Model: control dramas

May 6th, 2018

People sometimes feel weak and insecure, they feel a lack of energy.

One way to feel stronger and more secure is by 'stealing' energy from others.

We can do this by dominating others, manipulating others, draw their attention, ...


In The Celestine Prophecy they speak of Control Drama's. These are styles of stealing energy from others.

  1. intimidator

  2. interrogator/critic

  3. aloof

  4. poor me

One of these is often the dominant one.


An Intimidator tries to dominate the other. They try to scare you. And when not successful, they might even resort to violence. They take control over the energy in the relationship because you don't dare to object or disagree.


An Interrogator/Critic keeps asking questions until a fault or error is found. You start feeling bad for those faults and start losing confidence. When you lose confidence, you lose control over the energy in the relationship.


An Aloof acts all mysterious. As long as they keep your attention and curiosity, you will be giving them energy. An Aloof will give up some information, but withholding key info so you will keep asking for more. Nugget by nugget you will be able to get it out, but always holding back. And as long as the Aloof keeps your attention and interest, the control over the relationship's energy will be theirs.


A Poor Me act all forlorn and piteous. The goal is to make you feel bad because you didn't do X or will not do Y. When you feel bad, you lose confidence in yourself. This gives the Poor Me control over the energy.



A typical reaction to a control drama is by defending with another control drama. Now it becomes a battle for the control over the energy in the relationship.

But like in communication when one is offensive and the other reacts defensive, both will only become more and more stuck in their position. And no good comes of this.


This is also how you pass on control styles to children. By attacking with one style, they react with one to defend. And by using one often it becomes your default, dominant control style.


So how do you react? By naming what the other person does, you can break their influence over you.

If you tell them how their behaviour makes you feel, you break this vicious cycle.

"When you do X, I feel like Y"


Why is this model useful?

Because it helps to recognise these situations, lessening/breaking the hold over you.

And it shows a way how to deal with it constructively.


(src: Book: The Celestine Prophecy)