Manipulation is a word that generally has a really bad reputation, right? When you think about manipulation, do you think ‘oh yeah that’s cool’ or do you come up with a whole load of negative connotations?
Manipulation is actually one of our greatest capacities, but it’s something that we judge as a wrongness that we do against other people, rather than see out capacity to manipulate as a wonderful skill to create greater possibilities.
We looked up the definition and etymology of the word ‘manipulation’ – and it means to handle skilfully; it is the ability to create whatever you like skilfully with your capacities.
We come into the world as babies, manipulating – with our screams and cries when we are hungry; with our smiles and giggles that make people feel so grateful and good about being graced with such a sweet little being to play with and do things for. All of that is a manipulation.
Isn’t it funny how as a kid, manipulation is cute, then one day it becomes unacceptable and as adults we get so upset about it!
There is also often an underlying assumption that manipulation is about lying and being dishonest. Well, that’s a great way to stop you from creating with manipulation, and making you limited and controllable instead. People decide that to manipulate means to create only for yourself and against others, but when you start to use it skilfully, you can see how you can manipulate people out of their shell and have everything and everyone as your playmates.
When you smile at people on the street, that’s actually a manipulation. When you ask the question, “what can I be or do today that would make people happier?” that’s a manipulation too! If you have a point of view that manipulation as wrong however, you can never see when you are masterfully manipulating to create a greater possibility.
How many judgments do you have of manipulations that stop you from becoming a Master Manipulator to create the greatness you know is possible in the world?
Manipulation can be “what can I be or do different here that would allow my man to feel like a real stud today?” It can be asking a stranger to help you with your luggage on a plane or train and receive your gratitude for their contribution to your life. Manipulation is saying “Thank-you” to somebody. It allows a connection with that person where they will be more willing to do for you in the future, because you have received and acknowledged the contribution they are being.
How many times do we really allow people to contribute to our lives, or do we try to do things ourselves all the time? It’s great to know you don’t need other people to create your life, but if you were willing to ask for more contribution, that would be a manipulation that could invite more for you and the people you are opening up to receiving. How does it get any better than that?
This is just a starter conversation on what can change when we are willing to give up our fixed points of view of what manipulation is, in favor of the capacity that manipulation truly can be for creation and expansion of our lives, and those around us!
We had a lot of fun playing with this topic on a recent episode of Crème de la Crème called “How Can Manipulation Make Your Day?” Please listen to the replay if you’d like to know more about being a Master Manipulator!