You Can Have What You Say

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Well, like anything else involving communicating with another human being , it's the words we choose that matter. If hubris isn't the obstacle in your path, here are 10 phrases to initiate your trust-building starting now. We like them more than people who seem too perfect. So go ahead -- praise their work, using something like, "I can't tell you how much your extra mentoring efforts for the new employees have meant to the whole team.

Another form of praise should be given for someone's leadership or character traits for handling a challenging situation or difficult person. There's this false notion that people who ask for advice are perceived as less competent. It demonstrates humility , a leadership strength that builds trust with others. Often used as a greeting phrase, when done with the proper and enthusiastic voice tone and body language it's packed with deeper meaning that positively elevates the other person and makes you look and feel good.

It communicates, "You matter, and I value your presence. Trust is a two-way street.

Encyclopedia of Biology

By extending it to others on your team, they'll be more inclined to return the favor and trust you back. Next time someone gives you input on the direction of a project, be open, have faith in that person's competency to get it done, release your control or fear, and say, "I trust your judgment on this one. A confident group doesn't need taboos to protect it. It's not considered improper to make disparaging remarks about Americans, or the English. And yet a group has to be powerful enough to enforce a taboo.

Coprophiles, as of this writing, don't seem to be numerous or energetic enough to have had their interests promoted to a lifestyle. I suspect the biggest source of moral taboos will turn out to be power struggles in which one side only barely has the upper hand. That's where you'll find a group powerful enough to enforce taboos, but weak enough to need them.

Most struggles, whatever they're really about, will be cast as struggles between competing ideas. The English Reformation was at bottom a struggle for wealth and power, but it ended up being cast as a struggle to preserve the souls of Englishmen from the corrupting influence of Rome. It's easier to get people to fight for an idea. And whichever side wins, their ideas will also be considered to have triumphed, as if God wanted to signal his agreement by selecting that side as the victor.

We often like to think of World War II as a triumph of freedom over totalitarianism. We conveniently forget that the Soviet Union was also one of the winners. I'm not saying that struggles are never about ideas, just that they will always be made to seem to be about ideas, whether they are or not. And just as there is nothing so unfashionable as the last, discarded fashion, there is nothing so wrong as the principles of the most recently defeated opponent.

Representational art is only now recovering from the approval of both Hitler and Stalin. The early adopters will be driven by ambition: self-consciously cool people who want to distinguish themselves from the common herd. As the fashion becomes established they'll be joined by a second, much larger group, driven by fear. So if you want to figure out what we can't say, look at the machinery of fashion and try to predict what it would make unsayable.

What groups are powerful but nervous, and what ideas would they like to suppress? What ideas were tarnished by association when they ended up on the losing side of a recent struggle? If a self-consciously cool person wanted to differentiate himself from preceding fashions e. What are conventional-minded people afraid of saying? This technique won't find us all the things we can't say. I can think of some that aren't the result of any recent struggle. Many of our taboos are rooted deep in the past. But this approach, combined with the preceding four, will turn up a good number of unthinkable ideas.

Why Some would ask, why would one want to do this? Why deliberately go poking around among nasty, disreputable ideas? Why look under rocks? I do it, first of all, for the same reason I did look under rocks as a kid: plain curiosity. And I'm especially curious about anything that's forbidden. Let me see and decide for myself. Second, I do it because I don't like the idea of being mistaken. If, like other eras, we believe things that will later seem ridiculous, I want to know what they are so that I, at least, can avoid believing them.

Third, I do it because it's good for the brain. To do good work you need a brain that can go anywhere. And you especially need a brain that's in the habit of going where it's not supposed to. Great work tends to grow out of ideas that others have overlooked, and no idea is so overlooked as one that's unthinkable.

Natural selection, for example. It's so simple. Why didn't anyone think of it before? Well, that is all too obvious. Darwin himself was careful to tiptoe around the implications of his theory. He wanted to spend his time thinking about biology, not arguing with people who accused him of being an atheist.

In the sciences, especially, it's a great advantage to be able to question assumptions. The m. That's where new theories come from. A good scientist, in other words, does not merely ignore conventional wisdom, but makes a special effort to break it. Scientists go looking for trouble. This should be the m. It could be that the scientists are simply smarter; most physicists could, if necessary, make it through a PhD program in French literature, but few professors of French literature could make it through a PhD program in physics.

Or it could be because it's clearer in the sciences whether theories are true or false, and this makes scientists bolder.

'Would you be willing?': words to turn a conversation around (and those to avoid)

Or it could be that, because it's clearer in the sciences whether theories are true or false, you have to be smart to get jobs as a scientist, rather than just a good politician. Whatever the reason, there seems a clear correlation between intelligence and willingness to consider shocking ideas. This isn't just because smart people actively work to find holes in conventional thinking.

I think conventions also have less hold over them to start with. You can see that in the way they dress. It's not only in the sciences that heresy pays off. In any competitive field, you can win big by seeing things that others daren't. And in every field there are probably heresies few dare utter.

Do use: willing

Within the US car industry there is a lot of hand-wringing now about declining market share. Yet the cause is so obvious that any observant outsider could explain it in a second: they make bad cars. And they have for so long that by now the US car brands are antibrands—something you'd buy a car despite, not because of.

Cadillac stopped being the Cadillac of cars in about And yet I suspect no one dares say this. Training yourself to think unthinkable thoughts has advantages beyond the thoughts themselves. It's like stretching. When you stretch before running, you put your body into positions much more extreme than any it will assume during the run.

If you can think things so outside the box that they'd make people's hair stand on end, you'll have no trouble with the small trips outside the box that people call innovative. Pensieri Stretti When you find something you can't say, what do you do with it?

T.I. - Whatever You Like [Official Video]

My advice is, don't say it. Or at least, pick your battles. Suppose in the future there is a movement to ban the color yellow. Proposals to paint anything yellow are denounced as "yellowist", as is anyone suspected of liking the color. People who like orange are tolerated but viewed with suspicion. Suppose you realize there is nothing wrong with yellow. If you go around saying this, you'll be denounced as a yellowist too, and you'll find yourself having a lot of arguments with anti-yellowists. If your aim in life is to rehabilitate the color yellow, that may be what you want.

But if you're mostly interested in other questions, being labelled as a yellowist will just be a distraction. Argue with idiots, and you become an idiot. The most important thing is to be able to think what you want, not to say what you want. And if you feel you have to say everything you think, it may inhibit you from thinking improper thoughts.

I think it's better to follow the opposite policy.


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Draw a sharp line between your thoughts and your speech. Inside your head, anything is allowed. Within my head I make a point of encouraging the most outrageous thoughts I can imagine. But, as in a secret society, nothing that happens within the building should be told to outsiders. The first rule of Fight Club is, you do not talk about Fight Club. Smile at everyone, and don't tell them what you're thinking. This was wise advice.

Milton was an argumentative fellow, and the Inquisition was a bit restive at that time.

Don’t use: just

But I think the difference between Milton's situation and ours is only a matter of degree. Every era has its heresies, and if you don't get imprisoned for them you will at least get in enough trouble that it becomes a complete distraction. I admit it seems cowardly to keep quiet. When I read about the harassment to which the Scientologists subject their critics [12], or that pro-Israel groups are "compiling dossiers" on those who speak out against Israeli human rights abuses [13], or about people being sued for violating the DMCA [14], part of me wants to say, "All right, you bastards, bring it on.

If you said them all you'd have no time left for your real work. You'd have to turn into Noam Chomsky. Talking about an idea leads to more ideas. So the optimal plan, if you can manage it, is to have a few trusted friends you can speak openly to. This is not just a way to develop ideas; it's also a good rule of thumb for choosing friends.

Words—The Start Button to Everything You’re Believing For

The people you can say heretical things to without getting jumped on are also the most interesting to know. Viso Sciolto? I don't think we need the viso sciolto so much as the pensieri stretti. Perhaps the best policy is to make it plain that you don't agree with whatever zealotry is current in your time, but not to be too specific about what you disagree with. Zealots will try to draw you out, but you don't have to answer them. If they try to force you to treat a question on their terms by asking "are you with us or against us? Better still, answer "I haven't decided. Explaining himself later, he said "I don't do litmus tests.

There is no prize for getting the answer quickly. If the anti-yellowists seem to be getting out of hand and you want to fight back, there are ways to do it without getting yourself accused of being a yellowist. Like skirmishers in an ancient army, you want to avoid directly engaging the main body of the enemy's troops.

You Can Have What You Say – Kenneth E. Hagin | HopeFaithPrayer

Better to harass them with arrows from a distance. One way to do this is to ratchet the debate up one level of abstraction. If you argue against censorship in general, you can avoid being accused of whatever heresy is contained in the book or film that someone is trying to censor. You can attack labels with meta-labels: labels that refer to the use of labels to prevent discussion. The spread of the term "political correctness" meant the beginning of the end of political correctness, because it enabled one to attack the phenomenon as a whole without being accused of any of the specific heresies it sought to suppress.

Another way to counterattack is with metaphor. He never referred directly to the committee and so gave them no way to reply. And yet Miller's metaphor stuck so well that to this day the activities of the committee are often described as a "witch-hunt. Zealots, whatever their cause, invariably lack a sense of humor. They can't reply in kind to jokes. They're as unhappy on the territory of humor as a mounted knight on a skating rink. Victorian prudishness, for example, seems to have been defeated mainly by treating it as a joke.

Likewise its reincarnation as political correctness. It's true they have a long tradition of comparative open-mindedness. For centuries the low countries were the place to go to say things you couldn't say anywhere else, and this helped to make the region a center of scholarship and industry which have been closely tied for longer than most people realize. Descartes, though claimed by the French, did much of his thinking in Holland. And yet, I wonder. The Dutch seem to live their lives up to their necks in rules and regulations. There's so much you can't do there; is there really nothing you can't say?

Certainly the fact that they value open-mindedness is no guarantee. Who thinks they're not open-minded? Our hypothetical prim miss from the suburbs thinks she's open-minded. Hasn't she been taught to be? Ask anyone, and they'll say the same thing: they're pretty open-minded, though they draw the line at things that are really wrong. Some tribes may avoid "wrong" as judgemental, and may instead use a more neutral sounding euphemism like "negative" or "destructive". When people are bad at math, they know it, because they get the wrong answers on tests.

But when people are bad at open-mindedness they don't know it. In fact they tend to think the opposite. Remember, it's the nature of fashion to be invisible. It wouldn't work otherwise. Fashion doesn't seem like fashion to someone in the grip of it. It just seems like the right thing to do. It's only by looking from a distance that we see oscillations in people's idea of the right thing to do, and can identify them as fashions. Time gives us such distance for free. Indeed, the arrival of new fashions makes old fashions easy to see, because they seem so ridiculous by contrast.


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From one end of a pendulum's swing, the other end seems especially far away. To see fashion in your own time, though, requires a conscious effort. Without time to give you distance, you have to create distance yourself. Instead of being part of the mob, stand as far away from it as you can and watch what it's doing. And pay especially close attention whenever an idea is being suppressed. Web filters for children and employees often ban sites containing pornography, violence, and hate speech.

What counts as pornography and violence? And what, exactly, is "hate speech? Labels like that are probably the biggest external clue. If a statement is false, that's the worst thing you can say about it. You don't need to say that it's heretical. And if it isn't false, it shouldn't be suppressed. So when you see statements being attacked as x-ist or y-ic substitute your current values of x and y , whether in or , that's a sure sign that something is wrong.

When you hear such labels being used, ask why. Especially if you hear yourself using them. It's not just the mob you need to learn to watch from a distance. You need to be able to watch your own thoughts from a distance. That's not a radical idea, by the way; it's the main difference between children and adults. When a child gets angry because he's tired, he doesn't know what's happening. An adult can distance himself enough from the situation to say "never mind, I'm just tired.

You have to take that extra step if you want to think clearly. But it's harder, because now you're working against social customs instead of with them. Everyone encourages you to grow up to the point where you can discount your own bad moods. Few encourage you to continue to the point where you can discount society's bad moods. How can you see the wave, when you're the water? Always be questioning.