Deal With The Narcissist In Your Life Whether It's You Or Somebody Else
There's a little narcissist in all of us! So the first step to dealing with narcissistic personalities is to understand narcissism and how it shows up in you.
The main point is to balance your self love with a level-headed sense of personal responsibility, for yourself and your relationships.
In other words, you need to feel good about yourself, and keep your feet on the ground. With narcissism, you float a few feet off the ground, and therefore you have a tendency to look down on everybody else.
Also, when your feet are off the ground, you're very vulnerable to being knocked off balance and taken down. So, read this for the benefit it will bring you, and those you care about.
What Causes Narcissism?
Nobody decides to become a narcissist. It happens subconsciously in childhood, for a number of different reasons. Let's look at a few:
Being spoiled. This is the main cause of narcissism, and it's not the child's fault. When you are spoiled, you get a false sense of self-importance and a sense of entitlement, which are two of the main symptoms of NPD (narcissistic personality disorder).
Being the "favorite," the "golden child," "daddy's little girl," or "momma's little boy." This kind of excessive love (that is more about the parent's needs than the child's), is very destructive to a child. After this kind of childhood experience, the "real world" just never seems to measure up.
Being abandoned and/or neglected. One thing that can cause narcissism is a strong internal need for attention and love from others. Neglect and abandonment can certainly create that kind of strong internal need.
Extreme physical and/or sexual abuse can also cause narcissism, although it certainly does not in every case. While many abuse victims end up with extremely low self esteem, some individuals will overcompensate by creating an inflated sense of self-importance and entitlement.
In summary, you can see here that narcissism can result from either too much or not enough of the right kind of love and attention in childhood. There may be other causes of this problem, but the above list gives an overview of some of the basics.
How Do You Deal With Narcissism?
If you're caught up in narcissism, you're just too caught up in your own world to really pay attention to anyone else's world. You've probably seen this in some of your relationships, or maybe in yourself. It's basically a matter of it being all about you, with no focus on the other person. Learn more about symptoms of narcissism here, and read on for what to do about it.
First, you'll want to learn empathy. To overcome narcissism and develop a healthy self love, you have to learn to walk a mile in the other person's shoes.
It is good to look honestly at your own weaknesses and shortcomings. One way to do this is to ask friends, family and co-workers to list your strengths and weaknesses. You will need to be "brutally honest" with yourself here.
Love and forgiveness are about letting go, and unhealthy anger is about holding on. The person dealing with narcissism has a hard time letting go and tends to be angry, so this is an essential part of the healing process.
Take an inventory of the hurt and harm you've caused, and make amends with the people you have affected in this way. This is like the third and fourth steps in the twelve step program. This involves taking full responsibility and sincerely apologizing for the wrongs you have done.
Another useful exercise would be to write in a journal about your narcissism, or your relationship with someone in your life who has this problem. The technique would be to "let the narcissist speak," by just writing from your pride, anger or sense of entitlement. This is how you become your own best anger management resource.
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If you had trouble with these questions, you probably have some tendencies toward narcissism. Not to worry, you're in good company.
The main thing to know here is that whatever your situation or your limitations, you don't have to live with this problem. You can heal yourself and your relationships, all that you have to do is set your mind to it and never give up. This web site has lots of great information to help you, so get started now!