Narcissist is defined as, someone in pursuit of gratification from vanity or egotistic admiration of one’s own attributes. The term originated from Greek mythology, where the young Narcissus fell in love with his own image which was reflected in a pool of water. You might call a narcissistic person vain or even selfish.
Narcissism has been studied by many different agencies and fields, like the Mayo Clinic, who define narcissism as a personality disorder that is a mixture between nurture and nature, and can stem from childhood. It is said during childhood maybe a child didn’t feel loved or cherished enough and on the other hand maybe they were over indulged. It’s a fine line to walk between, and sometimes when those lines get crossed children are affected into adulthood.
How can you deal with a narcissist?
How can you deal with or handle being around someone who is a narcissist? Sometimes it can be difficult.
Here are a few ideas and tips that might make it a bit easier.
One – key point to remember when dealing with a narcissist is that whilst we are responsible for our words and actions, sometimes people are not aware of their impact, they may have past issues that they have not dealt with, treat them with kindness and compassion even if that may prove difficult.
Two – make your feelings known – many narcissists can be antagonistic, especially when you are trying to accomplish something. It can be difficult to complete tasks when someone is always trying to take your attention away from your task, so don’t be afraid make it known that you do not appreciate them interrupting you or your work. Don’t allow yourself to be derailed no matter how difficult it seems stay focused.
Three – keep your sense of humor, while this may be a more difficult it can help. It’s very easy to forget that this person has a personality disorder; they are not purposefully trying to pull your strings. When you call out the person’s inappropriate behavior do it with a smile or a laugh. Try and lighten the mood. You don’t have to be cruel to get your point across. You have heard the phrase “catch more bees with honey than salt”.
Four -this person may not realize they have an issue; it may never have even crossed their mind. If they are a good friend or colleague, maybe find a way to talk to them about your concerns. Be kind and caring, if they are receptive offer to help them look into finding the help they might need. Research has shown that people can in fact change their behavior, even long-standing behaviors.
Five – when dealing with anyone who might be having problems, patience is key. And while the situation might test your patience, take a breath and think things through before responding.
There are many different personality types, traits and behaviours. If we take the time to learn a little about those that push our buttons, and implement some strategies it can eliminate or alleviate stress and anxiety for both parties.