One of the characteristics of manipulative people is precisely to act in such a way that they cannot be recognized as such.
One of the factors that help to understand how they can go unnoticed in this way is that, instead of there being a typical behavioral pattern of manipulation, There are different types of manipulative people, or manipulation strategies to follow.. This makes it not always easy to recognize when someone is being deceived for one’s own benefit.
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The main types of manipulative people
Despite all the difficulties, it is not impossible to detect these cases of continued deception.
Next I describe the main manipulation strategies that manipulative people adopt depending on their personality or the context in which they are trying to deceive someone.
1. False victims
Some manipulative people hide behind a disadvantaged situation that in many cases is fictitious and, if it is real, they always try to exaggerate. The objective is clear: to feel sorry.
This is a strategy that appeals to the parts of the brain most related to the limbic system and emotional memory and that has a powerful effect on the behavior of others. In fact, some people cannot help but give in to everything that these types of manipulators ask for directly or indirectly despite sensing that they are being deceived.
2. Attention seekers
In certain people with narcissistic traits, attention is such a precious resource that they are willing to develop strategies whose ultimate goal is to obtain this element. And, in many cases, These strategies include a part of deception and manipulation. For example, this is what happens in people who pretend to have power that they do not have just to have a way to stand out without doing too much, or who simulate interest in other people only to make this interest born towards themselves on the part of the other.
Furthermore, these types of manipulative people know that it would be so strange for others to assume that they do everything for attention that they do not even consider it, and therefore it is unlikely that they will be discovered.
3. Authorities on the matter
This class of manipulators they adopt the ad verecundiam fallacy to exercise control over others. The idea, simply, is that they know a lot about a specific topic, and therefore they should be the leaders and those who have the last word on a given topic.
Of course, the moral position on which they decide what others should do is simply a facade that fulfills its function: to deceive others.
4. Echo Chamber Manipulators
These are people who want to prosper socially or economically by agreeing with an authority figure.that is, refraining from offering their point of view in exchange for reinforcing the decisions of someone powerful.
This harms both others, who see how there is a very clear power imbalance (a person who is already important has the unconditional help of another person) and the person who acts as leader, since he cannot reach to be informed when their decisions and opinions are flawed.
If the two previous types of manipulative people are based on authority, with this class the opposite happens**: they try to damage someone’s position so as not to have competition**.
To do this, these people can systematically position themselves against what this selected person does, and will frequently speak badly about them behind their back. You do not manipulate those you want to harm directly, but rather those around you.
6. False reward manipulators
These types of manipulative people are characterized by offering a long-term reward in exchange for following a plan.. Of course, when the time comes to give the reward, they will disappear. It is a style of manipulation that is linked to a specific object and a specific task.
These manipulators They go out of their way to speak well of someone so that someone believes that they are indebted to them and agrees to do what they ask.. As with false victims, it is possible to fall into their trap despite being partially aware that you are being manipulated.
8. Argumentative tricks
These are people who, to manipulate, opt for a strategy based on a verbal game: They make statements that after a while they manipulate to make it seem like they were saying something else.and they do the same with the speeches of others as long as it seems that they have said something else.
This happens a lot in discussions, to win public opinion. For example, if someone claims that a mayoral candidate has no education and another person points out that he does have a bachelor’s degree, the manipulator will respond that suggesting that a college degree is decisive for being a good mayor is ridiculous. In this case, they play with distractions and the audience’s memory to manipulate them by talking after the fact about things that have not happened.
- You may be interested in: “The 10 types of logical and argumentative fallacies”