10 things a conniving woman will do to undermine your confidence, according to psychology

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There’s a fine line between constructive criticism and outright sabotage.

When a woman is conniving, she knows how to subtly chip away at your self-esteem without you even realizing it.

Psychology has delved into this dark side of human behavior, revealing some telling signs. So, if you’re not careful, you might find your confidence shaken by these subtle tactics.

In this article, we’ll explore ten things a conniving woman might do to undermine your confidence. These are not just random accusations, they’re backed by psychological research.

So stick around, and arm yourself with the knowledge to prevent such undermining tactics.

1) Subtle insults

In the world of psychology, they’re known as “backhanded compliments”.

On the surface, they seem like a compliment. But, dig a little deeper and you’ll find a hidden insult.

It’s a classic tactic of the conniving woman, carefully designed to undermine your confidence.

For instance, she might say something like “You’re really brave for wearing that outfit” or “I admire how you just don’t care what people think.”

These comments may sound harmless initially, but they are in fact subtle digs at your appearance or behavior.

The aim is to make you question yourself without her appearing to be the bad guy. It’s a clever way of sowing seeds of self-doubt.

So next time you hear a so-called compliment with a sting in the tail, be aware. It could be an attempt to chip away at your confidence. And knowing this is the first step in countering such tactics.

2) Gaslighting

Gaslighting. I remember the first time it happened to me.

She was a friend, or so I thought. We were discussing a recent disagreement we’d had, and she flatly denied that the conversation had ever taken place. She insisted I was remembering it wrong.

I felt confused, doubted my memory, and even questioned my sanity. That’s the power of gaslighting.

It’s a manipulative technique a conniving woman might use to make you question your perception of reality, thus undermining your confidence in your own judgment.

Gaslighting is a psychological term that originated from the 1944 film “Gaslight”, where a husband manipulates his wife into believing she is losing her mind.

If you ever find yourself in a situation where you’re made to feel like your memory or perception is faulty when you’re certain it isn’t, you might be experiencing gaslighting. It’s important to recognize this for what it is – an attempt to undermine your confidence. Don’t let it skew your sense of reality.

3) Playing the victim

Sometimes, a conniving woman will play the victim to gain sympathy and control. It’s a tactic known as “victim playing” or “damseling”.

In this scenario, she portrays herself as helpless or unfairly treated to manipulate others. It’s not just about gaining sympathy; it’s often a way to deflect blame and criticism too.

According to research published by the American Psychological Association, individuals who tend to play the victim often have a personality trait known as “malignant narcissism”. This includes aspects of narcissism, antisocial behavior, aggression, and sadism.

By playing the victim, she can make you feel guilty for things that are not your fault, causing you to question your actions and inevitably undermining your confidence.

If you notice someone consistently portraying themselves as a victim, particularly when they are at fault, it might be a sign that they are trying to manipulate you. Don’t let it shake your confidence.

4) Constant criticism

Criticism, when constructive, can be a great tool for personal growth. But when it’s constant and negative, it can be a powerful weapon to undermine confidence.

A conniving woman might use this tactic to make you feel inadequate or insecure. It could be about your appearance, your work, or even your personality traits.

The key here is the frequency and negativity of the criticism. It’s one thing to offer occasional feedback; it’s quite another to constantly nitpick and belittle.

Remember, everyone has their strengths and weaknesses. Don’t let anyone’s constant criticism make you forget your worth. Stand your ground and don’t allow this manipulative behavior to shake your confidence.

5) Always comparing you to others

Comparison is the thief of joy, they say. And it’s also an effective tool for undermining confidence.

A conniving woman might frequently compare you unfavorably to others to make you feel like you’re not good enough. It could be about your achievements, your looks, or any other aspect of your life.

The aim is to make you feel inferior, sparking a sense of inadequacy and self-doubt.

But remember, everyone is unique and incomparable. Your journey is yours alone, and it’s unfair and unproductive to compare it with anyone else’s.

Don’t let anyone make you feel less by comparing you to others. Your self-worth should never be based on such comparisons.

6) Sabotaging your success

It’s a bitter pill to swallow, but sometimes those who should be your biggest cheerleaders can become the architects of your downfall.

A conniving woman might subtly sabotage your success to keep you from feeling confident. It could be in the form of spreading rumors, creating obstacles, or withholding necessary information.

The pain is particularly sharp when it comes from someone you trust or care about. But it’s crucial to remember that their actions reflect their insecurities and not your worth.

Your success is yours to claim. Don’t let anyone’s fear or jealousy deter you from reaching for the stars. Always believe in yourself, even if others don’t.

7) Isolation from support systems

There was a time in my life when I suddenly found myself cut off from my closest friends. It was a gradual process, so subtle that I didn’t even notice it at first.

She had a knack for creating misunderstandings or instigating arguments among us. It was only later that I realized it was intentional – an attempt to isolate me from my support system.

Isolation is a common tactic used by conniving individuals. The goal is to make you dependent on them, thus giving them more control and power.

By separating you from your friends, family, or other sources of support, they can make you feel alone and vulnerable, ultimately undermining your confidence.

If you notice someone trying to isolate you from your loved ones, be cautious. It’s vital to maintain your relationships and support systems, as they are crucial for your mental and emotional well-being.

8) Showering you with false praise

Compliments can make us feel good, right? But what if they’re only designed to set you up for a fall?

A conniving woman may shower you with excessive, undeserved praise. It might seem like a confidence boost at first, but it’s a setup. When reality doesn’t match the inflated image she’s created, it can lead to self-doubt and a loss of confidence.

This tactic is used to destabilize your sense of self-worth, making you more susceptible to manipulation.

Remember, true self-confidence comes from acknowledging your real strengths and working on your weaknesses. Don’t let anyone manipulate your self-perception with false praise.

9) Overstepping boundaries

Respect for personal boundaries is a cornerstone of any healthy relationship. Unfortunately, a conniving woman might intentionally overstep these boundaries to undermine your confidence.

It might be in the form of unwanted advice, intrusive questions, or disrespecting your personal space. The aim is to make you feel uncomfortable and to assert control.

When someone consistently invades your personal boundaries, it can make you feel disrespected and undervalued.

Always remember, you have every right to establish and maintain your personal boundaries. Don’t let anyone make you feel otherwise. Stand firm and demand the respect you deserve.

10) Exploiting your insecurities

We all have insecurities. It’s part of being human. But a conniving woman might use these insecurities against you.

She will find out what you’re most insecure about and subtly bring it up or highlight it, shaking your confidence.

It’s a cruel tactic, designed to make you feel less than you are. But remember, everyone has insecurities. Don’t let anyone use them to undermine your confidence.

Your insecurities do not define you. You are much more than your perceived flaws. Always remember that.

Final thoughts: Knowledge is power

Understanding the manipulative tactics that can be used to undermine your confidence is the first step towards safeguarding your self-esteem.

It’s crucial to remember that these tactics reflect the insecurities and issues of the person employing them, not your worth or ability.

Renowned psychologist Carl Rogers once said, “The curious paradox is that when I accept myself just as I am, then I can change.” This statement rings true in the face of manipulation and attempts to undermine confidence.

When you fully accept and love yourself, with all your strengths and weaknesses, the manipulative actions of others lose their power over you.

Stay strong, believe in yourself, and never let anyone shake your confidence. You are enough, just as you are.