaten you with will only make you appear more of a victim. This can have a powerful demoralizing psychological effect on the opponent.
Playing the victim card while fiercely attacking the opponent is high art in the world of psychological warfare.
Principle 5: Use Bald Morality to Shame Your Opponent
Most people in life who attack you have little or no shame. However, shaming them to their face can sometimes have a strong effect. Try to guess their insecurities and shame them for succumbing to them. If you are bold, then threaten to go public with broader shaming of them, as you reveal their hypocrisy and exploitation to others.
Be careful if you live in a glass house here, for many opponents will shame you right back. It helps if you have done nothing close to what you’re accusing your opponent of. This is tricky stuff here, so be careful.
Shaming is usually best applied as a threat of embarrassment for the opponent. For example, if a vendor threatens to not refund you or to not fulfill their pledge, threaten to go public to their other customers with this shame.
Principle 6: Stay Adaptable and Agile; Maintain an Escape Route
Victory often goes to the nimble and deft, not the powerful and strong. Being adaptable to changes as they occur is paramount. And in a world that is constantly shifting and transforming, being adaptable and agile is now more important than ever.
This is another reason why creative brainstorming is so important. Your rational and analytical mind is your most powerful weapon, and when you are engaged in creative brainstorming, you are strengthening your plan and your arms. Use creative brainstorming to rationally and imaginatively conceive of as many tactics and contingencies as you can.
The strategic planning process is not as complicated as you’ve been led to believe, so please do not be intimidated. If you were smart enough to seek out and read a book like this, then you are smart enough to be strategic and agile.
When you launch your attacks, it’s often useful to have an escape route, so that you can quickly backtrack and retreat if you are confronted with enormous resistance. In general, you always want to leave yourself some room to escape, if necessary.
Principle 7: Embrace Retreat
Retreat can be an effective tactic during an intense battle, as it can allow you an opportunity to reflect and regroup, and can sometimes have a psychological deflating effect on the opponent—at just the moment they think that victory is imminent, you retreat and take away that opportunity from them.
I can’t tell you when the best time to retreat during battle is. It’s something that comes with experience. -ust remember it is a tactic available to you in the heat of battle. As such, it’s best to give yourself an escape route so you can easily retreat if necessary.
This is why the best lies stay as close to the truth as possible. When your lie begins to get you in trouble, you can fall back on the parts that are true. In general, though, I don’t recommend lying, but it is a tactic available to you when attempting to defeat an opponent.
Principle 8: Scare Your Opponent with the Unknown
Make vague references to your opponents about resources and allies you have at your disposal. Put up appearances as though you are powerful, strong, and a force to be reckoned with. Feign relationships with powerful figures so your opponent will think you have powerful allies.
Most of all, keep your opponent in the dark. Make attacks that would suggest you have more resources and allies than you do. What you want is to evoke fear in the opponent. You want their mind to wander. You want them to imagine and fear attacks upon them that you haven’t even thought of.
CHAPTER 14: DEFENSE STRATEGIES IN PSYCHOLOGICAL WARFARE
Psychological warfare is out there and it is real. You may just find yourself a victim at some point in life. Or you have already been a victim without even realizing it. After reading this book, you may become aware of psychological warfare attempts that have been made on you. You are not defenseless. Awareness is the first step to victory.
Who are your potential abusers? They may be neighbors, exes, or even family. Anyone who has an agenda against you may be trying to run your life and influence your actions unfavorably. If you feel like a victim, then you probably are.
Prevent Psychological Warfare
Choose what you allow into your life. You do not need to give certain people or situations the time of day. You are very busy and your time is precious. You need to protect your energy, resources, and intellect by associating only with the positive. Being selective about the people that you associate with also helps you keep your reputation intact so that you can preserve it in the event that your enemy attacks it.
You should also be selective about the media and information that you take in. Psychological warfare is usually very covert. If you take in lots of information, you raise your risk of exposure. Only choose a few reliable sources of news, and avoid listening to people that do not seem trustworthy. Do not believe everything that you read; question everything and perform your own research on even your most reliable sources of information and news.
Choose your relationships wisely. You really cannot trust anyone. Avoid trusting people. You never know what information they may glean about you to use against you. As you have learned from employing psychological warfare, manipulative and emotionally abusive people are able to glean the tiniest clues about you from your conersations. They then use this information later to hurt you in some way.
Always be wary of people who try to bait you or distract you. Usually, their actions are not innocent. Why do they want your attention? By distracting you, they may be trying to give you a subliminal cue or they may be trying to control you through the power of suggestion. Either way, they are trying to dominate and monopolize your time. You can ignore or politely but firmly tell them no when they demand your attention.
When people try to exert power over you, they may begin by stating you have glaring flaws. They do this to lower your self-esteem and make you sensitive. You do not need to fall for this. -ust change the conversation or suggest that they have the same flaw. If someone says you have a bad
temper, for instance, you can grin and say, “I know! But at least I don’t hold everything in like you do. It is actually healthier to have a bad but controlled temper like mine. How is your project coming along, by the way?” This is called deflection and it works miracles.
Remove yourself from drama and conflict. Stonewalling people is better than arguing with them. When you argue with people, you fuel their anger and animosity. You add power to the fight. When you pull away and act like a stone wall, you become unreachable. You win through silence. You also avoid making the enemies that may eventually attempt to perform psychological warfare on you by using stonewalling.
Do not let the opinions or actions of others change you. It is a natural human instinct to mirror the behavior of others to earn social approval. But social approval is highly overrated. You will be more at peace if you keep to yourself and do your own thing. Act the way you want to act. Be who you want to be. By not buying into the need for social approval, you lower your risk of falling victim to mass fads. People can be controlled through things like social proof and fads. If you are not one of the herd, you can avoid falling into trends that are created for mass control by the government or some other untrustworthy agent. You can be more discerning and determine what is safe, rather than blindly following other people’s leads.
Avoid all contact with enemies. Again, this is important because your enemies may be trying to get pertinent information from you. It is also important because your enemies may be trying to poison you with their negative vibes. They may even be performing psychological warfare on you. Limit your exposure to avoid any harm. You don’t need to waste time with people who do not care about you.
Establish a good reputation. This will make it difficult for your enemies to discredit you. People are more likely to believe your claims and rally for you if you have a good reputation. You can create a good reputation by always being nice and kind to others. Always be honest so that you look
like a good person with unfailing integrity. You want to be someone that other people like.
Protect Your Mind and Your Heart
Protect your mind and your heart; they are the main targets of psychological warfare, more so than your physical body. By overturning the fear and hurt that your psychological war-monger inflicts upon you, you essentially win the war. Fear and pain are the primary weapons of psychological warfare. They are aimed at the primary targets; your heart, and your mind. The only way you can defeat psychological warfare is by blocking the fear and pain. If you can reverse the fear and pain back on your attacker, you are even more of a victor in a psychological war.
Avoid falling victim to the power of suggestion. If someone suggests that you have a flaw or that you should do something, understand that they are using the power of suggestion to make you believe a self-limiting belief. Someone is trying to plant a bad thought about yourself in your head. By believing what they say, you become a victim. But you can fight their beliefs by believing in yourself. Undermine self-limiting beliefs that others try to plant into your mind by suggesting an alternative truth.
Also, continue to hold positive beliefs about yourself. Know that you are a good person and that you are loved. Believe that you are smart and capable. Think positive thoughts that build you up, rather than tear you down. When you do this, you give yourself the power and deny others the ability to take control of your low self-esteem. You protect your mind from bad suggestions and your heart from the pain that these suggestions can cause if you believe them.
Search for your enemy’s weaknesses. Psychological warfare is very successful and effective, but its use suggests that your enemy is too weak to actually attack you. He or she can only employ covert methods.
Likely, your attacker uses the power of intimidation. This power is great and it can make you cower in terror. But realize that intimidation is usually just a front that a scared bully erects for his or her own protection. Has your intimidator ever actually attacked you or anyone you know? Or is it all a façade? Test intimidation and see how easily your intimidator’s façade crumbles when you challenge it.
Try relaxing and reducing your stress level. Your attacker probably knows just how to get to you mentally and emotionally. Because your attacker has designed careful attacks on your heart and mind, you take these attacks very seriously. They hurt you and trouble you. But come to think of it, you may realize that these attacks are really nothing you need to worry about. Maybe these attacks are based on lies, or maybe they do not matter in the overall scheme of things. Take a day to yourself at some relaxing place, far away from the person who is using psychological warfare on you, and think about the attacks and whether or not you are blowing them up in your mind. When you begin to relax and let go of stress, you take back power from your attacker. Things stop bothering you so much and your heart will feel better.
Your heart and your mind are usually the victims of psychological warfare, not your body. If the psychological war-monger really wished you dead, he or she would have killed you already. Considering the fact that you are still alive today suggests that either your antagonist does not want to kill you, or else they cannot get away with killing you. Perhaps he or she does not have the means to get away with murder and is terrified of legal repercussions. You are at least temporarily safe from bodily harm. Do not let your attacker instill fear of death in you.
But time is of the essence. You cannot let your temporary safety give you a false sense of permanent security. Things can quickly change as your antagonist’s plan unfolds. You need to act to protect yourself immediately, in preparation for future physical harm. If someone hates you enough to perform psychological torture upon you, then that person is also capable of murdering you.
Even if you are never physically harmed, mental destruction can be just as disastrous for your life as physical destruction. You may develop a host of mental illnesses in response to the trauma wreaked upon you. You will never be the same. You will deal with self-delusions, hallucinations, depression, and other issues for the rest of your life. Your mind will no longer be your property, but rather the plaything of another person or persons whom you do not know. As you have seen in this book, psychological warfare can take hold of you and transform you into another person. It is insidious and it is effective.
They are taking your life slowly but surely. They may as well kill you since they are stealing your willpower, your freedom of will, and your will to live. You need to put an end to it before they truly disable you and ruin your life. Take back your power now before more of it is stolen from you.
Protecting Your Loved Ones
Protecting your loved ones starts by limiting the use of social media and other forms of media. The less that they are exposed to certain media, the less likely they are to be exposed to any propaganda that can affect them adversely.
You can also teach your kids to think for themselves and to respect themselves. Teach them what manipulation looks like and tell them that it is never OK. Teach them to research everything that they hear, even in school, and to always be suspicious of things.
Be frank and open about the reality of psychological warfare with your loved ones. Provide plenty of real-life examples. This way, your family can become aware of the danger. Awareness can enable them to take steps to fight the problem.
CHAPTER 15: TRAIN YOUR MIND TO BE CALM IN EVERY SITUATION
One of the keys to entering your own mind and making changes is self-hypnosis. Self-hypnosis lulls your mind into a state where you can access your subconscious effortlessly. Once in the hypnotic state, you can make suggestions that your subconscious mind will hear and process. Self-hypnosis works by reducing distracting conscious thoughts, leaving your mind bare and free to receive more sensitive messages directly in the subconscious. Hypnosis also lowers your natural inhibitions so that your mind is more receptive to messages and does not argue with itself or block thoughts or messages out.
Here are simple steps on how to perform self-hypnosis:
Lie in a comfortable position or sit down. Now, look at a specific spot somewhere on the ceiling. It is important to strain your eyes a little bit in order to induce concentration so pick a spot that is behind you and hold your eyes on it.
Change your breath to be slow, firm, and deep. Breathe in through your nose, out through your mouth. Feel yourself fill your chest and concentrate on the sensation of your lungs expanding with air. Then, let all your breath out and feel it rushing through your windpipes, over your teeth, out through your lips.
Recite out loud or in your mind the word “sleep” as you inhale, and then recite “deep sleep” as you exhale. Keep doing this until sleep overtakes your body. Your entire body should feel leaden with sleep.
Now is a good time to tell yourself to shut your eyes. Your eyes should just close without any effort on your part.
At this point, you are in a hypnotic state. Welcome! Deepen this state by counting. Tell yourself, “I am going to count to three and as I do that, I shall slip deeper into this hypnotic state. By the time I reach three, I will be more relaxed.” You can come up with your own version of this mantra, but just be sure to say something like that to yourself. Repeat your mantra a few times, either out loud or in the privacy of your own mind.
Count to three, all the while repeating the command with each count: “One… I am feeling more relaxed. Two…. I’m feeling even more relaxed…Three… I am feeling completely relaxed and I am truly in a hypnotic state now.”
Counting past three can help you enter a deeper hypnotic state. If your mind still wanders and you can’t focus, you can try longer counts. The more you practice self-hypnosis, however, the easier a short count will work.
Once in the hypnotic state, start telling yourself things you want to manifest in waking life. Some examples:
“On the count of ten, I will overcome this grudge.” “On the count of ten, I will no longer hurt.”
“On the count of ten, I will start chewing gum when I crave nicotine so that I can stop smoking for good.”
“On the count of ten, I will start to crave healthier foods to lose weight.”
The more you use hypnosis, the faster you can slide into it. Also, the more you practice it, the more you can get into your deep mind and make a change. Finally, realize that you don’t have to regard the examples above. You can use this technique to achieve weight loss, quit smoking, letting go of grudges, or ending other bad habits.
Remember to always replace bad behavior with a good one. So instead of saying “On the count of ten I will quit smoking,” suggest to your mind that on the count of ten you will start chewing gum instead of smoking cigarettes. Find an alternative to your old habits. If you are working on changing your personality, you might want to suggest that on the count of ten you will become more of whatever you want to become.
Avoid using negatives like “stop,” “don’t,” etc. Your mind does not respond to negatives so well and will leave off the “Don’t” to adopt the following behavior. So instead of saying negatives, state positives. Say “I will” and “I am going to start.” Use lots of strong action verbs.
Whether you drink a little too much to deal with stress or you tear yourself down with overly critical self-talk, your bad habits are preventing you from shining at your very best. To end bad habits, you can start to hack your own mind. It is surprisingly easy to do and it helps you break bad habits by changing the patterns your subconscious mind follows on autopilot, as I mentioned before. Mind hacking is an excellent form of subliminal psychology to use upon yourself.
Mind hacking works by using loops. The concept behind loops is that you reach into your thinking and adjust it. Each thought you think leads to more thoughts of the same vein. So, to change your thinking, you want to create loops of positive thoughts rather than negative ones. Instead of following the loops you create with each negative thought, be innovative and chase the negative thought with a positive one to redirect the consequential thought loop.
So how can you use this to adjust your personality and change bad habits? When you start to reach for a bad habit that you normally turn to in order to comfort yourself, such as a drink, think a positive loop about how you deserve better. Follow that with another positive thought that will encourage yourself to do something else that you will thank yourself for later. For example, instead of drinking to unwind after a stressful day of work, do some yoga to relax or take a hot bath. You will not hate yourself when you wake up thoroughly well-rested and without a hangover. Find what you want to feel and then find healthy ways to encourage that feeling without engaging in your bad habits. The more positive loops you make in your own mind, the more positive emotions you feel. And then the happier you are.
Subliminal Trick for Waking Up
Waking up earlier is one of the difficult and elusive secrets to success. When you wake up early, you have more time to get things done. You are more productive. Even if it seems like you will get the same number of hours in a day no matter when you wake up, waking early is good for the human mind and allows for better productivity.
But if you struggle to get out of bed, you can try the exhaustive old advice of going to bed early and just forcing yourself awake at an earlier hour. However, this seldom works well for people. That is when subliminal psychology for self-improvement plays a fun little role. One excellent trick for waking up at an earlier hour is to chant the time you want to wake up to yourself as you fall asleep. So, as you begin to drift off into sleep, which is basically the hypnotic state, you should tell yourself, “I want to wake up at seven.” Say this three times.
You can start to train yourself using anchoring. Through this process, you teach yourself to reach for positive behaviors when you receive a stimulus.
So, to create an anchor, first set a clear goal.
Next, pick a stimulus. Anything can work, but a stimulus that already has a profound meaning for you will work best.
Once you choose the stimulus, you need to start playing it or expose yourself to it, and then immediately pick up the task you want to learn to perform by the anchor. Keep doing this until you have hammered it in. Soon, you will notice that when you see or hear this stimulus, you want to do a particular thing. That’s when you know it has set. Keep using it and the anchor will only get stronger and more infallible. After some training, it will start to work on its own to motivate you.
Continue Education and Further Experiences
Make it a goal to keep learning and experiencing life. This simple desire can really transform your attitude about life and your zest for doing new things. You will want to get out of bed if you dedicate your days to learning and experiencing more.
I love the saying: Do something every day that scares you. I think this is the best advice you could possibly apply to your life. Try new things, approach new people, and take advantage of new opportunities. Even if you feel scared, do it anyway and surprise yourself as your life improves. Do not be complacent and let your life get stale and stagnant.
Adjust Your Self-Talk
All day long, a monologue runs in your mind. Take a moment to listen to how you speak to yourself. How does your internal monologue sound? Is it the way that you would talk to a friend? If not, you need to change your self-talk to be kinder and more encouraging. Your self-talk is a direct reflection of how you feel about yourself, so it is very important to your overall mental outlook on life. To change your overall outlook, you need to start speaking kindly to yourself. You can vanquish lack of motivation, discouragement, fear, and depression by talking to yourself in a kinder manner and giving yourself confidence boosts throughout the day.
It’s OK to Be Mean
Sometimes it is just necessary to be mean. No, I don’t mean become the new bully in the office or an abuser to your family. But start to be a bit harsh and firm when you stand up for yourself. Be selfish and demand what you deserve without an apology. Give yourself permission to be mean when you need to be. Being nice will only open you up to being taken advantage of.
You must work to always stick up for yourself. Even if it requires being mean to someone, you must put yourself first.
It is also acceptable to ignore the conventional rules of social politeness to defend yourself. Take care of yourself and conserve your precious time and money by not tolerating sitting there listening to someone’s rambling.
Similarly, stop letting people insult you. Maybe you have accepted it before to be polite. You know that you are supposed to laugh and take it as a joke even though it is not very funny to you. But why do this?
Say no when you want to. You may feel that it is polite to say yes, but doing so can really tax your resources and make you overextend yourself.
Fearlessly confront people when you feel you have been ripped off. Never tell people that you are sorry for what you say or feel guilty for sticking up for yourself.
Being mean can help you gain both dominance and confidence. It shows you that you are worth something, so your mind starts to believe it. Soon you will not even have to try. You just stand up for yourself because you know you don’t deserve any disrespect or poor treatment.
CHAPTER 16: PERSUASION VS MANIPULATION
Seeing how individuals structure assessments and contentions, and display and incorporate realities into their psychological models is key to your capacity to persuade anyone to become tied up with a thought and afterward follow up on that thought. That is the embodiment of influence.
The distinction between influence and manipulation lies in:
1) The expectation behind your craving to convince that individual,
2) The honesty and straightforwardness of the procedure, and
3) The net advantage or effect on that individual
Manipulation suggests that you are disguising a craving to move someone to see things from your perspective, such that it will profit you. What’s more, if this advantage were uncovered, that disclosure would make the other individual far less open to your message since it would either:
Demonstrate a solid inclination towards their absence of advantage in the trade,
Demonstrate an ulterior thought process, or
Some mix of both.
So, for instance, suppose I was selling someone a vehicle. That individual strolled into my business with a group of six children, and it was evident that they were searching for and truly required a family-sized, reasonable vehicle.
In any case, I at that point utilized the entirety of my powerful capacities to persuade the parent that he shouldn’t purchase a little van, but rather a two- seater convertible to relive his youth, knowing that I would make double the commission on that vehicle and it was totally unsatisfactory for the customer.
That Is Manipulation
Now imagine a scenario where that same parent came into my business with six children and said to me, “Man, I simply need to blow some money. I should purchase an eight-seater. I know it’s silly, and I truly can’t legitimize this. However, I’m only here for the two-seater convertible.”
Also, imagine a scenario in which I then utilize my convincing capacities to gradually and deliberately drive this parent to comprehend the advantages of acquiring the more moderate and appropriate family vehicle.
That Is Influence, Not Manipulation
I utilized similar skills to persuade someone to accomplish something that I truly accepted was to their greatest advantage, rather than persuading them to accomplish something that was not to their greatest advantage.
It’s the hidden expectations, the net advantages, and the veracity with which you breathe life into this toolkit that makes the distinction between influence and manipulation.
This has been a subject of discussion for truly a huge number of years. In Greece, during the fourth century BC, the father of influence, Aristotle, held a gathering of educators known as the Sophists. Aristotle conflicted with the Sophists over the way that they couldn’t have cared less about truth yet would advance any thought for an expense. He stated that the Sophists were taking part in manipulation since they purposefully misdirected individuals and caused hurt.
Why Persuasion Is Good
To accurately perceive the distinction between influence and manipulation, it is fundamental to comprehend the morals that undergird influence. There are some scholars who have proclaimed that influence is morally impartial. In other words, that influence is neither acceptable nor terrible, however simply a fair-minded procedure. I don’t acknowledge this position. I would argue that the Aristotelian perspective that influence isn’t nonpartisan, however honorable, is right.
Influence is intrinsically acceptable in light of the fact that it is one of the essential methods through which truth gets known. Through the influential strategy, a thought is advanced with proof, and an individual is permitted to decide to either acknowledge or dismiss that powerful intrigue openly. Influence does, without a doubt, include moving individuals to a position they don’t right now hold, however not by asking or persuading. Rather, it includes cautious planning, the best possible encircling of contentions, the introduction of distinctive supporting proof, and the push to locate the right passionate match with your crowd.
The conviction that influence is a fair and powerful method for landing at truth is seen in the way that it is the reason for present-day financial aspects, directing practices, and the lawful framework. What’s more, influence is additionally the establishment of majority rule government. Majority rules systems utilize attentive moral influence at whatever point they choose pioneers, set up laws, or attempt to ensure their residents. Indeed, even the individuals who become alarmed with the thought of influence can’t get away from it.
Influence is imbued inside human correspondence. When imparting their will, individuals both deliberately and unexpectedly advance certain convictions and practices. Thus, influence doesn’t involve decisions; it is innate in social connection. Indeed, it is so inescapable in human correspondence that, on occasion, it turns out to be practically undetectable.
The supposed individuals’ callings – legislative issues, law, social work, advising, business the board, promoting, deals, advertising, and the service – should be called influence callings.
At its center, influence is the quest for truth. It is through influence that positive change happens. For instance, influential messages have been logically demonstrated to incite students to abstain from smoking, and from joining packs. Influence helps manufacture harmony between countries.
Influence persuades drivers to forgo driving when they’ve had a couple of drinks and are too drunk to drive. Influence is utilized to persuade a drunkard to look for proficient assistance. Influence is the manner by which the mentor of a dark horse group moves the players to give it their everything. Influence is an apparatus utilized by guardians to ask kids not to acknowledge rides from outsiders or to permit anybody to contact them in a way that feels awkward. So, influence is the foundation of various positive, pro-social attempts. Barely any of the decency that we find on the planet could be practiced without influence.
However, the integrity of influence and the way it is implanted inside human instinct isn’t what causes concern. What causes nervousness is the debasement of influence. Undoubtedly, when influence is mutilated, it can get manipulative, which is perilous. Through manipulation, scallywags, religious pioneers, and tyrants have mishandled, oppressed, and even slaughtered millions. In any case, as unfavorable as manipulation may be, it ought to never be mistaken for influence.
Manipulation is the corruption of influence. It isn’t worried about truth but instead based in double-dealing. Aristotle remarked on this in his acclaimed work, Rhetoric when he accentuated, “maltreatment of the explanatory workforce can work extraordinary evil, a similar charge can be brought against every beneficial thing spare righteousness itself, and particularly against the most helpful things, for example, quality, wellbeing, riches, and military aptitude. Properly utilized, they work the best gift; and wrongly utilized, they work the best damage.”
Therefore, the appropriate inquiry is how you might recognize influence and manipulation? Coming up next are the three clear, yet dependable ways that you can break down if a message is manipulative.
The aim is an essential factor in deciding whether a solicitation is manipulative. In the event that an individual endeavors to exhibit a thought or conduct that isn’t to the greatest advantage of another, they are participating in manipulation. Unfortunately, this is very normal. Individuals habitually fall into the snare of manhandling others in the quest for what they want. One of the underlying drivers of this Machiavellian point of view is not seeing others with equity. The famous scholar Immanuel Kant expounded on this attitude when he recommended that the central statute of ethical quality is regarding an individual as a person and not as a thing.
2. Withholding Truth
Manipulation includes misshaping or retaining truth. Regularly, this is seen through overstating the upsides of conduct, a thought, or item. It was this type of manipulation that incited the expression Caveat Emptor, which is Latin for “Purchaser Beware”. The expression was especially far-reaching during those chronicled periods when there was little responsibility for venders. The maxim was an admonition to potential purchasers to be suspicious of those selling merchandise, and to ensure that they confirmed, before buying, that the nature of the item was indistinguishable from the cases made by the dealer. Indeed, even today, a great many people have encountered being told about the highlights or advantages of an item, and afterward, in the wake of obtaining it understood that they had been misdirected. This isn’t right, as something outside genuine portrayal is conspicuous manipulation.
The pressure is the third and most clear segment of a manipulative intrigue. It is the expulsion of free decision, the final proposal – do it, or something bad might happen. Interestingly, influence includes impact, but never power. A characterizing facet of influence is free decision. At some level, the individual must be fit for tolerating or dismissing the position that has been encouraged by the person in question.
Interestingly, a manipulative intrigue is one that, whenever embraced, will adversely affect another. Manipulation is ethically off base and counterproductive to all included. The deliberate utilization of misdirecting impact strategies turns into a mentally and monetarily self-harming process. In this manner, through a precise and powerful comprehension of both the rightness of influence and the three essential components of manipulation, you will be ready to convince others morally and shield yourself from manipulative solicitations.
The Most Effective Method to Develop
Your Influencing Skills
We frequently need to convince and impact those over whom we have no genuine position. The question is how to do this in a viable and unpretentious manner.
Persuasion requires empathy
Give the other party the feeling that you have met them midway or further. An inconspicuous, compassionate methodology is suggested as opposed to a more straightforward or powerful style.
CHAPTER 17: EARN RESPECT
While life would be fantastic if it worked this way, you can’t snap your fingers and just decide to be more charismatic and confident. You can from a mental and psychological standpoint, but acting more confidently takes time and practice, just like anything else in life.
What I would recommend for is to read through this part of the book and let the information settle, and then start practicing a bit at a time. Some aspects will resonate more with you than others. Some things you might do already, and some you may never have thought of, so take the bits you want and work with them. If you’re feeling adventurous, then sure, try a bit you may not have thought about trying.
My point is, try things out and find what works for you. This way, you’ll be discovering yourself and your style of charisma along the way. Let’s go!
Method 1 – Becoming More Charismatic
To be charismatic means to have a charm and attractiveness about you, both physically and intellectually, that makes other people want to be around you and want to know more about you. You may draw people in with how you talk and the way you are, you may have people hanging off your every word, or you may inspire something in people that makes them want to be better.
I’m sure you know some charismatic people in your life; the kinds of people who make you feel like you want to be them, but not in an egotistical way—more in a natural way that just gives you a certain sense of peace around them. Fortunately, anyone can be this kind of person. It’s something you learn and practice, although it does come more naturally to some people. Here’s how:
Awareness of Your Values
This means you need to understand your values and what your abilities are. What do you stand for, what do you believe in, and what potential do you have to do amazing things in your life?
Own Your Integrity
Integrity is the ability to stick to your values and do the things you say you’re going to do. This is essential when it comes to trusting others around and believing in yourself.
Think for Yourself
The most charismatic people think for themselves, regardless of what the status quo thinks, which makes them such inspiring people to be around.
Have a Flame Inside You
There is nothing more satisfying than having a flame or a spark inside you that makes you go out and get what you want in the world.
Step Out of Your Comfort Zone
Charismatic people are comfortable with getting uncomfortable.
Be in Control of Your Emotions
Being emotional is not a great place to be. Now, I don’t say this because emotions are bad. Emotions are useful because they’re a clear indication of who we are as individuals and what we care about. However, if you allow your emotions to consume you and take over, this is where things can get problematic.
Method 2 – Everything You Need to
Know about Confidence
The official definition of being confident is having the willingness to act accordingly when meeting life’s challenges and having the drive to succeed. This goes hand in hand with stepping outside of your comfort zone, settling into uncomfortable situations, and even going on a journey to becoming more charismatic while believing in yourself.
If you don’t have confidence, you’re not going to have what it takes to be the best version of yourself. You need that passion and inner motivation to step forward into your true self and be yourself. Your relationship with yourself requires this, and it ripples out to every other relationship you’ll have in your life.
Find Your Limiting Beliefs
There will be moments where you are naturally confident already, so a great place to start when trying to expand this confidence “zone” is to take some time to think about where you are not so confident.
Define Your Confidence Style
The best way to do this is to think about the times in your life when you felt the most confidence.
Minimize Comparison with Others
Comparing yourself to someone else is only going to make you feel bad about yourself and diminish your achievements. The only person you should be comparing yourself with is yourself.
Keep on Learning
When you take time to learn something new, whether it’s a fact about the world or a new skill, you’ll give yourself a little boost in confidence because you’re proving to yourself that you’re enough and you’re fully capable.
Be True to Yourself
Suppose you’re masking yourself and pretending to be someone you’re not for the supposed benefit of others. In that case, you’re not going to be confident in yourself because you’re spending all your energy focusing on hiding this person.
When you can freely be yourself and truly embrace who you are, there’s no reason to spend energy on hiding yourself.
Method 3 – Your Outside Reflects Your Inside
It’s all well and good being a good, genuine person, but if you don’t look after yourself, you’re going to be pushing people away. More realistically, if you’re not looking after yourself, you’re probably not going to be confident in yourself, which will lead to you being even more socially anxious than you already are, which will ultimately make relationships harder to form and maintain.
It pays to look after yourself and to treat your body with respect, both for the attraction of others and for boosting the confidence you have in yourself. If you look and feel the part of the person you want to be, everything else will fall into place naturally.
Find Your Style
Everybody has their own style, so it’s important for your confidence and self-esteem to find yours.
Develop a Daily Routine
Proper hygiene is vital if you want to be confident in yourself, and if you want others to be attracted to you.
This means taking the time to look after yourself, thus helping you love yourself more and making yourself incredibly attractive to the people around you.
Endless studies prove that exercise is important for maintaining a balanced state of mental health, reducing stress levels, and building up your confidence. You’ll also improve your social relationships when you exercise with a partner or friend, join a team, and improve your abilities to successfully create powerful and beneficial habits.
Eat a Healthy Diet
Eating a healthy diet goes hand in hand with exercising properly and making sure you’re keeping yourself healthy in the best possible way, therefore allowing all the positive benefits to come into your life.
Method 4 – Trust is Everything
If you’ve ever been lied to or betrayed by someone, then you know how much it hurts to have trust in a relationship broken. Having trust is fundamental to any relationship. Even though you might see yourself as a trustworthy person, it’s vital that you think about how you can be more trustworthy and prove this to the people around you consistently and naturally.
Think about how often you tell little white lies. The lies that don’t mean anything, but you tell them anyway. In sales, I used to say all the time that work on a project was done, and I’ll send it over Monday because my internet was acting up. The work wasn’t done. I was just at home feeling sorry for myself and was making up excuses to give myself more time. Now, you might think these lies are harmless, but when people can see through them, they create an impression of you, and they damage your relationships.
From the other person’s perspective, they see that you’re going through a rough time but don’t want to approach you. Obviously, you’re lying because you don’t want to talk about it. However, that person will feel negatively towards you because you lied to them, and while it may seem little, they’re not going to trust you on much bigger, more important topics.
A 2016 global study on some of the top CEOs in the world found that 55% of CEOs in the world’s biggest companies said that a “lack of trust” was among the biggest threats to a company’s stability and success. -ust like in my example above, if you don’t trust the people you’re working with, this creates a huge shift in the team’s dynamic because nobody knows who is telling the truth. Problems are guaranteed to arise at some point.
The same applies to your relationships. If you break trust in a relationship, both romantic relationships or friendships, the person involved may never fully trust you again, and there’s no stability. It doesn’t matter what you say to that other person; they can just say, “I don’t believe you,” and there’s nothing you can do to make things better.
As a general rule of thumb, always be honest with people from the moment you meet them. Never give them a reason to think you’re untrustworthy. If people can trust you with their lives, your relationships will be stronger than you can imagine. So, how do you do it?
How to Be More Trustworthy in Your Relationships
People all have different life experiences, and if you meet someone who’s been lied to by the people in their lives for as long as they can remember, they may not trust you, even if you’re a trustworthy person. You need to have the integrity to prove that you are, and you can do this by following the points below.
Start Off Slow and Build Up Trust
Start slowly when you’re getting to know someone and build up to the more intimate and vulnerable details of your thinking as you go. Remember, while you want the other person to trust you, you always want to be able to trust them, so find the right balance between giving and taking.
Putting in the Time
If you want someone’s trust, you need to put in the time and have experiences with this person. The more positive time you put into the relationship, the more you’ll be trusted.
Avoid Emotionally Harming Someone
When someone tells you something that they’re trusting you with, you must pay them respect and avoid damaging them and hurting them, even if you do it unintentionally. This is one of the most assured way to break your trust with someone.
Remember, your words have the ability to create magic, and it’s up to you what spells you cast.
Be Honest with Your Feelings
The best and most fulfilling relationships are formed between people who can be open and honest, even if it would be easier not to. This will create a huge amount of respect for you among the people in your relationships, and the trust will only help strengthen these connections.
The message of the book is awareness of the various languages of psychology warfare including what they are, and who is fighting with these languages. Basic psychology involves a person’s inner systems that can be used for a better and more positive result. Psychological warfare on the other hand has been termed as mind and behavior manipulation.
The art of psychological warfare is present due to the inherent dark side of all people. The book mainly emphasizes the dark “I” and its impact on the psyche of the person.
The book is about the manipulation of minds and how people live through the minds and the transformations it brings.
The book’s main focus lies on the common person who is unaware of the powers that they have inside them.
There are different main arts in psychological warfare.
Deception is one of them. We must understand the various facets of deception as the word itself has multiple shades. For instance, camouflage is a part of deception. In camouflage, we learn to hide our inner self and give out the appearance that we are different from what we actually are. Another form of deception is to appear friendly on the outside and promote some other hidden agenda on the inside. This is but one of the many forms of deception used in psychological warfare.
Influence is another word used in psychological warfare. The art of influence is used for various purposes, but it can also be used for inducing some positive change in the person’s behavior. Another form of influence that is used for psychological warfare is influencing the person to believe they are in control of the situation while they actually are not.
Domination is another art used in psychological warfare. This art helps make the person feel disempowered. The art of domination is applied in psychological warfare through the use of high-ranking titles. The army generals are known by their ranks and so are the police officials. This, therefore, gives a sense of power to the people around them while they have lower ranks.
Blackmail is another art used in psychological warfare. It is one of the forms of fear used in psychological warfare.
Manipulation is another art used in psychological warfare. This is used to encourage a person to do stupid things that are in the interest of the manipulator.
Brainwashing is also another art used in psychological warfare. The art of mind control is used on those people who have witnessed trauma in their lives. The art utilizes that trauma for advantage. Due to the person’s inner difficulties and fears, art like this is used to make them feel that they are controlled, and free from any responsibilities.
Psychological warfare is based on how to control the mental processes of individuals. This is done by the use of these arts. The goal is to direct the individual towards some purpose that is accomplished by using psychological warfare.
The techniques employed in psychological warfare can be applied at the workplace. This includes distract the employees by giving them some false promises. The employee ends up not focusing on the work because they have been distracted.
It can also be applied in relationships. The attachment created through psychological warfare is not a healthy form of attachment. In unhealthy relationships, the other person can be constantly trying to persuade the person to do some favors or sell their inner self.
Different principles of the art of psychological warfare can also be applied to entrepreneurs and businesspeople. The psychological warfare that aims at influencing the decisions of the people who invest in the business is an art that can be utilized to boost the economy by offering investors more value for their money.
The mission of the book is to raise awareness of the varieties of psychological warfare in order to protect people from these tactics.
The psychological warfare that we face every day is not at all as easy as it seems. These people try to manipulate our minds, and with that belief in mind, the author decided to write this book.
The dangers of psychological warfare are real, and the author wanted to raise the awareness of the readers to fight the art. It is about realizing your power, working with the art of positive psychology, and ensuring there is a balance between the inner and outer self.
We need to take note of the fact that we are on enemy grounds and we need to have defense strategies in place.
We need to raise awareness about the different psychic attacks that people are suffering. We need to create a balance between the outer and inner self and this is done by raising awareness of the art of psychological warfare.
Thank you for reaching the end and hopefully, I was able to impart a lot of knowledge to you.