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How to ostracize a value-taker

Thanks. Actually he started to organize an event at his place next Saturday and he’s going to cook. Does that remember you of something?

So I’m going to let other people answer and say that I’m not available. Actually I’m going to do something on Saturday on my side. If I go to his place it’s going to turn toxic. There is going to be too much negativity. It’s time to cut out my losses. I’m not going to escalate. It’s not worth it.

Quote from Lucio Buffalmano on January 11, 2021, 1:25 pm

I liked this one:

you know, sometimes in your life when you spend time with somebody, after you go home either you gained something or you lost. And I decided to be around people who give to me instead of taking. Sometimes it takes time to recognize it and it's always very sad when I do. I know it might sound harsh, but I decided some time ago to only surround myself with people who bring me up and not bring me down.

It's passing judgment and, in a way, it's talking bad about someone.
But it's a high-quality, honest way of doing it.

How would you say it yourself? I'm curious.

Like you said earlier: not expanding the thread on it. Not being mean about it? Just matter of fact?

Because I'm trying to understand: he'll be talking shit behind my back as he's already talking shit in front of me. How to counter this? I mean what's the mindset?

I already learned that with people who like him I already lost so I won't try to win them over. As you see, this stirs quite a bit of emotions inside of me. I value friendship a lot and when I find out I've been wrong about somebody and I have welcomed someone with bad intentions into my life, I feel hurt. It's kind of a betrayal.

The good thing on my side is that he's already been labeled POS by F's girlfriend, so my behavior will expand on this thread.

Hey John,

A few things first which I think are relevant for the mission here:

  • You've already gathered intelligence: I like the fact you've already put out feelers for those who are closer to him

That was great.
You need to know where you and other people stand before deciding what to do.

  • You planned around that intelligence: ostracize from who it's easiest to ostracize from

And I like what you said you want to do based on that information: not trying to peel them away from A., because they've known A. for longer, and are probably closer to him.

And I also like that you decided to focus on the people who were "new", and not close to A.

I think that's a good idea.
You can still keep in touch with A.'s older friends, but without trying to ostracize A. from them.

On how I'd say that, I'd say it with a philosopher attitude.
As with an expression that "I'm not happy to say this, because I don't like having to talk bad about people. But it's also the truth, and if I gotta say the harsh truth, here it is".

Then I'd rephrase some parts of it maybe.
In caps what I'd change:

You know, sometimes in life YOU REALIZE PEOPLE EITHER GIVE, OR TAKE (just making it shorter)
And I decided to be around people who give to OTHERS (make it more impersonal, more powerful) instead of taking. Sometimes it takes time to recognize it and it's very sad when YOU do BECAUSE WHEN YOU'RE NOT LIKE THAT, IT HITS YOU EVEN HARDER (indirectly says "I'm not like that"). It might sound harsh, but I decided some time ago to only choose people who bring OTHERS up and not down (again, scrap me for more impersonal form, which are more relevant to those you're speaking to, and a higher charge of "WIIFT")

Quite deep.
If you get asked what do you mean, then you can say something:

You know, taking or giving are attitude towards others and towards life.
Sometimes you see it in the smaller things before you see in the bigger things.
Like I can make a joke about you now for example, but am I teasing, or am I making fun of you? Am I laughing with you, or am I laughing at you? Am I making a joke, or I am hiding a personal attack behind a joke?
And today it's a joke, tomorrow it might be something bigger. Maybe they lie to your partner about you cheating, or spread rumors about you to ruin your reputaiton. Because the value-taker is about the attitude.
And I don't need those people.
Do you know what I mean?

Have you read the forum guidelines for effective communication already?

You need to know where you and other people stand before deciding what to do.

Definitely. Michael Corleone's style.

And I also like that you decided to focus on the people who were "new", and not close to A.

Yes.

You can still keep in touch with A.'s older friends, but without trying to ostracize A. from them.

I agree and I get it now. With these people, I will use this:

For example, if you're not seeing A. anymore and A. comes up as a topic of conversation, you can just say "OK, I'm glad he's doing well, we're not seeing each other much these days" (= no hating here, just not seeing him anymore").
If the topic of you two not meeting anymore comes up, it's a great opportunity to say "yeah, he's an interesting guy, we're not seeing each other much anymore though (I guess we're different in some ways)".

Going neutral:" I don't want to shit on your friend, but I'm not going to tell you my deep feelings about him. You're smart enough to understand that I don't like him anymore and I chose not to see him. However, I respect your relationship."

 

Then I'd rephrase some parts of it maybe.
In caps what I'd change:

You know, sometimes in life YOU REALIZE PEOPLE EITHER GIVE, OR TAKE (just making it shorter)
And I decided to be around people who give to OTHERS (make it more impersonal, more powerful) instead of taking. Sometimes it takes time to recognize it and it's very sad when YOU do BECAUSE WHEN YOU'RE NOT LIKE THAT, IT HITS YOU EVEN HARDER (indirectly says "I'm not like that"). It might sound harsh, but I decided some time ago to only choose people who bring OTHERS up and not down (again, scrap me for more impersonal form, which are more relevant to those you're speaking to, and a higher charge of "WIIFT")

Piece of art. In my "Ostracization" file. Impersonal is great. I don't know if you noticed but I started to use it. When R. asked me why I was asking them about value-taking jokes I told him about a general situation. I think it's great. It lets the other person take a reference from a past experience in their lives. So they dig up a memory when they've been treated like shit. And when you ask them: "how did it feel?" they will say: "that was shit." and then you say: "that's how I feel." Empathy bomb. 

Quite deep.
If you get asked what do you mean, then you can say something:

You know, taking or giving are attitude towards others and towards life.
Sometimes you see it in the smaller things before you see in the bigger things.
Like I can make a joke about you now for example, but am I teasing, or am I making fun of you? Am I laughing with you, or am I laughing at you? Am I making a joke, or I am hiding a personal attack behind a joke?
And today it's a joke, tomorrow it might be something bigger. Maybe they lie to your partner about you cheating, or spread rumors about you to ruin your reputaiton. Because the value-taker is about the attitude.
And I don't need those people.
Do you know what I mean?

This is a nuke. I don't even know in where I should file this one. This is too hot for my computer!

These two are hot material in PU AKA how to deal with value-takers in private/social life.

The good thing is that I'm already viewed as a giver because that's who I am and decided to be. So I have the actions to back it up. They will think: "if this guy who's always having a laugh, giving advice, connections, cooking for me, showing me new games, introducing me to cool friends, is saying that, maybe he's telling the truth"

Power of the Light side. Honesty is a powerful weapon. The only thing is that when you walk that path, people doubt you're really that benevolent. So you have a higher moral standard to hold up to.

You dug down and found the essence of the value-taker. They keep taking and taking until someone or the law stops them. They give, but they give a drop and take the lake.

Awesome John, glad it was helpful.

John: The good thing is that I'm already viewed as a giver because that's who I am and decided to be. So I have the actions to back it up.

Great, and that's where reputation and past history matters.
And that's why the Machiavellian approach to life, when taken to an extreme, can come to hurt people: Machiavellian strategies tend to perform poorly long-term, as more and more lies and "games" come to the surface.

By the way, should this thread be in the "best of" thread stickied thread?

Have you read the forum guidelines for effective communication already?

Sure! Why not? It’s an important topic and we have to start experimenting with this idea of stickies.

So maybe the title should say: “How to ostracize a value-taker?” Or something like that. To give the flavor that it’s Machiavellian, yes. But not just to take advantage of innocent people. Because value-takers do ostracize people but out of feeling insecure or purely to rise in status.

Here my agenda is to be surrounded with value-adding individuals. And to offer them the company of other value-adding individuals. So I think (I’m biased) that in the end my intentions are win-win for me and the group. He will lose but as we already said it’s ethical to take from takers.

So it’s the same weapon with a different goal in life: being surrounded with high-quality people.

What do you think?

Going back to the impersonal, it’s also great because it avoided me asking them to align with one of us. Even implicitly. When someone tells you to help them with another friend. They implicitly ask you to take sides. I did not do that for Machiavellian reasons but also out of respect for them. It’s not their problem, I don’t have to involve them. Ask for their help with their opinion and knowledge, yes. But not ask them to get involved emotionally. It’s my problem. I created this situation with my actions.

I have a question: how shall I behave and what shall I say to him next time we meet?

Shall I play the "busy" game?

Because after Covid, we're going to be members of the same dojo. And maybe the same bars/friends.

Yeah, that's a good question.

I'd personally still be friendly.

Just avoid the 1:1 and do your own thing when organizing with the others.

If he reaches out to you a lot for 1:1, avoid the first time maybe, but then you can also say yes eventually if you happen to be free. Eventually, if you stop putting in effort, people also stop putting in effort.

A bit like the song "somebody I used to know". Somebody I used to be friends with, not my enemy, still friendly, just "not inner circle" anymore.

Have you read the forum guidelines for effective communication already?

I understand the logic of it. Thanks!

So, now he's having this event tomorrow night, a copycat of mine. He's piggybacking on the whatsapp group I created. So now it's a bit painful to watch. As I have to "let it play out" as Michael Franzese says. I'm going to expand my social circle in another direction. It's all good. But still, it's painful to witness.

That's also the times when I regret what I taught the takers. Now they can use it for their own benefit. That's the worst kind of mistake. I hate doing them.

The lesson I learned is that it takes time to know somebody. And it's important not to introduce somebody you just met to somebody you know from a long time if you're not 100% sure he/she's not a taker.