In an article titled, “Where does prototypicality come from?” Dirk Geeraerts(2007:176–77) provides a number of factors that beget this phenomenon; and when it comes to identifying the prototypical usage of a word he discusses how introspection can prove useful.
The meaning of words and expressions are notoriously difficult to analyze. Lexicographers have their work cut out for them in building a dictionary. Most often their methodology is based on subjective methods. But this makes it difficult to challenge their conclusions — at least in a capacity that relies on more than strong personal convictions. Is there another way to doing the backend investigations of lexicography?