While we may refer to others as narcissistic when they exhibit self-centered behavior and lack empathy in certain situations, narcissism is a legitimate and diagnosable mental health condition. Nonetheless, people can still demonstrate narcissistic traits without being diagnosed under the DSM-5. These traits can include manipulating other people, having an inflated ego, and needing praise from others constantly. Therefore, if you have ever encountered someone like this, you may have wondered what the proper way of how to deal with a narcissistic parent, boss, or co-worker. This is why we’ve put together a list of the correct and incorrect ways to interact with narcissistic individuals. To learn more about this, keep reading.
- Narcissism is a diagnosable mental health problem
- Not knowing how to deal with a narcissist can lead to significant problems and stress in your life
- Reach out for support from others when dealing with a narcissist
- Do not expect a narcissist to change
- Narcissists are attracted to people who they feel superior to
What should you not do to a narcissist?
Not everyone knows how to deal with a narcissistic individual, which can often cause adverse effects on your physical, mental, and emotional health. Therefore, it is essential to know what not to do as it can trigger more conflict in your life.
- Don’t share every thought or feeling with them as they will manipulate you.
- Avoid justifying or explaining yourself as they will use this information to gaslight you.
- Do not minimize their toxic behaviors.
- Do not expect them to feel empathy for what they have done.
- Never underestimate the power of their manipulation, deception, and ability to humiliate you or other people.
How does a narcissist act when hurt?
Furthermore, when you are unaware of how to deal with a narcissistic individual, it may cause them to lash out against you in what is known as narcissistic rage. This rage is caused when they feel their ego is threatened or exposed. As a result, these individuals can become highly defensive and frustrated. Additionally, narcissistic rage can also occur as a result of:
- Not getting their way.
- Not being the center of attention.
- Experiencing feelings of being out of control in their environment
- They are being held accountable for their behavior
- Experiencing criticism from other people
Moreover, when these triggers occur, narcissists tend to lash out in various ways. And while this rage will differ between individuals, some of these behaviors can look like the following.
- They may punch a hole in the wall when you forget to put away the dishwasher.
- A narcissist will damage the car of an employee who was promoted over them.
- They may become violent towards their spouse or children if they feel they embarrassed them in front of other people.
- Will break all the glasses in your home if a guest notices a smudge on their glass.
- They will belittle their children when they do not win at sports or do well on a test.
- Will blame you for their problems and make you feel bad or guilty for their actions or behaviors.
- Make you feel like you are the crazy one by gaslighting you.
What type of person does a narcissist want?
Furthermore, they can often take advantage of you when you do not know how to deal with a narcissistic spouse, parent, or co-worker. Even more so, narcissistic individuals are attracted to individuals with certain personality types as it is easier for them to victimize and manipulate them without being stopped. This is why it is essential to know what kinds of people narcissists want in their life to maintain control. Let’s take a closer look at this below.
- Someone who will go out of their way to compliment them and make them feel good about themselves.
- People who are overly loyal and forgiving
- Individuals who are over accommodating to their needs, regardless of if they are required to sacrifice their own wellbeing to please them
- Those who look to others to help them make decisions, rather than looking inward to help them make choices
- Someone who feels responsible for a narcissist’s actions and behaviors and is there to pick up the pieces
- Individuals who are impressive and hold high-status positions in society so they can reflect positively on themselves in the eyes of others
- People who overlook their flaws
- Someone less likely to stand up for themselves or leave them
How to deal with a narcissist?
Moreover, now that we’ve learned how narcissists can act and what kind of person they are attracted to let’s look at how to properly deal with a narcissistic individual, so you do not fall victim to their manipulation below.
- Realize there is no way to change the actions or behaviors of a narcissist as hard as you try. You will not win.
- Accept that the negativity directed towards you is projecting how they feel internally.
- Be assertive and implement boundaries in your life. This will help you determine when the right time is to move on.
- Remember your self-worth and speak up for yourself because they will make you feel small and worthless.
- Search for a support system from a third party to express your thoughts and feelings healthily, whether it be a counselor, friend, co-worker, or family member
- Insist that narcissists take actions to change their behaviors rather than make promises. They are notorious for making promises they cannot keep and are often insincere when making them.
- Come to terms with the idea that this individual may need professional help, and it is not your responsibility to fix them.
- Remain calm for your own benefit, as narcissists enjoy watching others become upset.
Are there any other methods of how to deal with a narcissistic individual? Let us know in the comments.