We hear many people talk about dealing with narcissists, dating narcissists, having narcissistic parents, friends, and more. What exactly is a narcissist, though? A Narcissist is simply someone who takes an unusually high interest in themselves. Narcissism can stem from a combination of a person’s background, environment, and genetics.
Sometimes they are easy to spot and sometimes not as much. Narcissists seem to have a huge sense of entitlement and often participate in manipulative and controlling behavior. When someone stands up to a narcissist, they will often turn it back on the other person and gaslight them by making them feel wrong or crazy. Narcissists also lack emphathy, need admiration and tend to be quite arrogant, so interactions with them can be tough.
As, I’ve been outlining all of these details, a person or two you know probably came to mind. There are certainly quite a few narcissists mucking about. So, how can you deal with the narcissists in your life? Well, here are a few solid tips:
- When dealing with a narcissist, try to have reasonable expectations. Realize that they are not likely to change so don’t be dissapointed when they don’t.
- Set personal boudaries with the narcissist. This will allow you to protect yourself from being hurt by this person.
- Try not to be too emotional. They often use their behavior to get a reaction, and will be dissapointed when you don’t have as big of a reaction as they expected.
- Avoid power struggles with them. Engaging in that manner is only going to stress you out and you aren’t going to win the war.
- Keep track of what’s been said. You may want to refer back to this in later conversations as narcissists often lie or deny what they’ve said or done.
- Decide which fights you want to pick. You may be fighting all the time with a narcissist, so choose your battles with care.
- Look for others to support you. Your self-esteem may start to falter when you are dealing with a narcissist because they love to make you look or feel stupid, wrong, or crazy. Talk through the situation with others so that you can get different points of view and better overall support for yourself.
- Take some time off from them when and if you need to. This break may be temporary or permanent depending on the situation.
All relationships and situations are different but dealing with a narcissist can be tricky and emotionally draining. Do your best to protect yourself in the process and set healthy boundaries to improve your interactions. Your mental health is important.