November 9, 2007

Influenca is Contagious

It's not a typo. I did mean to write the word influenca in the title with a 'C' instead of the 'Z'. We all know how good it feels when we social influence other people. I'm not talking about peer pressure here. Because peer pressure is when one is forced to do something he might not like just to go with the flow. I'm actually talking about socializing with people and later on seeing for yourself the changes you exerted on them, especially if they were positive changes.

I went to Michigan with some friends and I saw there a friend that I haven't seen for a while. So we had some one-on-one chat time at some Arabic café there. He opened up and told me that he was dating this girl he met at work who's not suitable for him. They both couldn't see any future together, and the weird thing is that they actually talked about it. They both admitted to one another that they cannot see anything serious happening between them. So they just decided to date until he leaves the country. I told him this is so wrong. I really hate it when people get into relationships when they know it's not gonna go anywhere. What a waste of time and emotions!
Of course, I didn't want to be pushful with my views. I didn't want to bore and annoy him. So I just told him how this relationship is not fruitful and should be ended sooner or later.

We finished our drinks and I told him to come spend some time with us at the hotel. So he came and lied down on one of the beds and I went outside the room to check on my friends in the other rooms. Half an hour later, I came back to the room and saw him sorrowfully looking at me. "I broke up with her", he said. I did not believe him at first. But it turned out that he did call her and tell her he wanted to end their relationship. I was really surprised and I had a lot of mixed feelings. I was happy he did the right thing, I felt bad for the girl that cried on the phone, and I felt proud of myself for having the power to convince someone of something without doing much effort.

It's a strategy that anyone can learn. It's just that people don't like to learn things. You must think deliberately (does this word ring a bell?) about the words you're saying before they actually come out of your mouth. You must be committed to the goals of the message you're trying to deliver. Do not use words such as "might" or maybe". Instead, use positive words such as "must" and "will". Don't ever be a dissembler! You have to be truthful and honest. Some people can know the difference in your tone of voice because it does reflect the psychological arousal.

If you care about your friends, you have to take their hand and open their eyes. That's what friends are for. It really grinds my gears when someone says "I don't care what my friends do as long as they don't do anything bad to me". That's only what a selfish person would say. Be nice and support those who might need your help.

Don't you know that we can change the world? I do.

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