I was trying to disengage from a relationship with a mindfulness/trauma therapist that had turned Machiavellian. Once I recognized his sociopathy, I knew I needed to disconnect from him. Yet I still had a fiscal obligation to complete a work project with him.
Angie Fadel, founder of Soul Care, is my friend. She introduced me to a technique called “gray rock” that she uses in dealing with difficult people.
This technique is invaluable. Using it, I keep a respectable distance from people whose manipulative behaviors toward me can easily trigger me. These days, going gray rock has enabled me to deal with those in my inner circles who have been acting out in less than healthy ways toward me during this COVID-19 crisis.
How to Go Gray Rock
To practice this technique, start by imagining a gray rock. There’s nothing special or memorable about this rock. Nothing about the rock catches your eye. No crystal specks glistening in the sun, no unique markings. It’s just there. Boring. Dull. Gray.
When you are with someone whose actions toward you can set you off, become this rock. Imagine you are just there—boring, dull, gray. Be the most uninteresting person you can be. Don’t smile or frown. Let your face be expressionless.
People who manipulate others feed on the drama they get when they are able to generate a strong emotion in others. If they can no longer get the response they seek, they often tire and move on.
Gray Rock Pointers
- Recognize When You Need to Go Gray Rock. In an ideal world, once you recognize a person in your life engages in deceitful behavior, then you