15 Reasons Why Narcissists Use Mind Games To Exploit You

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Reasons Why Narcissists Use Mind Games To Exploit You

Having detailed some of the mind games that we, narcissists, deploy against you, leads to the inevitable question of why do we do this? I daresay that some of you will be tempted to answer:

“Because you are all arseholes.”

Whilst this is understandable and potentially accurate (when viewed from your perspective) it is not going to provide you with any insight into the workings of our minds and behaviors. Accordingly, I will expand on why it is we use mind games comprehensively.

15 Reasons Why Narcissists Use Mind Games To Exploit You

1. Fuel.

An obvious one and rightly the first one that is considered. The application of mind games to the dynamic between you and us is done in order to prompt an emotional reaction from you and thus garner fuel from you.

Whether you become upset, distraught, frustrated, annoyed, or angry as a consequence of the games being played, it is all fuel which we will readily drink up.

Related: Narcissistic Abuse Syndrome: 10 Signs You’ve Experienced Narcissistic Abuse

2. Control.

We are obsessed with control. Our environment must be beholden to us. We have to control everything around us in order to ensure that we continue to exist, receive fuel, minimize and remove risks, and so forth.

By subjecting you to mind games, we are able to achieve this need for control, since you become trapped by them, you remain paralyzed by their effects as you try to establish what is happening, rather than knowing them for what they are and moving away from them.

mind games narcissists play

3. Future planning.

It is a common outcome from entangling with our kind that you will be labeled as The Crazy One once you have been discarded or escaped, as part of the smear campaign. The mind games bring about such a state of mind in you that it becomes easy enough for us to point to your behavior during devaluation, your behavior post discard/escape, and demonstrate that you are indeed unhinged.

There are very few people who can actually resist the proliferation of mind games and not be affected by them in some way and many people are left at the end of their tether creating an appearance of being “crazy”.

4. Façade management.

By engaging in games where we are in control, you are seen as histrionic and volatile, where we are calm and pleasant to everybody but you and causing people to form an adverse view about you, this allows us to manage and maintain the façade.

We have an array of lieutenants and members of our coterie who all regard us as decent and kind, which then makes your life even harder in terms of trying to persuade people about what we really are.

Related: 11 Manipulative Techniques Narcissists Use To Control You

5. Superiority reinforcement.

We operate from the perspective that we are superior to everybody around us and especially you. By engaging in games where we are able to pull the strings, make you upset and angry and exert control, allows us to emphasize that we are indeed superior to you.

6. Self-defence.

Many of the mind games that we engage in are because we need to defend ourselves from being challenged or criticized.

Hence when we project, deny, deflect and blame-shift, although there may be a collateral benefit in terms of how it affects you, the primary reason for engaging in this behavior is to protect ourselves by rejecting blame, preventing your challenge, and addressing criticism.

7. Exhaustion.

With any situation, you respond to it more effectively when you are rested and able to think in a clear manner. The deployment of mind games causes you to become exhausted which results in your lacking clarity, experiencing reduced resistance, and diminished willpower.

This means that you are far less likely to try to escape what you are doing and far more likely to accept doing what we want.

Related: Why Is It So Hard To Leave A Covert Narcissist? 5 Manipulative Traps They Use

8. Plausible deniability.

By operating within the vestiges of the spoken, gestures, and actions, we are often able to maintain being vague and amorphous. This allows us to manipulate you to a further degree but also serves an incredibly useful purpose in denying that we have engaged in such behaviors, to begin with, especially with a third party.

If we are challenged by, for example, someone in authority, we can point to the absence of proof or turn it into the word of someone calm and reasonable against some frazzled, ranting Crazy Person.

9. Impact.

The impact of emotional and psychological abuse is invariably more difficult for the victim to handle than physical abuse. Whilst physical abuse is understandably unpleasant, the insidious nature of mind games means that the victim cannot grasp what is happening, cannot ascertain if they are being subjected to a mind game (being punched is obvious and unequivocal), and cannot fathom why they are being treated in this manner. You no doubt will have heard victims state,

“I would have preferred to have been physically assaulted than be put through the mental torture.”

For someone to choose physical injury over this underlines just how devastating the impact is.

10. Lack of detectability.

Alongside plausible deniability is the fact that a bruise is a bruise and therefore raises questions. It is far harder to determine the effect of mind games. Yes, someone may present as exhausted, anxious, hypervigilant, terrified, and so on, but there is always the potential for us to suggest that it is put on and/or is related to something else.

It is harder to do this with physical abuse (although not impossible). Indeed, some people do not allow the effect of the mind games to be seen, preferring to keep it hidden from other parties.

Related: 15 Things Manipulative People Do To Control You

11. Erosion.

If you suffer a broken arm, you can still function. You can use your other arm, you can walk places, talk, you can hear and see, and so forth. The mind games naturally affect that which controls and governs everything you do.

By wearing down your mind, we are able to grind you down, causing your resistance to weaken and preventing you from functioning in a manner that might aid your escape from us.

12. Tenderising.

The application of mind games through achieving erosion and exhaustion as described above means that in effect you are being “tenderized” for further manipulations to be applied against you with maximum effect.

13. Empathic vulnerability.

As a person who has empathic traits and thus the reason why you were targeted by us, you are more susceptible to these kinds of behaviors. Mind games work especially well against you as a consequence of your traits such as honesty, decency, telling the truth, needing to understand, wanting to help, and your emotional responses.

14. Endeavour.

Some of the mind games end up making you try harder to please and do things for us with the additional benefit which naturally arises from this.

15. Power.

This is applicable to the Greater Narcissist only as the Lesser and Mid-Range are not aware of the true extent of the application of mind games. The Greater Narcissist revels in being applied to treat somebody in this manner, distort their world, have them jumping and moving at their say so, causing them to fountain with fuel and have no idea how or why this is being done to them.

Related: 10 Manipulative Strategies Used By Narcissists To Dominate You

The various manipulations and their outcomes mean this appeals to the omnipotence which Greaters believe that they have.


Written By HG Tudor
Originally Appeared On Narcsite 
Republished with permission
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