I know this title may sound weird after all in some of my previous articles I said that manipulative people are mentally unstable. In this article I don’t intend to teach you how to manipulate people to your advantage, simply because that’s socially unacceptable and unhealthy, and I’m strongly against that kind of behaviour.
You may be thinking that it’s only people with narcissistic personalities who are manipulative but that’s not true. We all use some forms of manipulation on a daily basis. When was the last time you exaggerated a certain story in order to convince someone that it’s true? If you ever did that then you were manipulating him. When you try to make someone laugh you are manipulating him, when you try to leave a good first impression at a new job you are actually manipulating your boss’s mind.
In this post I’m going to teach you how to manipulate people using their emotions.
How emotions influence people
Most of the actions and decisions that people take are usually a result of a certain intense emotion. A man who is feeling jealous of his successful friend can try to bad mouth him, gossip about him or even do his best to bring him down. A shy person can avoid social interactions and live as a loner not because he doesn’t want to make friends but because of the emotions he experiences during the social interactions.
Under the influence of certain emotions people can take actions and decisions that they would not take in the absence of those emotions. An intelligent man can make a stupid irrational decision just because he is under the influence of a certain emotion, especially if he has low emotional intelligence. See: where insecurities come from.
How to manipulate people using their emotions
You can manipulate someone by inducing a certain emotion in order to make him take a certain action or decision, but here is a trick. Three people can react in three different ways even if they were experiencing the same emotions. For example someone who is feeling guilty can act in an apologetic way and show how he is sorry for what he did while another person who is feeling the same way may act defensive because he is afraid to take the blame. This means that you should first try to understand how someone reacts under the influence of a particular emotion before you try to control him using that emotion. See: how to feel good about yourself.
Below are a few examples of how to control someone using his emotions
- Fear: if someone tried to mistreat you because he perceived you as weak, then acting confident, looking him straight in the eyes and treating him as if he is weaker would make him reconsider his decision. The way you behave and act can change a person’s perception of you to a great extent.
- Guilt: as long as a person is not in a defensive mode, showing him how much you were emotionally affected by his behaviour can make him experience guilt. This works best when you are trying to control someone superior to you like your manager.
- Anger: in some situations, you should avoid making someone angry at all cost but in other situations anger can be useful. For example when I’m coaching someone who is acting weak when facing her abusive husband I try to induce anger and confidence in her so that she stands up for her rights.
- Ego: in my book “growing beyond the narcissist” I explained how you can control people who have big egos like narcissists by involving their ego. For example if you told a narcissist that your friends said that he can’t make a good relationship partner then he would do his best to prove them wrong.