Although we might not want to believe it, we no doubt all have at least one narcissist in our lives. Yep, I hate to break it to you, but these bad guys aren’t just creatures of fiction. They are in fact all around us and can be found at work, in your friendship group, and not to mention lurking on your favorite dating app waiting to woo you. This disorder has become such a phenomenon in recent years that clinical psychologists actually believe that a huge 5% of people have NPD (narcissistic personality disorder). So, with so many of these master manipulators around, it’s essential that we know how to deal with them in order to avoid slipping into their grasp. Here’s what you need to do if you have any sort of relationship with a narcissist.
What to do when faced with a narcissist…
Advice on what to do in the following contexts.
At work — Here, you have to fix limits from the get-go
As within any working environment, the vast mixture of people will always bring together certain individuals with a grandiose sense of importance and not to mention huge egos. When faced with a toxic manager, for example, it’s very important to set boundaries and make your positions clear. If your boss is the type to call, text, and email you, aka harasses you by every means necessary outside your working hours, then you need to let them know that this is unacceptable at the earliest opportunity. Without being aggressive or confrontational, you’ll have to calmly communicate that this behavior needs to be stopped, or you will take it further if necessary. Standing your ground will have a positive impact and could even scare your boss or coworker into correcting their attitude out of fear of being exposed and being made to look bad.
In love — Run for the hills as fast as you can!
Narcissists feel the need to control their partner’s every move and hate the idea of loosening their grip. Such toxic personality traits run so deeply that despite all the love, care, and affection in the world, nothing will change them. Although it seems sad and perhaps even a little dramatic, narcissistic traits can’t be rectified and just aren’t compatible with love and healthy relationships. The brutal truth is that these people are incapable of loving anyone other than themselves and will ultimately only ever break their partners down and crush their confidence in the long run. Well, how else can they make sure you stick around?
Now, if you want to preserve your mental health and avoid an insurmountable heartbreak, you’ll walk away as soon as the red flags start appearing. No matter how much someone with NPD claims to care about you, it’s all just a ploy and unfortunately, none of what they say can be trusted.
In your friendship group — Consider leaving their toxic clutches behind
Do you have that one friend or even family member who is constantly on social media looking for likes, boasting about how fabulous their life is, or taking endless selfies? Of course, you do, we all do! Well, although this might not sound like much of a problem, it’s actually way more harmful than you might think. Being surrounded by such needy and self-important people have a negative effect on our own self-esteem and not to mention our patience. A healthy friendship isn’t one in which you are constantly expected to be at your so-called friend’s beck and call. However, if this is the case, the best thing to do is to walk away and take your distance. Now, you don’t have to be cruel about it, but you need to make it clear that this behavior is triggering for you. That's right, instead of pandering to it, you need to put your own needs first.
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How to deal with a narcissistic tantrum? - 5 Things to do
Knowing how to deal with narcissistic rage is a real conundrum and is, above all, very unpredictable. When narcissists are confronted with diverging opinions, or feel underestimated, these unstable personalities often punish their victims with terrifying outbursts of anger and frustration. Being confronted by this degree of fury can be surprising and destabilizing, but doing the following things will help you survive this scary ordeal.
- 1) Distance yourself from them - This might catch them off guard and reverse the control element within your dynamic.
- 2) Stay calm - Getting worked up will only convince them that they have won. Don’t let them see you rattled.
- 3) Stand your ground - Just because someone is yelling at you doesn’t mean you have to sit back and take it. Don’t be bullied into thinking you no longer have a voice.
- 4) Don’t take things personally - Their rage is their problem, not yours!
- 5) Remind them of your boundaries - By respectfully reminding your aggressor of your boundaries, you instantly take the higher ground and affirm yourself.
What is the best way to handle a narcissist?
Here are 5 ways to regain power in the relationship and better manage the emotional abuse of the narcissist:
- 1) Educate the narcissist - Narcissists often don't really understand what they're doing because they've learned it naturally their whole lives. Teach them as you would a child, by being direct and explaining the consequences of their behavior.
- 2) Assert yourself - Know what you want and fight for it. Being with a narcissist is a constant power play, and if you give up that power play, you give up all your own freedom in the relationship. Use verbal rebukes that demand respect and put your mind first.
- 3) Face things head-on - Don't run away from an argument; you may think you're saving yourself from a bad night, but the narcissist will see it as another victory. Stand up, look him in the eye, and talk to him. This doesn't mean fighting and arguing, but standing your ground and making your case clearly and calmly.
- 4) Respect your boundaries - The key to setting boundaries with a narcissist is to stick to them. The narcissist will often push you too far just to see how far you will let him push you. He will probably try to cross them and watch what you do. If you respect your boundaries and maintain them, he will learn to respect you. If you don't, the situation will only get worse.
- 5) Impose consequences - A person with a narcissistic personality usually begins to change his behavior when things start to affect him personally. Just make sure it's not an empty threat. Only talk about consequences if you are prepared to carry them out as planned. Otherwise, he won't believe you next time.
Editor’s opinion — You need to think of your own feelings before anyone else’s.
Having narcissists in your life is quite simply exhausting and will inevitably bring you and your mood down. Although it may sound harsh, you can’t take on everyone else’s problems and successfully deal with them. At times, we all need to be a bit selfish, especially when it comes to our own mental health. If, however, despite everything, you still feel unable to walk away from someone who displays dangerous narcissistic behaviors, you could try to encourage them to seek medical advice from a mental health professional. Being accompanied could lead them to recognize their problem and might even give them the motivation they need to work on themselves.
🤗 Understand yourself, accept yourself, be happy... Let’s do it here and now!
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