The Mind Game

Put yourself in another man’s shoes… a relatively common statement. Why do we have to remind ourselves that other people think through their decisions? What happens when you follow their footsteps to discover how they think? Recently I have been thinking about this and how we try and discover the inner complexities of other people.

The first step in a successful mind game is know yourself. If you fear what you may find, these games are not for you. If you think someone is playing you, maybe this list will help you figure out the game.

Level 1: The typical silent treatment. This tactic IS A MIND GAME. Their are a few sub levels of this to consider. The first is the actual game. All of a sudden someone stops speaking. They are looking for a simple response like, “How are you?” If they need you to vent they will, and though you may not want to get into something, you will gain serious points if you patiently listen. If you messed up (classic example being boyfriend can’t get his girlfriend to talk) be warned, this silence is a form of TORTURE. It is meant to make you uncomfortable, almost like training a dog, so you do not mess up again. *WARNING* slamming doors and screaming means to back off. This is NOT a game, hide and weather out the storm.

Level 2: Copy cat. Have you ever felt like you were copying someone you’re close with, like saying their catch phrase, or using one of their expressions? This game is fun and harmless, and if done right, gratifying. The only downside is prep work. Start doing something, like place your drink on your non-dominant side (most effective if you sit across from a friend often). The more subtle the shift the better. Good ones to try:

  • Place your shoes in a new location like take them off at the front door (if you do that, put your shoes by the back door.
  • Sigh EVERY time you sit down
  • twirl your hair

Level 3: Subliminal Messages. If you can control your body, this one is cool. Body language is mostly subconscious which is why most people respond to it, even if they don’t realize it. The general response is alarm, but sometimes you get a surprise. Try these out:

  • Fidget. Do not stop moving a little bit. So long as you don’t look alarmed it can cause the victim to fidget too!
  • Tense up. The subconscious perceives this a sign of danger and they respond with “What’s wrong.” (If you are a tricky person, like me, this is great if you want to vent about something. People are genuinely more attentive initially due to you body language and now are required to listen to you bitch because their subconscious still screams danger.)
  • Silly, but smile. This one is just a general rule. If you smile, the person you give attention to will smile, and as the smile grows more genuine the conversation will get better and the company more fun.

Level four: The Mind F***. This one needs a precaution, it is not for the faint of heart. To mess with another is to open oneself to the lie. DO NOT FALL FOR YOUR OWN TRICKS. These are great if you need a little more vengeance than passive aggression, but don’t want to fight.

  • Shift little things. hide all the pen caps, or waste all the erasers. Swap out school books from bag. Move objects to new, visible places. Swap things around (food works great… no one expects cheerios out of a wheat thins box.)
  • Musical Rug – Take that small electronic chip out of a musical greeting card and place it underneath a rug/carpet, so whenever your roommate walks on it, music will play.
  • Food Coloring – Put some food coloring inside their hand soap dispenser. When they try to wash his hands, they will end up messier than before they decided to wash them. (placing a life saver in the shower head has a similar effect. Clear is the most effective, all the stickiness and none of the color to give it away.)
  • Salty Toothpaste – Sprinkle some salt on your roommate’s toothbrush. When he/she goes to brush their teeth, they will get a salty tasted treat.

*None of these pranks have I personally used since my roommates have access to this blog. My observations are mere suggestions since these games are all about personal exploration and gratification. Do whatever makes you happiest.

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