15 Rules on Dealing with Sociopaths

If you are like most people, you probably associate the word ‘sociopath’ to serial killers. Sociopaths exhibit their antisocial tendencies in various ways, and you’d be surprised to find out that there are many sociopaths leading ordinary lives.

Sociopaths usually have a personality disorder whereby they are unable to get along with others and have a total disregard to the moral or legal standards in their culture.  Wondering how to deal with a sociopath? Find out below.

Know the Signs of a Sociopath

It is important to be able to identify a sociopath before they can cause any damage. One way to do so is to watch out for their behavior. Some signs that someone might be a sociopath include:

  • Lack of remorse - they hurt people with abandon without feeling like they have done something wrong.
  • Liars – they lie about anything and to anyone. They do it very casually.
  • Lack empathy – they do not care whether or not they hurt someone.
  • Incapable of loving – they are unable to love others, and it is apparent to those close to them.
  • Egocentric – they love being the center of attention.
  • Delusions of grandeur – they often feel superior to others.

Sociopaths are motivated by having power over others and using it to fulfill their selfish needs. They might show some flashes of kindness and good heartedness, but it is usually driven by an aspect of self interest. One characteristic of sociopaths is cheating on their partners without feeling guilty.

How to Deal with a Sociopath

You need to be wary when dealing with a person with sociopathic tendencies. Now that you are familiar with their characteristics, here are things to watch out for when dealing with a sociopath.

  1. Practice the ‘Rule of Threes’

Only give someone 3 chances. After that, it’s best to cut your losses and run. One mistake such as a lie, a broken promise or a neglected responsibility should be forgiven since it could be a misunderstanding. The second mistake could be a serious mistake. The third strike should be the final one. Cut ties with them completely. 

  1. Avoid Them

When you realize you’re dealing with someone who could be a sociopath, make a point of staying away from them. Do not try to cure them or beat them at their own game.   

  1. Don't Try To Reform Them

With studies showing that efforts at curing sociopaths with therapy do not bear fruit, it is best to leave them alone. They will only waste your time and use the sessions to sharpen their conning and conversational skills. You simply cannot cure a sociopath. Only a person who has some humanity in them can be reformed. Those devoid of a conscience are beyond reform.

  1. Protect Yourself

A sociopath will attempt to drain you of everything you have including your money, emotional well being, power, reputation and status. If they see you as a threat to their deceitful lifestyle, they will come after you. They would want to see you become completely desolate. They might try to get your fired from your job and begin to bad mouth you to friends. Take any possible preemptive measures.

  1. Keep It to Yourself

How to deal with a sociopath? Do not confront the sociopath about their behavior and your plan to cease interaction. This will only backfire on you.

  1. Refrain from Accusations

Do not try to accuse them of any wrongdoing. They won’t respond well and it might turn into a fight. You will lose more than they will. 

  1. Hold Back Your Emotions

A sociopath wouldn’t want to hear about our feelings especially if what you feel reflects negatively on them. Avoid getting emotional whenever you are in a confrontation with them. However, if they feel wronged by you, show them as much empathy as you would another person.   

  1. Avoid Ultimatums And Power Plays

A sociopath will view any sort of ultimatums, emotional pressure and power plays as games or threats.

  1. Avoid Intrigue

Do not play mind games with a sociopath. Do not compete with them, don’t try to outsmart them or even psychoanalyze them. Your focus should be on protecting yourself.

10. There’s No Right or Wrong

Don’t talk about being wrong or right. Sociopaths do not perceive right or wrong. They only understand power, and they want to have power over you.

11. Be Skeptical

Sociopaths have perfected the art of pushing people’s buttons in order to get their way with them. It is important to be on the lookout for this. How to deal with a sociopath? Make sure to stay calm and collected no matter what the person says. For example, they might tell you about a party you were not invited you just to rile you up.

12. Don't Share Personal Information

One thing you need to realize about sociopaths is that they will use anything you turn them against you. They are professional manipulators, and so you should be wary of what you share with them. Keep communication short and stick to the facts; avoding shareing your address, your bank account, etc. Do not give your personal opinion on anything.

13. Suspect Flattery

Flattery and compliments are different, and you should learn to tell them apart. Sociopaths use flattery as a tool for manipulation.

14. Avoid Pity Parties

Sociopaths have an easy time manipulating those who pity too easily. They will give you all sorts of sob stories to get you to do their bidding. If you are constantly feeling pity for someone who hurts you, then you are probably dealing with a sociopath. Stay away from them. That’s how to deal with a sociopath.

15. Get Back Up

Depending on your relationship with the sociopath, you might need professional help to keep help you recover psychologically and physiologically. This is especially so when the sociopath is unwilling to let you go. Your friends can be of great help especially if the sociopath cannot reach them or is unknown to them. This is because the sociopath can easily start spreading rumors about you to your friends in a bid to turn them against you. 

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