Can we all take a second to discuss and recognise what Narcissism is and looks like?
I started to recognise and understand narcissistic personality types back when I was a teenager. It honestly has not made detecting them on first impression any easier, but it does allow me to identify consistent traits and then leave when his/her true colours inevitably show.
Narcissists are people who invalidate your feelings and repeatedly hold their own best interests high above yours. They might make you feel crazy, as though you’re constantly in the wrong, are possessive of you, highly sensitive to criticism and prone to rage-like reactions.
Sort of like a magnet, people known as “empaths” who exhibit a lot of soft, gentle, giving emotions naturally attract people like narcissists, who are perpetually exploiting anything they can get from others in order to feed their fragile egos.
Here is a list of traits that should be raising a serious red flags if you encounter them. If you are close to someone who ticks many of the following boxes, it is probably time to create distance with them.
A narcissist is someone who:
- Is charming and charismatic
- Lacks empathy towards other people
- Has an exaggerated view of their own importance and abilities
- Is often dismissive of your feelings or viewpoints
- Is prone to rage, temper or tantrums
- Is overly confident
- Has an overly impressive or showy persona (termed “grandiose”)
- Feels entitled
- Pursues perfection
- Is rather superficial
- Enjoys and pursues admiration
- Often idealizes people of power and status
- Acts arrogantly
- Is deeply avoidant of any form of shame (points if you can spot this one)
- Is frustrated with themselves and deeply insecure (though they will not want to show you this)
Being close to a narcissist feels like being subtly put down, or slowly being silenced. It feels like you’re always in the wrong for something. As if you’re always walking on eggshells to make sure you please them and that you’re slowly going crazy because you’re never quite good enough. This is NOT the case.
You are actually experiencing someone’s lifelong insecurities being taken out on you. Narcissists love to isolate you, as they NEED a continual source of energy and praise. They can’t give it to themselves, because deep down they feel worthless. Therefore they will try everything to convince you of the opposite. They only want you to listen to their viewpoint, and can be VERY convincing. However it does NOT matter whether they realize how hurtful they are being or not. No matter how well you might think they mean, a narcissist is like a spider, and you need to get out out their web.
You cannot reason with a narcissist. Even moreso, you cannot change one alone. I’ve always believed I may have the means to but I am ALWAYS taught a rather cruel lesson instead. They do not want you to get too close, for the chance you might reveal their insecurities. Simply put, narcissism is a coping mechanism, and the subject does NOT want your sympathy.
Please, if you’re in a relationship, friendship or have a family member who makes you feel like this, limit or end your contact with them. You deserve to be loved unconditionally, you are whole, you are MORE THAN good enough JUST as you are, and you need not beg for or jump through hoops for someone’s love or attention. You are not crazy, and you may be reacting to but you are not CAUSING these behaviors. They are repeated patterns of emotional frustration, and you are the unfortunate trigger in this situation. Wrong place, wrong time. These traits are painfully and deeply ingrained in the self-absorbed person. Take care of yourself first and please, please know there’s much better things waiting for you.