The reinforcing of Stereotypes

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Much as educators and psychologists have advised against the creations and maintenance of stereotypes, it still exists in societies today as it had always existed years before. In fact, stereotyping has become stronger and more impactful than before.

Psychologists would have attributed this to the fact that the human minds have a predilection of categorizing and compartmentalizing things and people so that understanding comes easier. For instance, when we ask about someone’s profession, wouldn’t it be easier to gain an almost instantaneous impression of them based on their responses that they are lawyers than to spend years knowing them as unique individuals?  This is true in knowing a person as an individual as it is true in knowing groups of people.

It is the same for educators, who often attribute (at times non-existent) qualities on a student when the student exhibits certain behavioral traits that is reminiscent of some students the educators have encountered before. These are not the appropriate ways to assess the personality of students. Nor is it a just and judicious manner in which students should be judged. However, with both the convenience and constraints of time, educators often commit this error. Furthermore, the human mind would have approved.

“While stereotyping in these scenarios may seem problematic, nothing is more problematic than when these forms of mental imprints are developed and imposed on not one individual but a group of individuals who share similar traits. “

I believe that none if not few of us would choose to develop certain impressions on a group of people but this often happens over time at a subconscious level. It cuts both ways. So, when we develop positive feelings towards a group of people, that will be great as we will develop happiness whenever we are with them or even talking about them. A mere mental recall is enough to bring euphoria to one’s mood and dialogue.

Rather, it is when our impression swings the other way into negative impressions that problems will result. This occurs based on our previous life experiences of someone who shares similar traits to certain group(s) of people. For instance, if one has been backstabbed by one’s boss in the office (probable on more than one occasion) previously, one might – over time – develop a certain level of mistrust (or even rebelliousness) towards authoritative figures in the future. This might adversely affect their relationship with their bosses – even if they were to leave for other companies.

“This conflicting and affictive feelings in them may follow them wherever they go in their line of work. Over time, these negative emotions may even develop into biases and discrimination. What compounds this problem is that these individuals may not even be aware of these mental afflictions. “

The longer that these people hold these negative sentiments, the deeper will be the distaste towards certain groups of people. They need to know how these unwarranted sentiments are affecting them and more importantly, they need to know the ways to eradicate or at least alleviate these negative sentiments.

One of the best ways to resolve and unwind these emotional knots that these individuals have tied themselves with is to understand that the human mind tends to project the impression someone makes on us to all other similar individuals. These effect works on people as well as on situations. We have seen above how someone can make an impression on us just by mentioning their profession.  Similarly, a bad experience at an event may also make us hesitant in attending similar social functions in the future. More interesting, the way we perceive the world seems to have already been forged in our childhood days.

“In other words, we often live out our lives based on how we perceive the world when we are very young.”

However, there is a way out of this virtual cycle that permeates human living. We need not be resigned or be binded by our childhood days or any negative experiences that we have encountered with people or situations.

Yes, we are able to walk out of this.

But how?

I feel that the best way is to develop compassion. This includes understanding that others have the same needs and wants as us. Understanding this will enable us to develop empathy. However, to reach the level of compassion, we should also take the additional step of wishing them to be well and happy. This might mean sacrificing a promotion so that they are able to be promoted (which kind of reduces backstabbing occurrences in the office and promotes mutual respect and trust), putting in time to communicate with them on issues that might cause further conflicts, letting them know that they are loved or at least respected by us, as well as putting in the time and effort to see the good in them.

Giving advice is the easy part. It’s the application of the value of compassion in our daily lives that will probably require some practice and patience.

” However, as Lao Tzu said, ‘A journey of a thousand mile begins with a single step.’ “

So, let us all take the step in developing compassion and encourage one another to see the good in others, especially the ones we do not take well to. Always.

Patrick Tay is an English Language and Life Skills Training Specialist  who is based in Singapore. He has been teaching communication studies and international issues in polytechnics and writes regularly on various issues of interest in education, media, business and international affairs at patricktay.wordpress.com. He can be contacted at teachingwithart@gmail.com.

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Discussing change and stability

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Much have been discussed about change and stability. Are we able to achieve both?

This is an interesting question and much have been discussed in both academia and the business circles. I will say that this question transcends both areas such that the very choice that we make encompasses life itself.

“To make a choice between change and stability is usually very heavily contextualised within the domain of one’s life circumstances and ever-evolving happenings globally. It also has much to do with the cultural characteristics in which one was engaged in. It also has to do with one’s innate personality. The last factor may be the pivotal point in which one makes a decision between change and stability.”

So, there really isn’t any hard and fast rules on whether it is possible to merely achieve one or both. It’s a blend somewhere between personality, culture and changing circumstances. Currently, TIME magazine has reported on the intrusion of tourists on certain tourist attractions such as Lombard Street in San Francisco. But gradual adjustments have been made to accommodate the influx of tourism while still ensuring minimal disruptions to the residents in the area. Besides striking a balance, I feel that another crucial factor lies in the decisive moments when one makes one’s decision. What’s challenging is that most of us often miss these decisive moments, as well as the fact that the decisions that we make are often relative and subjective.

It seems that there are more people who prefer to be where they are than to make changes. Are there any reasons for this?

It’s primarily psychological.

If you move, you have to deal with changes. And these changes could be as trivial as making room in a corner of your bedroom for a pet, or as drastic as ensuring that there is enough budget for food, accommodations and transport in the event that you choose to accept an overseas posting for a few years.

“Such changes could be social, economical, political, financial, educational or it could a combination of all these – on a national if not global scale. “

The “if it’s aren’t broke, don’t fix it” mantra has a stronger emotional and mental pull on almost anyone. It all comes down to self-preservation. If you make changes, you incur cost in terms of allocating resources and facing any changes that might be disruptive to your lives. If you stay where you are, you are safe – at least for now. It usually takes a whole lot more than a mindset to cause attitudinal or behavioural changes in someone. However, this is not how our forebears survive. They change their habitat, their lifestyle, their preferences, their habits – in the hope of a better life and a better world. You also observe these in animals, in insects. A chameleon is an obvious example.

But there is an interesting aspect to these changes. Humans have always strived to strike a balance between being competitive and collaborative through change. You see this in politics, in office politics, as well as parental and marital relationships. You also see this in carnivorous animals that hunt, such as the wolves.

“The Chinese novel “Wolf Totem” (which had since been translated into English) carries a strong message in its tale: that should the wolves be wiped out by the hunters, their preys will increase in number and the crops will suffer as a result. In a very provocative manner, the themes of change and renewal is prominently brought up in almost every aspects of the book. “

But humans did progress after all, didn’t we?

We did, but often not fast enough. We probably pay a price for this – in the form of a lost job opportunity, maybe. Or maybe something more costly.

What you are saying is probably mankind’s progress on the whole. On that count, yes we are progressing progressively. But if you were to look at the societal or national levels, the progression are of a different pace because people have different views, as well as being born in different circumstances. And in these disparities and differences in progression rate, we see opportunity costs borne by the people.

So, to expedite change, sometimes we have to change the circumstances for the better, which cannot be accomplished by any single individual. Of course, another way is to relocate. Nevertheless, there is no perfect place on Earth and one at times have to make do with things that one is unfavourable about. There is also a cost in relocating oneself. Families and loved ones are left behind.

Yes, you are right. It is often better to regard progression on a wider scale rather than just on an individual level.  Life is relative and the media often aggravates this tendency. It is human nature to want to better one’s life and often, we use others’ materialistic possessions and achievements as yardsticks to measure our own well-being, instead of using our current achievements as benchmarks to do better next time.

To a certain extent, this is human nature – which often does not change.

Patrick Tay is an English Language and Life Skills Training Specialist  who is based in Singapore. He has been teaching communication studies and international issues in polytechnics and writes regularly on various issues of interest in education, media, business and international affairs at patricktay.wordpress.com. He can be contacted at teachingwithart@gmail.com .

The Art of Thinking in Reading

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Humans thrive on information.

This is why the internet is an immediate attraction with people globally as with its emergence, there also arises an easy access to information from numerous sources, with viewpoints more varied and diverse than what traditional media is able to offer.

Reading has always been one of the favourite past time of humans and it still remains to be so. What has changed are our reading habits.

“Where ,once, we have read for depth, now we read for breadth (which probably explains the decline of the encyclopaedia. Of course, there is now Wikipedia).”

In addition, we are now more selective in what we read than before, opting for news feed from online social media than reading hard copies of newspapers and magazines. Nevertheless, newspapers and news magazine still has their place for providing the depth that most online information lacks.

Regardless of our current reading habits and preferences, an inevitable fact remains: we are looking for more information now than before – even in the face of information overload. While some have argued that information overload will put some readers off from acquiring more information or risk getting confused from various information, this has not happened.

“In fact, on the contrary, something interesting has happened: our neural pathways have adapted to this new way of acquiring information.”

We can see it happening in schools and in the workplace. Students and working professionals are now being selective about what they read without being taught about it in lessons. So what do they read? Yes, they read what interest them. It is human nature to read what sustains our interest. This often spills over into whatever we see, hear, do and engage in.

Some websites already have interfaces that employ cookies to track the websites we visit, as well as product and services that we view previously. This practice is prevalent in both commercial enterprises and institutions of public service such as public libraries.

What this implies is that we are getting more of what we want instead of what we are able to explore. Eli Pariser said it best in this TED video.

“If we were to look at the news articles that we read on a continuous basis, we often find that the article content is often repetitive, and just phrased and worded in a different ways. So, continuous reading of such materials merely deepens our understanding and strengthens our beliefs in the stand made in the article. However, this may not substantiate the arguments made.”

So, in present times, we really need to take a step back and question the very premise that everything we read is useful.  This is crucial not just in educational institutions but also in the workplace.

In the absence of clear thinking, we run the risks of groupthink and skewed thinking. Every article is written with a certain intent and goal in mind, to persuade the readers to its point of view, including this post. Please think deeply about what this post is trying to telling you as this is why this post is written.

We live in a time when we read articles in their entirety and with such a fast speed that it’s inadvertent that the mind absorbs the information rapidly without much contemplative processing. This is fine when reading a novel since its content seeks to broaden your scope and understanding of the narrative tale.

However, it is a different story when reading factual news, commentaries, non-fiction materials as well as research findings. Such materials have direct influence on our lives and hence, we need to be mindful of every argument being made.

“There is a certain truth in the saying that what we read, we become.  And there is almost a complete truth to the saying that what we think, we become. “

It’s precisely because of this that we should always think when reading before taking in what we read. It seems that most of us do not have this habitual tendency.

What does it mean?

“It means having the foresight of our prior beliefs, then taking the initiative to compare what we know and believe with what is being read, and having the awareness and possessing the courage to disagree with any arguments made while still having the open-mindedness to examine any contradictory arguments that are made.”

Besides assessing the validity of the arguments, we also need to do associative thinking when reading such that creative ideas can emerge. This is true both in education and in business.

Such is the art of thinking.

There are now universities who have integrated this cross-disciplinary approach in some of their modules but this is not prevalent at this point in time for this approach to be instrumental in shaping our reading habits for the better.

“Learners and business professionals need to understand the mechanics behind associative thinking, such that more innovations can be discovered to better society and to further the positive progress of the world. “

So, the next time we flip through or scroll through any new information, let us ask ourselves the reasons why we disagree with some arguments that are put forward, and what connections we can make between the disparate elements of different disciplines and topics.

Only then will we be better learners, and not merely an information sponge.

Patrick Tay is an English Language and Life Skills Training Specialist who is based in Singapore. He has been teaching communication studies and international issues in polytechnics and writes regularly on various issues of interest in education, media, business and global issues at patricktay.wordpress.com. He can be contacted at teachingwitheart@gmail.com

3 reasons why setting DEFINITE goals DON’T work

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1. The only constant in life is change.

There are changes in our lives all the time.

Having goals (or intentions) is important. It’s just that we should not make our goals too definite.

For example, while one of our goals may be to buy a car in six months’ time, there may be other priorities that come up such that we will direct our focus elsewhere out of necessity . For instance, maybe housing prices are better in half a year’s time, and we purchase a new home instead.

We may also want to join a gym club in a month’s time but soon learn that yoga and pilates are more suited for our body types.

Hence, too specific goals do not work most of the time.

We should have general goals, and choose to to go with the flow of life while adjusting our goals accordingly, which is what most successful businesses do.

As what Jon Acuff said in this book “Start”, we know where we start but we do not know where we finish when it comes to accomplishing our goals. Often enough, we end up not where we thought we are going, but somewhere even more fantastic.

2.  You can’t enjoy life’s journey when you are too focused on your goals.

Personally, I do not think that life wants you to go where you want to go. I think life wants you to enjoy the journey more than the destination (which is what you want to achieve).

It is not surprising to see many people defining happiness as a process, and not a destination. It is the same for life.

“The joys of life is savoured along the way, such as spending time with your friends and loved ones. It’s not as if someone reaches a place called Life’s Destination and say, “Oh wow!!  I have reached my goal. Now it’s time to be happy!!”. Nay, it’s not like that. “

In life, it’s human nature to want to achieve things for themselves but that’s not the primary purpose of life.

“Some people just have the knack for understanding life. For these individuals, they also have life goals that they wish to achieve. What makes them different from the rest is that after they have put in their best efforts,  they smile and just be – regardless of the outcome.”

3. Did you accomplish all your new year resolutions?

 If you have friends who have fulfilled all their new year resolutions every single year throughout their lives to date without fail, let me know. Because I have never met one.

One of the most common reasons people say that goal-setting does not work is because we lack passion. And they say that we must develop this passion to accomplish our goals. But think about it. The very fact that we lack passion for certain goals means that our values and beliefs are different from those required to pursue these goals.

Say, for example, buying a car. If we feel that cars are depreciating assets and that taking public transport is a better deal, then we will not be passionate in buying a car and hence this goal of buying a car will probably not be achieved. Do we really want to force ourselves to be more passionate about cars such that we can buy one? Will this really make us happy? Think about it.

We are better changing our goals such that it suits our values and beliefs better.

Then of course, there are other reasons.

Most of us would usually reason some of our goals away by saying that we have no time (because our priorities are not on achieving these goals, which means we know exactly what we want, which is great) or  we set too many goals (which means we know how to prioritise, which is also great).

But do you see the actual reason for our procrastination?

“The ones that we do not do are usually the ones we do not wish to do. Life is telling us something here. When we face resistance in ourselves like this, this means we are moving in the wrong direction. If these are the goals we really want to pursue, find a way around them. If not, drop them. “

For example, if we want to lose weight, we may have set the goal as joining a gym club and exercising 4 times a day. Now, gyms are popular outlets to exercise and we may have wrote it out of habit. But deep down inside, we know that we just want to do a brisk walk.

Then go for a brisk walk! Forget about the gym. We should listen to our bodies.

We know what we want, so don’t let goals stop us. We control our goals, not the other way round.

So ok, you might have a deadline for work. And there’s no way around it. Do you enjoy doing this? Yes, good for you. Then find a way to work around it.  No? Take a second to think about why this is so. Is it that you are someone who prefers  a more flexible working environment with increased autonomy? Or that this job is not for you? Either way, you got to make a change, right?

So, whenever we face resistance in doing what we set out to do, know that we should work on the goal in a way we are comfortable with, or drop the goal entirely for a totally new direction suited for us.

And do not work towards others’ expectations.

“I need to get rich.”

“I need to get a car.”

“I need to get a bigger house.”

“I need to get another house.”

Do you really want to do the above? If so, please do.

If not, are you then working towards what is expected of you by others and society rather than what you want? Don’t.

Work towards what you want and put in your best efforts, but let things that you work towards to come to you at their own time, and you will have a happier life!

Author’s background: Patrick Tay is an English Writing Specialist who lectures in various polytechnics in Singapore, and coaches students in English as a private tutor. His professional services can be found here.

 

Q & A: How does one define success in life?

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In developed countries, it seems that many people are driven towards a financially-free life. Even in developing countries, people are aspiring towards a better life in terms of financial achievements. Is this true success?

Well, I feel that the environment where you live in determines – to a large extent – what you call success. But of course the media plays a large part in this aspect as well.

For most mainstream media, the emphasis is on successful individuals but the basis is almost always financial. Investors. Businessmen. Entrepreneurs. Sportspeople.  It’s a great thing since featuring such individuals aspires us towards greater heights.

Then of course, there are interviews with academic luminaries where their views are sought on issues of current affairs. This is also encouraging since we should all aspire to be lifelong learners and we should always keep ourselves updated on current happenings to stay relevant in the workplace and in life.

However, the issue is that money does not equate to success. If you were to run a check through quotes on sucess online, you would probably have come across quite a number of accomplished individuals who had mentioned this.

You can have money and not feel like you are a success. This is because you might like to want more. And this becomes a virtual cycle.  I figure you know where I am getting at here.

Yeah, right. You meant contentment? 

Right, right.

We should aspire to greater heights whenever we achieve our goals. However, success has no ends since it has no definite definition, so we should be grateful for what we have achieved as well as being content with what we have now.

“Drive is a tricky business and we should strike a balance between achieving and being content.”

Most importantly, we must be happy with who we are. There are some of us who define our self identity with our success. But there are always ups and downs in life. If we are our success, would that make us less of who we are when we fail? And more of who we are when we succeed? This doesn’t make sense.

And when we talk about success, I can’t help but bring in happiness.

This is because some people equate happiness to success but this is not really so. Such individuals will strive and expect to be successful all the time and not some of the time, which is not possible.

“Success does make one happy for a while but if one cannot maintain one’s success or if one constantly strives for greater success, then one’s happiness actually fluctuates over time.”

So, the questions goes back to: do you want to be successful or happy? 

No, of course not.

Let’s not draw a dichotomy between success and happiness, as there are none. In fact, I would like all of us to be both successful and happy, with the latter taking precedence over the former.

It’s a matter of being content and celebrating every small achievements that we had and will have, that makes one happy. So, in this way. we  use success as a platform to create happiness.

But of course, there are more factors contributing to happiness, such as gratitude, contentment, spending time with loved ones, pursuing one’s interests and many more. So, we should not be fixated on success alone. Else, a primary focus on success alone will be detrimental to one’s happiness.

So, contentment rather than success is key to happiness, is this what you are saying?

Yes, absolutely.

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Psychological games that people play : 8. The Lover

 

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For my first post on this series, please click here.

When one sees the term “lover”, it’s unavoidable that feelings of romance and sensuality are evoked in one’s mind. This is probably due to the proliferation of the media promotion on beauty and aesthetics but most significantly..romance. In a world of technological advancement and societal isolation, everyone is out there looking for attention.

“This can most be seen most prevalently in singing competitions (which the media is constantly spurning out in recent years, often primarily due to competition, viewership and ratings) where some contestants would often inform the judges that they love music all their lives and that they want their music [and talent] to be recognised. In actuality, they were merely saying that they wanted attention and to be loved, which I believe all of us share the same sentiments. While technologies have brought us global communication and widespread cable entertainment, it’s doesn’t make us feel loved. “

How can one feel loved when their dining partners are busy typing away at their keyboards to answer their emails at 11p.m. in the evening? Or chatting to their partners who, in response, are busy “SMSing” their friends on their mobile phones?  Or busy downloading games from the phone apps store onto their phone to play in the later evenings? Or uploading photos of the food they have just ordered to Facebook for their friends’ comments on their gastronomic preference?

I believe that you catch my drift.

Everywhere one turns, indifference can be seen. It might not be personal. Nor need it be. People keep to themselves on the trains, dating websites (and online love scams) are on the rise,  emphasis are increasing on personal branding and focus has been re-directed to work-life balance.

“So, what people is looking for in contemporary times – more than ever – is love, or a feeling of being appreciated. “

This is where the role of the Lover – playable by both genders –  comes in. However, the Lover does not only represent romance.

“He stands for something more than that. He stands for the surrogate parent for the orphan, the perfect lover for singles, the companion and confidante of the isolated and the ostracised and the uplifting spirit for the dispirited and the disillusioned. “

With masculine acts of initiating conversations and feminine touches of concern, The Lover comes across as approachable – adorable in every sense of the word. Smooth and sleek, the Lover often impresses others first with their attire, and then by their demeanour.

But what is appearance without substances?

“The Lovers often exude their real charm in conversations and carefree banter, revealing their knowledge of the worlds through their words and dialogues with others. Well-read and  conversant, others are drawn towards them inexplicably and before long, the Lovers will lead the conversation to where they wants others to go, and have them in the palms of his hands before the evening comes to a close.”

Charismatic in conversation through a playful dance of compliments and sheer indulgence of others’ interest (which differs from a display of one’s intellectual prowess, as often displayed by the Sage), intense engagement through the potent combinations of the five human senses (unlike a single thematic engagement with humour, as often employed by the Clown / Jester), a flair for the theatrical drama that so enchants singles (unlike the straightforward assertiveness, as often exercised by the Alpha Male / Authoritarian), and exhibiting an unpredictability (as opposed to the undying loyalty so often exhibited by the Loyalist) that mesmerises others, the Lovers remain as enigmatic as they are seductive, and remain as one of the most powerful roles ever to be played by any individuals who share their proclivities and tendencies.

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Alter ego of the Lover:

The Casanova

When the role of the Lover is pushed to the extreme, he turns into the Casanova where – unlike the jester, where humour is paramount – appeal to the delight of others through a stimulation of their human senses in unpredictable and random fashion, enmeshing them in such a intricate web of intrigue that they remain ignorant to the fact that they are being played into the hands of the Casanova.

Attuned to the five human senses of sight, hearing, smell, taste and feel, the Lover is skilled with the combination of these elements to draw others to them. More than that, he understands human nature and more significantly, how compliments and vanity appeal to the human ears and minds, as well as how others’ vanity will ultimately prove to be their undoing.

Like puppets reacting to the strings of the puppeteer, others will act accordingly to the wishes of the Casanova and do his bidding with no resistance, for what resistance will there be towards someone who seeks to please them with loving words, arouse them with aromatic fragrance of lavender, tease them with mischievous whispers of sarcastic humour , and touch their arms with an affectionate smile?

However, if we can identify the fact that compliments and praises should be taken with a pinch of salt, and question the motives behind the lavishers, we will surely not fall prey to the Casonovas of this world.

In the next blog post, we will look at another role which people play the Observer / Investigator.

Psychological games that people play : 7. The Loyalist

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For my first post on this series, please click here.

As opposed to the Rebels who constantly seek  to overthrow establishments, the Loyalist is someone who believes very deeply and strongly in pledging allegiance to an organisation or the nation state. Their passion for serving a master or an organisation delves deeper than loyalty itself. It almost seems as if the very reason that they are living is because of the very people whom they serve.

“Unlike the Rebels, the Loyalists have no issues with authority or established rules. In fact, they relish the very fact that they have a a father figure to look up to, or a mother figure to protect. Films of bravado and patriotism flame their passion and strengthen their belief that the very purpose of their lives is to protect and to serve – something that the Rebels will probably not understand.”

There are many such literary figures in history. In Chinese culture, there is Yue Fei  (岳飞) (a famous Chinese general who defended his country against foreign invades and who, ironically, died in the hands of traitor Qin Hui) and the Yang Family (杨家将) (whose entire family, including females, served the country’s military for generations, with some family members killed in the line of duty), who willingly risked and ,at times, sacrificed their lives for their patriotic beliefs.

Much can be said for patriotic figures in western cultures too.  Consider William Wallace, who was popularised in the movie “Braveheart“, who led the war during the Wars of Scottish Independence (1286 – 1328). Then there is Sir Lancelot du Lac, one of the most courageous and loyal knights serving under King Arthur.

The above examples prove that individuals take on such roles regardless of their cultures.  The inclination to be grateful breeds loyalty and this tendency to serve is imbued in Loyalists more than others. Hence, the Loyalists , in their lifetime, often position themselves as advisors to a leader, although sometimes they will bear the responsibility of the leadership themselves when the situations call for it.

“The Loyalists are often highly valued in corporate organisations since they offer unwavering loyalty to the organisations they work, and are not as easily tempted by higher monetary remuneration offered by competitors. This innate ability to value their contributions to the organisations they serve over higher salary packages often makes their steadfastness look almost saintly in the eyes of others. “

When it comes to ads, the unfaltering faith of a soldier saluting the national flag, images of soldiers conversing with the natives that the former protects, policemen who keep the streets safe, samurais bowing down to their shoguns and national flags swaying to the winds all evoke feelings of loyalty, an attribute which the Loyalists take well to.

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Alter ego of the Loyalist:

The Blind Devotee

When this role is played to the extreme, the Loyalists turn into the Blind Devotees, where their unflagging and unflinching support for their cause turns them against everyone and/or anything that is perceived as a threat to the people and the cause they defend.

Now, the end justifies any means that they need to use to secure their objectives.

“The blind devotees have forgotten the initial reason  for pledging their loyalty, persisting with an adamantly fierce loyalty that simply refuses to switch course, even when the original rationale for being loyal is no longer there (such as the case when the initial ruler is removed and a tyrannical dictator has taken over).  An overemphasis on the significance of loyalty has made them blind to the adverse changes occurring around them. Even when their lords are pillaging the nearby villages and looting valuables from peasants, blind devotees remain oblivious to the fact and devote their time to protecting the stability of the existing regime.”

Their obsessive strive for the integrity of what they fight for are almost cult-like, working single-minded to defend against anyone or anything that they consider as adversaries and opponents.

What is interesting about both the Loyalists and the Blind Devotees is that power is never their original motive for their actions, and probably never will be. Instead, what drives them, besides their undying loyalty, is their belief in hope, in the hope that through their struggles, justice (as defined by them) will prevail eventually and everything will be all right again.

“The role of the Loyalist is a popular role that – even if not taken on by someone – serves as a constant reminder to all of us that there is always light at the end of the tunnel, and that with continuous determination and faith, one can prevail against all odds. However, it is very important that Loyalists temper their unwavering faith with a dose of rationality, and not be entirely swayed by emotions – else they will – more often than not – inadvertently inflict more harm than good on the masses.”

In our next post, we will explore a role that is more in touch with our five physical senses and takes it to such an artistic level that they become often exemplifies charisma.

We will look at the Lover.