Feeling a bit like a puppet? Signs of manipulation


Feeling a bit like a puppet? Signs of manipulation
How can you tell when someone is convincing you to see things their way for honourable reasons and when they are using you for their personal gain?

Being the target of manipulation can leave you confused and questioning someone else’s motives – were their words and actions innocent, or were they trying to strongarm you in a particular direction without regard to your needs?

Clinical psychologist Dr Kirsten Keown shares the signs to look out for if you suspect someone is pulling your puppet strings.

Manipulators will often:

•Leave you feeling confused or thinking you’re irrational or“crazy”

•Diminish your sense of agency and undermine your confidence

•Make you feel guilty about taking the course of action you really want

•Complain about you or compare you to other “ideal”characters

•Lie, deny, minimise, or feign ignorance about their culpability

•Unfairly blame you or make you feel responsible for things

•Give up things that matter to you



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