Not all narcissists are CEOs, celebrities, or crime show characters.
In fact, they may be around you more than you think.
According to Dr. W. Keith Campbell, a professor of psychology at the University of Georgia, narcissistic personality disorder is rare, but it does exist in 1-2% of the population.
“Clinically, when it destroys marriages, ruins business relationships, and over-confidence at work causes mental breakdown, it becomes an obstacle,” Campbell says of people with the disorder. Stated.
But narcissism is a personality trait and everyone fits somewhere on that spectrum, said Dr. Craig Malkin, a lecturer in psychology at Harvard Medical School and a licensed psychologist in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
The top 10% of people with the highest levels of this trait are defined as narcissists, which means one in ten people can be considered a narcissist, he added.
But how do you spot the people who, at best, are likely to bore you with their exploits at a party, or, at worst, inflict some kind of abuse on them? Share 5 things you can do to protect yourself.
According to Malkin, there are three types of narcissists that can be distinguished by how they make them feel special. Some are harder to find than others.
Overt narcissists deal with feeling superior to others, and they may be the first ones that come to mind when you think of narcissism, says Malkin.
“For some reason, there’s always this feeling that no matter what you do, you’re not good enough, and that makes you pale in comparison to others,” says Malkin. “Their achievements are even better.”
A covert narcissist feels special to be seen as someone who has suffered their greatest misfortunes or misunderstandings, he added. The hardships this person is going through will inevitably overshadow the issues you are dealing with.
Third, there are communal narcissists who feel special because they are considered the nicest person in the group.
“They want them to understand that they’ve never met a more caring and dedicated person,” Malkin said.
How you feel about the person can be a good indicator of how that person measures up on the narcissist scale. According to Malkin, people who have had relationships with multiple narcissists are likely to experience significant self-doubt.
People who work with narcissists often say: “Maybe it’s better to try to soften your approach, maybe not raise your voice, or be less aggressive,” says Malkin.
Such people are often disconnected from their emotions, he added.
How do you know you’re dealing with a covert narcissist and not just someone who really needs support? See how you feel. Malkin said.
Covert narcissists don’t share their vulnerabilities, he says. “If you don’t see real tears, or don’t feel drawn to them, it’s a display, not an expression.”
Conversations (and relationships) have to go back and forth. You share your vulnerability and your partner shows you care. Then they will share your weaknesses and you will return your concern.
Not so much with narcissists.
“Usually, they are uncomfortable with caring, connected conversations that share real and vulnerable emotions such as sadness, fear, and loneliness,” says Malkin.
Many people may have some fear of opening up, he added, but narcissists deal with that fear by maintaining a sense of being special.
Not only do they avoid admitting that they feel sad or lonely, but they care so much about themselves that they may say they don’t actually feel that way, according to Malkin. That’s what I’m talking about.
“Not only do they avoid acknowledging this very common human experience and feeling, but they seem to hold themselves back that they feel better than you in comparison,” he said. Ta.
The desire to feel special often prevents narcissists from forming intimate relationships, says Malkin.
“Narcissism is about obsessively maintaining the feeling that relationships don’t really matter,” he added.
“Narcissism generally means having an exaggerated view of yourself and a lack of close, emotionally warm relationships with other people,” says Campbell.
A narcissist relationship may be defined by what Malkin calls the triple E, rather than true friendship, romantic partners, or family ties.
• Exploitation, “doing anything at the expense of others to make yourself feel special”.
• Right, which is “act as if the world should obey their will”.
• Empathy disorder, which is “feeling special compared to others”. They are people who are totally oblivious to the fact that other people have their own feelings, needs and perspectives. ”
Malkin said these trends could lay the groundwork for verbal, emotional and physical abuse.
Deborah Ashway, a licensed clinical mental health counselor in New Bern, North Carolina, says it can be difficult to spot a narcissist.
“They use a lot of charm to draw people into their world to follow them and make them think they’re better than others,” she added.
Don’t beat yourself up if you find yourself caught in a narcissist’s web, she said.
“It’s very difficult because the façades are so good and each one is slightly different,” Ashway said. “People can go years without realizing it.”
Think it’s time to distance yourself from the narcissist? Try gray-locking, a method for dealing with a narcissist. This is how you make yourself as uninteresting as possible.