Tag Archives: manipulative behaviour

How to spot a manipulative personality


manipulation photo

How to spot a manipulative personality

Do you know the signs of a manipulative personality? Chances are, you have a vague idea but for many of us, manipulation carries on right under our noses. That’s because manipulative personalities are so adept at manipulation that they do it often, without being detected.

A manipulative personality is focused on getting their needs met. They don’t really have the time or inclination to be bothered with your needs, no matter what they are. They are skilled in the art of deflection. Any accusation aimed at them will shift direction, be aimed away from them – most likely back onto you. Example: “It upset me when you left me standing in the rain last night”. Deflection: “Well you should’ve taken an umbrella”. Here, the manipulative personality does not wish to deal with their behaviour and take responsibility so they will deflect that by adding in a new issue to take the ‘heat’ off them = manipulation!

A healthy, rational person would be able to deal with WHY they left someone standing in the rain.

A manipulative personality often lacks assertiveness and has learned to use manipulation as a covert way to get what they want. They will cast doubt on how you see things, even going so far as to poke fun at you or criticise your way of thinking. The more someone lacks self belief and confidence, the easier they will be to manipulate.

A manipulative personality often suffers from low self esteem and often don’t believe that they deserve many of the things they wish for. Instead, if they use manipulation, they can get what they want in an underhanded and subtle manner that avoids them having to ask directly for it.

They will adopt passive-aggressive behaviour and play mind games. They won’t ever want to be backed into a corner and may offer vague explanations for things. They like to be able to chop and change to suit their current mood so you may find it almost impossible to obtain a definitive answer from a manipulative personality.

Manipulative personalities never accept responsibility for their own behaviour, often see themselves as the victim and never accept the blame for anything. They often have low empathy for others and many tend to possess narcissistic tendencies. This is an over-generalisation but there is often an overlap between narcissism, sociopathy and manipulation.

Spotting manipulation can make it easier to withstand. Look out for the signs. When you are with a manipulator, you will often feel you are not being heard and that your needs are going unmet. Take heed and listen to your inner voice. At times, we are so desperate to be loved that we overlook the signs but they will become worse so it’s better to spot them early on!

Mandy X



Aggressive, Passive & Assertive Behaviour

passive aggressive

aggressive, passive and assertive behaviour

Aggressive, Passive  and Assertive

What’s the difference between aggressive, passive and assertive behaviour?

1) Aggressive behaviour

Involves putting your needs consistently ahead of other people’s needs. Aggressive people bully others into doing what they want and always think of themselves first. As the saying goes “it’s my way or the highway”. These types are pushy, selfish and manipulative.

2) Passive behaviour

Involves putting other people’s needs ahead of your own. Passive people often lack their own opinions and may seem very easy going (at least much easier to be around than aggressive people) as they are happy to be bossed about and have life planned out for them. They often don’t enjoy making decisions and let life happen to them rather than being pro active.

Being passive takes its toll however and that is why passive aggressive behaviour often emerges from passive behavioural types.


This is a deliberate and covert way of expressing anger or a negative emotion at someone. It is subtle and frustrating for the person targeted as the behaviour is not openly evident. An example of passive aggressive behaviour is when someone criticises you and then immediately says “I was only joking. Can’t you take a joke?” or when you ask someone to help you and they deliberately procrastinate and delay helping you out.  Passive aggressive people take genuine pleasure in frustrating others. They are skilled at getting others to act out their angry feelings–to explode and appear crazy–while the passive aggressive person sits back and watches the emotional outburst with satisfaction, total control and always with their own poise intact.

3) Assertive behaviour

The happy in-the-middle healthy behaviour is being assertive. Just like Goldilocks who finally found the porridge that was just right! Being assertive means that you are trying to obtain a “win-win” situation where everyone’s needs are met as much as possible. Obviously, this isn’t always possible but being assertive means that you are quite happy to stand up for yourself and ask for what you want but not at the expense of everyone around you. Being assertive involves a healthy self esteem for oneself as well as consideration for others.

Being aware of the aggressive, passive and assertive behaviour makes it easier for us to monitor our behaviour and consciously aim for assertive behaviour.

Mandy X



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