So, I was talking with my daughter the other day, and she mentioned weaponizing incompetence. My ears perked up, and I said, “Tell me more about that”.

I knew what it meant to do this, but I had never heard the term for it.

It boils down to a person faking incompetence to avoid doing something they don’t want to do. Often, this is used as a manipulation tactic to get someone else to do that thing.

Here are some examples:

  • A spouse or partner might say,” I am just an awful cook,” to get out of cooking.
  • A co-worker might say something like, “This is your area of expertise. You’re so great at it,” to pass off a task they should be doing.

Where have you seen it in your life?

This can be a sneaky tactic, so here are a few tips for dealing with people who weaponize incompetence:

  • Don’t take the bait.
  • Talk to them about it. Share how it affects you.
  • Set boundaries by letting the person know you aren’t taking on a responsibility that belongs to them. In other words, say no.

Life is good.


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