We all know someone with a short fuse. A narcissistic, defensive personality that prevents any further communication to attempt peace and a solution. Thinking before they speak — the world over spectacle of cussing ensues. As we mesmerize at their actions, we may think…this person is crazy! Logic, reasoning, and obtaining the facts are important before building a wall towards our opponent and coming up with our own egotistical conclusions. At times we convince ourselves about our own rationality, open mindedness, and enlightenment. In reality though, it is the utmost importance to understand one another to fend off opposing views. In your childhood do you remember that one person with a calm demeanor that mostly everyone liked? It was always that person with the voice of patience and reason that everyone seemed to be agreeable towards.
If you’re old as dirt, like us, they you may have had the privilege of seeing Mister Roger’s Neighborhood. Close your eyes for a second and see if you could imagine Mr. Roger’s teaching a child to throw their arms up in the air, begin yelling all the while violently threatening others to the point of division and creating a hostile environment? Or could you see Mr. Rogers telling a child that they aren’t special while he neatly tucked away his dress shoes and changed into sneakers? Such a separate and completely reversed charismatic attitude was portrayed by Mr. Rogers in a powerful showcase to defend public television from budget cuts. His sincere interest to educate children to be their honest self, love themselves and others — proves that being genuine can win over an audience. Intuition and emotion show that Mr. Rogers was genuinely empathetic towards educating children. Could you imagine if he’d taken a philosophical approach and would not have been interested in educating the public? Intuition tells me that the public would have sniffed out our neighbor’s fake attitude a mile away.
Below are some basic notes that were taken from Mr. Roger’s and the Power of Persuasion that was produced by Yellow Bear Films (shown above). Hopefully, you can apply some of these when attempting to persuade and appeal to your own audience.
Three Modes of Persuasion (technically more)
1. Ethos – argument by character. Personality, reputation, and trustworthiness. Ethos is used in ads to create credibility. Aristotle believed that ethos is the most important of persuasion. A person’s way of life persuades better than their spoken words.
2. Pathos – argument by emotion. It’s the appeal to a person’s sense of identity, self-interest, and sentiments. Humor is very powerful as it increases likability and established a common ground.
3. Logos – argument by logic. Attempts to persuade the audience by making a reasonable claim and providing proof. For example, using statistics and numbers to prove an idea. Concessions can also be used by applying your opponents argument and then using it to your own advantage. By admitting a validity in their own argument, you indicate that your not just listening but your seeing their side.