Tag Archives: Knower/Judger

The nature of anger

From Volume 11, Issue 3:What makes you angry? Politics? Bad manners? Erratic driving? Poor service?

And why, when so triggered, do you express the emotion anger?

Psychologist Gail Brenner, whom I’ve been reading lately, has dived deeply into this emotion, and it ties in with the nomenclature I’ve been using to describe reactive behaviors in this newsletter. Anger exists in the Knower/Judger. It’s learned.

Love means never having to say you’re sorry

From Volume 11, Issue 3:Have you ever thought of the various uses of “I’m sorry”?

There are people who perpetually apologize for things that don’t warrant an apology—sometimes they’re just prefacing a simple sentence, like “I’m sorry, can we have a conversation about your time card for last week?”

Or they say “I’m sorry” every time they pass someone closely in a hallway. For these people, it’s a trained reaction. My experience has been that these folks learned this at an early age and frequently beat themselves up about not executing their lives to perfection.

Developing power in a conversation

From Volume 11, Issue 2:You’re in a conversation with your co-worker. Your opinions on the subject at hand are clearly disparate. And you both absolutely and truly believe you are right. How does that conversation go?

“Are too!” “Are not!” “Are too!” “Are not!” (ad nauseum)

A happy discontent

From Volume 11, Issue 2:We’ve been down this discussion road before. The older I get the clearer I get when distinguishing between satisfaction and happiness.

Perhaps it’s just my definitions that help me feel clearer about the distinction, and that helps me make decisions day-to-day, minute-to-minute on what’s important—a version of interactive triage.

For those who’ve followed this line of thought in the past, you will recognize that I perceive satisfaction as the degree to which I’ve accomplished some goal I set out to accomplish.

Prepare the Child

From Volume 11, Issue 1:Prepare the Child for the Road, not the Road for the Child. —Native American proverb

This article is basically an op. ed. piece. And it’s “parent-y.” It’s totally my opinion, and I’ll take any heat and commentary on it as productive.

It’s been my (and most transactional analysis psychologists’) premise that the experiences of our youth, from about two years old through about six, form our Knower/Judger persona. It is thought that through that age period we make decisions about how the world works and how we fit in it. We create our concepts of right and wrong, persuasion, self-worth, and thousands of things that we’ll compare ourselves against for the rest of our lives. We may even have a concept of the type of spouse we’ll marry, and, if we grow up in certain environments, even how often we should beat him or her.

Letting yourself learn

From Volume 10, Issue 12:Remember American History class? Blah, blah, blah, Lincoln, blah, blah blah, Gettysburg, blah, blah, blah….

Unless you’ve suddenly decided American history is now interesting, your retention of this material is probably minimal or limited to being proficient at Googling such topics.

The value of maybe

From Volume 10, Issue 12:There are tons of situations in which “maybe” is a non-productive response. Salespeople know “maybe” as a time-waster, indefinite, kick-the-can-down-the-road answer. Very non-committal. And salespeople live and die by commitments.

“Maybe” can be infuriating. I use it when I simply want to keep my options open no matter how badly the other person wants or needs a commitment from me.

Wanting

From Volume 10, Issue 11:Can you define something that you feel you want that isn’t tied directly to your Knower/Judger? That wouldn’t be satisfying some ego need? It’s tough, isn’t it? Money? Car? House? Relationship?

No cheese, please?

From Volume 10, Issue 11:How many times have you turned on a fake smile? Chances are, you’ve done it a lot, with colleagues, prospects, family, and friends—perhaps when told to “Say ‘cheese’.” Research on the sincerity of smiles (the spontaneous one vs. the one you try on when you’re offered broiled armadillo bites at a cocktail party) indicates there are good reasons to understand the value of a smile.

Altruism

From Volume 10, Issue 10:According to Scott Farrell, MD, altruism is “the belief in or practice of disinterested and selfless concern for the wellbeing of others.”

In contrast, egoism (a.k.a., egotism) is “an ethical theory that treats self-interest as the foundation of morality.”

These two terms are about as polar opposite as two words can be. Black/white. Good/evil. Angel/devil. Altrusim/egoism.

Not to be a pessimist, but I believe I see the world that I know gravitating FROM altruism TOWARD egoism.