Narcissistic Personality Disorder is one of the most misunderstood, yet pervasive disorders out there.
When you think of a stereotypical narcissist, you often think of someone who is overconfident, selfish, and arrogant.
And let’s be real: you’ve probably come across plenty of people like this in your life.
However, these are just surface level personality traits that don’t capture the entire picture of this disorder.
Behind the air of false confidence there are usually significant underlying issues and trauma that have been left untreated.
Like everything, narcissistic traits lie on a spectrum.
It’s not black and white.
Most people have some degree of narcissistic traits, but that doesn’t necessarily mean you have Narcissistic Personality Disorder.
One of the issues that is commonly hidden by narcissism is the feeling of inferiority, which is disguised by compensatory expressions of superiority and grandeur.
Constantly trying to overcompensate is a difficult and unhealthy way to live, and can eventually take a toll on your mental wellbeing, relationships, and career.
Some of the environmental factors contributing to narcissistic tendencies or Narcissistic Personality Disorder include childhood abuse or neglect, parental pampering or spoiling, unrealistic expectations, sexual promiscuity, or other cultural influences that can reinforce these tendencies.
It’s important to remember that narcissism falls on a spectrum and everyone has some narcissistic traits at times.
That means just because you show some signs, doesn’t mean you have Narcissistic Personality Disorder.
Let’s take a look at some classic signs that people struggling with NPD display.
SIGNS OF NARCISSISM OR NARCISSISTIC TRAITS
- A grandiose sense of self-importance such as exaggerating talents and expecting recognition
- Secret or sometimes even unconscious feelings of insecurity, vulnerability, shame, and fears of humiliation
- Often preoccupied with fantasies of unlimited success, power, brilliance, and perfection
- Believe they are special and unique, leading them to think they should only associate with other high-status individuals
- Require an excessive amount of admiration from others
- Unreasonable expectations of favorable treatment and a strong sense of entitlement
- Take advantage of others and lack empathy when it pertains to recognizing the feelings and needs of other individuals
- Envious of others or believes that others are envious of them
- Show arrogant behavior or attitudes
- Become angry when special treatment is not received
- Have difficulty regulating their emotions and behavior
- Feel depressed due to not reaching perfection
If you’re experiencing any of these issues, they undoubtedly take a toll on many areas of your life.
Let’s dive into NPD’s far-reaching complications.
COMPLICATIONS OF NARCISSISM
- Relationship difficulties
- Career or school-related problems
- Depression and anxiety
- Physical health problems
- Drug or alcohol misuse
- Suicidal thoughts or behavior
TREATMENT FOR NARCISSISM
Our therapists are trained in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Psychodynamic Psychotherapy, and Family Therapy, which are all proven by research to be highly effective in treating NPD.
In other words, we’re here to help!
We understand how difficult it can be living with Narcissistic Personality Disorder, and the impacts it can have on you and those around you.
We’re trained to see behind the surface into the deeper issues and help you heal them.
Part of our treatment involves repairing possibly damaged relationships with friends, family, and coworkers, along with forgiving yourself.
We will also help you avoid situations that trigger negative behaviors such as alcohol, drugs, or other substances, and we have therapists that specialize in addiction as well as other techniques to reduce stress and anxiety.
At My LA Therapy, we will create individual plans based on your unique needs to assist you in becoming your best self.
We’ll help you realize your strengths, develop the awareness necessary to be receptive to criticisms or failures, understand yourself and your condition, and manage your thoughts, feelings, and needs in a way that doesn’t alienate others.
Additionally, we’ll help you better manage your self-esteem issues, and provide you with the tools you need to set realistic goals for yourself.
While these things are difficult to change—we’re not going to lie—they will surely make a difference long term and increase the overall quality of your life for you and those around you.
In other words, it’s worth it.
If you can admit you have a problem and are willing to look at yourself in the mirror, couples therapy can also help.
The unique dynamic in a couples therapy setting will allow you to replace narcissistic compensations with a deep sense of security within yourself and help you develop empathy for other people’s point of needs and feelings, thus healing your relationships.
But this will only work if you’re willing to take responsibility for your own stuff and not lay blame on your partner.
If you’re in a relationship with someone with NPD, we can help you too!
Typically, narcissistic relationships are characterized by major codependency issues, which we also specialize in.
Narcissism and codependency usually have their roots in deep trauma, attachment issues, and problems with self-worth and emotional expression.
All of which we are trained to help you heal and overcome to become more empowered and alive.
OUR NPD THERAPY METHODS
Therapy can successfully improve your life by helping you minimize the anxiety in your life, identify and change underlying thought and behavioral patterns that contribute to your struggles, and provide you with strategies to decrease discomfort while restoring an overall sense of peace.
To experience true and lasting joy in our life, we must face and conquer our pain by healing our underlying trauma and confronting our fears.
Our evidence-based, scientifically proven interventions are demonstrated by research to be effective in overcoming underlying trauma and mental health concerns that contribute to Narcissistic Personality Disorder.
WANT TO TALK? SPEAK WITH A NPD EXPERT NOW
If you have any questions, contact one of our NPD specialists for a free consultation any time.