The Safe Stance
In an emergency, when you don't have enough time to think or don't feel
comfortable enough to use what you have learned, always go into
Computer Mode, and stay there until you have a good reason to change.
When things are coming apart--go Computer. There is no safer stance.
Practice it in front of a mirror, if you have to, but make sure this defense
is in your arsenal.
- is never angry or emotional or hurried or upset.
- never talks in the first person singular (I, me, my, mine, myself)
without a ton of modifying phrases.
- always talks in abstractions and generalities.
- say, "It is ______ that....;", for example, "It is obvious that there is
no cause for alarm."
- says, "One would..." or "Any reasonable person would..."
- always looks absolutely calm and relaxed.
- usually takes a single physical stance early in the conversation and
maintains it from then on.
- never commits him/herself to anything.
A presupposition is something that a native speaker of a language knows is
part of the meaning of a sequence of that language, even if it is not overtly
present in the sequence.
Every native English speaker knows the following presuppositions:
- For instance:
- "Even Bill could get an A in that class."
Overall Strategy for Dealing with Verbal Attacks
- that Bill is not that great of a student; and
- the class is an easy one.
- Identify the Satir Mode being used.
- Identify the presupposition(s) of the sequence.
- Respond in Computer Mode, with a neutral request for information about
the presupposition or a remark about the presupposition.
- Maintain Computer Mode.
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