Transactions are the flow of communication, and more specifically the unspoken psychological flow of communication that runs in parallel. Example: sweet caring voice with sarcastic intent. To read the real communication requires both surface and non-verbal reading.
Strokes are the recognition, attention or responsiveness that one person gives another. Strokes can be positive (nicknamed "warm fuzzies") or negative ("cold pricklies"). A key idea is that people hunger for recognition, and that lacking positive strokes, will seek whatever kind they can, even if it is recognition of a negative kind.
Eric Berne IP: Popularized Transactional Analysis by books: games people play, I’m ok your ok.
Benefits of knowledge of T.A. concepts:
Improve understanding of communication transactions.
Learn about dominant ego state.
Better able to avoid psychological game playing.
Improve communication effectiveness.
Effective use of strokes
Eric Berne IP States:
1. Child EGO state:
Displaying Curiosity, need for fun, joy, intimacy, fantasy, impulsivity.
Either compliant. (Placating) or rebellious (demanding, defiant, or whiney)
i. Early (or Somatic) Child - Crybaby ii. Early Adult (or little professor) - Early problem-solving iii. Early Parent - Internalization of nurturing and prohibitive messages 2. Adult Ego State
- Objective and rational functions.
- Considers consequences
- Referee between Parent Ego State (demands) and Child (wants)
3. Parent Ego State:
Rules, morals, manners.
Caring and protective.
Control, Intimidating, enforcing.
As Parent develops:
Incorporates messages from caretakers.
Messages can come from three all three states: Jumping on the bed example.
Pp (Parent state of Parent)
Do what I tell you to do (critical parent); scolding, upset
Ap (Adult state of Parent)
Don’t jump because you might get hurt; rational
Cp (Child state of Parent)
Transactional Stimulus: Acknowledging the other. Transactional Response: Response to stimulus.
Three Main Transaction Types:
A simple, reciprocal transaction occurs when both partners are addressing the ego state the other is in. Parallel Transaction in P-C-A
EG. P-P, A-A, C-C.
Unequal type of Complementary Transaction:
Respond from unequal ego states.
EG: C-P (In this case a child [requesting like a child] and a Parent [responding as parent])
- Non-parallel lines of communication.
- Cross or intersect.
- Where partners address ego states other than the one that their partner is in.
Two Types of Crossed Transactions:
Message stimulus: A-A
Receiver responds: C-P
Message Stimulus: A-A
Receiver Responds: P-C
3. Ulterior Transactions (spilt): where the explicit (surface) social conversation occurs in parallel with an implicit (subsurface) psychological transaction.
Use more than two ego states at one time.
Angular (3 Ego states)
Three ego states (A, A, C)
On surface may appear A-A
S: I’m applying for law school.
R: That’s really hard to get in to. (You might not be smart enough)
S: I’m applying anyway. (I am smart enough)
Duplex (4 Ego states)
Four ego states
Common in flirtation games
Surface transaction: A-A
S: Come up to my apartment to see my sketches? (Would you like to play?)
R: Yes that sounds good. (Of course I’d like to play)
Strokes: The basic motivation behind social interactions: An acknowledging (Physical or Symbolic).
Positive Strokes: Warm fuzzy.
- Feel good and content.
Requested Strokes: asked for
Earned Strokes: Done something for.
Negative Strokes: Cold prickly.
- Feel unpleasant but still acknowledged.
- Better than no strokes at all.
Freebie Strokes: Do not have to do anything for
“Types of STROKES”
1) I’m not OK – You’re OK
a. Children often decide it is their fault