If you’re dealing with a narcissist, know that you can take steps to stop their unhealthy behavior. In this article, we’ll give you a few tips on how to do just that, including identifying narcissistic traits and developing healthier coping mechanisms and communication skills. However, be aware that it can be very difficult to break free of the narcissist’s control and toxic behavior. It will take patience, courage, and a willingness to work with a professional therapist or counselor to overcome these challenges.
The most obvious narcissistic trait is an excessively grandiose sense of self-importance. This person believes they are naturally special and part of an elite class that deserves only the best. They fantasize about unlimited success, power, brilliance, attractiveness, and ideal love. These fantasy worlds shield them from feelings of inner emptiness and vulnerability, so any evidence that contradicts these beliefs is dismissed or downplayed. This can lead to aggression or even outbursts of rage when their fantasy world is challenged.
They also have difficulty processing unpleasant emotions such as fear, stress, and hurt feelings. Rather than arguing or getting angry, they often blame others for these feelings and dismiss them as “crazy,” “overreacting” or “oversensitive.” This is called gaslighting. You can help diffuse this behavior by removing these phrases from your vocabulary and recognizing that it’s okay to feel uncomfortable sometimes. This is the first step toward regaining humility and being a normal functioning human. To start, take a look at yourself in the mirror and identify any narcissistic traits that you might have picked up over time.