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Fawning

 

Techniques General persuasion > Ingratiation > Fawning

Description | Example | Discussion | See also

 

Description

Fawning is a way of building the other person's sense of identity by placing yourself in a lower social position. This helps them to feel superior and unthreatened (and where they may make magnanimous gestures).

To fawn effectively, treat them as if they are better than they are without over-doing it. It is often best used as a part of a longer-term subtle strategy of making them feel good about themselves, and particularly when you are around.

Example

Oh you're so wonderful. I just love everything you do.

I know I won one race but I have a long way to go to match your record.

Discussion

Fawning can seem to be excessive and obsequious, and lowering one's own social position can be undesirable. It can also be subtle, for example where you are modest about your achievements, downplaying them in comparison with what the other person has achieved.

The danger in fawning is that the other person sees you as so inferior that you are not worth their attention. Fawning gone wrong can be seen by the other person treating you with disrespect and disdain.

To keep fawning successful, first assess the person to determine if they like feeling superior and are likely to play along with the illusion.

See also

Flattery

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