Are Narcissists Insecure? Of Course They Are, And Here Are 10 Reasons Why

Last updated by Katie M.

There is no denying that narcissistic personalities display some deeply worrying and disturbing traits, but what if these devious traits were just a means of protection? What if they were in fact a complete facade, fabricated to keep people away, in the hope of hiding their deepest darkest insecurities? After all, everyone has weak spots, even the most confident and put together of people, so why wouldn’t a narcissist deal with the same niggling doubts as everyone else? It's time we got to the bottom of this and discovered why these folks are so insecure.

Are Narcissists Insecure? Of Course They Are, And Here Are 10 Reasons Why

Although narcissists would like us to buy into their grandiose personalities and unshakable confidence, in reality, these folks doubt themselves at every twist and turn. Their inner turmoil is so great that they believe they have to compensate for it, by putting on an act of strength and insensitivity. Indeed, these individuals go to extreme lengths to preserve their insecurities and to hide their truths from people who they believe are susceptible to judge them for what they believe are shortcomings.

10 Examples that prove narcissists are insecure

And just like that, the facade slipped away...

1) They feel wholly inadequate

The unfortunate truth is that they never feel good enough in anything they do. Whether it is in their professional life or in their relationships, they never consider themselves to be up to the standard that people expect of them, which explains why they often lie and form an inflated sense of self around them. For fear of being judged and looked down upon, they’ll never admit that they are in a dead end job that they hate, and are definitely more likely to pretend that they are in the running to become CEO rather than accept the truth!

2) They often experience tough childhoods

As we all know by now, our formative years take place when we are very young and when it comes to our personalities, we are a product of our environment. Low levels of self-esteem are therefore concretized during our childhood and adolescence. In the particular case of a narcissistic personality disorder (NPD) the individual was more than likely constantly told that they were insufficient and useless by their family members and parents when they were a child. Now, their tough upbringings don’t excuse their present behavior, but it does go a long way in explaining why they act so deviously as adults.

>>> Find out whether narcissists are born or raised

3) They are anxious about their relationships

Relationships, both professional and romantic, are like labyrinths for narcissists, because they simply don’t know how to approach them. Plus, when they feel themselves getting in too deep, they panic and want to run without actually thinking anything through, which gets them into more trouble and anguish. It has to be said that their relationships are always toxic as well as demonstrations of vicious cycles which lead them to intense destruction. The bottom line is, a relationship with a narcissist will never end well... 

Narcissists may have a deep-seated fear of abandonment and rejection, which is why they worry about losing their partner. In fact, their fear of losing their spouse is often motivated more by a desire to retain a source of validation and admiration than by any real emotional attachment. They have a constant need for admiration and approval to maintain their fragile self-esteem, and their spouse is often seen as an extension of their own image. Consequently, the loss of a spouse can be experienced as a blow to their ego and sense of grandeur.

4) They always view other people in a negative light

Now, because they are so insecure and unwilling to get to know people for whom they really are, their narcissistic traits mean that they are hugely judgmental. They have such reservations that people have poor intentions towards them, largely because of what they see on social media, that they build walls up around themselves and refuse to truly let others in. Their hearts are well as truly closed, which would explain why none of their relationships are pure.

5) They are incapable of dealing with their true emotions

In the eyes of a narcissist, emotions are synonymous with weakness and risk, making them vulnerable. Their tough upbringings often mean they have never really received much love, affection or guidance and are therefore unable as adults to express their feelings. Plus, they believe that they need to appear strong in order for the people in their life to respect them. After all, what could be worse than not feeling respected and admired?

6) They want to conceal their pain

Years of poor treatment, abuse and insults have lead to them building a fort around them as a way to protect themselves for disappointments and betrayals. Although it may not seem like it, deep down these folks are suffering and calling out for someone to take them into their arms and listen to them. The real problem here is that their pain is so deep-rooted and unaddressed that instead of making them empathic to the suffering of others, it does the complete opposite.

7) They have high levels of stress and anxiety

Let’s not beat around the bush here, individuals with this personality disorder have very poor mental health, simply because they are unaware of how to deal with their emotions and too proud to ask for help. Their stress and anxiety accompany them everywhere, yet they are never addressed and instead simply swept under the rug, due to the fact that they refuse to appear as troubled.

>>> Discover the 5 main symptoms of anxiety

8) They are perfectionists, but never satisfied

Narcissists are experts in hiding behind a facade and have learned to perfect their act over the years, and this means that they expect the best of everyone else too. They simply don’t have time for errors or excuses, they demand that everything and everyone meet their requirements, otherwise all hell will break loose. Now, the trouble with having such high expectations is that no one can ever meet them, which provokes a spiral of rage within these folks.

9) If they could, they’d spend much of their time alone

If truth be told, NPD sufferers wouldn’t bother socializing or associating themselves with others if they didn’t believe their entourage could help further them along. Narcissists see socializing and making friends as a complete waste of time, and will only ever make an effort to get along with people whom they believe could help them in some form or another.

10) They are completely unable to trust

That’s right, trust is virtually a foreign word to them and unfortunately when they try to look it up, Google Translate just doesn’t come up with the goods. These individuals are convinced that everyone is out to get them, which is why they need to be more cunning than the rest. Their negative views are what prevents them from finding happiness and establishing genuine connections.

📍 - FAQ - 📍

What are the insecurities of a narcissist?

While narcissistic people may exhibit behaviors and attitudes that suggest high self-confidence, they may also experience internal insecurities. Here are some common insecurities among narcissists:

  • Deep low self-esteem: Beneath the mask of self-confidence and arrogance, these people may actually experience fragile self-esteem and deep insecurity about their self-worth. They may fear rejection or not being loved for who they really are.

  • Excessive sensitivity to criticism: These folks can be highly sensitive to criticism and negative remarks, as these challenge their idealized self-image. They may react defensively or hostilely to protect themselves against these feelings of insecurity.

  • Constant need for validation and admiration: They constantly seek admiration and validation from others to boost their self-esteem. They may feel anxious and insecure if they don't receive enough attention or recognition, as this jeopardizes their perception of their own worth.

  • Fear of failure: Narcissists may fear failure and imperfection, as it challenges their image of perfection and superiority. They may find it hard to accept mistakes or failures, and may go to great lengths to maintain a façade of constant success.

Are narcissists aware of their insecurities?

Narcissism classically refers to self-love and is normally part of the psychic construction process of individuals. So much so, that psychologists believe that low self-esteem is the main cause of this personality disorder. That’s right, narcissism is underpinned by a lack of self-confidence, however, folks with this personality disorder seem unable to accept this so-called flaw. Indeed, instead of recognizing and acknowledging their lack of confidence, they act out and inflict their frustration on other people.

Narcissists are acutely aware that they lack in self-esteem, but aren’t motivated enough to work on themselves to improve it. They are plagued with insecurities; from their looks, their professional success, (or lack of it), to their relationship history. However, these personalities simply aren’t equipped with the tools necessary to address the issues in question and prefer to repress their insecurities and act like they don’t exist.

In conclusion, yes, of course they are aware that they suffer from a severe lack of confidence in all areas of their life, however, they'll never willingly change this. Therefore, they'll continue on the road to frustration, and will destroy those they are jealous of.

>>> Read; what does a narcissist want in a relationship?

💡Practical tip time💡 - How to overcome your insecurities

It's time to stop beating yourself up and instead focus on building yourself up! Here's what you need to do in order to build your confidence levels:

  • Congratulate yourself on your small successes
  • Think about the people who appreciate you when you feel that you're not liked.
  • Cultivate positive thoughts and avoid harsh self-criticism
  • Visualize yourself succeeding at what you fear you'll fail at
  • Set yourself realistic goals and expectations.
  • Visualize people congratulating you, yourself first
  • Accept compliments, no matter who gives them to you

Do narcissists admit they are insecure?

No, a narcissist will never ever admit that they are insecure about themselves because they are too proud. For them, admitting that they are insecure is synonymous with being weak and feeble. These controlling personalities hide their insecurities and weaknesses under layers of fake confidence and in your face bravado. These folks lack confidence in every area of their lives, be it professionally or in love. However, they do recognize that they are unconfident, yet they are unwilling to share this information with anyone else, which is unfortunate because their insecurities are at the root of their terrible behavior.

Deep down narcissistic people realize that they are insecure and lack confidence in themselves, however, they will never admit this. For them, feeling insecure is akin to being weak and feeble, which is why they prefer to act tough and hide behind a well preserved façade. These abusers are deeply damaged people who struggle to process their emotions and feelings. In fact, instead of dealing with what they feel, they opt to become completely combative and often take a turn for the worst, personality wise. In fact, the only times when they admit to feeling insecure, is when they feel like they need to use a powerful argument to manipulate their victims into staying. Here, they definitely won't hesitate to pin their poor behavior on their confidence issues and therefore use them as an excuse. However, although they may appear convincing, it is important to realize that they are totally insincere.

Editor’s opinion - They create a persona to hide behind

No one like to fess up to the shortcomings and weaknesses, but narcissists take their denial to the next level and often form a strong persona to hide behind, in order to conceal their suffering. Now, if we are honest, many of us run from what we deem as character failures, however, in this case, choosing to remain completely oblivious to them can become dangerous and lead to even more pain. Recognizing our insecurities isn’t an easy feat, but it is key in ensuring that other people aren’t put in danger because of them.

🤗 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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