Thursday, April 11, 2013

Why we need psychopaths (part 2)

Regarding emotions and manipulation:


As psychopaths become less associated with demonic bloodlust a more accurate image is formed of just what this set of symptoms really looks like. They have “shallow emotions” which simply means their emotions are much less intense than non-psychopaths (DSM-IV-TR (2000) 4th ed., text. rev.). To demonstrate, imagine that a company is interviewing candidates to fill a vacant position. After several mediocre interviews, the recruiters are introduced to a charismatic, energetic, intelligent and striking woman whose credentials align perfectly with the job description. Obviously she is hired on the spot. Her low emotionality keeps her calm under pressure and cool-headed when resolving conflicts with co-workers. She’s able to make critical decisions for the company because “it’s not personal; it’s a business decision,” and has no problem sleeping at night while putting hundreds of employees out of work. Some of her co-workers go home emotionally exhausted after a day of rejected sales attempts, but not her. Little do they know her attractive outwardly appearance merely serves as a cover for the hollow shell within. Emotional detachment and regulation are important while in a business setting but for psychopaths their emotions are consistently “turned down.”

The flip side to this would be someone who is overemotional, which is often synonymous with “irrational.” This is why people are granted bereavement time from work. When mourning the loss of a loved one, they will be overcome by emotion and unable to concentrate effectively on their job duties. In some careers, such carelessness can be dangerous. It is this same extreme emotional state that sets the stage for crimes of passion because emotions have a tendency to distort reasoning - unbalanced emotions overwhelm balanced judgment (Hare 1999). For psychopaths, problems are evaluated in black and white terms with very little “gray area” distortion. Factor in the other leading characteristic, lack of empathy, and it is understandable why they describe having an “unburdened mind.” (Thomas 2013)

Psychopaths compensate for these deficits by learning to be experts on human behavior and honing their ability to mimic appropriate emotions. This overcompensation is often described as “deception” and “manipulation” in diagnostic criteria, but it is the same concept as “impression management” techniques regular people frequently utilize (DSM-IV-TR (2000) 4th ed., text. Rev). It is also called social masks in some literature. This is the idea that people slightly alter their personality depending on the situation they are in, thus “playing to the crowd” (Hare 1999). An example would be maintaining a professional appearance and demeanor while at work but “being yourself” at home. Adolescents or even young adults may use crude language in front of their friends but refrain in the presence of their families. Trying to show your best attributes during a first date and gradually “letting your guard down” describes the same concept. This could be “making a good impression” or being manipulative and deceptive depending upon perspective.

Regardless of one’s opinion of such practice, another important part of impression management and successful social interaction is learning to display proper emotion at certain times with appropriate intensity. Failing to display appropriate social cues can be off-putting and uncomfortable for the people who would describe this person as “hard to read.” So people learn to smile on cue, chuckle at a joke whether it is humorous or not, feign concern over a matter that doesn’t genuinely trouble anyone but the people involved, and so on. This process is generally automatic although errors occur occasionally, which is called “sending mixed signals.” It could be chalked up to having good manners and refined social skills but just how much feigned emotion people can handle is debatable. At what point is a person accused of “putting on a show” or being “fake?” When someone’s ego is at risk of injury they attempt to “save face” or avoid negative action. There is not a clearly defined manual for impression management and some pull it off better than others.

69 comments:

  1. Interesting post but also sort of ass covering.

    I personally do not give a shit who/what/ why people use as a reason to behave like an undignified savage.

    I am not calling socios savages. What I am saying, is that it is advantageous to us all to get along in our society.

    If you talk the talk, then walk the walk. If not, go find a more hospitable island or country or company of partner or whatever the fuck you need.

    Just leave me the fuck alone.

    From Bananarama

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. What do you mean by "If you talk the talk, then walk the walk"?
      Everybody lies and pretend at small scale, psychopaths just do it more and better.

      And why would they want to leave to some island far from you, if they feel good where they are, of course they'll stay there.

      Delete
    2. It's a sad fact that, alot of what you say about your superior, business world, skill set, IS true. Unfortunately, many empaths get caught in the "web" of a low functioning, societal populace. Starting with poor development of basic intelligle skills such as reading, writing, speech/vocabulary, and obviously math and complex conceptual ideas. Blah, blah, blah.
      As adults, existing at a lower socio-economic status, an individual will occupy their time with trying to survive economically. many will give up. ie drug abuse, welfare,living with relatives, ect. Others become zombies- non-stop work/labor, tv,sports,drinking. And then there is crime and punishment- jail.
      The empath, however, does have the potential to work on their social skills and develop mechanisms, cognitive and behaviorable, that can allow them to function at a higher level that does not permit their selves to be overwhelmed by their strong emotions. Especially in business, an empath can explain to another empath that there is nothing personal about a decision, and that the decision was based solely on criteria that are in line with a business' methodology. Obviously, feelings do get hurt. Nepotism over ability. But an empath can dissolve a business relationship and still have a viable continuing personal relationship. The "hurt feelings" can be a learning experience to help the empath mature on a personal level, thus restraining potential, overwhelming feelings, in future situations that may be innappriate the the overall experience/situation.

      Delete
    3. It's perfectly possible Dumpstress even if it's more difficult, but most empaths don't see the need to acquire more knowledge and skills, which is sad for them really.

      Delete
    4. Yes, most do not SEE the NEED. Their needs become minimal [learned helplessnes]. The want, the desire, the drive?? Laziness and aversion to unpleasant / uncomfortable stimuli. "Drunk, fat, and stupid is no way to go through life son." Learn what real suffering is. The crucifixion of Jesus Christ will make your work schedule look like a priviledge. Which it really is.

      Delete
    5. "most empaths don't see the need to acquire more knowledge and skills"? Really? Since when a conscience/empathy prevents you from learning and thinking? Empaths have a different perspective but this has nothing to do with a lack of perfectionism, brains or skills. Please do not lower the intellectual level of this place. This has never been a Sociopaths Rule blog.

      Delete
    6. Miss Sharp - Please do not take offense at the " most empaths" generalization. I am a highly functioning empath. Go to Walmart or McDonalds over the weekend. See how many socios you can spot meandering about. Can you see any differences?

      Delete
    7. Hahaha,I see your point. But maybe empaths in walmart lack the clarity of mind of the socio, but I think many socios may lack the depth and intuitive knowledge of some high functioning empaths. I think there are really stupide people on both sides, and the opposite. However,the strenghts of the socio and the empath cannot be the same,each condition goes with its own flaws and strong points. Excuse my English:hangover.

      Delete
  2. "I personally do not give a shit who/what/ why people use as a reason to behave like an undignified savage.

    I am not calling socios savages."

    Interesting comment but also sort of ass covering.

    ReplyDelete
  3. 'Cause it's a bittersweet symphony, this life
    Try to make ends meet
    Try to find some money then you die
    I'll take you down the only road I've ever been down
    You know the one that takes you to the places
    where all the things meet yeah

    You know I can change, I can change
    I can change, I can change
    But I'm here in my mold
    I am here in my mold
    And I'm a million different people
    from one day to the next
    I can't change my mold
    No, no, no, no, no

    I can't change my mold
    No, no, no, no, no,
    I can't change
    Change my
    No, no, no, no, no

    Its just sex and violence melody and silence
    Its just sex and violence melody and silence
    I'll take you down the only road I've ever been down
    Its just sex and violence melody and silence
    I'll take you down the only road I've ever been down
    Been down

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Have you tried to change. Have you been in behavior modification. Have you lowered your intake of substances?

      Have you worked on yourself in any meaningful way. Changed the choices you have made that hurt the living hell out of the people who love you?

      I know about the past. What about the future

      I only have the tools to help so much. I have been in a lot of therapy and I work so hard. I understand when things are in you brain. I am on meds. Have you tried them? Every fucking day I struggle. I might be alone for my whole life. I try to live and let live. That is the basis of my religion.

      I know with once I was happy for a brief moment. The happiest I can remember.

      C dancer.

      Delete
    2. You are alone for your whole life... YOU are trapped inside your own little fish bowl of perception. It's just you..

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GxJzj65cOHE

      Delete
    3. Free will my friend! Nothing to fear. You are here. So live damn it! Smile, and the world smiles with you. Cry, and you cry alone. YOUR choice.

      Delete
    4. Is it getting better?
      Or do you feel the same?
      Will it make it easier on you now?
      You got someone to blame
      You say

      One love
      One life
      When it's one need
      In the night
      One love
      We get to share it
      Leaves you baby if you
      Don't care for it

      Did I disappoint you?
      Or leave a bad taste in your mouth?
      You act like you never had love
      And you want me to go without
      Well it's

      Too late
      Tonight
      To drag the past out into the light
      We're one, but we're not the same
      We get to
      Carry each other
      Carry each other
      One

      Have you come here for forgiveness?
      Have you come to raise the dead?
      Have you come here to play Jesus?
      To the lepers in your head

      Did I ask too much?
      More than a lot.
      You gave me nothing,
      Now it's all I got
      We're one
      But we're not the same
      Well we
      Hurt each other
      Then we do it again
      You say
      Love is a temple
      Love a higher law
      Love is a temple
      Love the higher law
      You ask me to enter
      But then you make me crawl
      And I can't be holding on
      To what you got
      When all you got is hurt

      One love
      One blood
      One life
      You got to do what you should
      One life
      With each other
      Sisters
      Brothers
      One life
      But we're not the same
      We get to
      Carry each other
      Carry each other

      One

      One


      Delete
    5. This is one of my favourite songs.

      Delete
  4. I would like to comment on the use of the term "hollow". This crops up in the literature frequently. I have in effect diagnosed myself as being on the socio spectrum, although probably not a full-blown psychopath. I don't feel hollow. More like self-contained. I have emotions, but they're my emotions, not ones transmitted to me by others.
    I tend to think of other people as being more like hollow. I see people with few internal resources. They can't bear a moment of peace and quiet. They have to have TVs turned on, even when they aren't even in the same room. They use social media to share banalities as though they are afraid that without constant feedback from the rest of the herd they might cease to exist.
    I can't see inside other peoples heads, only read there outward signals. Similarly other people can't see inside my head. If I don't give out signals it doesn't mean that there is nothing going on inside. The fact that I exist is not dependent on others noticing me and reassuring me that I do. This is why I think that empathy is, to a large extent an act of imagination. People read each others signals and imagine themselves into a similar brain-state. So I suggest that "normal" people are more "hollow", waiting like blank canvases to reflect whatever is happening around them. This is of course exactly how all herds function throughout the animal kingdom. Do then other animals have a number of individuals who don't fully conform? The smart ones become leaders, the dumb ones become outcast and the rest just conform, but each imagines itself unique and special?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have been told I am "hollow" by a few people. I don't get it either. It could just be my narcissism screaming to be something though... and reality I am nothing. Hollow.

      Delete
    2. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QGGGYWZhF_A

      Delete
    3. That's exactly how I feel, I'm not hollow, but it's the word they use when they can't manage to read somebody.

      Delete
  5. When someone calls you "off" what does it mean? I have an idea but would like to hear your comments. Someone called me it~

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Usually when certain types of food reaches an expiry date, we refer to it as being 'off', inedible.

      It's pretty clear that you've managed to evade a life-threatening situation, fortunately for you. You seem to have encountered a wild cannibal on the hunt.

      Delete
    2. I think it means that you don't seem normal.

      Delete
  6. Replies
    1. That was hilarious!!

      Delete
    2. Theme for Tom Hill( switch genders and the thing works)

      Delete
  7. Hey everyone! What happened to Rich?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. He died. methadone overdose.

      Delete
    2. Oh my God, I can't believe it! Just kidding.

      Delete
  8. I feel flat as a pancake. This happens before I collapse.I get so thin that there is nothing left except the a dilution to an incredibly small number of parts per milliliter or however you scientific types figure it out. All I know is that I am fading like an echo reverberating in the Grand Canyon. I feel like I won't come back. I am so flat and pancake like.

    ReplyDelete
  9. All the voices scream as if I am actually in hell and the demons have gotten me finally. They have their way with me like they did in life. I don't protest. I didn't even know they had gotten me. That is a fool, dictionary definition.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. More of your revelling in self pity. You're screaming into a void, at and about yourself.

      Delete
  10. Monica,
    Is it true Rich the uber empath passed away from an overdose?

    ReplyDelete
  11. Oh, that sucks. sorry for the loss of your friend.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Following the comments about being "hollow", and the whole thing about having 'shallow' emotions, I wonder what people here think about the paper on the hidden suffering of psychopaths? That psychopaths are actually suffering a lot but that it is 'hidden' and that they can go into remission, even change their brain function under certain conditions, such as when they are in a good relationship? Do you think this is possible, or do you think the socio/psychopath is just doing a good job of fitting in, in order to get what she/he wants, ie a continuing relationship? I tend to think that it is true, that the suffering is so intense they've shut off their emotions, but under certain circumstances(or perhaps only certain socios can do this), they can allow themselves to feel more 'deeply' again. But what do I know, maybe I'm just gullible. The guy who wrote the paper is a PhD, but again that doesn't necessarily mean much. Thoughts? (apologies if this topic has been discussed already)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. How about doing something helpful like... Hmm? citing the paper or telling us if it was a POST by M.E. or something informative like that????

      :)

      signed,
      I am so zen because I have a tattoo on my tit.

      Delete
    2. And no "true" psychopath suffers.

      Delete
    3. Anon 618, you are one lazy fucker, you know that?
      You could have just googled it. Took me all of 20 seconds.

      Pretty sure this is the article he's talking about:

      http://www.psychiatrictimes.com/psychotic-affective-disorders/content/article/10168/51661

      Delete
    4. psychotic has nothing to do with Psychopathic, idiot!!!

      Stay in school.



      Delete
    5. The article is called "The hidden suffering of the Psychopath".
      Learn to read the article, or at least it's title, not just what they archived it under for whatever reason. Dumbass.

      Delete
    6. Idiot!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      Delete
    7. So.. you're lazy, incapable of reading even a short headline and offer that ^ as a comeback? Holy fuck, you are awesome!

      Delete
    8. somebody's a bit agitated and frustrated....

      Delete
    9. Not in the least, actually. I am bored though.

      Delete
    10. then leave your house maybe? take a walk?

      Delete
    11. Ha! That's exactly what I did. Went to the beach for a walk :)

      Delete
    12. I wrote the paper. Not a PhD. The article is titled "Why We Need Psychopaths." M.E. provided a subtitle with each post. Rolling sociopaths/psychopaths into ASPD was simply for the sake of the paper and to align with the DSM definition. I've enjoyed the comments good and bad. Much appreciated :)

      Delete
    13. Well done, Nicole.
      I found it to be fairly well written, with some interesting points.
      M.E. has made them all before though, but more eloquently.
      Rolling psychopathy into ASPD wouldn't have done you many favors with regards to having people here take you seriously. Just a thought.

      The paper Anon 552 is talking about has nothing to do with yours. Note that he mentions it's about the hidden suffering of the psychopath, which funnily enough is the title of the paper.
      He was talking about Willem H.J. Martens, M.D., Ph.D. who authored the paper that was being discussed. Not about you.

      I know you're excited, but thinking that every comment must be about you makes you sound rather narcissistic.

      Can I ask what motivated you to study psychopaths?

      Delete
  13. IS there any link to the news that Rich died of overdose. WOuldn't there be one when someone dies of overdose?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. People only matter on here to the degree of entertainement they're contributing on this website. Rich's long texts got very repetitive and boring. Why do you care so much about his death?

      Delete
    2. Maybe because there was a real person behind all those blocks of text. Some people have this special ability called "empathy", you see...

      RIP Rich, if indeed he was real. I am still not convinced of that, personally.

      Delete
    3. There does not have to be news of a death. The family can keep it private.

      Delete
    4. I always knew Rich was monica from the beginning.

      Delete
  14. I think that whoever wrote this needs to do more studying on psychopaths/ sociopaths. They are extremely underestimating the damage that these people purposely cause to others. I would recommend reading Snakes in Suits by Robert Hare and Paul Babiak. When they manipulate and deceive, it's not just because they're trying to fit in and seem normal. It's because they enjoy lying , tricking people, and causing all kinds of pain in others.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm not underestimating them but haven't we all heard how they're all the epitome of evil and should be burned at the stake? That's what Love Fraud is for. And I'm not glorifying them either....simply wanted to look at it from a different perspective.

      Delete
    2. Nicole
      How flippant you are about the evil deeds of sp. Makes your post a less serious read.

      Delete
    3. You're just bitter, Anon 825.
      We're not evil, just misunderstood. See the new book for proof of that :)

      Delete
    4. I'm not bitter, it appears you are Anon 10:26?
      Projection?

      Delete
    5. Ha!
      I'm not the one talking about evil deeds that she refuses to take seriously enough.
      That makes you sound bitter. Martha Stout bitter.

      You're not bitter. Good to hear. So are you after a more badass description of sociopaths then?

      Delete
  15. Thanks for the very thought-provoking post and I agree that manipulation and managing your feelings around others can be similar; though I'm not sure they are exactly the same either.

    Honestly, though, I do think that your premise that sociopaths are good for businesses is a difficult one.

    First, any level-headed man or woman can be equally beneficial for a business. Second, while I sympathize with the idea that businesses should be judicial in their hiring practices, I don't think it is possible to neatly delineate a sharp border where business and personal lives are mutually exclusive. Business has always had to accomodate to personal experience, for example with vacation time, healthcare packages, and other benefits for workers. The success of certain businesses in the modern economic also shows that empathizing with workers is a positive, rather than detrimental, attribute. CostCo, one of the largest and fastest growing big-box retailers in the United States, pays its workers about $20 an hour and offers attractive healthcare packages for them, all while other companies tank. Why? I believe that it is because of the way they treat their workers, which is with immense warmth.

    But let's leave business out of this. There is a fundamental problem with the idea of impression-management, and it is that society should be more compassionate to start with. From the data I have seen, a more open society which has less condemnation and prison systems that are focused largely on reform work, by far, more effectively than those which function with a more in/out group mentality.

    We should focus not on fitting in with society or perpetuating systems of social, economic, and national darwinism, but on working towards a more open society that eschews arbitrary norms, imprisonment, and rejection. The next step in our evolution as a species is realizing that we are all a part of a the same human family and shedding the terror of social rejection, war, and other forms of gratuitous suffering.

    ReplyDelete

Comments on posts over 14 days are SPAM filtered and may not show up right away or at all.

Join Amazon Prime - Watch Over 40,000 Movies

.

Comments are unmoderated. Blog owner is not responsible for third party content. By leaving comments on the blog, commenters give license to the blog owner to reprint attributed comments in any form.