We play mind games because it makes us feel powerful and allows us to avoid taking responsibility for our feelings. The drawback of playing mind games is that you never really have an authentic relationship with people and thus never feel a deep loving connection that comes from honesty and trust.
Below are seven common mind games.
1 – Disqualifying. This is a method of saying something hurtful to someone and then, when they become hurt, doing a double-whammy by making it seem you didn’t at all mean what they thought you meant. You may say to someone, “Sometimes you’re so gullible.” If the person becomes hurt (which you consciously or unconsciously want), you reply, “Oh, I was just joking. Sometimes you’re so over-sensitive.” Not only do you hurt them once, but you hurt them twice, by disqualifying what you first said and then insulting them. This can make the other person both angry and confused.
2 – Forgetting. Passive-aggressive personalities play this game. Basically they forget important things like appointments, promises, paying back loans and the like. You wait for them to remember but they don’t, and when you bring it up they reply, “Oh, I’m so sorry, I forgot.” After having to bring it up several times you start to get annoyed. Then they reply, “Oh, I’m really sorry. Are you angry? You seem angry.” If you ask them if they’re angry at you, they protest, “Oh, God no. If I were I’d tell you.” They make you feel that you’re angry over nothing, which makes you more angry. This is how they “dump” their anger onto you without giving you a chance to voice your own anger.
3 – Persecuting. Sometimes people project their hatred onto others and persecute them. They are either unaware of their own hatred or they think it’s justified. Once they begin projecting, they look for reasons to persecute. If the hated individuals disagree with them on politics, decline an invitation or smile the wrong way, the persecutor finds a way to punish them. They may talk trash about them behind their backs, get others to gang up against them, or speak to them in a condescending or insulting way. They judge them as bad or evil and treat them accordingly. They never discuss their feelings or try to work things out. This is the opposite of the golden rule, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” This could be stated, “Punish others for not being what you want them to be.”
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