Gaslighting is a way in which an individual or entity, in order to gain more power, makes a victim question their reality. It works way better than you might think. Any individual is prone to gaslighting, and it is a common tactic of dictators, abusers, narcissists, and cult leaders. It is done steadily, so the victim never realizes how heavily they have been brainwashed.
Psychologist Shivani Misri Sadhoo tells about the warning signs of gaslighting.
They Tell Outright Lies
You know this is a blatant lie. Yet they are telling you the lie with a straight face. Why are they so blatant? Because they are setting up a precedent. Once they tell you a big lie, you are unsure if anything they say is real. Keeping you unsteady and off-kilter is the goal.
They Instantly Deny They Ever Said Anything
You know he said he would do something you know he told it. But they downright deny it. It makes you doubt questioning your reality, maybe they never said that thing. And the more they do it, the more you question yourself and start accepting theirs.
They Wear You Over a Period of Time
This is one of the subtle things about gaslighting, it is done steadily, over time. A lie here and there a snide comment quite often and then it begins ramping up. Even the smartest, most self-aware person can be sucked into gaslighting it is that powerful. It is the frog in the frying pan analogy. The heat is turned up gradually, so the frog never fails to realize what is happening to it.
Whatever is Near or Dear to You, They Use it as a Tool
They know-how important your kids or friends are to you, and they know how dearer your identity is to you. So those may be one of the initial things they attack. If you have kids, they will tell you that you should not have had those kids. They will tell you will be a worthy person if only you did not have a long list of negative qualities. They attack the base of your being.
Their Words and Actions Differ
When one is dealing with an individual or entity that gaslights, look for what they are doing irrespective of what they are saying. What they are saying means nothing it is plain talk. What they are doing is a concern.
They Tell You, Everyone, You Know is a Liar
By constantly telling you that everyone you know is a liar, it again makes you doubt your reality. You have never known someone with the ability to do this, so they must be telling the truth, correct? No. It is a manipulation tactic. It makes people turn to the gaslighter for the “right” information, which is not the right information at all.
During the current challenging time, it’s common to experience anxiety, depression, sleeplessness, and relationship challenges at home. While you are under lockdown and maintaining social distancing norms to help the country to control COVID-10 spread, your very own counsellor Shivani is now just a call and Skype video call away from you.
However, in this age of coronavirus, we hope to offer our therapeutic help. Change is difficult for all of us and changing the way you meet with your therapist is no exception. But try it before you disregard this option. This is a challenging moment in time, and fears and anxieties are running high.
You may find, telepsychology isn’t a second-rate option. Instead, it’s an effective and efficient upgrade to a valuable service!
Feel free to call Counselor Shivani Misri Sadhoo at +91-8860875040 for telephonic or video support and to book an online counselling session to address any relationship issues, emotional and psychological challenges.