There’s nothing worse than a bully. This person loves to intimidate others by pushing their weight around.

While it’s classically thought of as a child on the playground, a bully can be someone of any age. According to the National Institute of Health, bullying in the workplace can be done through the internet or in person.

Assume you work in an office with a gentleman who has been there for years. You’re considered an up-and-coming sales professional, and corporate is grooming you for management. He may feel threatened because of your position, so he will use intimating and other tactics to try to force you out.

You must remember that this person’s insecurities are coming into play in situations like these. Just like the kid on the playground, they make themselves feel better or more critical by pushing you around. Sadly, not all bullying cases are so blatant, and you need to have keen senses to determine who is manipulative and pushy and who is your friend.

Twelve Behaviors That Reveal a Cruel Person Who Loves to Intimidate Others

Thankfully, some specific behaviors or habits show someone has bullying tendencies. You can quickly identify when someone is trying to intimidate or manipulate you by using the following list. Here are the top behaviors of bullies.

1. Blackmail is Commonplace

One of the most common tactics used by a bully is blackmail. If they have any dirt on you, they may use it to get you to do what they want. For instance, if they know that you had someone else clock in for you, they may use that against you.

It wouldn’t be uncommon for this person to tell you that you must buy their lunch for a week, or they will tell. Yes, this action sounds quite childish, but this is how the typical bully gets their dirty work done. They will use whatever information they know about you to their advantage.

2. Lying Comes Natural

To do some of the evil things that this individual has done, they need to be a good liar. Please don’t believe anything out of their mouth as it’s only what they want you to know. Be careful telling them anything as they can add to or take away from your facts to make it completely untrue.

3. They Won’t Talk About Their Past

Another interesting trait of someone who loves to intimidate is that they want to know all about your story, but they won’t tell you about themselves. They may approach you asking for information about your life, but don’t count on them to offer anything about their life in return.

Be careful as what you tell them can and will be used against you. Additionally, they don’t want to talk about their past because it’s too painful. In most cases, you will find some abuse or neglect that has left them psychologically damaged.

4. Tries to Confuse You

One classic tactic of a manipulator is that they try to overload you with data to confuse you. For instance, assume you’re having issues with your car and need a mechanic. They may start spouting all these car repair tips to show their knowledge in this area.

The goal is to make themselves look knowledgeable and to make you feel insignificant in their presence. They want to appear to be all-knowing about the matter, so they will spew all sorts of information about cars and repairs, whether it’s true or not.

5. Displays Negative Emotions

What’s one thing a bully always does? They want to be louder than everyone else. They want to see and be heard.

This person may aggressively manipulate others by raising their voice so all can hear what they have to say. The louder they are, the more intimidated people are by their presence. The behaviors you’re seeing are nothing more than someone who wants you to conform to their demands, but you shouldn’t buy into it.

6. Uses Adverse Humor and Sarcasm

If you tend to be a bit insecure, then you will be a prime target for those who love to intimidate. This bully sees your insecurity as a weakness, and they will use this to their advantage. It’s not uncommon for them to want to make you feel insecure or inferior, so they will use poor humor and sarcasm to achieve it.

They may laugh at the shoes you’re wearing, the fact that you’re always late, or the lack of a personal life. They love nothing more than to make you look bad, but you need to get away from this person rather than playing into their hand. If you can think of a comeback quick enough, then turn their hostile humor back around on them.

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7. Plays Professionally Ignorant

A manipulator has a few tools in their arsenal, and professional ignorance is one of their secret weapons. Since they like to be a con artist, they don’t mind “playing dumb” occasionally. If they want to avoid a situation or try to hide something they’ve done, they may use this passive-aggressive technique to cover their tracks.

An example would be your child didn’t clean their room as you asked them to do. So, rather than just taking the punishment, they will pretend they didn’t hear you ask them to do this chore. As a parent, you would call their bluff because they should keep their room clean anyway.

While the example uses a child, plenty of adults also like to use such methods when they refuse to take responsibility for their actions. According to the National Institute of Health, the passive-aggressive personality can be resentful and vindictive, making them hard to handle.

8. They Manipulate the Facts

You must remember that you’re not dealing with the average person as this individual is a compulsive liar. They will twist the facts to use them to their advantage. Be careful about anything that comes out of their mouth as they will often forget critical details of a conversation, make excuses, and blame those who are entirely innocent. It’s best to stay as far away from this person as possible.

9. They Appear Selfless

Those who intimidate often keep their plans, aspirations, yearning for power and dominance well concealed. So, in the first few encounters with an intimidator, you may think they are completely charming and selfless. They seem like a person that could be your best friend.

However, these charming first few encounters are only acting to lure you into their manipulative schemes. They know how to say and do the right things to make you want to be their friend, but they only want to use you. Remember, no matter how genuine they seem, they want to manipulate and control you.

10. Uses Pressure Tactics

An intimidator will apply pressure when they want someone to move. They accomplish this by creating a false sense of urgency to make you respond to their demands. The goal is to raise the level of tension to get their way.

What they’re attempting to do is to suppress your decision-making abilities by taking control over the situation. They’re not above using theatrical displays to undermine you.

11. They Use Forced Teaming Strategies

Those who love to intimidate are con artists with self-destructive behaviors. They like to gather their team to make their story even more believable. They often use words like “we” or “us” to make themselves seem more powerful. They’re trying to project that it’s more than just them that’s of this belief so that they can get you on board.

Another tactic observed is using these terms to pull you into their drama. For instance, assume a machine went down at work because the safety check wasn’t done correctly. They might say to you, “how are we going to handle this mess?” You may have had nothing to do with the error, but they want to bring you into their drama to lessen their impact if they take sole responsibility.

12. Playing the Victim Card

A schemer may fake as a victim of situations or another person’s bad behavior to sympathize. When these individuals try to get your pity, watch how they act. It’s easy to tell someone who is an actual victim from someone who is faking.

Assume they told you they were in a car crash. They would be shaken after such an event, and they may cry, be angry, and have anxiety over the situation. The faker won’t have the same emotions because they didn’t truly experience the incident.

If they’re good at their game, they may emulate these emotions, but they will quickly recover.

Final Thoughts on Recognizing a Person Who Seeks to Intimidate Others

Some people love to intimidate others, and they never pass up the chance to use someone to further their agenda. The classic manipulator often is seen as having a narcissistic personality that is unrelenting. They don’t care about others, and they have few friends or relatives who want anything to do with them.

The key is their past tells the story. If you were to dig deep into the background of those who love to intimidate others, you would often find they are very insecure. They make themselves feel better by using passive-aggressive tendencies and manipulating others. They need to be in control, so they will use whatever methods possible to accomplish this task.

If you encounter a bully on your job or in a social club, you mustn’t play their games. Try as they may; you don’t have to allow them to lure you into their web of deceit. By making sure your interactions with this individual are few and always keeping a witness by you when they’re near, you can minimize the damage done by this classic narcissist.