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Defending friends and colleagues without rescuing

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Hello guys,

Context:

I was at a dinner with a friend and his associate. Thanks to an app we get 50% on the meal we're having. His associate made fun of him because my friend would not usually spend money at a restaurant. He said indirectly that he thought that he was stingy. I did not say anything even though I thought it was not cool. Everybody has different spending priorities.

My attitude:

Now, I let people defend themselves because in the past I was rescuing a lot. I had a "savior complex". It ended up in a perpetrator-victim-savior dynamic.

My question:

After reading on the website, I could see that there is a middle ground. I understand we can defend your friend and colleagues without rescuing them. I understand this goes back to assertiveness but I don't know how to do it in a healthy way.

Any suggestion?

Thanks!

Stef and selffriend have reacted to this post.
Stefselffriend

I think to help you friend save face you may have casually droped this:

"Everybody has different spending priorities"

depending on your delivery ( tone, inflexion, hand and facial gestures) it may come across as helping, defending, rescuing or even attacking the original agressor.

Thanks for your answer. Yes, that’s what I wrote: I thought that everybody has different spending priority but did not say it because I did not want to “save“ my friend.

My question is about letting other people defend themselves and letting them stand up for themselves vs being a friend when they are being attacked.

Stef has reacted to this post.
Stef

well a way may be to call your friend apart, explaining him the power dynamic of what just happened in case he is not aware, and suggest him how to defend himself in similar scenarios and how to regain power in the current interaction?

like, teach him how to defend himself

maybe invite him to become a reader of the power moves?

a more risky approach, would be asking to your friend: hey hey why are you leting him imply that you are stingy? if he reacts properly he may come with something himself (less risky send him a private chat message: "why are you letting this guy imply that/ lower your status, etc., as your friend i suggest you to defend yourself... " )

John,

How would you have handled that in the past.

 

Stef and selffriend have reacted to this post.
Stefselffriend
Have you read the forum guidelines for effective communication already?

In the past I would have said in a mildly angry tone: "My friend does whatever he wants with his money". I would have attacked the attacker. And then I would have become the perpetrator and the attacker would have said: "no need to be so angry" and have turned into the victim and my friend would have said: "Yes, John that's not very cool" and he would have become the savior of the attacker. That's what I do my best to avoid.

But since I lived this situation now I just say what I feel like saying assertively.

Stef and selffriend have reacted to this post.
Stefselffriend

John (and anyone else),

That guy's power move can be classified as micro-aggression.

This is an important concept, so I made an entry jut for this.
Check out:

Check out that post, and if it clicks, you will immediately realize while your past reactions turned you into the (out of place) aggressor.

In this particular situation, instead of defending your friend, which could have started some negative socio-dynamics, I would have smoothened things over, applied some social balm.

For example:

Max: LOL, good to see Eric tonight, it took a 50% off to get him out, otherwise... Tough luck (grins)
You: (ignores the grin, answers neutrally, or with a slight smile to avoid breaking rapport with anyone) Yeah, it's good to save money sometimes. What are you guys thinking to eat

Such as, you pick no sides openly, but your comments suggest that it's not cool to imply Eric is stingy and that, after all, it's a smart choice to save money.
Then you bridge to another topic, so that you avoid any nasty value-taking dynamics, and move towards more friendly and value-adding exchanges.

It's a smooth move, and it also makes you more of a leader. A value-adding leader, who's not out for blood, but defends his friends with tact and class, and without making enemies.
Unless Max is a dummy, he'll get the message. And unless Eric's a dummy too, he'll know/feel what happened.

 

John Freeman, Stef and selffriend have reacted to this post.
John FreemanStefselffriend
Have you read the forum guidelines for effective communication already?

yeah being classy makes you memorable and so much admired and respected by high value people.

Lucio Buffalmano has reacted to this post.
Lucio Buffalmano

Hello guys,

please excuse me for not having answered earlier.

Lucio: I was blown away by this concept. It completely changed my way of interacting with people, for real. Now I can see this is the basics of social intelligence: to answer to aggression proportionally and all people witnessing it will understand what is happening. I noticed that nobody will blame you and they will even respect you if you defend yourself appropriately.

Lucio Buffalmano and Stef have reacted to this post.
Lucio BuffalmanoStef

Thank you for the feedback, John.

Now I am thinking it might make sense to flesh out this concept a bit more, add a few examples, and turn it into a micro-lesson (little pun there) for Power University.

 

Dan and Stef have reacted to this post.
DanStef
Have you read the forum guidelines for effective communication already?
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