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Transactional Analysis

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Samuel Zimmer

on 8 August 2018

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Transcript of Transactional Analysis

Berne, E. (1996). The Games People Play. (5th ed.) New York: Ballentine Books
Structural Analysis and Ego States
Parent, Adult and Child
Thesis. "Why Don't You-Yes But"
Why Don’t You, Yes But
Thesis: This is played in four significant forms: Parental pastime, Adult pastime, Child pastime and game. In the pastimes there is no denouncement or payoff, but much unworthy feeling.
Ain’t it Awful
A GAME is an ongoing series of complementary ulterior transactions
progressing to a well-defined, predictable outcome.

Descriptively it is a recurring set of transactions, often repetitious,
superficially plausible, with a concealed motivation; or, more colloquially,
a series of moves with a snare, or "gimmick."

Games are dearly differentiated from procedures, rituals, and pastimes
by two chief characteristics: (1) their ulterior quality and (2)the payoff.
Duplex Diagram
Duplex Transaction
Angular Diagram
Sales staff are particularly adept at angular transactions, those involving

three ego states. A crude but dramatic example of a sales game is illustrated in the following exchange:

Salesperson: "This one is better, but you can't afford it."
Customer: "That's the one I'll take."

The salesperson, as Adult, states two objective facts: "This one is better" and "You can't afford it." At the ostensible, or social level these are directed to the Adult of the customer, whose Adult reply would be: "You are correct on both counts."

However, the ulterior, or psychological, vector is directed by the well-trained and experienced Adult of the salesperson to the customer's Child.

The correctness of his judgment is demonstrated by the Child's reply, which says in effect: "Regardless of the financial consequences, I'll show that arrogant fellow I'm as good as any of his customers." At both levels the transaction is complementary, since her reply is accepted at face value as an Adult purchasing

(Berne, 1996 pp
Angular Transactions
Possible interactions

Complementary transactions are represented by (1-1) , (5-5) and (9-9). (2--4) ( 4--2), (3-7) (7-3) and (6--8) (8-6).

All other combinations form crossed transactions, and in most cases these show up as crossings in the diagram: e.g.,
(3-7) (3-7),
The Relationship Diagram
This condition develops in the person whose real parents, or Parent
Contamination – The Person Without a Conscious
Children are preoccupied often with conflict between parent data and what they see in reality
In some cases, the parent data may threaten the adult. The child is afraid to examine the parent data with the adult. This produces contamination of the adult.
Some parent data remains unexamined
See Figure
Contamination – The Person Who Cannot Play
LADY I: (Looks at her watch, winds it, mumbles, catches the eye
of the lady next to her, sighs wearily.)
LADY 2: (Sighs back, shifts uncomfortably, looks at her watch.)
LADY I: Looks like we're going to be late again.
LADY 2: Never fails.
LADY 1: You ever sec a bus on time-ever?
LADY 2: Never have.
LADY I: Just like I was saying to Herbert this morning-you just don't get service any more like you used to.
LADY 2: You're absolutely right. It's a sign of the times.
LADY I: It costs you, though. You can count on that!

These transactions are Parent-Parent in that they proceed without the benefit of reality data and are the same kind of judgmental exchange these ladies, as children, overheard between their
Complimentary Transactions
Parent - Parent Interactions
Psychological Strokes (spinal chord, brain shrivels up and dies ) failure to thrive, neglect on the brain.
I’m NOT ok, You’re OK
I’m NOT ok, You’re NOT Okay
I’m OK, You’re OK
I’m OK, You’re NOT ok
Cellular Birth, Physical Birth Psychological Birth Social Birth
The Four Life Positions
The ultimate goal of transactional analysis is to reinforce the adult ego state.
This involves effective and assertive communication and awareness of the other's potential ego state.
A focus of communicating adult to adult, is crucial
The Goal of Transactional Analysis

Non verbal – continual movement of the face, affect congruent, sometimes showing the curious child

Verbal – uses ‘I’ statements (I notice that, I wonder if, I feel that etc.) and focuses on the objective, the what, where, when, why etc.

In conflict, the adult often uses an assertive inquiry to get to the bottom of a problem, what where why etc.
Adult Clues
The Adult
Slowly emerges at ten months.

The ten-month-old has found she is able to do something which grows from her own awareness and original thought. This self- actualization is the beginning of the Adult

Mother says, "No, no! Don't touch that!" The little person respond to this by pulling back and crying, but at a future opportunity she will touch it to learn what it is all about

Through the Adult the little person start to contrast the differences between life as it was taught (Parent), life as it was felt or wished it or fantasised it (Child), and life as it is discovered(Adult)

The Adult is a ‘learnt’ concept - a curious scientist
The Adult
The Critical/Controlling/Punitive Parent Mode: Sadness, anger, impatience, and judgmental natures come out in "punitive parent" and are directed to the patient and from the patient. Perfectionist thinking and "black and white thinking" are common hear often relate to perceived expectations of parents care givers in early life.

The Nurturing Parent Mode: this mode fails to acknowledge the other persons capabilities or potential for their own self care. The mode is caring and protective and seeks to keep the person contented, often subjectively solving problems for the other.
Parent modes
Non Verbal Clues: the furrowed brow, pursed lips, look of disgust or horror, rolling eyes, sighing, crossing arms, head patting

Verbal: judgements that often relate to pervasiveness or permanence. I am going to put a stop to this ‘once and for all’, ‘how many times have I told you?’ ‘you’re always late..’

Often automatic judgements are not an adult evaluation e.g. Lazy, nonsense, absurd, how dare you? , naughty, ridiculous, Not again!, Now what? you never...
Parent Clues
The Parent
A collection of recordings in the brain of unquestioned or imposed external events by parents and caregivers perceived by persons in their early years

This occurs before the social birth of the person (entering school)

This data is often the “how to” category: such as rules and social etiquette - how to greet, how to eat, how to farewell

Parent data is regarded as a ‘taught’ concept of life.
The Parent

The Angry Child:
This mode is fueled mainly by feelings of victimization or bitterness, leading towards negativity, pessimism, jealousy, rage, and so forth. Clues include yelling, screaming, throwing/breaking things, or possibly even self-injury/harming others. In this mode the person can be destructive, upset etc, and feels unsupported in ideas.

The Vulnerable Child
: This is also called "abandoned child" it is a schema mode in which a person may feel defective in some way, neglected, or unloved and up against it.
Child Parts
Non verbal: tears, the quivering lip, pouting, the temper tantrum, rolling eyes, shrugging shoulders, downcast eyes, nail biting, teasing, the high-pitched

Verbal: I dunno, I guess, Mine is better, Comparing bigger, better, best.
Child Clues
The Child
Recordings of internal events or feelings in response to external events (mostly mother and father) between birth and age five
The Child
We are a social species

A transaction is any social intercourse – an interaction whether verbal or nonverbal.
The Transaction
Figure 1

Berne observed you can people shift ego states before your eyes. It is a total change. For example, shifting from a parent-like state to a child-like state in seconds due to an activating event.

Berne noticed this in psychotherapy with adults

Berne considered some of these changes to have connections with recordings in the brain of actual experiences (internal and external events) in early years of development

Berne also noticed people to be able to return to adult like states
Parent, Adult and Child
" We all have parts" Carl Jung

Our ego states are formed when we behave repeatedly in the same manner. They form in our early developmental years

This ‘over and over again’ learning creates a physical neural pathway in the brain with its own specific emotions, abilities, and experience of living.

This neural pathway contains a close connections of a network of neurons.

Neuroplasticity theory - we can grow new neurons and we can grow new connections between our neurons.
Forming Ego States
Recollections were derived from the participant's memory

The indicates that conscious awareness is recorded and stored in the brain

It can be "played back" to some degree in the present. Associated feelings were also recollected.

This is more a reliving than a recalling. A sense of being there.
The Penfield Experiment
Dr. Wilder Penfield (1951) neurosurgeon conducted experiments touching the temporal cortex of the brain with a weak electric current

The participant, under local anesthesia, was conscious and able to talk to the tester

Different points touched in the temporal lobe evoked a memory and feeling in the patient.

A placebo, false or non contact with the temporal lobe, showed no response in the particpant
The Penfield Experiment
Transactional Analysis
Life Positions - can we change?
Transactional Analysis
Ego States
Transactional Analysis
Game Analysis

Harris, T.A. (2004). I'm Ok, You're Ok. (5th ed.) New York, NY: Harper Collins Publishers Inc.

Emmerson, G (2007). Ego State Therapy. (2nd ed.) Carmarthen, Wales, UK: Crown House Publishing Ltd.

The emotion which the situation originally produced in the child including the interpretations, true or false.

It is the context of childhood and not the intention of the parents which contributes to this

In the child part are recorded the numerous, first-time experiences of living

Both pleasant feelings (excitement) and unpleasant feelings (abandonment) are recorded here.

The data that creates the child part can be considered as a ‘felt’ concept
Recordings of what the child observed them say and do
The Parts and their modes
Critical Parent
Nurturing Parent
Angry Child
Vulnerable Child
parent data
constantly updating,
adult data
child data
The Adult
In the same way that the Adult updates Parent data to determine what is valid and what is not, it updates Child data to determine which feelings may be expressed safely.

The Adult's function in updating the Parent and Child is diagrammed in the figure below.
Social Level
Psychological Level
Social Level
Psychological Level
Just like an angular transaction, a duplex transaction has an ulterior motive.
Emmerson (2007)
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