Urgent! Another problem outside the community

Richard

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Gents, I was talking to my dad today about my sister. She's 21, no job, has never had because my dad has babied her through her life because of a condition she had as a child (she had to get a shunt put in her head) and my parents were very overprotective of her and as such, she grew up without learning to socialize. Now, my dad supports her by:
-Not forcing her to get a job, well force isn't the right word.
-Always helping her, and never letting her fall to learn from experience
-Babying her
He doesn't understand why she doesn't want to go out into the real world and work for her own money, and it's because he makes it so she doesn't have to. She lives at home for free, and she gets a $20.00 allowance every week for gas. SHE:
-has no friends outside of Facebook acquaintances
-has no friends to socialize with in her actual life
-has no motivation to work (puts in bland job apps over the internet instead of handing them in personally)
-spends her time either on the computer or watching WWE or some other show instead of being outside and active

After reading Dale Carnegie's book, my mind was opened up further to influencing people, but my sister is a different case because any motivation you can provide to her, it goes in one ear and out the other. She never wants to admit to when anyone else is right, so she gets very defensive when you tell her about the benefits of having a job, and my dad has no idea how to motivate her to want to get out and work and have a social life. I can't talk to her because my natural vocabulary is too much for her {it's no joke =/....}. Both my mom and dad (divorced) are worried about her, and neither know what to do about her, any advice guys? i have a few of my own ideas, but I'd like to hear from anyone who has actual experience with this instead of just theory (I have theories based on psychology, and human nature) but like I said, I'd like some real advice from real experience.
 

ZacAdam

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Zphix,

I don't want to burst your bubble, but this is what happens when you improving your life and you see people who aren't. You start projecting that they are a problem, and thus you can't help them or inspire them.

Because you naturally judge them just by that projection of thoughts.

Zac
 

Richard

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Zac, that's not the problem. Me upgrading my life and improving myself hasn't changed or caused the situation, and hasn't caused me to believe I can't help her. It's the fact that it's been like this for 3 years already since she's gotten out of high school. It's the fact that she didn't establish a good foundation as a child because my parents were overprotective of her, and things that happen in your childhood drastically effect your future, she never got blossomed in her childhood and her adulthood is now suffering.
And, as far as judging other people, it's not something I do. Essentially I raised myself with my own morals, and I've never judged anyone, this moral was further strengthened by my choice to major in therapy because I prefer humanistic therapy, where you don't judge a person for what they have done, you accept there actions and decisions and help to guide them to their own answers.
The only reason I posted this was because my dad was talking to me about it, and he's the one who's worried because he doesn't know what to do about it, and he's afraid for her future if she doesn't learn to be social, if she doesn't find motivation to change her life, him and my mother are worried about my sister, and I decided to post it to pass on any information you guys to him =)
 

Ross

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My older brother is very similar. No job, using my parents for their care. And he doesn't change because he doesn't have to.

Recently my dad took away his allowance. And thus, he started trying to make money to fund the amount of money he was spending. He started selling things on eBay, being smarter about his money, etc. He was mad that my dad cut off supply, but understood that it was my dad's money, not his. He felt entitled to it, sure, and argued, but he didn't carry on the conversation much farther.

If there's one thing I've learned about people, it's that they won't do things that they don't feel that they have to do. People who regularly go out and meet women feel a need to do so. People who work out feel the need to get stronger. She isn't feeling any needs. She doesn't have to, and thus she doesn't do it.

Now.. Take away gas money and she needs to start doing things for herself. She gets a job, meets people, understands that socializing is important. I've said it once, and I'll say it again. Motivation does not come from within. It is a result of outside stimuli. So.. you could tell your parents that they need to stop paying for everything and make her work for it. But they may not go for that, because paying her off to stay happy with them is easier. People live in their own realities of things, and they take the easier path that they have taken most often before. Nothing wrong about this. How exactly do you change all their minds, then? If they are all content with what they are currently doing, how do you change them?

If they were completely content, you couldn't change them unless you changed their situation to make them feel the need to change. Want her to feel like she needs to get better with people? Convince her to go out with you and do something you both enjoy. Start conversations with other people, and introduce her to them. Apply social pressure to her to act. And when she fails? Pick her up, and help her. This is something that I do with people who I know are going to be in my life for an extended period. They see social pressure, they mess up, feel bad, and become better people because of it. They make mistakes, and I form a connection where they'll listen to me. Most recently I used this with my old roommate. Well liked, good in social situations most of the time. But he was deathly afraid of asking out this girl that clearly liked him. When he finally tried asking her out, she didn't get the memo. After a lot of social pressure was placed on him, he was forced to act, and he got into a relationship with her by waking her up at 2am and asking her out.

However, with all this being said, I don't think that you are ready to do this. Just as they won't do anything because a lack of stimuli, you won't do anything. You may tell them what to do, sure. But are you really willing to act and solve the situation?

but my sister is a different case because any motivation you can provide to her, it goes in one ear and out the other.
She never wants to admit to when anyone else is right, so she gets very defensive when you tell her about the benefits of having a job, and my dad has no idea how to motivate her to want to get out and work and have a social life.
Me upgrading my life and improving myself hasn't changed or caused the situation, and hasn't caused me to believe I can't help her
And, as far as judging other people, it's not something I do. Essentially I raised myself with my own morals, and I've never judged anyone

Your mental model is saying that all of this happened, and now you can't change things. Mentally, you aren't ready to change her. You see far too many negative qualities and don't even give a glimmer of hope that she can change. In fact, you already know the answer, and so does your dad,

He doesn't understand why she doesn't want to go out into the real world and work for her own money, and it's because he makes it so she doesn't have to.

She doesn't affect your life enough to justify action. So, how do you change yourself so that you care? Take her out with you, regularly. Experience the social awkwardness that she creates. You'll feel the negative polarity and edginess of the situation, and you'll learn to deal with it, and so will she if either of you hopes to achieve the goals of achieving emotional satisfaction. Both of you will be better because of it.
 

Richard

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Ross, unfortunately, I've already done the things you've said such as taking her out and introducing her to new people, she stays quiet and doesn't talk and it makes the air tense, and as you've said, I feel the negative polarity, but it doesn't inspire her to talk, she's content with it. I've tried numerous times to build her up, provide her with motivation via outside stimuli (which I learned from psychology, and applied) and nothing. I don't believe in force whether physical or verbal, and my parents simply want to force her to do something, I prefer to influence people with techniques I learned from Dale Carnegie's book.
I have acted to no avail. I point out the downfalls because they haven't changed even when I've tried to help her change them, but at this point in her life, I don't feel like she wants change, and thus won't respond to influence, which may in fact be my mental model. However, I want to help her change, she just doesn't respond, it's like the harder I try the more defensive she gets, social pressure hasn't caused her to change, verbal force from my parents hasn't changed, and even providing "positive and negative punishment" hasn't helped at all. She's fine not having gas money because she doesn't need to drive, and the majority of the other punishments my dad could provide would be a hindrance to him so he won't do them, and I've told him I'll accept the punishments too on things that would affect both her and myself, and he has yet to do anything.
And lastly, I'm honestly still not sure how to deal with the social awkwardness she brings, I've had numerous trial and errors, and so far, I've gotten so many errors, it seriously seems like nothing has worked thus far, so I'm actually not sure about what I can do further, as bad as that is to say, what else can I do Ross?
 

Richard

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I keep rereading what you wrote and she doesn't take interest in much except WWE, and I mean that literally. She's afraid of change (runs in one side of my family, probably my moms) and pressure causes her to panic, and she runs away from her problems which actually pains me to see because I know she has enough strength in her to face her problems but she doesn't know how, and now that I'm thinking about it, I haven't supported her that much. She doesn't know how to talk to people, and isn't willing to take the steps needed to remedy that problem, I had the same issue until I found this site, and read about 6 different books on social psychology, small talk, influencing people, etc. and after swallowing my fear, I've become a much happier conversationalist. Now for her, my parents have had the problem of pointing out her flaws like saying "Grace, you need a job! You need to learn to socialize with people." and she responds with "I know how to talk to people! I just choose not to," when in reality she doesn't know how to talk to people. She has no interest in finding new hobbies either, she's not one to venture out and find something new, she's content as she is now, so what can I do Ross?
 

Ross

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I've already done the things you've said such as taking her out and introducing her to new people, she stays quiet and doesn't talk and it makes the air tense, and as you've said

1. You left out the key step of forcing her to feel the pressure. She's content without it; bring her into conversation and put the focus on her. Allow her to stay quiet, and she'll be content with that.
2. You can't do this once every other week. She won't change because of that. This needs to be done daily, for as long as possible.

I don't feel like she wants change

Of course she doesn't want to change. People don't want to change; I don't want to change, and never have. I may think I want to, but I really don't. Did I want to approach women and conquer A.A.? No, not really. I said I did, but the reality is that I dreaded approaching girls at first. But once you get into that conversation, your brain rapidly tries to do a lot of things. You leave it feeling drained, like a failure. This is what made me change; it's not because someone told me that I needed to. I tricked my mind enough by applying quick bursts of pressure from reading articles and influencing an emotional discontent. Emotional discontent changed me from a weak boy into a genuine man.

it's like the harder I try the more defensive she gets

People don't like to be told to change. They don't like being told that they are bad for doing things one way, and not the other. Tell a woman who believes men are evil and say, "Hey, you know you are wrong, right? Let me explain why," and they won't like you very much and will get defensive. Seduce them and make them feel better than they ever have before, and all of the sudden they become a loving, soft woman. It isn't about talking to them about change; they have every reason to get defensive and not want it. It's simply about changing them.

And lastly, I'm honestly still not sure how to deal with the social awkwardness she brings

I'll let you in on a secret. My brother is still extremely socially awkward. I only have to deal with him once or twice a year, so it isn't worth my efforts to focus everything on him to change him. You may feel the same way; in such a situation, you could stop caring so much about your sisters situation as it really doesn't effect you that much. When changing things, allow for the social awkwardness to inhabit the space for just long enough so that its effects are felt by the person in question. How do you know that it is being felt by them? They may try to clear the awkwardness of silence by asking someone, "So, what are you up to?" Then when the small talk returns to a social silence again, you can prove mastery by effortlessly clearing the awkwardness. She needs to feel failure after putting up effort.

Imagine you are playing volleyball. You set someone up for a spike, and they jump up and completely mishit it. The whole team is frustrated at this person for messing up, and their pressure is felt. They seek to fix their issue. Next, someone sets you up for a hit and you effortlessly score for your team. And you continue to do this over and over, while they continue to mess up. You text them the next day and ask them if they want to practice hitting. Frustration mounts in the 1 on 1 practice from them constantly messing up and you keeping your cool. You ask an open-ended question,

You: What do you think is going wrong?
Friend: The stupid ball just won't go where I want it to.
You: Who controls the ball?
Friend: I don't know.
You: Comon.. Who controls it?
Friend: I do. But it keeps hitting the tops of my fingers.

They admit to their problem, and they want help. You have the solution because you've been practicing with them.

You: Here, I'll set it a little better so that you can hit it with the left inside part of your palm.

This does a lot of things. You stay open with them and don't go straight into trying to fix them. You get them to admit that there is an issue. You then relate to her and show a matching vulnerability so you can mutually work through your issues in the game. Now they start hitting it with the left inside part of their palm, and it goes straight where they aimed.

This may be about volleyball, but the process is the same. Here is the process in another format:

1. Set them up to try. The mistakes are the stimulant. Set your sister up to be in a position of trying to do something; in this case, trying to relieve her own self-created social awkwardness.
2. Allow them to try multiple times. One mistake, and she may feel fine. Many mistakes, and she starts to search for an answer; why can you clear the silence so easily, yet she cannot?
3. Listen to their side of the story by asking open ended questions about her issues. She opens up, you listen and act appropriately; it isn't all clear cut. In the volleyball situation, your friend was feeling like a victim of something out of their control. They got past that issue of feeling that way, and were then open to suggestion or improvement. She may blame you for her inability to talk to people. Knowing this isn't the case, you bring her to realize it is her, not you, "Who is the one person has control of your actions?"
4. Provide guidance when it is desired. In the volleyball situation, your friend admits that they are the ones who are messing up, and they identify an issue, opening the conversation to finding a solution. Your sister may say, "I just don't know how to talk to people. I'm doomed." This isn't opening up for a solution. I hear, "It's too hard to change things, so I won't." This means that she isn't ready for guidance. The stimuli isn't enough; she still thinks she can get away with simply not learning how to talk with people. Go back to step 1, and repeat until that pressure mounts to the need for a solution.

Feels as though I've written a mini-article. But social issues aren't easy to solve. Men and women spend their lives saying they want to understand how to change people, but most often they don't have the stimuli there to even try to change others. I play volleyball to win; and I learned how to help people get better. The feeling of losing provides enough pressure for me to feel the need to make others better. It's a team sport, and no matter my skill level I will always need to work on others problems, regardless of the ways that they are. They can have all the victim mentality in the world, but if I want them to increase their vertical jump I will find a way to increase it. Do you have enough pressure to learn to change your sister? The answer to this question will determine your ability to devote time towards her. As I've said before, I don't think that the pressure and motivation is there. And I believe that is alright. I don't have enough pressure convincing me to spend time fixing my brother's social awkwardness, so don't feel bad if there isn't enough pressure on you to change your sister. In the end, it is her life, and her issues remain separate from yours until they effect you.
 

Richard

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Ross, I truly appreciate you taking the time to write out your in-depth responses, they've helped me wonders. I've no approached new people while my sister was with me, I'm really going to take your advice and force her to feel the pressure, but you're right, I don't have the motivation to change her because she doesn't affect my life enough, but I know in the future without the ability to socialize, and make friends, she'll need somebody to lean on... Even so, its a future based motivation and isnt directly strong enough to make me act, and my other motivation is self-gratification, I always get a great feeling from unselfishly helping others.
Once again though Ross, I thank and appreciate you and your advice,
Richard
 
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