How to Beat a Narcissist

Painting by John William Waterhouse, of Narcissus and Echo, the nymph who fell in love with him.

You can’t. Don’t even try.

Though I have a tip that worked like medicine. I told the narcissist to take the fight out of his relationships and bring the energy into a cause. To be a warrior for a cause and not fire wars within his intimate bonds.

Oh, he was so upset. The relationship ended, of course. I only noticed much later that it was because I hit where it hurt, like only the truth can hurt.

Not us who have a wide, or normal, emotional palette. We are freed by the truth. But narcissists? They hurt when they are faced with something real.

So how will this info help you? Know that a narcissist never commits himself to a cause greater than himself. Once you notice that, you can decide if you want to interact or not.

Narcissists are not the worst people; but they are certainly not the best. Despite the image they sell.

Their friends are also only fans. There are no people around them who are deep or part of their biography.

Two red flags: no meaningful, lasting relationships / company that consists of characters who feed the narcissist’s ego and are quite disposable (and he processes them in such a way that they sound homogeneous, like one person, because to him, they are the same person) and no cause greater than themselves / self-worship.

We all have narcissistic traits or behaviours; that is not narcissism. Narcissism is utter loneliness and a psychological disorder that makes relationships about themselves, not their true needs, but about boosting their self-picture. The narcissist has the same needs as you do, but their priority is never about a common, universal need, but about attention to their person and a trait they deem superior and seem to possess.

The narcissist admires no one except the slightly more successful version of himself: people who have managed to sell themselves in the most positive light. Great people — in their effort to better the conditions for all — are no role models to narcissists. More often than not, the great ones annoy them, because they got attention through their cause rather than a personality cult. That is something a narcissist can not comprehend; they just don’t live for a cause, they care about people only as long as they give them attention; nothing breaks their heart, no hardship, no pain, no injustice — except the failure to live up to their own projection of themselves and maybe the knowledge that some other people know that they aren’t too good, or that great.

Narcissists don’t contribute to groups, unless the group shows the cluster of characteristics they can identify with. In fact, narcissists often flock to each other. They just don’t stay with each other. Maybe they could  if they developed empathy… And for the sake of the rest of us, that would be a good move.

I don’t recommend having relationships with narcissists. Sometimes you can not choose that; but when you can… please do.

You can’t learn much from narcissists, except that at some point they will start to voice that they find you boring. (Everyone but their self-image bores them. Even their fans whose attention they depend on; though they won’t say that aloud, not in the beginning.) Know that they are telling you the truth about themselves when they say that you bore them, that this is the emotional spectrum they operate from. That is a good time to leave.

Or you will get hurt.

If behaviours don’t add up and you are left perplexed by a narcissist’s behaviour, accept that all they care about is a perfected, and the most polished picture, of themselves. Unless you are a narcissist yourself, you can not relate to that. And that can not warm you.

Therefore it is better to sever the tie and make yourself available to love and to genuine connections, while your heart is beating.

Listen to your heart.

NJ,
16 September 2016

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