By: Dr. Linda Mintle
“I’m having trouble with my boss. He always thinks he is right. I think he is a narcissist.”
“He’s impossible to deal with because he doesn’t see how often he puts me down and thinks he is better than I am.”
‘She’s always telling me how great and important she is. It’s gets old!”
These words represent the frustration people feel when dealing with someone who has the characteristics of a narcissist. Narcissist are people who exaggerate their achievements, feel they are superior in their talents, are preoccupied with success, power, brilliance and often believe that they can only be understood by other high status people. They crave admiration and have a strong sense of entitlement. Empathy is lacking and they come off as haughty and exploitative of others.
On this weekend’s show, we talk about the roots of narcissism and how to deal with people who have these qualities. Guest Dr. Fred DiBlasio discusses current brain research and how that impacts narcissism.
Here are a few pointers in terms of dealing with a narcissist.
• If you can find a way to make a request while appealing to their ego, they will listen better. While you may not like doing this, there is incredible insecurity underlying the narcissism.
• Recognize that narcissists usually do not trust people. Even though they appear overly confident, they live in anxiety with the fear that their weakness will be overcome by someone else. Thus, the overcompensating.
• You don’t have to respond to everything that is said, as they can be master manipulators. Sometimes less is better.
• Avoid arguments because you usually can’t win. Acknowledge their feelings and don’t continue to push your point.
• Don’t look for empathy as this is a skill that has to be taught.
• Give positive feedback when you can. It helps to focus on the positives in order to not build a wall of negativity.
• Avoid challenges as you will probably lose. Often the narcissist has low frustration tolerance.
• Forgive often as you don’t want to build a root of bitterness towards the person.
• Pray, God can work on anyone. Transformation is His great work in us. When the narcissist becomes frustrated that his close relationships are failing, he or she is often open to the work of the Holy Spirit. Continue to point the person to the Lord and how Christ in them gives them the power to change in their relationships and be more like Christ.
• Offer help. Now that we have a better idea of the brain research, people are more open to understanding how they are wired and what they need to do in order to be successful in their interpersonal relationships.
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