We’re surrounded by manipulative people. Even if we don’t want to admit it, each of us has a manipulative side that comes out when we need it and becomes a great tool that helps us achieve our goals. But we’re not talking about ourselves. Today, we’re dealing with the people who base their entire lives and actions on these strategies. The most important thing to bear in mind is that these people don’t care about anything or anybody but themselves and their goals. The only thing they see in others is the way in which they can benefit from them by coming up with the most elaborate and intricate schemes to make them bend to their will. Whether it’s a partner, a friend, family member, coworker, classmate, or a store attendant persuading you to buy something, there will always be that one manipulator willing to turn you into a puppet. So, to avoid this, here are some of their traits, so you know how to spot them before it’s too late.
They have different personas
Just like the Many-faced God in Game of Thrones, these people are capable of playing many different people or characters, depending on what would work best with their victim. For example, they can act as if they were the smartest person in the
universe and overwhelm you with facts and information that, when you think about it, are really useless. But since you didn’t see it coming, you feel immediately intimidated. Another classic manipulative move is playing dumb. They usually do this when they want you to do their job for them. We see it in movies all the time, where the charismatic and handsome character plays dumb, so that the smart one feels pity and ends up doing everything. The same applies to when they're playing the role of the victim. They'll tell you they’re going through a difficult time in their lives or pretend to be helpless, vulnerable people who need all your help. Above all, their most important trick and tool is their charismatic personality. That’s how they get you.
They’ll do their best to break you
As we learned with love bombing in the case of relationships, one of the best strategies they use is to slowly bring you down. They want you to feel dependent on them, as if they were the only ones you’ll ever be able to count on. So, how do they do that? First, they’ll do their best to make you feel important and indispensable. But once you’re in their claws, the shaming and breaking down begins. They will constantly judge for how you look, your choices, your personality, you name it: the point is that they want you to feel like nobody would ever want you. They also tend to make jokes about these things to bring you down. This can end up making you feel guilty about everything while agreeing to whatever they tell you to believe. And finally, they also undermine your self-esteem by giving you infamous silent treatment, so you end up humiliating yourself. This means that if they start talking to you again, it would be under their conditions and rules.
They use simple strategies
Last but not least, here are some of the strategies they use so that the things I've mentioned in the other points work perfectly to their benefit. The first trick, besides being completely charismatic and friendly, is that they’ll conduct the conversations so that you speak the most and they can spot your insecurities and weaknesses. They’ll mentally take notes on this to use them at the right time. Once there’s more trust between you, they’ll start sneakily pushing you out of your comfort zone, so when they decide to attack, you don’t have anything to hang on to. Then, whenever they want you to do something you’re not sure about, they’ll play all the cards they already have to pressure you to make a brash decision, so you don't have time to analyze the situation and you end up doing what they want.
It might sound a bit dramatic. But, if you think about, it’s a slow process through which their ability to mess with your mind reaches a point where you won’t even realize what’s going on. I'm not saying you’re a pushover, but rather that some of these people are almost professional mind controllers and know exactly what strategies will work with each type of person, even the strongest ones.
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