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While we would all like to think that we are strong enough withstand manipulative people, it’s a lot easier for people to use you than you would think. Well, until it happens to you.

And it isn’t easy to overcome the urge when it is for someone you care about. However, for some of us, it is hard to resist their charm, or we may love them and try to please them because we feel like we should do whatever it takes to make them happy. But really, when you allow people to use you- you are enabling them.

So, how do you break the cycle? It’s easier than it seems.

Why are you allowing them to use you?

What reason is behind you letting them use you? Is it because you didn’t realize it recently, or is it because you are generally manipulated? You need to understand the root of why you are doing what you are doing, and who you are doing it for.

Define what being used means for you.

At what point does it go from you helping this person, to them using you and what does ‘using’ mean for you?

Trust your intuition.

If your gut is telling you that you are being used and you feel any negative emotions deep within your mind, go with it. Trust yourself and trust your intuition.

Watch for patterns.

Don’t believe what someone says- believe in what people do. Actions speak much louder than words.

Remember that apologies don’t equate to the person stopping their manipulation.

Just because someone says they are sorry, doesn’t mean they truly are. Words are easy to come out, but for some people, they are much harder to act on.

Understand your worth.

Remember that you don’t have to earn people’s love and attention. If you are allowing someone to use you because you are trying to maintain their love, keep that in mind.

Watch for the red flags.

Does this person only come around when they need something?

Do they make excuses for their needs when they are using from you?

They tell you they will pay you back, but never do.

They have used other people.

They are otherwise deceptive.

If you notice the red flags, it is time to shut it down.