Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Refusing to be Manipulated

I absolutely refuse to allow anyone to manipulate me or guilt trip me. For the most part I am an easy-going guy. But, I become a bear when someone tries to manipulate me. I just will not stand for it.

One reason I quit attending immediately after determining the church was not true was to circumvent any manipulation attempts and guilt trips.

poster:
Hueffenhardt, let me know how you do this..and how you can tell when you are being manipulated..I let people do this to me outside the church in all the corners of my life and I want it to stop!!!!

poster:

If you want to stop manipulation attempts, but are not doing it, I don't think it is necessarily due to a lack of know-how. It might be due to some internal factors on your part. May I lead you in a little introspection to see if we can identify why you are having difficulty doing what you want to do in this situations?

A person cannot be manipulated or guilt tripped without allowing oneself to be manipulated, or allowing oneself to feel guilty. Someone can shoot you without your participation, but no one can manipulate you without your participation. At the heart of manipulation is trying to get another to feel some emotion. I simply refuse to feel that emotion. You can't make me feel guilty about something when I know I was not in the wrong. You can't make me feel bad for not waiting on you hand and foot, when I know it is not my responsibility to wait on you hand and foot. You can't make me feel like a disloyal friend for not letting you cheat off my paper, when I know that true friends would not ask me to cheat.

Futhermore, I just get mad when I recognize that someone thinks they can use me or take advantage of my values or emotions. And when I get mad like that, I ain't doing anything for you. I'll tell whomever straight to their face that I recognize their manipulation attempts and that it makes me mad.

So, it looks like a few things are involved:

1) A confidence in one's own behavior that comes from a strong morality, and an understanding of what can reasonably be expected of you when you are in the wrong.

2) Valuing one's self highly. You are worth sticking up for and your own self-interest is a valid consideration.

3) A strong enough sense of self, that one cannot be unduely affected by what others think of you, especially others whose opinions shouldn't really matter when they are doing much worse by trying to manipulate you. I don't care if a manipulator thinks I am an asshole or unloyal, because I know that I am good to those who don't try to use me.

4) An emotional intelligence in which you recognize when someone is trying to manipulate your emotions.

5) An assertiveness to actually call people on the carpet and tell them it ain't happening.

Poster, when you introspect, what do you think is keeping you from refusing to be manipulated?

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