Sunday, August 12, 2018

The Gray Man Irony: Chatting Isn't Creepy

No one would argue that the ability to communicate will be paramount in an #SHTF situation.

But do we communicate well?

Often, we hear that some new device will improve communication.

But the opposite is usually the result.

Because of devices that give the illusion of communication and interaction, we are most decidedly losing our skills of communication in real life.

We think that the billions of people living in the world are seamlessly connected through technology, but simultaneously we are profoundly disconnected from people in the same room as us.

Because we are not practicing real communication, we are seeing all sorts of problems arise.

For example…

Autism—a dysfunction where a person is drawn deeper inside himself—is increasing in the number of identified cases.

Research is showing, that some children who are predisposed to being autistic, actually learn their way out of it through direct, interpersonal interaction with others.

Especially if they are kept off of devices that allow them to sink inside themselves.

Research is also showing that some children are pushed deeper into the autism spectrum as a result of retreating into a device like a smart phone.

That device was likely handed to them as soon as they could hold it by lazy parents.

People on the autism spectrum panic more easily because they lack abilities to accurately take in stimuli, process them efficiently, and respond appropriately.

It’s straight to fight or flight and heaven forbid the path is fight.

How do you prepare against programming?

Recently, I proposed a rather simple means for a person to teach himself to communicate better.

Strike up interactions with people who are deep inside their bubbles.

Context: supermarket…people you don’t know

Situation: someone’s cart is blocking what you need

Options: (1) wait and seethe or (2) interact and accomplish

Strategy: [say] “Let me just sneak in and grab some of that spaghetti sauce. My daughter adores it.”

Purpose: Practicing jolting a person out of their bubbles to build your confidence to do so time and time again.

In an #SHTF situation, you WILL have to talk to strangers.

In an #SHTF situation, you WILL have to climb over barriers for your own good.

Interacting with people in a supermarket is a baby step in that direction.

But the “I won’t talk to strangers” knee-jerk reaction came out loud and clear.

Get over it.

There is a LOT of bullshit written in prepper blogs about supposed value of being the nondescript, gray man who goes through life unnoticed by the idiot hordes who are unprepared.

The irony is that nondescript people actually stand out more.

Blending in often causes a person to stand out.

Standing out often allows a person to blend in.

By being the person who interacts openly and eagerly, you gain several gray man tactical advantages.

The first is that because you are being proactive with your communication you are gathering precious intel.

But because you’re chatty and light, people don’t realize you’re gathering intel.

The second is that because you seem shallow and light, you are most likely not seen as a threat.

You may be dismissed as a lightweight, but you will be dismissed as a lightweight rather than being drawn nearer as a threat.

Think of it this way.

When you are silent—to another person—you’re an unknown quantity and that feels like a threat.

When you interact in a shallow and non-threatening way—to another person—you’re likely to be taken off their list as a possible threat.

Con artists are the epitome of the gray man ideal because you don’t see them coming.

You can be the silent gray man who is most likely to be perceived as a psychotic crazy.

You can be the outgoing gray man who is most likely to be tolerated and ignored, but not seen as a threat.

Choose appropriately.

Prepare well, my friends.