Saturday, November 15, 2008

Defusing the Game

The following is an excerpt from my correspondence.

One thing I've learned from constant observations of the Patterns of Life, is that so many people play their cards close to their chest. They do this in all types of relationships, and I have noticed that it's really prevalent in dating.

Another pattern within this larger pattern, is that when Person A approaches the boundries of Person B's super-ego, B will pull their cards even closer. It's those moments when a question or situation that strikes at a person's core and forces them to take a stand for what they believe in, no matter who is looking, that they will either stand tall or pull their cards in closer. The closer someone pulls their cards in, the more they are afraid or uncertain of where they themselves actually stand. These situations are a great way to shed some light on how self aware they really are.

The problem I've encountered, is that when someone pulls their cards in, the other person will pull theirs in as well. It's a natural defense mechanism for self preservation: If someone isn't going to be vulnerable around me, I'm not going to be vulnerable around them. The sad part is that this is actually the core of "The Game". We've all played it, and it's bigger than what most of us think of when we talk about Players and The Game. The bigger Game is that awkward feeling each other out phase that happens when two people are starting to get to know each other when they are dating. It becomes a game of dancing around each other. You want to know more about them, but you're uncertain how much of yourself to share with them. How vulnerable are you comfortable being? This all ties into "Presentation of Self" and Impression Management", which you may already be familiar with, or I could rant about later. Everyone plays to a certain degree, but relationships with good communication will quickly become comfortable to the point where the game is no longer needed.

The Game itself can be diffused, but it takes a strong will and a risk of a backlash. The quickest way to diffuse The Game, is to put your cards on the table. Think of life like poker, if you put your cards on the table, The Game changes. There is no strife with someone who shows you their cards. You don't have to out wit someone who puts it all on the table, there is no longer anything to out wit. It's just honesty laid out flat for you to see.

There is still the risk that the other person will not agree with the cards that they see, which is the whole reason people play the game in the first place. Even if they don't like what they see, at least you can cut out the weeks or months of ambiguity involved with trying to get down deep in order to understand someone to the core.

So I had a moment where I was a little paranoid. It happens, but it wont go away if I just ignore it, so I took a chance by laying it out on the table for you to see clearly. Because you can see it clearly, then you can easily return your response clearly. BAM! Honest communication plain and simple. It's really only hard because it seems to go against everything we have learned growing up and being socialized by not only our family, community and church, but the growing beast of modern media. The trial and error of modern dating leads all of us to start playing The Game, because we have grown accustomed to everyone playing it at least a little bit.

If you want to be a real social rebel, don't harden your defenses like a "badass", fuck the system by NOT playing The Game. It will quickly weed out the people not worth your time. Those who are afraid to even look at their own cards, are the ones who will hold them really close. These are the types who will run away as if you have leprosy. It's not fun for the ego to scare people away, but in the grand scheme of things: good riddance to bad rubbish!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

interesting read. I would love to follow you on twitter.