7 Tips to Handle a Manipulator

26 March, 2016

It’s true that each and every one of us is unique and different. But when it comes time to enjoy emotionally healthy environments and relationships, we need to distinguish those people who produce a great deal of harm within us. There are many types of people like this.

Today I’m going to share with the 7 rules to follow when communicating with a manipulator, a person with the ability to make you feel guilty and lie to you or manipulate you in order to build the relationship.

“If you don’t have inner freedom, what other type of freedom do you expect to have?”
-Arturo Graf-
man speaking into persons brain

A manipulative person’s way of behaving can lead you to do what he or she wishes and not see past it, making us victims of our own lives, without feeling free.

Sometimes, this type of relationship can last for years. Learn how to avoid getting trapped with these key pieces of advice from communication expert, Preston Ni.

Don’t forget your inalienable rights 

You have the right to:

  • Be respected by other people. 
  • Express your emotions, opinions and desires.
  • Establish your priorities.
  • Say no without feeling guilty.
  • Receive what you have paid for.
  • Express your point of view, though they may be different from those around you.
  • Protect yourself from physical, moral or emotional dangers.
  • Build your life according to your own concept of happiness.

Always remember your limits of personal space, since a manipulator doesn’t respect your rights and breaks your limits constantly. Don’t forget that you’re responsible for your own life.

Keep away from the manipulator 

While you continue to communicate with a manipulator, they will continuously change their mask and be excessively courteous or on the other hand rude and aggressive.

They can also maintain an attitude of a victim or of insecurity. If you notice that a person around you has a character that reflects both extremes, I recommend that you keep away and be prudent when it comes time to come into contact with them.

The origin of a manipulator’s personality comes from their childhood. It’s not your problem or one which you can fix or correct.

“This is not the way to do it. It’s one way to do it.” 
-Gary Craig-

Ask them certain test questions

Ask them test questions so you can discover if that person has any self-criticism and/or shame, which manipulative people typically don’t feel:

  • Do you think that what you’re asking me is fair?
  • Do you think this is fair for me?
  • Can I have my own opinion about this?
  • Are you asking me or telling me?
  • What will I get in return?
  • Do you really think I…?

Don’t run away
lady turned around in woods

One important characteristic of a manipulator is leading you to respond or react instantly when faced with a certain situation. When you have a short reaction time, they can manipulate you easier.

When you feel pressured, I urge you to take a breath and not feel rushed to make a decision.

Saying “I’ll think about it” will allow you to maintain some control over the situation. It will also make you be respected for setting your own limits for the person you’re conversing with.

Learn to say no

Knowing how to say no will let you establish your limits and respect yourself, and thus your peers will as well.

A clear “no” at the opportune moment will allow you to maintain a good relationship with the other person. Remember that you have the right to do so, and you deserve to choose your own path towards happiness.

Share with them the possible consequences 

When you’re in a situation in which you feel harmed both verbally and emotionally, let the manipulator know about the consequences of their actions.

The ability to get ahead of them and convincingly lay out the possible outcomes is one of the most effective methods of communicating effectively with a manipulator.

That way you’ll force them to change their attitude towards you, making their plan evident and thus taking away their power.

Defend yourself from the bullying 

Sometimes a manipulator seeks to scare their victim and cause them suffering out of fear of bullying and offenses.

In these cases, it’s good for you to keep in mind that they tend to cling to what they think is your weakness. Nothing else. If you remain passive and play into their game, they’ll keep taking advantage of you.

The moment you confront them and defend yourself, these people will tend to back off, since they are natural cowards.

There is a lot of research showing that manipulative people tend to have been victims of abuse during childhood or upbringing. This doesn’t justify their actions but it’s important to remember it when you’re responding to their actions in a healthy way.