Dealing with Narcissistic People

We commonly encounter narcissistic people in all areas of our life: they are the impossibly self absorbed individuals who love being the center of attention and have a great sense of entitlement. Every conversation you have with them inevitably ends up being about them and their life and they can often be rather tedious. So what is the best way of dealing with narcissistic people in everyday life situations?

How you deal with a narcissist depends very much on their relationship to you. If the narcissist is someone you do not know very well, it is usually easier to walk away and let them bore somebody else with their self obsession: life is too short to waste valuable time listening to a narcissist talk about themselves for hours.

If the narcissist is someone you work with, or worse, your boss, this can be a very tricky situation to deal with. Most of us cannot afford to alienate someone we have to work with on a daily basis, which means we have to be diplomatic about how we deal with that person.

Narcissists in the workplace are great at avoiding responsibility for anything. They are quick to take the credit and lap up the praise when a job goes well, but they are usually the first to pass the buck when it all goes badly wrong. Narcissists are also arch manipulators, so be wary of their Machiavellian machinations or you might find yourself on the losing side in a corporate power struggle.

Dealing with narcissistic people when they are your friend can be challenging. The chances are good that if this individual is your friend, it is because you are the kind of person who is an easy target and is great at showering the narcissistic person with positive attention. If this sounds like you, you need to make a concerted effort to stand up for yourself a little more and make it quite clear that you are not there to shine the light of glory on your so-called friend.

Many narcissistic people don’t realize they are so self absorbed, but unfortunately a true narcissist is unlikely to change, which means that having their undeniable faults pointed out to them will probably cause a bad reaction. Ultimately you will need to decide how much the friendship means to you: just do not be too surprised if you are the one continually making all the running.

Having a narcissist as a close family member is the epitome of problematic. We all accept we cannot choose our family, but at the same time, we expect our family to be there for us when times are tough. Sadly, the very nature of a narcissist means that they will be last person who is there for you in your hour of need. A narcissist finds it impossible to empathize with your problems therefore they are not interested when your life is heading down the toilet bowl in a big way.

The only way to cope with a narcissistic relative is to accept that they are who they are. You will not be able to change them; all you can do is take a step back and accept that the problem is them, not you.

About Alexander Burgemeester

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