Manipulation is crown jewel of communication techniques. What manipulators have in common is that they have a hidden agenda that they pursue without clearly saying it. Many people use manipulation to get what they want. Nevertheless, it can be very difficult to defend oneself against it, or even to recognize it. Its like checkmate in chess terms.
So chances are good that you do have contact with manipulators (or are one yourself) since there are many of them around us. Using it for good or bad, that's their problem.
What is Manipulation?
Manipulation can take many forms: emotional blackmail (making you feel bad in case you don’t do what is expected from you), flattering you or telling your things in order to make you do something specific, testing you, etc. In all cases, manipulators try to gain control over your feelings and/or behavior by playing in some way on your weaknesses.
The goal for them is to get what they want. When they are successful, you end up doing what they want, even if it is something you would not have chosen to do out of your free will.
For example, if you feel particularly proud and valuable when you are needed, someone knowing this can deliberately play victim in order to make you help them. If you secretly think that you are lazy and feel bad about that, and someone suggests that you’d be a lazy bum if you don’t help them move on Saturday, chances are good that you will spend your Saturday carrying transport boxes.
Manipulators do or say certain things in order to influence your feelings in such a way that you react the way they want you to react. The manipulator usually says things in an indirect and subtle way. The underlying, unspoken message, which is what they’re really telling you, is expressed between the lines, not in a clear and direct way. Manipulators don’t say what they want openly. They insinuate, suggest and hint. Many manipulators are mentalist as they are master manipulators of thoughts and behaviour.
They may look, sound or do stupid things, but everything is done to reel in the big fish-which will be you or someone else.
How Does It Work?
The Candy Method : This method flatters your ego and promises to fulfill your desires. The underlying, unspoken message is “If you do X, you’ll be great/cool/a good person/the result will be to your advantage/, etc.” So, since you want to be great, cool, a great person and all that, you do it, without even noticing that the decision wasn’t entirely yours. Ideally, the promised “reward” is something important to you. That you will get this reward isn’t said clearly though, it’s just suggested. Just enough for you to understand it. (I'm still wondering what's with the equations)
*Sorry guys and gals but unfortunately I cannot tell you more about the procedure as it is extremely dangerous if fallen into the wrong hands. But I can tell you that its called 'The Spiderweb Effect'. Maybe I should think of a way to write in a 'non-danger' manner.
How Do They Do It?**
As I said, the real message is not expressed directly. It can be camouflaged as the expression of an objective truth, a personal feeling, or a simple question. Let’s say for example that your boss wants you to work overtime, and you refuse. Manipulative answers could be :
- “But how are we going to do without you?” (Real message: “You are letting us down, and the project might fail because of you”),
- “I thought I could count on you” (Real message: “I am disappointed with you. You’re not a good employee.”)
- “I understand… Go and have fun, we’ll manage somehow! (with a sad or strained look)” (Real message: “You are an egoist.”)
Courtesy of Ariff
©Naughty Productions 2009
** Adapted from The Definitive Book of Body Language