Usually, the word self-love gets tossed around heaps in our selfie-obsessed, celebrity-driven culture, often to describe someone who seems excessively vain or full of themselves. Based on psychological terms, narcissism doesn’t mean self-love. Narcissists are the people who can have traits that include a grand sense of self-importance, an obsession with fantasies of unlimited success, power, brilliance, and beauty. They may believe they're special and have a need for excessive admiration. All the traits despite appearing to be mild can be downright threatening. So it becomes crucial for one to identify the symptoms which can help one know whether they are narcissistic or are just self-confident.
Look for these signs and you will know:
1. Grandiose sense of self-importance - Narcissists believe they are unique or “special” and can only be understood by other special people. They feel that they are too good for anything whether average or ordinary. Being related and associated with alternative high-status folks, places, and things is their sole need.
2. Lives in a fantasy world that supports their delusions of grandeur- Since reality doesn’t support their grandiose view of themselves, narcissists live in a fantasy world propped up by distortion, self-deception, and magical thinking. The line between reality and virtuality is blurred.
3. Needs constant praise and admiration- Narcissists need constant food for their ego, so they feel comfortable around people who are willing to cater to their obsessive need for assurance.
4. Sense of entitlement- Narcissists always expect favourable treatment as their rightful awaited reward. They truly believe that whatever they require or need, they should get that in life.
5. Exploits others without guilt or shame- Narcissists never develop the ability to identify with the feelings of others to put themselves in other people’s shoes. As a result of this, they don’t think twice about taking advantage of others to accomplish their own meaningful ends.
6. Frequently demeans, intimidates, bullies, or belittles others - Narcissists feel threatened whenever they come in contact with a person who appears to have something they lack. This mostly occurs when they are popular. They’re also threatened by people who challenge them in any way.
Getting the right treatment can help make your life more rewarding and enjoyable.
- People with Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD) are often resistant to change and engage in the blame game more than often.
- Even slight criticisms and arguments take a toll on their health and people near try to go along as they don’t want to be on the receiving end of their rage and coldness.
There is no specific cause of NPD and is said to be an interplay of genetic, social and neurological factors which leads to the development of such personality. Hence the probability of your narcissistic traits to be a personality disorder is extremely rare but don’t hesitate to consult.