Narcissists are toxic individuals who have an ulterior motive. If you have weak boundaries, they are sure to trample all over you and keep hurting you till they get what they want. They employ some of the most manipulative methods to enforce their will upon others.
While they try to gain control over you, you might feel uncertain about yourself and doubt your self-worth and sanity. This is exactly where they would like to keep you. Here are nine manipulative techniques that they use to control you.
1. Aggressive outbursts
Many researchers point to the narcissist’s tendency to resort to verbal abuse and aggression. They tend to be unstoppable when their anger is triggered as they lack empathy for others, even if it’s a partner or a family member. They have a habit of blowing things out of proportion and expect you to take the blame for it.
This is another poisonous trick they use to break you. They use it to make you doubt your own sanity. And they do this by bringing another person into the mix. The third person brought in serves the role of a validator, and the narcissist will defend their behavior in their presence, thus breaking you in the process, until you begin doubting yourself.
3. Periodic insults (devaluing)
A narcissist is a charming person when you first meet them, and they will praise you and put you on a pedestal. Then just when they have you under their control, they’ll suddenly start to insult you and be ruthlessly critical of those very same qualities they had previously admired about you.
4. Target your insecurities (shaming)
If you are dealing with a narcissist who enjoys your pain, you’ll likely see this one in action. They’ll find out what unsettles you and what your insecurities are. They’ll make you feel ashamed till you are even more insecure about those things, and when your defenses are destroyed, manipulating you becomes easier.
This is one of the most popular and highly destructive way to control you. They use this method to make you believe that you are crazy and your perception is flawed to the point of not being real at all. Narcissists use this to escape any accountability for their toxic actions.
This is the method they use to make you do things that you were never comfortable doing, but you end up doing it just for their sake. They make you feel guilty or like you have failed them if you don’t do what they have asked. They brainwash you till the point you feel that way, and you’re compelled to behave as they see fit.
This is another stark technique used by narcissists, which involves blaming you for their faults. This is called projection — another toxic defense mechanism where they shift the responsibility of their actions onto someone else. When they project their feelings onto you, the intention is to make you feel ashamed and responsible for their own shortcomings.
8. Name calling
This is when they feel most threatened and stand a chance to be proven wrong. As narcissists, they always want to be right and have the last word. Therefore, in the desperate bid to save themselves from shame, they’ll stoop to the lowest and criticize almost any aspect of you by name calling and belittling you.
Narcissists are great actors. They know what will throw you off-balance when you try and confront them. They pretend like they are the ones who are the victims and try and change direction by putting the focus on you and reminding you of your faults.