Does someone emotionally blackmail you regularly? Do his/her moods change rapidly? Is he/she extraordinarily violent and cruel to people or animals? Does he/she lie with ease? If an answer to most of these questions is yes, then you may be dealing with a sociopath here. To be sure, you require detailed psychological testing, and you need to delve into the past of that person.
Sociopaths are people without a moral compass. They cannot feel emotions like love, compassion and empathy. The condition of sociopathy could be acquired or the person may be born with it. Dealing with such individuals is very dangerous due to their inherent lack of emotions and their incapacity to love and be loved. They are extremely manipulative and incapable of feeling guilty for any harm that they inflict. Although they are incapable of feeling emotions, they can certainly mimic them to fool and manipulate others.
This lack of feelings coupled with extreme intelligence can be a very deadly combination. Such sociopaths, with high intelligence, can easily camouflage themselves in society, and manipulate others as they wish. They can also become veritable criminal masterminds, as almost nothing is impossible for them. Their manipulative behavior and lack of emotional investment in anything other than themselves, makes them antisocial. If a sociopath gets power, he uses it to concentrate more and more of it in his own hands. They usually ensnare people in their web of control by finding what other people are emotionally invested in and using it to get control over them.
They enjoy being puppet masters, and exploit other people for their own selfish interests. There is a common perception that a sociopath is a serial killer. Yes, all serial killers are sociopaths, but not all sociopaths are killers and sexual predators. If they do not have any emotional associations, what do they live for? Probably, the only thing they live for is winning and self-preservation, at any cost.
They can be people at high ranking positions, due to their intelligence and high manipulative power. They can execute their plans with extreme precision, as emotional swings or other involvements cannot distract them.
This article is aimed at giving you an insight into dealing with a sociopath at work, or in any sphere of life. Before you can think of dealing with one, you must first be able to identify him/her. It is not easy to do so, as they can be very persuasive and very good actors, efficiently masking their real intentions. They are like chameleons, presenting a different face to different people. However, there are certain indicators and ways of finding out their true nature.
Identifying a Sociopath
~ Does that person hurt you constantly, show no guilt, and make you feel that it’s your fault?
~ Does he/she constantly make you feel guilty, sympathetic, and sorry for him?
~ Does he/she lie with ease?
~ Does he/she take money and other stuff from you, and avoid returning the same?
~ Does he/she emotionally blackmail you regularly?
~ Do his/her moods change rapidly?
~ Is he/she extraordinarily violent and cruel to people or animals?
~ Does he/she think so highly of himself/herself, that it borders on megalomania?
~ Does he/she resort to any degree of unethical and immoral acts to win or get what he/she wants?
~ Do you often feel manipulated, used, back stabbed, or betrayed by this person?
~ Do you find his/her behavior extremely hypocritical?
~ Has he/she had an extremely abusive and violent childhood?
~ Does he/she show sexual promiscuity?
~ Does he/she have no friends?
~ Does he/she take sadistic pleasure in hurting people or seeing people suffer?
All the flaws illuminated by these questions may be there in many people, but they are all magnified in a sociopath. However, by the time people realize that the person they are dealing with is a sociopath, it is usually too late. The causes behind the way these people are, is a subject of research in psychology. There are various typical neurological and physiological traits that are particularly exhibited by them, but the exact cause is yet unknown. It is thought to be a combination of nature and nurture. If a person is brought up with, and subjected to abuse, since childhood, the chances of him becoming a sociopath are very high.
How to Effectively Deal With A Sociopath
Stay Away from Them
Once you realize you are dealing with a sociopath, the best thing to do is to remove them from your life, and stay as far away from them as possible. Beating them at their own game is tantamount to risking your own life.
Do Not Try to Reform Them
Studies have shown that efforts at curing sociopaths with therapy, only backfire. They use the therapy to sharpen and polish their conversational and conning skills. There is no known successful treatment for them. People without a conscience, or people who can override the call of their conscience are beyond reform.
If a psychopath has ruined your life and if you feel that you should warn other people before he ruins theirs too, do so at your own risk. Report to police authorities, if you come across evidence of violence inflicted by the sociopath. The faster they are put behind bars, the better it is. Remember they feed on your fears and emotions, and use them to manipulate you. Be fearless, and deal with them coldly.
For those of you, who have been unfortunate enough to have crossed paths with these type of people, I would like to say that, do not lose your trust in humanity. There is a lot of goodness and beauty in this world, which is waiting to be beheld by you. Deal with the sociopaths in your life with a cool mind, and do not ever hesitate in doing the right thing, no matter how hard it is.
Disclaimer: This PsycholoGenie article is for informative purposes only, and should not be used as a replacement for expert medical advice.