Reverse Psychology


Not long ago my son asked me what reverse psychology meant. This was easy enough to explain and give an example that he would understand since I practice it on a regular basis. As a parent, it a must-have tool. Like guilt.

I told him it’s when you get someone to do something that you want them to do, by suggesting they do the opposite. Like when I tell him, “It’s okay with me if you don’t do your homework. I’ve already passed grade seven.”

He understood immediately and had to point out that he knew that I didn’t really mean this, but admitted that he feels like he still has to do the right thing. He wanted me to understand that I wasn’t exercising some super-power – he knew what I was up to.

I’m okay with that. It’s still incredibly effective.

Imagine that. Despite the fact that I wasn’t guarding my secret weapon – in fact I was carefully explaining what I was doing – it still worked.

So why do we feel that we can’t do this at work? Why do we feel that we need to shroud our programs and processes in secrecy. Do we feel they will lose their value or potency if the average person figures out how they work?

Pu-leeze. A good program will work even better when everyone understands the purpose and the steps. Even if they don’t like it. So, stop doling out information like a guru on a mountain…all cryptic and incomplete.

If you want people to respect you and what you are trying to do, then respect them enough to be honest with them.

Oh, and please don’t share this with anyone. And I strongly suggest that you don’t read any of my other blog posts – they are terrible.


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