Am I manipulative? If you ask yourself this question, it’s time to do some soul searching if you have any of these 11 behaviors.
Am I manipulative? Admit it or not, at one point we used some mental trick to make another person do something we want. We probably did it for fun at first, but once you feel all clever and powerful from doing it, you’ll start the downward spiral to addiction and start manipulating the people around you. That is, until they find out and then start hating you.
Am I manipulative?
As you can see, nobody wants to be manipulated and no one wants a manipulative person in their life. Manipulative people end up being alone as they cannot sustain a long term relationship based on deception. They are hated when discovered, and they cannot be trusted after.
But the question is how do manipulative people play their mental games? Who knows, we might be manipulating people and we are none the wiser. So, if you wonder, am I manipulative, these 11 behaviors say yes.
#1 Being deceptive. Deception is manipulation. By either lying straight to another person or deliberately withholding vital information that concerns the person, you manipulate them into a course of action devoid of the facts.
Example: Gossiping that a guy your friend has a crush on is a player so that you could pursue him yourself.
#2 Gaslighting. Gaslighting is a covert form of deception where instead of withholding information or lying, you make the person doubt their very own thoughts and decisions by implying they are mentally incapacitated.
Example: “You were drunk that day so you couldn’t have seen me with another woman. It’s the booze playing tricks on your head.”
#3 Guilt tripping. Guilt tripping is a form of manipulation that attacks emotion. As we all know, guilt is a strong emotion most people avoid as much as possible. Feelings of guilt cause a great amount of distress. People who experience this would be easily driven into a course of action that somehow alleviates their feelings of guilt. Guilt tripping involves using a person’s sense of guilt to do their bidding.
Example: “You should feel bad forgetting our anniversary. Now, you should make up for it by doing this for me.”
#4 Playing the victim. Playing the victim is another form of emotional manipulation. Humans with their altruistic nature tend to feel sympathy for the victim even when logic advises us against it. By playing the victim, you divert another person’s attention or sometimes diffuse hostility towards you by appearing as the aggrieved party even if you are not.
Example: “I cheated on you because I’ve been cheated on my whole life.”
#5 Shifting the blame on others. Shifting blame towards others is how manipulative people get away with being accountable for their mistakes. While normal people apologize or make up for a mistake, seasoned manipulators concoct a scenario where other people except for them are to blame for a screw-up.
Example: “I only did it because you made me jealous. It’s all your fault.”
#6 Passive aggressive. Passive aggressive is also a form of manipulation. It involves indirect hostile activities such as procrastination, forgetfulness, stubbornness, and silent treatment.
Passive aggressive is particularly annoying since it requires little effort from the person doing it while doing more emotional distress compared to normal aggression. By being passive aggressive, manipulative people emotionally wear down the target of their hostility to do their bidding while at the same time appearing innocent.
Example: Saying that you did not receive the text when your dad asked you to buy something for him.
#7 Sabotaging relationships. Sabotage is self-explanatory. It is a physical act that immediately results in a strained relationship. By sabotaging relationships, manipulative people influence people’s perceptions or decisions that results in their favor. This way manipulative people pit people in a good relationship against each other, or sway people to agree with their ideas.
Example: What Littlefinger tried to do in Game of Thrones Season 7 Episode 5.
#8 Being nice to get something they want. We all hate this sort of behavior. We’ve met some kind of person who tried to do this to us. Similar to the saying, “You don’t bite the hand that feeds you,” manipulative people butter up others by flattery and act nice to them until they get what they want from the person.
Example: Flirting with a classmate that you bully in order to get him to do your homework.
#9 Feigning concern. Similar to playing nice until you get what you want, feigning concern is another type of emotional manipulation to make you appear as someone genuinely empathetic to a person experiencing distress in order to gain something from them. Usually they would surprisingly be present in your time of need, offering empty words of support while doing nothing helpful. This way they undermine your suspicion and gain your trust for the day they find your use.
Example: That friend who keeps acting nice and concerned in order to borrow money for you but isn’t there once they already got that they came for.
#10 Raising their voice and acting hostile in an argument. During an argument, people want to resolve disagreements through a mature, intellectual conversation.
However, manipulative people suddenly go into a fit of rage and turn the conversation into a shouting contest in order to raise pulses and veer the conversation off its course. They usually do this once they feel cornered and at the losing side of the argument.
#11 Playing dumb. Ignorance is bliss and innocence. If you are unaware, then you are not culpable. This is how manipulative people use the playing dumb tactic to manipulate others. It is usually used to get out of a pinch, and more commonly, to avoid responsibilities.
Example: “I cannot do this task since I’m not trained to use this software. Ben here knows how to so he can get this assignment.”
Am I manipulative? Nobody wants to be manipulated and no one ever trusts a manipulative person. But as much as we hate manipulative people, there’s a high chance that we may be manipulating others unwittingly.