10 Minutes

Edited & clinically reviewed by THE BALANCE Team
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Do you feel flustered and annoyed at your co-worker who pretends to do all the work and bags in credit that was meant for you? Do you feel helpless when your partner gaslights you, leaving you in a state of utter shock and disbelief? Do you doubt your self-worth when your parents constantly degrade you or are you tired of listening to them bragging about themselves? If you find any of these situations relatable, chances are you are dealing with a narcissist either at work or at home.

There is no denying the fact that it is excruciatingly taxing to share a close relationship with a narcissist. They can be your parent, sibling, co-worker, or your spouse, and confronting and living with them demands all the strength from you. You might find yourself walking on eggshells around them, doubting your self-worth and this can take a significant toll on your mental health. 

But before we jump on how to deal with narcissists it is necessary that we learn who they really are and how to spot them in our circle.

The origin of the word ‘narcissist’ dates back to Greek mythology where it is said that a young man named ‘Narcissus’ fell in love with his own reflection in the water and later died out of thirst. 

In today’s age, ‘narcissist’ is the term used to describe someone who has an inflated sense of self also referred to as grandiose and is frequently looking for praise and admiration with no sense of empathy for others. 

Narcissistic individuals put their own selves first. Even though there is nothing wrong with tending to one’s needs, a narcissist does not even think twice before putting someone under the bus for their own gain. To make it all the more draining, narcissists are never guilty about their actions; to them, they are always right. And if you ever make the mistake of criticising them, they don’t take it well. So it is fair to say that it is very tricky and exhausting to deal with a narcissist.

Narcissism is a personality disorder that affects roughly 1 to 6 percent of the population of the UK. It is seen more frequently in men than in women. It is said that individuals who develop narcissistic qualities have been neglected in their early years and to cover their insecurities they adopt the attitude of grandiosity. Narcissistic individuals may appear big and powerful on the surface but in reality, they may feel really small and fragile on the inside. 

It is no easy task to spot a narcissist but there are specific red flag findings that you need not ignore in the behaviour and personality of these individuals that will give you clues about them having Narcissistic Personality Disorder.

This condition can be diagnosed through DSM V criteria where 5 out of the 9 characteristics of narcissistic behaviour should be met. They are as follows:

  • They have an over-inflated sense of self
  • They have a flamboyant manner
  • They consider themselves superior
  • They need constant praise and admiration
  • They are manipulative and controlling
  • They lack empathy
  • They are envious of others and believe others are envious of them
  • They are arrogant 
  • They believe rules don’t apply to them 

Interacting with a narcissist at work, or sharing the house with a narcissistic parent, spouse, or sibling can be really difficult. It can get on your nerves and leave you exhausted with crumbling mental health. It is necessary that you learn some core techniques and strategies that can help you in overcoming narcissistic abuse. 

Here is a guide on how you can deal with a narcissist and take control away from them.

  • Know them for who they are and not what they pretend to be

Narcissistic individuals are masters at the art of deceiving. They keep up a very charismatic persona in public and are quick at garnering attention. Once you accept that they are narcissists, it becomes easier to ignore their comments and attacks that come off as too personal and disturbing. 

Moreover, a narcissist can easily manipulate you into believing it was all your fault hence it is crucial that you trust your judgment and not let their convincing doubt yourself. 

  • Set boundaries

It is necessary to make boundaries in your relationship with the narcissist and make it very clear to them that you will not tolerate anyone crossing the limits that you have set. For instance, they are not allowed to invade your personal space and breach your privacy and if they do so make them accountable.

If you encounter anyone stepping on your boundaries at the workplace make sure you record the events and address your issue to higher authorities.

  • Do not take it personally 

Narcissistic individuals whether they are your parent, spouse, colleague, or sibling are known to be critical and disrespectful. They can hurt you a great deal with their comments making you feel the sole cause of all the troubles and there comes a time when you start believing them. Slowly but gradually you start doubting yourself and consider yourself insignificant in front of them and it is exactly how they wanted.

To deal with a narcissist it is important to learn the art of not making hurtful comments and criticism personally.  Although it is easier said than done and it takes a lot of courage to not give in to their degrading remarks but once you learn this skill it will become easy to deal with them. 

Know that this is not your fault and that the problem lies with them and not you. 

  • Don’t get into arguments

It is best to not get into an argument with a narcissist because it will simply backfire on you. A narcissist knows how to win an argument. They know how to manipulate you into believing that they are the victim and that they have suffered because of you. 

To maintain your sanity, it is best not to argue with them unless you can keep your point in a polite way that they will find acceptable then there is no harm.

  • Redirect your attention towards yourself 

Narcissistic individuals have always been attention seekers. To control a narcissist, stop giving them attention and treating them like they are the most important person in the room. This will make them lose half of their power since they will feel that they are unable to control the situation. 

Instead of trying to fix them, start focusing on yourself and give yourself time and stop going behind the notion that you can change them because the truth is, you can’t. No matter how hard you try, until and unless a narcissist himself or herself realises the damage they are causing and tries to change no one can change them.

  • Speak up for yourself

Try to communicate with them and tell them how you feel about their behaviour. You can address your issue in a calm and polite manner and tell them that you are getting hurt by the way they’re treating you.

  • Surround yourself with people who support and value you

It can be easy to lose your sense of self-worth after living with a narcissist for a long time. Hence it is important to surround yourself with people who understand you and value you. Your support group should help you cheer you up and make you hold on to your original self. 

It is necessary for your mental health that you go out with friends and change your surroundings from the one you share with the narcissist, to get a break from the emotional and mental exhaustion. 

  • Do not believe their promises

‘Great talkers are not great doers’ and this is exactly the case with narcissists. They will promise you that they will correct themselves and abide by all that you say when in reality they won’t follow a single thing.

Ask the narcissist to prove through their actions that they mean it. In addition, you need to stay firm and not leave your ground. Tell them that you will fulfil their demands only after they have fulfilled your requests.

  • Walk out of the relationship with the narcissist

Sometimes narcissistic abuse can be so bad that you feel devastated in all aspects; mentally, physically, and emotionally. You have been ridiculed so much by the narcissist that you feel numb and are spiraling into a mental health disorder such as depression, anxiety, or worse, PTSD. 

You might feel like you have tried everything to deal with the narcissist but nothing worked and you can’t save yourself then it is best to end the relationship and move on. 

The idea of hoping that the narcissist would improve one day is tempting but it is not practical since they are not empaths. They can’t feel your pain. They are oblivious to how badly they have wrecked your life and mental health and you deserve to give yourself the option to walk out of the relationship. 

  • Understand that the narcissist may need professional help

Individuals with Narcissistic Personality Disorder are unlikely to go for professional help. The reason is that they don’t see a problem with themselves. However, this doesn’t make them mentally healthy individuals because it is a personality disorder and such individuals are often involved in substance abuse and other mental health disorders. 

You can suggest to them that they can seek professional help but it is their responsibility to go to a therapist and you can not make them do it.

  • Get help for yourself

If you are living with the narcissist or if you have called it quits, either way, you may need professional help because narcissistic abuse can cause a significant toll on the mental health of the victim. 

You may need to see a therapist, to learn ways how to deal with a narcissist. Therapists can help you with communication skills and will enlighten you about gaslighting to make you aware of the signs of narcissistic abuse. 

Often individuals are abused by their narcissist partner, sibling, parent, or boss and they don’t even realise it. Seeking help from a professional helps them understand that it was never their fault in the first place and it gives them hope that there is a way to heal from the trauma of narcissistic abuse.

Along with medication and therapies, many individuals who suffer from anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) as a result of narcissistic abuse get to recover.

Luxury Inpatient Rehab programs are a great way to recover from narcissistic abuse. Since individuals with narcissistic abuse are often dealing with PTSD, depression, or anxiety so in a rehab program individuals are treated with dual-diagnosis. Luxury rehab programs aim to help you recover part of you that was lost during the period of narcissistic abuse.

At our executive treatment centre we assess all the aspects of your life that have been negatively affected due to narcissistic abuse to design a tailored treatment plan that suits all your needs. At our luxury rehab centre you are guaranteed round-the-clock care from highly esteemed professionals and a 24/7 live-in therapist is at your service.

As a holistic rehab centre, we focus on an integrated treatment approach that is patient-centered, which involves improved and research-backed therapies to help you become an improved version of yourself. By staying at a luxury rehab centre you isolate yourself from the environment that caused you emotional and mental trauma and work on healing yourself away from the distractions of the world.

A picturesque location of our luxury rehab centre with a 5-star private residence that is discrete and makes you feel at home and multiple amenities help you be completely at ease. You are provided with a personal in-house manager, a private chef that can cook scrumptious and nutritionally rich meals for you, and a  personal chauffeur. 

Extreme care is taken to make your stay at our luxury rehab centre as accommodating and as lavish as possible. Some of the high-end luxury inpatient rehabilitation facilities range from a premium bedroom with Egyptian linen beddings, swimming pools for recreational activities, massage therapy, top-notch fitness trainers, and a state-of-the-art gym with world-class equipment, equine therapy, yoga, meditation, and other complimentary facilities.

Moreover, at our luxury rehab centre we provide aftercare to ensure that you are in the best state of your health, mentally, physically, and emotionally after your stay ends with us and this strategy has resulted in low recurrence rates and has yielded better results in the long run. 

If you are dealing with narcissistic abuse or know someone who is going through it call us immediately and we are ready to serve you in our premium luxury rehab centre providing you with high-end facilities and the experience of a lifetime. 

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