How To Stop Being A Narcissist - 15 Steps Towards Self-Improvement

Last updated by Katie M.

Whilst many narcissists would never dream of changing their ways, those with a less severe form of this personality disorder are more likely to alter their ways. Now, many of us, and probably rightly so, tend to believe that narcissists are completely devoid of any empathy and that they are rigid and domineering by nature, but that’s not to say they can’t work towards being better people. After all, change IS certainly possible when you want it, and especially when you are willing to work for it. Admittedly, no one can just switch off their narcissistic button within themselves, but they can do things to be better.

How To Stop Being A Narcissist - 15 Steps Towards Self-Improvement

Now, the road to recovery from narcissism is a long and winding one, however, that shouldn’t put sufferers of this personality disorder off from wanting to alter their behavior and do better. Self-improvement is within everyone’s reach, all you have to do is seize the opportunity with determination.

>>> Read; Can a narcissist change?

15 Steps on how to leave the narcissist lifestyle behind

It's time to become the best version of yourself!

1) Be attentive to feedback

Now, no one likes hearing negative feedback about themselves, and least of all not people with narcissistic tendencies, but this is one of the first steps to moving away from this toxic lifestyle. Hearing the impact you've had on people over the years could give you the shock you need to alter your behavior patterns for the better. And, although the feedback might have a negative impact on you at first, it will do you the world of good in the long run when it comes to reaching a realization.

2) Acknowledge past trauma and wounds

Childhood trauma, past breakups, and professional failures are all wounds that we unconsciously carry around with us, without exactly realizing how damaging they are to our mental health and behavior. Going through tough situations leaves us with mental scars that can force us to act out and inevitably lose our way. However, once we acknowledge that we are part of our journey, we'll definitely feel lighter and stronger.

3) See a therapist

Narcissistic behavioral issues can't be resolved within a day, however, consulting a mental health professional or a licensed clinical therapist will soon help lessen the damaging patterns. Seeking therapy isn't something that these folks typically like to do, but it's a necessary step for them to undertake, plus it will give them more understanding of why they act in certain ways.

4) Engage in self-reflection

Overcoming narcissism is no easy feat, however, it does require a certain amount of soul-searching and a true willingness to reassess certain behaviors and choices. By really honing in on concrete examples, these toxic personalities will definitely grasp that they need to take steps toward changing. After all, once they are caught up in the vicious circle of abuse, they often become oblivious to it.

5) Stop belittling

Yes, this is an ingrained habit, but it needs to be stopped if these folks want to look for redemption and eventual forgiveness. People with narcissistic traits just can't help themselves at points, and often find themselves criticizing their entourage and putting them down. That's right, they just can't resist having a few digs at people.

6) Reach out to your old victims

By reconnecting with their old victims, they'll eventually learn to build some empathy for them and may even begin to regret their actions. Likewise, this may even make their victims feel better and could even lead to an apology and a truce being put in place. It's certainly healthier to draw a line under certain issues and points because this is what allows people to move on positively.

7) Figure out what triggers you

Knowing what triggers you is an important part of the healing process, and figuring it out will give you indications as to which people or situations to avoid going forward. Do certain family members or people in your life bring out your dark side? Or perhaps your working environment does? In any case, you need to put your finger on what unleashes your toxic behavior.

8) Focus on your good qualities

Now, people with narcissistic personality disorders obviously get a terrible reputation from the get-go, however, that doesn't mean that they are evil to the bone. Whilst they admittedly do some horrific things, they aren't all bad and do have some redeeming qualities, they just need to be found.

>>> Find out how narcissists behave sexually

9) Be proud of your progress

Rome wasn't built in a day, and the road to healing your soul and changing your outlook will undoubtedly be a long one. But, that's not to say that you shouldn't be proud of the stepping stones you make towards becoming a better person.

10) Give journaling a go

Writing in your journal will give you an idea of how far you've come, plus it will also provide you with an outlet for your frustrations and fears. Sometimes jotting down your thoughts is the best form of therapy around and will help you fix realistic goals.

11) Reconnect with nature

Nature is one of life's best healers and has a way of reconnecting you with what really matters. Going on a few walks and taking the time to meditate will boost your serotonin level and give you the time to recognize the error of your ways. Establishing a link with what's important in life will also help you reevaluate your lifestyle, goals, and ambitions.

12) Relax the control element

Narcissists love being in control, and their need to constantly pull the strings is what pushes them to act in such despicable ways. So, if they let go of their need to be in the driving seat and instead became more spontaneous, they'd definitely be able to loosen up a little.

13) Think before you speak

Nastiness often spews from the fact that many of us are incapable of thinking before we speak. Indeed, narcissist abuse involves putting others down and crushing their confidence with your words. That's right, having no filter can be extremely hurtful for those on the end of the vicious comments.

>>> Find out how being in a narcissistic relationship changed me

14) Do nice things for other people

Performing a few good deeds never hurt anyone, plus by making positive choices and doing nice things, you'll concretely prove that you are willing to change and that you are taking your road to recovery seriously. After all, actions speak louder than words.

15) Recognize that time is a healer

No one can click their fingers and magically expect things to be forgotten about or for the past to be erased. However, over time, with consistent efforts and positive changes, things will get better, your relationships will improve and people will begin to forgive you for your previous wrongdoings.

Can a narcissist be cured?

Narcissism isn't an illness that can be cured but a personality trait that is pushed to the extreme, making the manipulator's profile fall into the psychiatric field. This type of person is incapable of feeling sorrow, guilt, and accountability. However, he is aware of his perversion, loves it, and cultivates it at the slightest opportunity because it is his entire psychological construction. Although, these folks can never be cured, that's not to say they can't do better and act in more appropriate ways.

Here are 6 reasons why a narcissist can't ever be cured:

  • 1) Their past is too heavy.
  • 2) Manipulation is their go-to move.
  • 3) They are aware of the harm they are doing.
  • 4) Love and respect are alien concepts to them.
  • 5) They have no empathy and therefore cannot question themselves.
  • 6) They never seem to get hurt, so why would they change?

Does narcissism get worse with age?

The short answer is yes, narcissists get worse with age and become even more ruthless. After all, a narcissist is sick and a pathological individual whose personality disorder is unchangeable. Even with time and age, this manipulator will not change for the better, because these folks are structurally incapable of questioning themselves and evaluating their decisions. While wisdom comes from experience, the narcissist is stuck in a mental straitjacket from which they cannot escape. These people are emotionally immature, meaning they have no concept of regret or remorse. Their lives are just a painting, on which they add layers of paint without ever looking back on the first one. They only seek to fill the painting and make it more and more beautiful, at the expense of others and his previous colors. There is therefore no room for questioning or for the regrets of youth. The only thing that concerns these people is themselves. However, as they age, they often become more and more frustrated with their situations and therefore can become more ruthless and devious.

Editor’s opinion - Victims will be dubious of this sudden change

Trusting that a narcissist can do better and become a decent person is definitely no easy feat, especially if you have suffered abuse at the hands of one. That’s why no one should force you into trusting them or repairing your relationship with them. It’s only natural to be skeptical when someone has taken advantage of you with such venomous force.

🤗 Understand yourself, accept yourself, be happy... Let’s do it here and now!


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Article presented by Katie M.

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Is there any articles or research about the relationship between alcoholism and narcissism, because I have both. I've been hiding it from my family and friends for over a decade now, but I don't know how much more I can hold it back.

Mark Leach a year ago

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Wengood's playlist

Wengood's favorite tunes 🎵

Wengood's playlist


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How to detect a narcissist?

"Be yourself; everyone else is already taken." 

- Oscar Wilde