Have you ever noticed someone’s outwardly confident, self-involved behavior and started to wonder if they might be a narcissist? Narcissists seem to come in all shapes, sizes and personalities. From the very obvious attention seekers, to people who just demand more respect than the average person. But what are the general traits that define a Narcissist?
To help understand this complex personality disorder better, here is an exploration of 12 most common traits of narcissists. By understanding these components it will become easier for you to spot them in your daily life.
In psychology, a trait is a stable and enduring characteristic that defines an individual’s behavior, thoughts, and emotions. Traits describe a person’s typical patterns of behavior and personality, and they are used to explain differences in behavior between individuals. Traits are thought to be innate and heritable, although they are also influenced by the individual’s environment and life experiences.
Here are 12 most common traits of narcissists;
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1. Self obsession
Self-obsession is a hallmark trait of a narcissist. It refers to the excessive preoccupation with one’s own interests, needs, and appearance, often to the exclusion of others. Narcissists are known for having a grandiose sense of self-importance, feeling entitled to special treatment and admiration, and believing they are superior to others.
They may constantly seek attention, praise, and validation from others, and often react with anger or resentment if they feel their self-esteem is threatened. They also tend to have a limited capacity for empathy and may be unable to see the perspectives or feelings of others.
These traits and behaviors often result in strained relationships with others and difficulties in personal and professional life.
“The most dangerous thing about a self-obsessed narcissist is that they will make you believe it’s your fault.”Fahim chughtai
2. Lack of empathy
Lack of empathy is a core trait of narcissists. Empathy is the ability to understand and share the feelings of others. Narcissists, however, have a limited capacity for empathy and may be unable to understand or respond to the emotional needs of others.
“A narcissist’s lack of empathy is their greatest weapon, allowing them to manipulate and control those around them without any regard for the consequences.”Mateo Sol
They may view others as mere instruments to serve their own needs and desires, and have a tendency to use or manipulate others for their own gain. They may also be indifferent to the feelings and experiences of others, and may not see the harm they cause in their interactions with others.
This lack of empathy often leads to strained relationships and difficulties in personal and professional life. It is important to note that while all narcissists may lack empathy to some degree, the severity and extent of this trait can vary from person to person.
Hypersensitivity is a common trait of a narcissist. It refers to an excessive emotional sensitivity to criticism, rejection, or perceived threats to their self-esteem or image. Narcissists have a fragile sense of self-worth that is often dependent on external validation and admiration from others. As a result, they may become easily upset or defensive when they perceive even minor criticisms or slights.
They may also react with anger, aggression, or vindictiveness towards those who they believe have challenged their sense of self-importance. This hypersensitivity can lead to a tendency to avoid constructive feedback and to instead surround themselves with people who provide constant validation and support.
Additionally, their hypersensitivity can result in a lack of self-reflection and an inability to take responsibility for their actions.
Exaggeration, also known as grandiosity, is a common trait of a narcissist. It refers to the tendency to present oneself in an overly positive or inflated manner, often beyond reality. Narcissists may exaggerate their achievements, abilities, and accomplishments in order to bolster their sense of self-importance and to impress others.
They may also make exaggerated claims about their wealth, intelligence, or social status in order to appear superior to others. This grandiose behavior can make it difficult for them to form authentic connections with others and may result in a sense of entitlement and a belief that they are entitled to special treatment and recognition.
Over time, their tendency to exaggerate and their lack of genuine connections can lead to feelings of emptiness and a sense that something is missing in their lives.
Envy is a common trait among individuals with narcissistic personality disorder. Narcissists often feel envious of others who they perceive as having more success, power, or status than themselves. This envy can drive their need to prove their superiority and to put others down in order to feel better about themselves.
They may also feel resentful towards those who receive recognition or praise for their accomplishments, viewing it as a threat to their own sense of superiority. Additionally, they may become fixated on the success and accomplishments of others and may spend a significant amount of time and energy trying to one-up or undermine them.
This envy and resentment towards others can lead to feelings of bitterness and can strain relationships, both personally and professionally.
Exploitation is a common trait among individuals with narcissistic personality disorder. Narcissists often view others as mere objects to be used for their own gain, and they may use their charm, manipulation, or deceit to get what they want.
They may exploit others for personal gain, such as using their resources or connections, or they may manipulate others to serve their own needs and desires. They may also be prone to taking advantage of the vulnerability of others, such as their emotional or financial dependence.
This exploitative behavior can result in strained relationships and can cause harm to others, both physically and emotionally. It is important to note that while all narcissists may be exploitative to some degree, the severity and extent of this trait can vary from person to person.
7. Ruins Relationships
The tendency to ruin relationships is a common outcome of narcissistic behavior. Narcissists often engage in self-centered and entitled behavior that can harm and alienate those around them.
They may use others for their own gain, ignore the feelings and needs of others, or engage in deceit and manipulation. Their lack of empathy and their hypersensitivity to criticism can also result in conflict and strained relationships. Additionally, their tendency to devalue and dismiss others can lead to a pattern of breaking and discarding relationships that no longer serve their needs.
Over time, this pattern of behavior can result in difficulty forming and maintaining healthy relationships, both personally and professionally. As a result, many individuals with narcissistic personality disorder may struggle with feelings of loneliness and a lack of fulfillment in their personal lives.
8. Grandiose statements
Grandiose statements are a common trait of individuals with narcissistic personality disorder. Grandiosity refers to an excessive sense of self-importance and a belief in one’s own superiority. Narcissists may make grandiose statements about their achievements, abilities, or social status in order to present themselves in an overly positive or inflated manner.
These statements may be exaggerated or embellished, and are often made with the intention of impressing others or attracting attention. Additionally, narcissists may make grandiose statements about their future plans or goals, often in a way that seems unrealistic or overconfident.
This grandiose behavior can make it difficult for others to trust or connect with the individual, as their statements may not match their actions or reality. Over time, this pattern of grandiose behavior can result in a disconnection from reality and a sense of emptiness and dissatisfaction in their personal lives.
9. Manipulative behavior
Manipulative behavior is a common trait of individuals with narcissistic personality disorder. Narcissists often engage in manipulative behavior in order to achieve their own goals and to maintain control over others. They may use charm, deceit, or emotional manipulation to get what they want, and may exploit the vulnerability of others for their own gain.
For example, they may use flattery or praise to gain the trust of others, or they may use guilt or fear to control their behavior. Additionally, they may use their charisma or intelligence to manipulate others into doing things for them, or to gain the upper hand in negotiations or interactions.
This manipulative behavior can result in strained relationships, as others may feel taken advantage of or manipulated. Over time, this pattern of behavior can lead to a reputation for being untrustworthy and can result in difficulty forming and maintaining healthy relationships, both personally and professionally.
10. Entitlement mentality
An entitlement mentality is a common trait of individuals with narcissistic personality disorder. Narcissists often feel a sense of entitlement to special treatment, recognition, and privileges, regardless of their actual accomplishments or contributions.
This sense of entitlement may result in unrealistic expectations, a belief that they are above rules and norms, and a lack of consideration for the feelings or needs of others. For example, a narcissist may feel entitled to the best of everything, including the best job, the best car, or the best romantic partner, and may view others as inferior or unworthy of these same opportunities.
Additionally, they may feel that they are owed special privileges or rewards simply because of their own sense of self-importance, and may become entitled when these are not granted.
This entitlement mentality can result in strained relationships and a tendency to take advantage of others, as the individual may feel that they are owed these things and that they do not have to work for them. Over time, this sense of entitlement can lead to feelings of dissatisfaction and frustration, as the individual’s unrealistic expectations are not met.
11. Lack of boundaries
Lack of boundaries is a common trait of individuals with narcissistic personality disorder. Narcissists may have difficulty recognizing the boundaries of others and respecting their privacy, autonomy, or personal space. They may see others as mere objects to be used for their own gain, and may disregard their feelings or needs.
Additionally, they may blur the lines between their own needs and the needs of others, and may treat others as if they are an extension of themselves. For example, a narcissist may repeatedly intrude on someone’s personal time or space, or may expect others to prioritize their needs over their own.
This lack of boundaries can result in strained relationships, as others may feel disrespected or used. Over time, this pattern of behavior can lead to difficulty forming and maintaining healthy relationships, both personally and professionally, as individuals may come to see the narcissist as controlling or intrusive.
12. Inability to take responsibility
An inability to take responsibility is a last common trait of narcissists. Narcissists often have a difficult time acknowledging their own mistakes or taking responsibility for their actions.
They may blame others for their problems, or they may make excuses for their behavior. For example, they may blame someone else for their own mistakes, or they may refuse to take responsibility for their own negative impact on others. Additionally, they may engage in denial or minimization of their own behavior, or they may deflect criticism by blaming others.
This lack of responsibility can result in strained relationships, as others may feel that the individual is unwilling or unable to make amends for their mistakes. Over time, this pattern of behavior can lead to feelings of resentment and a loss of trust in relationships, both personally and professionally.
It can also result in a pattern of avoiding accountability, as the individual becomes increasingly removed from reality and the consequences of their actions.
I explained 12 most common traits of a narcissist above. You can know a narcissist easily by recognizing these traits in them. Narcissists are some of the most difficult people to deal with. They are completely self-absorbed, lack empathy, and often take advantage of those around them.
If you finds yourself in a relationship with a narcissist, it is important to set boundaries and establish rules that both you and the narcissist can follow. By doing this, you will be able to protect yourself from being taken advantage of and preserve your own sanity. Thanks for reading!