All you wanted to know about narcissism

All you wanted to know about narcissism

There is an opinion that we live in the era of narcissus. Almost each of us is in different extent susceptible to self-confession or challenge, and these are realities of public life. Parents seek to have ingenious children, young people dream of achieving success, earn a state, become famous, women – to have perfect appearance. Modern culture and upbringing encourage such behavior. This material is about that invests modern psychology in the concept of narcissism and where the line between healthy self-esteem, the desire to express itself, get recognition and pathology of life.

The history of the emergence of the term

One of the myths of ancient Greece tells about the sad fate of a young man named Narcissus. Nature endowed the young man with beautiful appearance. Forest Nymph Echo had misfortune to love handsome. He was absorbed by his own person and neglected the feelings of innocent creating. Unrequited love ruined the girl. The goddess of Aphrodite in anger cruelly punished myself, forcing him crazy to fall in love with his own reflection in the pond. Seeing himself in a mirroring stroit, he could no longer take his eyes off the perfect face and turned into a daffodil flower.

In everyday life, Narcissali is called narcissistic, vain people.

The term entered the source at the beginning of the twentieth century. In 1913, English doctor and psychologist Ernest Jones writes the book “Complex of God”, which analyzes the behavior of people who fantasize about alliances, god-like. His patients are emotionally inaccessible personality seeking fame and inadequate social status.

Finally introduced to the psychology term “narcissism” Sigmund Freud in 1914 when creating the theory of psychoanalysis. Initially, psychoanalyst understood the sexual perversion, in which the child, taking the place of the mother in dreams, gives her love. However, later came to the opinion that this is the stage of psychosexual development of the individual. According to his observations, all children at an early age are experiencing a bright and strong sense of love for themselves. The natural and harmonious experience of this stage leads to the further formation of a full-fledged person.

Discussion questions in a modern sense developed an outstanding Austrian scientist Otto Kernberg. He allocated three types of this mental state: ripe narcissism, infantile and pathological. The subject of his studies were the border states of psyche, pathological narcissism and psychopathy.

Made their significant contribution to the study of the problem and made a detailed description of the narcissistic character of psychoanalysts Heinz Kokhut and Nancy Mc Williams.

Characteristics and signs

Narcissism is a mental state, the essence of which is in hypertrophied human love in itself, his body, personality and obsession to get recognition from others. Narcissism in varying degrees inherent in any person. So, a person may like the results of his labor, he can consider himself outwardly attractive or gifted in some kind of life. This is fine. But admiration can take a painful shape and cause suffering to man and his surroundings. In psychiatry under narcissism, they understand serious personality disorders requiring treatment.

Narcissus is difficult to communicate with people. He is not able to build harmonious relationships. With a man named, looped on his uniqueness, selfish hard to be friends, love, cooperate.

At the same time, daffodils are successful socially and implemented in creativity. Among the brilliant people of the planet there are quite a few figures with pronounced symptoms of a narcissistic personality.

In the outside world – success and recognition, and in the shower – a huge hole and emptiness, which we immediately and do not see the glitter of glory.

Narcissoms characterize the following signs.

  • Excessive feeling of own significance, uniqueness and desire to become the most outstanding in any sphere.
  • Unreal fantasy, The subject of which can be wealth, power, perfect appearance or beautiful love.
  • Exaltation and presentation of their merit and achievements in bright light, many of which can be just invented. At the same time, there is a concentration of attention on the negative sides of others, riding in their favor, in extreme cases – up to insult.
  • Waiting for the admiration of others and the desire to attract increased attention. Narcissus causes misunderstanding and bewilderment when this does not happen in life.

  • Feeling of internal devastation. It happens that this is indifference and rejection. Next time you want to avoid. Invitation, ability at any time to remove or complete contact, distrust – this is what you have to deal with close people surrounded by Narcissa.
  • Idealization and instant depreciation of another personality, His merit and labor. Convincing reasons for the first and second narcissus are not needed. Lifeline from the pedestal the subject of the old admiration, immediately finds another ideal that the same fate awaits.
  • Fear to feel shame. High assessment of self, Perfectionism does not give him the right to mistake and weakness. Understanding that in real life does not correspond to their transcendental ideals, by the part he sees himself insignificant and bad. He is experiencing a deep sense of shame on this. And in difficult moments of life, the sensitivity to humiliation and the feeling of shame is aggravated.

  • Envy – Damage character that Narcissus acquires a chronic form. Narcissus may calculate that he has something lacks in life, and others are. Unreasonably criticizing, expressing pity and contempt, he can try to destroy the object envy. Such people envy what they wish, but having received, immediately depreciate.
  • Non-recognition of negative feelings. Considers himself an object envy and intrigue. In his eyes, people should be shameful for unworthy thoughts and behavior towards him. Inclined to blame others for their failures.

For this reason, work on its character for Narcissus is very problematic.

  • Lack of reaction to criticism. The slightest attempt to those surrounding to make a Narcissus remark can cause him fear or aggression. Any negative statement deeply wounds. Remembers, scrolls in the head a painful moment many times, mentally argues, proves the opposite. Perceives as a personal resentment, requires repentance, refutation, equity recovery.

  • Lack of compassion for people. The world of Narcissa spins around his desires and needs. The care of the surrounding it takes as proper and does not seek to thank and answer the same. In the gusts of the soul can show mercy and immediately begin to be proud of their kindness.
  • Polarity of states. The feeling of shame, insignificance, its own insolvency and fake is replaced by self-sufficiency, superiority, vanity.
  • The desire for rivalry. Narcissus love to compete and unconsciously cause people from those who are surrounding this desire. Therefore, it is important for them to surround them for some criteria worse than them. Victory – another reason to demonstrate their superiority. Constantly compare yourself with others. In the easy version do it mentally. People who noticed this line, suffer very much about this. After all, such a character of character does not correspond to moral. In extreme forms, a person does not endure someone else’s success next to him, responds in a condescending tone, mocking and glazed behind his back, annoyed in a relationship.

  • Disappointment in people. In this way, he is protected from close relationships, which in the subconscious act as pain, injury.
  • Deep indifference to the problems of other people in the team. Perdition only exceptional attention, in his opinion, qualitatively superior to all other personalities. To the sorrows of loved ones is also indifferent. Personal life and professional successes of friends and acquaintances do not worry him. These little things of life and life are unworthy of his attention.

Narcissism is equally exposed to representatives of both sexes, although it is believed that men have this problem more often.

Men Narcissa is the main task – to achieve recognition in the eyes of others. Especially to achievements financially, in a career, social status. However, even from the most outstanding results of satisfaction and happiness is not experiencing. Ambitions pushed to conquer new peaks. With external success, the relationship is not glued. There is no emotional contact with the surrounding. The woman treats disregard. The whole world is only for him one. Always right. Does what he wants is not considered with the opinion of loved ones.

Often financially dependent on the mother or spouse.

Build strong family relationships such a man is unable. Families are often destroyed. Most of all children suffer from the negative influence of the Father.

The feeling of inner emptiness agrees over the years. The crisis is possible to 35-40 years, and only a specialist can be helped from this pathological condition.

Female narcissism manifests itself in relations with children. They are strict and unreasonably demanding. Make children meet their increased expectations. Strive for high ideals. Joy, heat, simplicity are impaired. In relations with loved ones – alienation and coldness. Nervous breakdowns on children and feeling of guilt in front of them alternate. Unconsciously, such mothers make a child abandon their own needs, desires and feelings and implement the needs of adults and support their self-esteem.

In the husbands of Narcissus, they choose caring, soft men who despise their weak will. Natural desire for such women – to live for someone else’s account. Men in their understanding are a fat wallet, tool to meet their numerous needs. Union of two daffodils – men and women, hardly will be durable. The constant struggle of characters and the competition with each other is absolutely in everything sooner or later bored, and the marriage will disin.

In narcissism you can see and positive features. A constant desire for achievements allows to implement truly grand and large-scale ideas for the benefit of society. Envy – an excellent motivator for specific active steps to his goal. Dependence on the assessment and opinions of the surrounding allows you to be attentive listener and be aware of all events and trends. However, the lack of feeling of internal happiness and the completeness of life is the fee that Narcissus brings to the altar of love for himself.


In psychology, two main types of narcissism are considered: constructive and destructive.


Constructive narcissism inherent in mature personality. Such a person has an adequate self-esteem, puts and achieves interesting goals for himself, feels the completeness of life, loves and enjoys relations. This is a normal healthy form based on self-esteem and accept yourself and others as they are. Confidence in behavior, awareness of their true needs and desires, freedom from someone else’s opinion – signs of healthy love.

Failures are transported calmly, new things start easily.

In satellites of life, chooses a person in its own way, and not in favor of relatives or public standards. Close man is an object of love and friendship, and not a means to achieve mercenary purposes. Healthy narcissism allows you to find a balance between the satisfaction of your aspirations and needs for others.


Destructive narcissism is a mental disorder of personality. People walking towards maturity may not have an adequate and holistic idea of ​​themselves as a person, depend on the judgments of others, do not feel self-sufficient, in life being passive and compliant. This is deficient narcissism, which is not a pathology.

If you are watching a person with an abnormal love for yourself and at the same time a contemptuous attitude towards other people, here you can talk about the diagnosis. Destructive narcissism can take different severity. The most dangerous – malignant narcissism. His manifestations:

  • Distribution on me+
  • The state of gradation imposing defenseless+
  • Recklessness+
  • Summagambiciosity+
  • Pathological dependence on the admiration of others+
  • The tendency to exploitation of other people+
  • Lack of empathy and loyalty to other people+
  • misguidity, greed, violent assignment of someone else’s+
  • The position of a person who all should.

These people are sullen, depressive. Ignore and violate the rights of other people. May have delusional ideas, differ suspicious, diminity. Their ideas about the world and people are distorted in the negative side. Often demonstrate rage, anger. Aggressive psychopathic command controls the inner world of their loved ones. Are not able to understand what hurt hurt.

The very heavy form of illness takes when a person receives satisfaction from emotional violence, trying to assert themselves for someone else’s account. Externally, the conflict may not be manifested, and the result is sad for the other side: from depression to suicide attempt.

    Other daffodils can be shy and restless. Shame, timidity, sexual braking hide dreams of their own greatness and grand. Fear will lose these illusions prevents them from acting, so that they do not destroy them.

    Narcissism can also manifest itself in chaotic illegible sexual relations and inability to love. So men are born with the Don Juan complex, Macho Men. In female form, he takes the kind of fatal cold impregnable beauties.

    And those and others are overcrowded to contempt for the opposite sex and are incapable of manifestation of warm feelings and empathy.

    Masochism can sometimes be addicted to narcissism. Such personalities see themselves the greatest martyrs, constantly staying in unhappy, aggressive relations. Experience of suffering gives them the right to feel superiority over all others.

    Understanding this ailment, a weak value system. With the loss of loved ones, it is difficult for them to express sadness, burning and mourning care of an expensive person. Flashing of raisingness are replaced by boredom, irritation. Cause harm to another or commit an unlawful effect of it can stop not a feeling of guilt before the victim, but fear to be caught and get punished.

    Complication may be addicted or parasitism – the desire to use people capable of helping or the state. Unemployed daffodils offer to get a job may indignant.

    Causes of occurrence

    Root problems go before childhood. In a harmonious family, the appearance of a child causes joy. In the first months of life, parents in relation to it are of unconditional love. All the manifestations of the kid are delighted and lunizing. He becomes the center of life mom for a while. Satisfaction of his needs plays a paramount role. Over time, the world of the child expands. It is aware of: There are people around with whom it is also necessary to share love and attention moms. So baby learns to love.

    Mom – First Love Teacher. The coldness of the mother, the absence of empathy, heat, attention already in infancy forms pathological traits of narcissism. The desire to fill the shortage of maternal love and tenderness will pursue such a person and adult years. He will imagine himself an universal center, while hiding pain and anger, will idealize its parents.

    Another reason for the development of narcissism – early evaluation of children. The child gets an assessment, is tied to the concepts of “good” – “bad”. Parents reward love and attention to their child only for success. And in the future, all life will be configured to receive high points. When the child does not understand that it is valuable in itself, but require constant proof, a narcissistic injury arises.

    There is an opinion that narcissism is a genetic disease.

    Narcasted mother or the same dad as a young daffodil is growing and similarity. The kid is not recognized as a separate personality, but only serves as a means to meet their needs and fulfillment of desires. Character properties, temperament of a child are not accepted. Feelings, needs, desires are ignored. It is believed that they are not. Personality impairment. Baby is forced to constantly be on the verge of rejection. In an attempt to survive, get a heat tolik and the feeling of proximity, a child, imitating parents, begins to depreciate and reject part of themselves, which parents are condemned and trying to eradicate.

    In such a medium, a narcissistic person is not always formed. The trace of such education in character may manifest itself in special sensitivity to shame, difficulties of maintaining boundaries in relations. Persons having a narcissistic injury, like daffodils, slopes to make excessive efforts to maintain a sense of self-esteem or to obey the surrounding, fearing the outbreaks of anger and aggression.

    Severate narcissistic features in the nature of the kid can excessive love and admiration of parents with their children. Since childhood, they may be extorted, praising. Adults are afraid that a complex of inferiority will develop, especially if the child very early pronounced his talent or parents obsessed with the idea of ​​the genius of his child. Often pseudogenia grow in such families.

    Excessive parental care and permissiveness can also be soil for germination of the disease.

    How to deal with syndrome?

    If you have noticed some signs of narcissism, the best advice is to contact a specialist you trust. An experienced psychotherapist will help detect the origins of the problem and allow it in a shorter time, rather than you will deal with it.

    Huge plus is a healthy self-esteem. The adoption of its negative character traits and at the same time recognizing its uniqueness and its talents will make it possible to form an adequate opinion about himself and stop depending on human moloss. Self-development, meditation, participation in group trainings will help this.

    Well established itself in healing gestalt-therapy syndrome and transactional analysis.

    As a painful disorder, narcissism requires serious treatment. To determine the degree of narcissism, psychologists and psychiatrists use a specific technique. This is a test of 163 statements, with each of which you need to agree or reject. As a result, it is possible to determine the level of the 18-point scale.

    For Narcissa more difficult to realize that he is a mediocre person. Neither great nor insignificant, and ordinary, who is not alien to anything. A big problem for him to realize yourself, your own “I” without illusions and fantasies about my own personality. He does not know who he really is.

    A large role in healing will play the circumference of the patient during the treatment and quality of support, which will be provided. Man needs to get the experience of cashless judgment. He can make shameful, as it seems, things. It is very important that a person who calmly with warmth and tenderness will be able to perceive him at such moments, without condemning, without being punished, without causing his feeling of shame. Getting such attention, it will feel safety, protection and starts to reveal.

    Awareness will come that contact with another person can be pleasant. From warm friendly and romantic relationships you can enjoy and joy. In other words, the therapist and close will need to give the patient what was not able to give mom in childhood. Of course, healing from narcissism, it is not necessary to abandon the aspirations for great cases, but the looping of them will go away and a person will gain at itself a balance.

    There is another approach in the treatment of illness. Not always the patient can immediately recognize its diagnosis. Therefore, a direct conversation about narcissism in relation to it can not give results.

    In the inner world of such people most often have a significant adult: Mom, dad, spouse, whose character has narcissistic inclinations. Much more efficiently begin treatment with the healing of the patient’s relationship with such a person. The specialist will have to teach the patient to distinguish pathological features, narcissistic manipulations, to which a close person resorts, and interact with it in a healthier key.

    Treatment of pathological narcissism requires long therapy, and may not be finally getting rid of the disease.

    The result will depend on the patient itself, the depth of its problem and the type of disorder.

    Daffodils are deeply lonely people, they live life in suffering. The more consciously the choice in favor of a full-fledged and happy life and the intention to go through this path hand in hand with a specialist, the greater the chance of success.

    It is worth a few words to say about the prevention of the disease. Everyone knows that the disease is easier to warn, than to treat. Since the problem is from childhood, then healthy self-esteem must be formed by an adult from an early age.

    For their children, parents are important:

    • keep their self-esteem and independence from their opinions around+
    • Allow the child to cry and show negative emotions+
    • recognize the child in love just like that without making focus on beauty, talent or act+
    • express approval for a really decent behavior or result, not very often and without exaggeration+
    • give a child knowledge that he will have to live in society, while society will not live for him.

    Recommendations for interaction with a narcissistic personality

    If there is a person with bright signs of narcissism, be it a colleague, boss, relative, here are some tips to help interact with such a person.

    Narcissal habit to devalue, criticize, might might unpleasant to annoy. The best thing that can be done for yourself in this situation is not to pay attention to this and improve your skills in the sphere that attention aims. Concentration on the development of its abilities, an adequate assessment of its advantages and success will minimize the destructive impact by Narcissus.

    Narcissus behavior can be cleaned. Tell him about your achievements, knowledge and skills where you are really strong. Maybe so you climb into his eyes and you will communicate on equal.

      Narcissus is not always despot and tyran. It may be cute and pleasant in communication people. Whatever they are, the best thing you can do for yourself and for them is to take them as they are, remaining with themselves. This is especially true of the close people with which blood bonds bind.

      Communication with malignant daffodils in the environment should be avoided. Its manipulation and aggressive mood with prolonged communication can destroy and exhaustively act on you.

      With the necessary need to bring the contact to a minimum or simply ignore.

      The feeling of dependence on this kind of person – the signal to pass the therapy itself and free from the control of such an personality over its inner world. Especially if the manipulator is a close man. Tolerate, forgive and humble with the situation will not bring relief, no one will heal and will not allow the situation. Everyone deserves love, care and respect for oneself.

      And in conclusion – about one amazing fact. Scientists investigated the reasons for narcissism at the level of the anatomy and found a difference in the volume of gray substance, the state of the cortex of the brain and nerve cells in the suffering of narcissism and a healthy person. The gray substance in a healthy person is more, and the differences found in the brain department responsible for feeling compassion and empathy. From here we can conclude that the key to successful healing of the patient lies in to teach his ability to love.

      Additionally about narcissism, see the following video.

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