This is second part of the two part series on manipulation.
We have talked about manipulation, and how the emotional aspect of manipulation can leave you open to being on the losing end of the bargain. This is never a great position to be in. How do you tip the scales in your favor? That’s easy, you have to identify the other person’s currency.
It might seem like a large task to undertake, and it can be, if you aren’t able to take your emotions, put them away, and evaluate the circumstances with your logic. Believe it or not, the other person is going to outright tell you what works on them if you know what to look for, and it is pretty quick to ascertain.
People manipulate with what works on them. It’s that simple.
If they are manipulating you with affection, affection will work.
If they are manipulating you with greed, greed will work.
If they are manipulating you with jealousy, jealousy will work.
They will manipulate you with what works, because most humans have terrible cognitive empathy which would allow them to evaluate interactions with others, and see that everyone experiences the world differently. It’s interesting that this is true, that people see the world differently, but this limitation of seeing outside themselves is fairly universal.
Likely, if you truly look inward, you will find this is the truth for you as well. What you want from someone else, you will do to or for someone else to manipulate them into doing the same for you. What someone wants from you in a relationship, they will do for you in that relationship.
If your significant other has suddenly stepped up giving you affection, return that affection, and you will probably see that is what they were trying to get from you in the first place. If they do things that are meant to make you jealous, it is because they are a person that gets jealous.
If you can put your emotions on the back burner, and understand that human interaction is manipulation at its core, you will find that it is not difficult to see what the other person utilizes in their social negotiation.
There are of course exceptions to the rule. Once you understand that this is how people usually function, you can change your tactic to match theirs, or counter with a form that nullifies their own. Keep in mind, they can do the same thing if they understand how this sort of thing works.
Keep your emotions at bay, and watch it like you would watch someone making a move on a chess board. Play it out, where are they going, what’s their endgame, and how do you meet the challenge? That is the skill set that you are developing with this information.
You also have to be aware that there are people like me that can use a variety of techniques because, while none of them work on me if they are emotionally based, I certainly have learned them and their nuances throughout the years. I can emotionally manipulate with the best of them, but trying to use that on me is a waste of time.
I personally dislike emotional manipulation, and believe that you either consciously or unconsciously train people how to treat you. If I was interested in getting the most immediate payoff in my dealings with people, and had little regard for how that might have to be dealt with later down the line, I might use emotional manipulation. However, over the years I have learned two things about this.
Emotional manipulation has fallout. Especially things like love and trust. Use these things, and then when you get what you want and you shut them off, there is a lot of negative consequences that comes along with that. A great deal of drama, and many complications overall.
If you use it on others, they will try to use it on you. As this is the default tactic used by most people, and me using it demonstrates to them that they should interact with me like they do everyone else, it becomes the technique that they rely on. Well, it doesn’t work on me, and them using on me is just annoying. It doesn’t get me what I am interested in, and again… drama.
It would seem as though I have the upper hand in terms of manipulation, and that would be correct. There is a reason that manipulative is found on nearly all psychopathic checklists. It isn’t that psychopaths are so much worse in terms of manipulation, it is that it is an easily played game, and that advantage comes across to neurotypicals, psychopathic researchers, and regular people alike, as being somehow nefarious. They’re wrong, and they seem to miss the boat on understanding something fundamental about it.
Psychopaths learn how to manipulate from you. No one else is providing us the lessons in doing this. It is all learned by watching those around us manipulate everyone they know, all the time. I see all types of it, and have learned what works, what doesn’t, and what it is to lay it on too thick, or not enough. I know the language of manipulation because I live in a neurotypical construct of reality, and neurotypicals can’t help but use it every day.
Basically, I entered the world, saw the rules of the game, but don’t have a lane that I am predestined to stay in when it comes to tactical advantage. Fear, love, affection, guilt, rage/outrage, jealousy, admiration, among others are not effective on me at all. However, I have watched and learned these techniques, and can use them easily. This is more an exception to the rule however. Generally, people stick to what they know and trust. They know and trust what ultimately works on them.
This is not meant to be a tutorial, a 101 of how exactly to use a person’s currency. It is simply the fastest route to identify their currency. How you choose to utilize it, that is on you, but I will tell you what I do, and why I do it.
I use greed, and I use it for two reasons.
It works on me. It is what will get my attention. I want stuff, and if you have the stuff that I want, I am willingly going to sit at the negotiating table with you. Chances are I have a lot of stuff that you want too, and can be persuaded to give that stuff to you if the price is right. It also is pretty universally effective. Everyone has something that they want, and I have had a varied life, that provides me with inroads to be able to get whatever it is that they seek and very little cost on my end.
There is no fallout if you are manipulating with greed, unless you do it underhandedly. This is not what I recommend. That is just burning the bridge you worked to build, and that can and likely will become very handy for you in future endeavors.
If you approach a person with an exchange that enriches them, they will want to partake. If you approach a person with an exchange that seems like it will enrich them only to pull the rug out, they will have a very black mark next to your name. Not good for you in regards to that person, and it will probably be something that they will inform others of, thus closing off many other possible valuable interactions.
Using greed also allows you to decide how much you are going to offer. So long as you stick with what you don’t care about giving up if things go south, you are never going to feel taken advantage of. You will be able to shrug and say, I know what to do better next time, and adjust.
This is why I negotiate with what they desire, provided that I am able and willing to bargain with. I give them what they want, and they are inclined to give me what I want, especially if it is something that they are a gatekeeper of, or they know someone that is. People have long memories, and immediate payoff is not worth the alienation of more beneficial exchanges in the future.
If you leave your emotions aside, and look at people from a much more removed position, you will be find the manipulation tactics that they fall into. Once you know what they are, you can see the manipulation coming from a mile away, and decide how you are going to reply to it. Are you going to dance with them, or will you see decide that the drama isn’t worth your time? That is an easier thing to decide when you have a clear picture of what’s actually going on.