Don’t Let Liars & Manipulators Ruin You — Heres How To Move On Stronger Than Ever

Master manipulators are skilled liars and incredibly in tune with other people’s insecurities and what it takes to exploit them. They’re so good at their craft that they’re able to work their way into your  heart before you even realize what’s happened. Whether it was a friendship gone wrong or a toxic relationship, the resulting damage can be difficult to move on from. It will take time and effort — trust me, I know from experience — but here’s how to move on stronger than ever:

  1. Take Time To Grieve. I wish someone had told me this when my relationship with my ex ended. I was genuinely heart broken, but everyone just kept saying that he wasn’t worth my time. They were right, and I knew it, but that didn’t change the fact that the relationship was still real. You have every right to treat it like any other breakup and allow yourself to go through all the necessary emotions.
  2. Remember Why You Ended Things. Before/during/after the grieving process, just remember that there was a valid reason things ended. Don’t give yourself any lenience to get back into the relationship. Not only will that set you back, but that’s also exactly what fuels someone with a manipulative personality. No matter how much they apologize or promise they’re going to change, don’t buy it. They’re doing what they do best: trying to manipulate you.
  3. Write Down All Their Negative Traits. It might seem a little childish, but writing down everything you hated that they did to you in the relationship can be so helpful. It’s a nice reference when you have moments of doubt, and it’s also good to just glance at that list when you’re missing the good parts of the relationship. It seems like a silly exercise, but it really will go a long way in reminding you of your own strength and what the manipulator put you through.
  4. Learn How To Be Independent. I can’t stress this point enough — finding out who you are is the best gift you can give yourself. I was lucky in the sense that after my ex and I broke up, I had to move out of state the next day for college. I had to start a whole new chapter of my life where I knew no one while also going through an extremely difficult breakup. It was also the greatest possible situation I could’ve asked for. Find ways to love yourself and spend time alone instead of relying on others to bring you happiness.
  5. Ask For Help when you need it. There’s nothing wrong with asking for help, and in some instances, this might even be professional help. For me, it was finally caving and telling my roommate in college what happened. She’s the one that helped me process everything and start to move on. Remember that you’re not weak if you need to seek out a friend, family member, or professional. Everyone is rooting for you.
  6. Focus Your Energy Elsewhere. Start a new hobby, study a little extra, start volunteering, etc. Just do something that will take up your time and keep you distracted while you work through your emotions. For me, volleyball was my outlet. It was the one place that I could shut my brain off for a few hours and channel my aggression in a healthy way. It was also the place I felt most at peace, which is a blessing when you’re a bundle of emotions.
  7. Practice Standing Up For Yourself. Manipulators put you down — it’s kind of their M.O. After spending enough time in a romantic relationship or friendship where you’re constantly belittled, it can be difficult to remember to stand up for yourself. I was in such a low place after my relationship ended that I gave myself pep talks in the mirror (seriously), but you know what? They helped! Whenever someone would tell me I wasn’t good enough or couldn’t do something, I told them to watch me while I proved them wrong. Eventually, I even believed that I could.
  8. Forgive Yourself. Getting pulled in my your manipulator is not your fault. They’re really good at what they do, and it happens to the best of us. You’re not defined by or responsible for what happened in your relationship, so don’t allow yourself to feel guilty about it. Don’t hate yourself for getting into that situation, either, because it could’ve happened to anyone.
  9. Vow to do better and then leave the baggage behind. Once you’ve forgiven yourself, just remember that it was a great learning experience. You now know how to spot a manipulator and you won’t fall into the same trap again, so live and learn! Life’s about learning from mistakes, and no one is perfect.
  10. Give Yourself Time To Trust Again. For me, this was, and still is, the hardest part. Learning from the past is fine and dandy, but attempting to decipher the genuinely good people from the wolves in sheep’s clothing is insanely difficult. It may take months or even years to allow yourself to completely open up to someone again, but that’s okay. There’s no time frame on trust — just remember that the world is full of good people and most really are as good as they seem.
Tori is a recent college graduate trying to find her place in this world. She loves to travel (way too much), play volleyball, and practice her broken German when she isn't working as a safari specialist.