4 Ways To Prevent People From Manipulating You
I think at some point in our lives we all have a friend or family member who tries to control who we are and what we do. Sometimes they just come out and say it, other times they use guilt, emotions, and other tactics to force you to do what they want you to. But there are ways to disarm a manipulator and knock 'em out of your life.
1. Simply recognize the problem.
Step one is sometimes the hardest one. It can be difficult to identify the characteristics of manipulators. Often times their needs come first, they'll expect you to be there for them at the drop of a hat, and often experience various crises that require your action right away. Does that sound like anyone you know?
2. Now, ask them some questions.
Manipulative people are often very demanding. They thrive on control, and asking questions helps take some of that control back. You might ask how you're benefited by doing something, if you have a say in how you proceed, or you can even ask yourself if it's reasonable at all. When you ask questions, you shine a light on ulterior motives.
3. Say no!
This is your greatest tool. Simply say no. It's not exactly for the sole purpose of not helping a manipulator but instead seeing how they respond. Do they freak out? Play the victim? Call your friends and family? Bad mouth you? Never talk to you again? The reaction is telling.
4. Take your time.
Sometimes saying no simply isn't possible. Instead, use time to your advantage. If you know someone is manipulating you and trying to force you into doing what they want, simply say "hey, let me think on it. I'll get back to you." And with that, you'll have the power again. And with time, you can talk to others, or even your manipulator, think on it, and make the right call.