Recently a lady within the community requested an article about ‘manipulation’. As soon as she posted this request on the blog, I immediately thought – What a great idea!
I know many people in this community, for obvious reasons, have suffered the intense tactics of manipulation – which includes love-bombing, outrageous pathological lies, the awful results of triangulations and smear campaigns, and behaviours which defy any human reason or explanation.
All of these things fly under the banner of ‘manipulation’.
So why do some people use manipulation as a tactic?
What on earth drives people to manipulate rather than be authentic?
I’d like to take you on the journey of a deeper look at ‘manipulation’.
Manipulation Is About Fear and Unworthiness
What makes a person succumb to using the tactics of manipulation in order to try and secure a desired agenda?
The first reason is quite obvious – fear.
The fear that as things stand, this person will not gain a desired result produced from their own merits. That life and other people will not provide favourably. That life and others are positioned against this person.
This is a fear that others will gain what they won’t, and that there are limited resources in a ‘dog eat dog’ world that have to be secured and controlled in order to survive emotionally, practically or financially.
There is a dire fear of What will my life be if I don’t make this happen? And Someone will get the upper hand over me if I don’t.
Now let’s dig deeper…
The fear underneath acts of manipulation stems from a person’s lack of worthiness.
This translates as: I am not worthy of life working out for me, and I am not worthy of life and other people having my best interests at heart.
How a person perceives that they relate to others and life, is essentially how this person sees themself.
So to simplify, the real belief is: I am unworthy.
Manipulation Is About Lack Of Consciousness
Lack of consciousness occurs when there is a failure to recognise that we are responsible for our own reality. Being unconscious is the inability to make the direct correlation between one’s life’s events and internal level of beingness.
What this correlation means is: It doesn’t matter what anyone purposefully presents to the world, because the emotional intent underneath that presentation is the true determinant of where their consciousness lies, and what will ultimately unfold.
There is no beating the systems of so within so without.
Unconscious people don’t believe that this system exists, despite the repeat patterns, the painful episodes and the regurgitating disappointments. This is the epitome of not learning from previous experiences, or what inner emotions and outer life is showing up as.
This is the condition of not evolving.
Unconscious people believe that manipulation in a perceived ‘unsafe world’ is the way to get results, despite these results not bringing durable satisfaction, and ending up emotionally or literally back at square one – time and time again.
Then to try to avoid the pain of this – another manipulation needs to be created.
Why doesn’t manipulation pay off past the initial ‘quick fix’? Because the action of manipulation is not an effective or authentic action. It is a defensive reaction to try to offset fear, pain and unworthiness.
It is a deliberate action which isn’t aligned in the consciousness of the greater good.
The ultimate level of unconsciousness is the non-understanding we are all One.
Therefore, by trying to create gain via manipulation, rather than authenticity, the personal result is non-authenticity.
Anything gained from that level of unconsciousness can only, and will only ever create hollow victories, ongoing pain and emptiness and fear, and of course even greater unworthiness.
Unworthiness is a dire separation from life and others – it the fear of being unworthy of being loved and accepted by others and life.
Being unconscious means not learning, not evolving and not coming into the true power of authenticity worthiness – which is the knowing of being loved and accepted for Who One Truly Is.
It is a disconnection from Oneness.
Therefore, it is only people who feel unworthy at their core who manipulate.
Common Expressions of Manipulation
To peel the lid back on this, we need to acknowledge that it is not just conscienceless people who manipulate.
We all know, and have experienced, the boundary-less lengths narcissists will go to in order to manipulate and secure narcissistic supply and outrageous agendas.
I really don’t need to elaborate on these…
Manipulation can be more subtle than this – and is always coming from a position of unworthiness.
I had a really interesting conversation with a girlfriend yesterday who admitted that she has a fear of abandonment – and in order to avoid being abandoned tries to make sure that her partner needs her.
She asked me was she being ‘manipulative’. (Love the synchronicity because I had not discussed this article topic!)
I stated “Yes. You are acting out your unhealed wounds, and having to be maladaptive in order to avoid those wounds, rather than face them. Really you are manipulating as a result – even if there is no ill intent.”
This friend is not a narcissist. She is a giving, loving person who could not imagine smearing, lashing out, pathologically lying, or having affairs behind her partner’s back. She has high levels of integrity.
However, she is struggling with knowing she is loveable and worthy simply because she exists. The message she received in childhood was I have to be needed in order to be loved, and this has been a reoccurring inner program driving her behaviour in all of her love relationships. She is attempting to manipulate how she is perceived to avoid being alone.
Not surprisingly her first husband left her, and her current relationship is now shaky.
The truth is we always manifest within our relationships exactly what we fear – everyone does.
And the more we try to twist ourselves into a pretzel – trying to manipulate circumstances and people RATHER than dealing with these inner fears by going within - the larger the cracks appear.
Narcissists also manifest their horrendous fears of being defective, and being unworthy of being loved. Every partner ends up holding the horrendousness back up to the narcissist trying to make him or her accountable for it.
The False Self cannot bear the self-recognition or self-ownership of ‘being flawed’, therefore projects, attacks, deflects, devalues and discards, and manipulates onwards to the next relationship – generally as quickly as possible. And the cycle of manipulation goes on and on and on.
The Goal of Evolving Into Knowing Your True Worthiness
There is absolutely no value in focusing on another person’s manipulative behaviour and trying to change it.
Didn’t the narcissist’s non-accountability show you that in vivid technicolour?
The truth is, the only power we ever have in life is within our own self, within our own belief systems, and aligning with our own application and creation of life from the inside out.
When faced with manipulation and continuing to hang around to receive it, your own maladaptation which undermines self-worthiness comes into play.
On the battle field with a narcissist you have no choice other than become someone you don’t want to be, because ever part of your authentic self is under attack.
An essential truth of life is – be very aware of the levels of consciousness of people in your life. Either your consciousness will lift theirs, or theirs will reduce you to their level.
Be very aware, a narcissist’s level of consciousness is not going to rise.
When we get past engaging in trying to change someone else’s manipulative behaviour, and establish the knowing of our own worthiness, we don’t play out our own ‘manipulations’ as a way of avoiding our own unhealed wounds.
Every time you go against the authenticity of yourself you are in fact trying to manipulate something or someone on the outside of yourself to try to create a different result which will allow you to feel more worthy.
This equals how to lose.
There is only one place worthiness can ever take place, and that is within – regardless of conditions outside of you. Because you never have any control of conditions outside of you – you only ever have control of your own beingness, and how your beingness is manifesting as your life through you.
Some examples of handing over worthiness are:
- Taking the blame to appease another in order to retain the relationship or avoid necessary confrontation.
- Ignoring abuse and self-disintegration rather than face the inevitability of being alone.
- Making poor relationships choices based on the neediness of gaining energy, security, approval and / or love, rather than the true desire of a healthy, compatible, joyous relationship.
- People pleasing in order to win love, approval and / or security.
The truth is the narcissist was never meant to be the supplier of your inherent worthiness – and in order to secure narcissist supply he or she always intended to undermine and strip your worthiness.
The greatest gift of all of this was the opportunity to claim and create your own authentic worthiness.
This is generally when personal catharsis occurs – when everything on the outside becomes total devastation and rubble – with no means of resurrecting it…
…because then there is only one place to go – inside.
Changing the Patterns of Manipulation
Changing the patterns of manipulation in our life from the inside out starts with authenticity.
Authenticity means that who you are being on the inside is congruent with the person you present on the outside.
Being an authentic being means you know and take action based on inherent worthiness – the worthiness of knowing you are loveable and acceptable for Who You Are.
This worthiness does not rely on validation outside of you, because you already have solid validation from within.
No longer are your actions fear based, they emanate from love, fullness and the consciousness of so within so without. This is the knowingness of the abundance of life which will reflect back to you Who You Are Really Being.
Back to the ongoing conversation with my friend yesterday…
She stated to me “Damn! I know I do that, I feel it all the time, but I don’t stop doing it”.
I said to her “Imagine stopping needing him to need you, and not doing those things that try to make him need you. What does that bring up for you?”
She imagined doing that.
“Panic!” she exclaimed.
Now here is the problem – to avoid that painful feeling she carries on trying to make him need her. Even though she knows what she is doing, and the possible terrible manifestation results (which are already playing out).
So given that she finds the fear and pain too hard to overcome – and defaults back, how can she change?
The same way anyone can…
There is only one way people ever genuinely change behaviour.
They have to change their BELIEFS.
The belief – I need people to need me is responsible for her fear and behaviour, and it’s that belief that needs to be released. Which really means healing the core belief – I am only loveable and worthy if people need me.
To heal that belief means the ‘trauma’ of the creations of those beliefs in childhood needs to be addressed, released and reversed.
Then true worthiness could be established, and her fear and maladaptive behaviour would disappear – immediately.
The fear and maladaptive behaviour are symptoms of that painful belief.
No-one escapes their inner programming, the fears they produce, and their subsequent behaviour without changing beliefs.
Knowing what you do, or even why you do it is rarely enough to durably change.
Deeply going inside, working on yourself and releasing emotional pain is the true solution to durably change.
To change who you are being, requires changing your beingness.
Now maybe you can understand that trying to hold the narcissist accountable for his or her manipulative behaviour was never going to make a scrap of difference. Nor did the narcissist’s rare moments of accountability (feigned or real) hold up as any genuinely reformed behaviour.
A pathological manipulator would only ever change if the damage of childhood which created the dire unworthiness was directly addressed and released.
And if course it would have to be the manipulator who decided to do this, and who actually did the work on themself.
Reform is never possible any other way.
What is certain is that the reform of your inner belief systems and life is totally possible.
I hope this has explained what ‘manipulation’ really is, and I look forward to answering your comments or any questions below.