Have you ever felt trapped in someone’s web of deceit? Like you’ve become a pawn in a psychological game?
Let me tell you something.
This is not just a feeling, it is a reality for many people. Mind games are real and can be as tangled as a spider’s web if you don’t know what to look for.
If you ask yourself, “Am I being manipulated?” or “Am I being played?” then just hang around. We’re about to delve into the seven psychological games people play to keep you entangled in their web of deception.
Remember: knowledge is power.
Let’s shed some light on these shady tactics.
1) Gas lighting
Ever heard of the term ‘gaslighting’?
This is one of the most sinister psychological games out there. It is a form of manipulation in which the perpetrator tries to make you doubt your own sanity.
You’re sure you remember an event a certain way, but someone insists you’re wrong. They tell you it didn’t happen that way, and you must have misremembered it.
Over time, this constant doubt can cause you to lose confidence in your own memory and perception. You start to question your reality, and that’s when they trap you.
2) The feelings of guilt
We’ve all been there, right?
One of my personal experiences involves an old friend of mine who had a knack for making me feel guilty about things that weren’t my fault.
I remember this one time: I had a weekend getaway planned after a particularly stressful week at work. My friend knew about this but still asked me to cancel my trip to help him move apartments. When I politely declined, he started saying things like “I thought you were my friend” and “I’ve always been there for you, I can’t believe you won’t do the same.”
I felt guilty, even though I knew I shouldn’t have done that.
That’s guilt for you – a classic psychological game where someone deliberately makes you feel guilty to get their way. Don’t fall for it!
3) The silent treatment
This one really gets under my skin.
I was once in a relationship with someone who wouldn’t communicate when we had disagreements. Instead, they remained completely silent and ignored my calls and messages.
By doing this, they had me wrapped around their finger. I found myself apologizing profusely and trying to win them back, even when I knew I wasn’t in the wrong.
A manipulative tool designed to make you feel desperate and willing to bow down to them. If you find yourself faced with this psychological game, remember: communication is key in any relationship.
4) Playing the victim
Have you ever met someone who is always the victim, no matter the situation?
This psychological game is devious and often goes unnoticed until it is too late. The player positions himself as a victim, making you feel like the perpetrator.
I once had a colleague who was an expert in this. Every time she missed a deadline or made a mistake, she made up a story about how it was someone else’s fault. And somehow I would feel sorry for her!
Be wary of chronic victims. It’s usually just a ploy to avoid responsibility manipulate others to feel sorry for them.
5) Love bombing
This one is a real doozy.
Love bombing may sound like something fun, but it is far from it. It’s a psychological game where the manipulator showers you with affection, only to abruptly take it away or use it as leverage.
The fascinating thing is that love bombing is often used by cults to attract and control their members. It’s intense, confusing, and it can leave you feeling disconnected from the validation of the person bombarding you with “love.”
Yew someone in your life is hot and cold with their affection, beware. You may be the target of love bombing.
There was a time when a close friend constantly accused me of being jealous and insecure. It was painful and confusing, especially because I didn’t have that feeling.
Only later did I realize that it was my boyfriend who was dealing with those insecurities and simply projecting them onto me.
Projection is a psychological game in which people attribute their negative feelings or mistakes to others. It’s a defense mechanism that can be harmful if you’re on the receiving end.
Triangulation is probably one of the most damaging psychological games out there.
In this game, a third person is brought into the dynamics of a two-person situation. This could be in the form of an ex-partner, a friend or even a family member. The manipulator uses this third person to create rivalry, jealousy or hostility.
The target? To gain control and keep you off balance.
If you ever find yourself in a situation where someone is constantly comparing you to someone else or pitting you against others, take a step back. You will likely be subjected to triangulation.
If you recognize some of these games being played in your life, it’s important to remember that you are not alone. This is a harsh reality for many.
But here’s the bright side: understanding these games is the first step in breaking yourself away from them. Knowledge is truly power.
Start thinking about your relationships. Are there manipulation patterns? Do you often feel confused or doubt your own reality? Are there people who constantly make you feel guilty or inferior?
Recognizing these patterns is crucial. Only then can you begin to break free from this web of deception.
It won’t be easy, and it won’t happen immediately. But every step you take toward recognizing and rejecting these psychological games is a victory.
It’s okay to prioritize your mental health and well-being. It’s okay to set boundaries and distance yourself from those who engage in these manipulative tactics.
With time and effort, you will find yourself stronger, wiser, and less susceptible to these games.
So take a deep breath, stand tall and start regaining your peace of mind.
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