We have reached the grand finale of this topic, for the past few days we have been discussing narcissism, from the effects causes and definition today we will be discussing how to manage narcissistic tendencies in ourselves and people we meet …
Brief recap on definition and traits Narcissism goes by other names: “arrogance, conceit, vanity, grandiosity, and self-centeredness in extreme.” People with Narcissistic tendencies see themselves as fundamentally superior – they are (in their minds) special, unique, entitled, a false sense of self and so on.
5 tips to manage narcissism
(1) Managing the tendencies in ourselves
Self-awareness is the key… being aware that we have some of these tendencies we have been speaking about …putting ourselves in other peoples shoes helps us to be more empathetic , asking ourselves deep questions about our intentions when we do altruistic act, do we do it to be acknowledged by outsiders.. Being aware of our social media habits… do we really need constant validation every second… why do we constantly change our pictures, statues etc.? When we go for events or lovely places? Try and enjoy the moment, do not make it your sole purpose to be there to take pictures and get people to see where you are or have been… always remember that self-love comes from within not outside of ourselves.
Be aware and see whose toes you are stepping on… ask yourself if you are being so self-centred… Always question your actions even when you are in position of authority, religious leader, pastor, sudden fame, money… once this happens checks and balances are thrown out of the window…. Even though you might mean well, if you do not spend time reflecting on your thoughts and actions you might start being narcissistic… remember the road to hell is paved with good intentions. In a nutshell do lots of soul searching.
(2)Married or in a relationship with a narcissist
Having a daily relationship with a narcissist takes a lot of mental work: trying to figure out his motives or intentions; walking on eggshells when his mood shifts; blowing off negative or even nasty behaviour to keep the peace. There’s never a dull moment in a relationship with a narcissist, which can be exciting in the beginning but ultimately feels draining and infuriating If you can’t leave these are ways to manage them:
Ask yourself these questions did I subconsciously choose this relationship because I had narcissistic parents, I love a man in control and I do not mind sitting in the backseat. Is your sense of worth being attached to someone in the spotlight?
Does the negative image of yourself they foster with their criticisms and superior attitudes resonate with your own critical inner voices? Many people who become romantically involved with narcissistic partners have issues surrounding co-dependency. They will tolerate a certain amount of abuse because they don’t feel confident enough in themselves to set boundaries or be on their own
Once you have gone past the self-evaluation above Keep your expectations realistic. One shouldn’t have to lower their expectations in a relationship, but when dealing with a narcissist, there aren’t many choices. Please realize that your relationship will be completely one-sided because they are not capable of filling your emotional needs.
Do not take things personal because most of these inflated self-esteem, superiority and grandiosity is a cover up for the flip side of self-hate and feelings of inferiority.
Don’t rock the boat. Choose your battles wisely. Never question the narcissist’s knowledge or point out his/her lack of knowledge. They must be “right” at all times. Be prepared to listen, but don’t plan on speaking.
Convince your spouse that giving you what you want will reflect well on them. Remember, narcissists are very concerned with outward appearances. They might well be happy to play the role of good spouse if they believe it will earn them the high opinion of others.
Learn to keep yourself at an emotional distance. The narcissist will try to make you dependent upon them. If you keep your independence the narcissist is more likely to respect you.
Master the ability to foresee bad behaviour and reiterate to the narcissist the consequences for the specific behaviour. Make sure you both know what your non-negotiable are, because this is where you MUST draw the line.
Learn how to manipulate. Example: Your partner never wants to see your family during the holidays. Turn it around and make it about him, “We should go to my parents for the holidays. They think you are so funny, they just love your stories! ”Always apply flattery before suggesting something your spouse can do for you. When a narcissist’s ego is full, they are apt to feel generous. Use positive reinforcement. When your spouse supports you in some way or does anything that is unselfish, reinforce that behaviour with praise so that they will want to do it again.
(3) Narcissistic boss
Always empathize with your boss’s feelings, but don’t expect any empathy back. Look elsewhere for your own self-esteem. Understand that behind his display of infallibility, there hides a deep vulnerability.
Praise his achievements and reinforce his best impulses, but don’t be shamelessly sycophantic. An intelligent narcissist can see through flatterers and prefers independent people who truly appreciate him.
Show that you will protect his image, inside and outside the company. But be careful if he asks for an honest evaluation. What he wants is information that will help him solve a problem about his image. He will resent any honesty that threatens his inflated image of himself and will likely retaliate.
Give your boss ideas, but always let him take the credit for them. Find out what he thinks before presenting your views. If you believe he is wrong, show how a different approach would be in his best interest. Take his paranoid views seriously. Analyse them, don’t brush them aside—they often reveal sharp intuitions. Disagree only when you can demonstrate how he will benefit from a different point of view.
Hone your time-management skills. Narcissistic leaders often give subordinates many more orders than they can possibly execute. Ignore the requests he makes that don’t make sense. Forget about them. He will. But be careful: carve out free time for yourself only when you know there’s a lull in the boss’s schedule. Narcissistic leaders feel free to call you at any hour of the day or night. Make yourself available, or be prepared to get out.
If you can’t find a way to cope in this situation, the stress will get to the point where it begins to physical manifest itself through things like tension headaches and upset stomachs. The only solution will be to remove yourself from the situation by leaving.
(4)Narcissistic spiritual leaders
Most of these spiritual leaders do not have any checks and balances… Become part of a healthy check and balance by setting boundaries and limitations.
Try and avoid being manipulated and brain washed by having a personal relationship between you and your God/higher self…. Read and know your bible/ Koran or religious book for yourself so you can defend it and interpret it
Try and have an independent mind-set that will curb the manipulation and excessive praise and sycophantic ways we give our religious leaders… always remember they are servants of God and not God himself.. .we all have that channel to him…
Bear in mind how the holy men lived…. Jesus, Mohammed and Buddha, etc. the examples they portrayed… They were not tyrants… they demonstrated love and humility.
If the Narcissistic spiritual leader gets so overbearing and refuses to change and it’s something that you cannot deal with, you can always look for another spiritual house that resonates with you.
(5) Managing narcissistic parents (The adult child)
Be more assertive with them because now you are an adult…., set boundaries especially when it comes to issues of choosing your spouses and your career… typical example with the type of man and woman you want to marry…
In not so many words there is really no cure for narcissism especially in extremity which will then be narcissistic personality disorder (NPD)… The person will need therapy. Technically we can never change people, but we can manage our reaction towards them.
Self-awareness is the key, with this we can apply most of these tips and live happier fulfilling lives.