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Signs of Narcissistic Personality Disorder

Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD) is a Mental Health Disorder that affects the way you think, feel, behave, and interact with others. Many people see NPD as being arrogant and egotistical, but that is an oversimplification. While this is a major characteristic of NPD, it is just one of many symptoms that can define your experiences with the disorder.

It is important to recognize NPD as more than just negative traits such as arrogance and self-centeredness. By understanding other signs of Narcissistic Personality Disorder—including the poor self-esteem, fear of rejection, and struggles with empathy—you can identify and address NPD as the complex Mental Health Condition it is. Read on to explore some of the most common symptoms and behaviors associated with NPD and see why it is so vital to address these symptoms with the help of a Licensed Clinical Psychologist.

Inflated Sense of Self-Importance

Individuals with NPD have an inflated sense of self-importance. They see themselves, their capabilities, and their achievements as better than everyone else around them. They might brag excessively about their accomplishments or even exaggerate their achievements to seem more impressive. In some cases, they might overestimate their own skills, which can lead to situations where they are underqualified and do not have the skills to live up to expectations.

Sense of Entitlement

Narcissistic Personality Disorder also comes with a sense of entitlement. You might feel as if other people owe you their time, energy, or attention. You might also believe you deserve an unrealistic amount of special treatment regardless of where you are, who you are with, and your own actions. This sense of entitlement can be so strong that you feel angry when other people do not cater to you or meet your expectations of special treatment.

Preoccupation With Your Own Importance

Narcissistic Personality Disorder also involves obsessive thoughts surrounding things such as power, beauty, intelligence, and success—things that, in your point of view, make you more important than other people. You might prioritize your own success over the needs of others. Alternatively, you might consider yourself more attractive and therefore more important than everyone around you. You might also have fantasies revolving around success, fame, and power.

When you have NPD, your own importance takes up so much of your time that your thoughts and behaviors revolve unhealthily around it.

Belief That You Are Inherently Superior

People with NPD feel, think, and act as if they are the main character in life. Their belief in their own special and unique qualities leads to them thinking they are superior to everyone around them. This mindset can lead to judging others harshly, cutting ties with people you see as inferior, and prioritizing yourself over others. This sense of superiority drives a lot of the entitlement, arrogance, and other symptoms of NPD. It also puts strain on relationships and makes it hard to relate to and care for other people.

Exploiting Others

When you believe you are inherently better than others, you are more likely to use them or hurt them to get what you want. Sometimes this involves conscious, deliberate behaviors, such as manipulating or taking advantage of others.

However, exploitation can be subconscious as well. You might form and prioritize friendships with people who can make you more successful without even realizing it. Similarly, you might value friends or family for their status and connections rather than who they are as people—another subconscious habit that can develop unintentionally.

Arrogant and Patronizing Behaviors

Many thoughts and behaviors associated with NPD involve boosting your own sense of importance while looking down on other people. In many cases, this quickly leads to arrogant behaviors. You might patronize those around you, talk down to them, or secretly think that you are better than them. These thoughts can also lead to snobby, condescending behaviors, as you view others as less worthy of your time, energy, and care.

Struggles With Empathy

Many people with NPD struggle to empathize with others. They might not recognize the feelings, needs, or wants of other people. If they do, they might see the expression of those feelings and desires as weak or overly vulnerable.

Narcissistic Personality Disorder also makes it difficult to recognize and return the kindness and interest other people give to you. This struggle can lead you to say and do things that are hurtful to others—even if you genuinely care about those people.

Fear of Vulnerability

Individuals with NPD do not want to appear weak or flawed, which means they never want to seem vulnerable. If you have NPD, you likely struggle with opening up to others and trusting them with your innermost thoughts and feelings. This challenge can lead to self-isolation as you hide from friends, family, and romantic partners to avoid feeling weak or vulnerable around them. The result is strained, one-sided relationships where you struggle to find and accept the support you need.

Poor Self-Esteem

It might seem contradictive to other symptoms such as arrogance and self-importance, but one of the most common signs of Narcissistic Personality Disorder is a fragile self-esteem. People with NPD are their own worst critics; a lot of their condescending and hurtful thoughts and behaviors stem from a deep fear that they are not good enough. This fear leads to constant and overwhelming feelings of self-doubt and harsh self-criticism.

A Need for Admiration

Because people with NPD have such a negative self-image, they often rely on others for validation. This includes behaviors such as seeking compliments, demanding admiration, and bragging about their own achievements to receive recognition. If you have NPD, you might spend a lot of time thinking about others’ opinions of you and fearing negative thoughts and judgment from others.

Similarly, NPD involves hypersensitivity to criticism. People with NPD have an intense fear of failure rejection and are afraid of others despising them for their failures. This fear is so severe that you might react with anger when you face criticism or feel as if others are judging or rejecting you.

Fear of Envy

With poor self-esteem comes a habit of constantly comparing yourself to others. Over time, this leads to envy and jealousy. You might resent someone else for their success, even if that success does not affect your own achievements. This jealousy can also lead to tearing down others you perceive as a threat, either by talking down to them, diminishing their achievements, or taking advantage of them for your own gain.

Narcissistic Personality Disorder can take a serious toll on your relationships, career, self-image, and other key aspects of life, so it is crucial to seek professional intervention from a Licensed Clinical Psychologist. Find evidence-based treatment from an NPD therapist in Los Angeles, Irvine, Beverly Hills, Newport Beach, Bel Air, Century City, Brentwood, Westwood, Huntington Beach, Mission Viejo, Aliso Viejo, and the surrounding areas when you contact Blair Wellness Group. Talk to our team and see how our evidence-based treatment plans can help you.

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