The Art of Persuasion - 3 Insights

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Published: 17th August 2015
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The Art of Persuasion - How does the human mind works? Can anyone persuade others? Is there any ethical method when persuading? Here are 3 valuable insights.

My name is Ofer Langer, a lecturer of Persuasion. As a lecturer in the amazing field of Persuasion I wanted to share with you some insights about 3 aspects of the human mind and its relation to persuasion.
As a brief introduction to the subject of persuasion, let me just refute and disprove the common myth about it: Persuasion is not the art of deceiving and lying to other but rather the skill to understand how the human mind works in order to better achieve one's goals. For me, as a lecturer in this field, persuasion has to be ethical and moral. To persuade is to better understand social situations that happens all around us. It's the ability to read between the lines. It's the art of knowing how to position our bodies in the spaces that exist between people.
In this article I want to discuss 3 insights I gained about persuasion through the years. Three aspects about how to persuade more efficiently and effectively:

Listen to the rustles: Persuasion is all about your ability to understand things that other simply don't see, but exist everywhere you look. For example, reading someone's mind - how do magician do it? Well, there are tons of simple techniques, but it's very simple. One of these techniques has to do with body language. If I will ask you, "Have you ever been to Asia?" Is there a way to know the answer without knowing the person? Well, yes! NLP (Neuro-linguistic programming), a method discovered by psychologists', claim that there is a connection between our eye movement patterns and images seen by our brain. So, if the person is looking to the upper-left side - it means that he is visualizing a constructed image. So if that person responds: "Yes, I've been to Asia", he is probably lying. There are about 9 directions that can tell us amazing things about someone's thoughts. Magicians do it all the time. They simply read between the lines.

Redesign your body: A few days ago I went to a conference and I starred (without being noticed) at two people talking to one another. The girl directed her leg towards the door, and her arms were holding her belt. The guy kept talking about some issue and every few seconds he got closer and closer to her. I couldn't hear what they were saying but I understood the situation. The girl's legs indicated that she's disconnected from the social situation, her arms revealed disagreement or even anger. After a few minutes she left the room, and I heard the guy mumbling to himself: "Almost... " As if he was saying: I almost had her number. To redesign your body is simply re-shaping the way you position yourself in social situations. Truly, I don't think this guy's look had anything to do with the reason why she left, but he invaded the girl's private space. All I'm saying is this: be more aware of your body movements, postures, gesture etc. Persuading is all about being aware of how we interact with others. There is a reason why some people are more likeable than others.

Shape your rhetorical skills: Words are a tool for politician as well as for sales people. Words are powerful instrument in changing people's mind. Choosing the right words in the right time made me gain 32,000 views for a simple movie (honestly, not the best video I've seen) in the first week I uploaded it to YouTube and positioned my website in the # 1 result in Google. All I did was choose the right words at the right time for my video and my website. Of course, SEO methods helped me a lot, but after all it's all about picking the right words. This works for the internet sphere as well as for the social interactions. Shaping the rhetorical skills is the core of this discussion. My cousin, is one of my role models. Not only is she a good salesperson but she also knows how to engage people: The art of interpersonal communication. She's like those people who can turn every social interaction into a vibrant party. Giving everyone a sense that they matter. Dr. Kevin Dutton, a lecturer of persuasion in England called this ability "Perceived Self-Interest" - people tend to act in what they believe to be their own interest. Providing someone the essence of his very own need is the key to success.

I hope this article shed some light on some key elements of persuasion. In the next Articles I will discuss methods of persuasion. Methods that are easy to use, and can change one's ability to achieve better in every aspects of his life.

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