What is guilt induction? How does it create conflict and poor relationships

People tend to resist attempts by others to manipulate their emotions and feelings. Guilt-induction attempts are efforts to make someone feel guilty or “less than”, often in an attempt to shame them into going along or changing. While guilt induction attempts are usually subtle, make no mistake — the other person will know exactly what you are trying to do if you use them.

When we use guilt-induction we usually do so unconconsciously, or without being aware that we are trying to manipulate the other person, but whether we are aware of what we are doing or not aware, the result is the same. This brings us to a fundamental point about communication. Our INTENT, when we communicate, is not as important as the other person’s perceptions of our intent.

Some examples of guilt induction:

  • It’s your fault we are in this mess
  • If you had done what you were supposed to we wouldn’t be having this conversation
  • I can’t believe you are causing all this trouble

 

 

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