We all meet narcissistic people every day
Zlatan Krizan, an associate professor in the Department of Psychology at Iowa State University, explains that there’s actually two kinds of expressions of narcissism: grandiose, which is where the bragging and showing off is exhibited, and shy, where a person may not be as forthright “or be out there with a bullhorn, but is sitting in the corner, fantasizing about when their day will come, and resenting others.”
What is a narcissistic personality disorder?
People with narcissistic personality usually don't think that anything could be wrong, so they may be unlikely to seek treatment. If they do seek treatment, it's more likely to be for symptoms of depression, drug or alcohol use, or another mental health problem. But perceived insults to self-esteem may make it difficult to accept and follow through with treatment.
Narcissistic personality & behavior
- They display an exaggerated sense of self-importance.
- They require constant admiration.
- They expect to be recognized as superior and entitled to associate with equally special people.
- They greatly exaggerate achievements and talents.
- They belittle and look down on people they perceive as inferior.
- They expect favors and unquestioning compliance with their expectations.
- They manipulate and take advantage of others to get what they want.
- They're not willing to recognize the needs and feelings of others.
- They're arrogant and coming across as conceited, boastful and pretentious.
- They insist on having the best of everything.
- They can't handle criticism.
- They become impatient or angry when they don't receive special treatment.
- They have significant interpersonal problems and easily feel slighted.
- They react with rage and belittle the other person to make themselves appear superior.
- They have difficulty regulating emotions and behavior.
- They have angry outbursts when dealing with stress.
- They have difficulty adopting to changes.
- They feel depressed and moody because they know they're not perfect.
- They hide feelings of insecurity, shame, vulnerability and humiliation.
- They don’t necessarily make good leaders, but they want the power and attention, so they’re more likely to end up in lead positions.
- They always manage to trail the conversation to talk about themselves.
You might tell them about your hip surgery but you can see it in their eyes that they're not hearing a word you're saying, but they're thinking about telling you their story, as soon as you shut up, when the doctor removed a splinter from their pinky.
You tell them about the award ceremony where you were recognized and honored, but you can read their expression of thinking about what they're going to say to belittle your achievement.
How do you deal with narcissistic people?
Can you build a healthy relationship with them or as soon as your recognize the symptoms you stop interacting with them and run?
In some cases we have the freedom to escape toxic relationships, but sometimes we can't and must find our own way to deal with them the best we can.