What Is Narcissism? 9 Signals & Narcissistic Traits


Narcissists are incredibly complex people who are often difficult to understand and even more difficult to find out if someone is one of them.

Fortunately, narcissists often follow the same kind of pattern.

Once you know these, it becomes a lot easier to find out if someone is a narcissist.

Do you feel that you are living with a narcissistic person?

In this article, we share the most important signs to find out if someone is a narcissist.

What is narcissism?

Narcissism is a very complex disorder that affects both men and women.

It is often linked to a poor self-image that makes the narcissist think of himself as very good (“I look really good today!”) and preferably over the backs of others (“I look much better than anyone else). at this party.”).


Narcissists often have no idea that they suffer from narcissism, a bad quality like that could obviously never happen to them.

Narcissists don’t just like to say they look great, they like to hear it. People with narcissism are always looking for attention and like to be the center of attention.

Narcissists also have no empathy at all, except for themselves.

When a narcissist is pushed in front of the supermarket, it is the biggest disaster on earth. But if he does it himself or it happens to someone else, it’s not that bad.

Sometimes they don’t even realize that they’re hurting you and they’ll even be surprised – or worse – annoyed to hear that they did.

Not because they hear they hurt you, but because you make such a crack in their perfect self-image. Of course they can’t do that.

They stand on many toes both accidentally and on purpose, much to the annoyance of their loved ones.

Narcissistic traits in men and women

Men and women share many narcissistic traits, but there are also some narcissistic traits that are specific to men or women.

A specific female narcissistic trait is that they can enjoy the pain inflicted on others (but not by them!).

That does n’t always make life with a narcissistic partner easy.

Listening to how your life fell apart last week after your mother passed away, they can really take pleasure in the fact that you feel terrible.

In some women, this narcissistic trait goes even further: they deliberately stoke a relationship so that that relationship breaks down and then both people point the finger at each other and not at the narcissist. The very idea that they have caused that pain can give them a lot of pleasure.


A trait more often attributed to men is that they use their partners (and children) to look better in front of their others.

A good example is that when politicians win an election, they often very dramatically drag their partner onto the podium and then kiss them on stage – nothing to do with the election or the politician, but looks really good.

Also, partners on social media will drop by extensively and be dragged into parties at any time. Often this also means – to the delight of the woman – that they are inundated with gifts and an elaborate wedding is held.

Another female narcissistic trait is that they use people -preferably other women, but also men- and then dispose of them like an old piece of dirt.

If a narcissist is ever in a deep pit and wants to help someone, they will be all too eager to take that help with both. They allow themselves to be helped, cared for and loved. All this attention makes a narcissist very happy.

Once the narcissist feels a little better, they have no qualms about tossing and forgetting the person who helped them—much to the chagrin and chagrin of the person who helped them.

Another typical male narcissistic trait is that men like to be in charge – both in relationships and at work. Narcissistic men are therefore often found in positions higher up the ladder, such as manager or company director, often to the great annoyance of the employees.

They do this because this position of power gives them an advantage over others and also makes them look great as a bonus. Who wouldn’t want to be a strong, confident, respected (although that respect is often fear) man? Such a position confirms the image the man has of himself.

He certainly won’t be afraid to use this as an argument in a discussion. (“I’m the boss and that’s why you should listen to me!”


The Danger of Narcissistic Anger Outbursts

Narcissists are not pleasant people when they are angry. In fact, narcissists are often furious when they argue (whether it’s lawful to get so angry or not) and will destroy anything that stands in their way.

Often this is because you have damaged the perfect self-image by, for example, telling them that they are not as perfect as they claim. Something that will also lead to a lot of anger and misunderstanding is if you deny them something they want.

A well-known example is often that if a narcissist shows interest in you by complimenting you to get on your good graces and you reject them, they will completely turn around and then in a narcissistic rage outbursts and insult you. .

Also, their perfect self-image will strike (“I was too good for you anyway!”).

Narcissists will certainly not hesitate to insult you to influence others behind your back, nor will they hesitate to stoke healthy relationships just because you rejected them in one way or another.


A narcissist in a relationship will often go even further. A narcissist in a relationship with a tantrum won’t hesitate for a moment to smash the whole relationship to pieces at once. The consequences are completely forgotten in that moment and in a blind rage everything can be destroyed at once.

If a partner had been with the narcissist for a long time and the self-esteem had already been lowered by the narcissist and committed to them all their life, then the narcissist may instead simply waltz over the partner for a while knowing that the partner will not leave.

After the narcissistic outbursts of anger, bullying will often follow.

A narcissistic boss is a whole different story. Narcissistic bosses are often known for the tantrums to fire people spontaneously, not realizing the effect that will have. Also, name calling and threatening to fire you will not be missing from the list.

On the contrary, one of the first “weapons” that bosses use is the fear of firing you, knowing the effect it will have on the person facing them.

There is often a bad, sad or even anxious atmosphere in the workplace. It is therefore very important to shield yourself from this as much as possible, without falling out of attention.

Try to discover what makes your boss happy and do your best on that.

Another good idea is to compliment or otherwise satisfy your boss without being too obvious.

This way you not only come in a positive light, you can also avoid the worst narcissistic anger outbursts.


9 signs to expose a narcissist

1: Self-centered behavior

One of the biggest signs of narcissism is self-centered behavior.

Narcissists like to listen to themselves and have difficulty listening to others. They don’t really care what’s going on in your life.

Narcissists also often dominate a conversation and never really let you speak, especially when it’s not about them.


They are actually constantly looking for attention, which often has to do with a bit of insecurity – something that narcissism is often built on. Examples of well-known narcissists are Kim Kardashian and Miley Cyrus.

Narcissists certainly don’t fall for something if they don’t like something. If you do something they don’t like, they certainly won’t be the worst at explaining to you in detail.

2: Narcissists think they have a right to everything

But really everything. From the last carton of milk at the grocery store to that sweet partner – narcissists believe that everything they want belongs to them. This has everything to do with their sense of superiority. This makes living with a narcissist very difficult.

In the life of a narcissist there is only right and wrong, black and white and better or worse. Often times, if a narcissist thinks you’re less good than themselves, they often think you’re “not worth it.”

Narcissists therefore have the need to be the best and will do anything to get there. A kind of Frank Underwood from House of Cards, so. Strangely enough, it also works the other way around.

Narcissists also like to be the worst of all. When they’re sick, they’re not just sick, they’re sicker than anyone else. If they have an injury, they have not just any injury, but the worst injury ever seen.

3: They (re)recognize no boundaries

In fact, not only do narcissists have no boundaries, they don’t understand the boundaries of others. This often leads to a lot of misunderstanding and irritation.

Narcissists will (unintentionally) stomp your boundaries like an elephant, and will be offended to the bone if you hurt them and will even go as far as DEMANDING apologies and pulling them out of you if necessary.

Even if they don’t care about your feelings, narcissists are very sensitive people who need to be dealt with with a subtle hand.

If you’ve had an argument, you’ve probably already experienced this: narcissists care little about logical arguments and much more what they think of something.

If they like the look of a red sports car, they will do anything to get that red sports car, whether or not the car is too expensive and therefore better get that smaller, blue car.

4: Everything is black or white

The narcissist’s personality is split into good and bad parts and they also divide everything in their relationships into good and bad.

All negative thoughts or behaviors are attributed to you or others as they take credit for all that is positive and good.

They deny their negative words and actions while constantly accusing you of disapproval. They also remember things as completely good and wonderful or so bad and terrible. They can’t seem to mix these two constructs:

Marieke labeled the entire holiday ruined and the worst ever because the hotel room did not meet his expectations and the weather was not perfect.

Jan was blamed for 20 years for not being there when his wife had their first child, although he was stuck with a flat tire somewhere in the middle of North Brabant.

Narcissists are unable to see, feel, or remember both the positive and negative in a situation. This is very typical of narcissistic behavior. They can only process one perspective at a time – theirs.

5: Shame

Narcissists don’t feel very guilty because they think they are always right, and they don’t believe that their behavior actually affects anyone else.

But they have a lot of shame. They believe that there is something deeply and permanently wrong or bad about who you are.

Buried in a deeply repressed part of the narcissist are all the insecurities, fears, and rejected traits he constantly guards to hide from everyone including himself.


The narcissist is soon ashamed of all these rejected thoughts and feelings. Narcissists will also often go on the strangest crusades to defeat fears.

For example, narcissists with a fear of heights will suddenly go skydiving – only to prove that they are not afraid. For someone living with a narcissist, these thought cycles can be very difficult to follow.

Hiding his vulnerabilities is essential to the narcissist’s alleged self-esteem or false self.

Ultimately, however, this makes it impossible for them to be completely genuine and transparent.

6: They Can’t Open Up Hard

Because of their inability to understand feelings, their lack of empathy, and constant need for self-protection, narcissists cannot truly love or connect with other people emotionally.

They cannot see the world from someone else’s perspective. They are actually emotionally blind and alone.

This means that they need a lot of help emotionally.

When a relationship is no longer up to their standards, they either have a new relationship before the other is over or start a new relationship as soon as possible.

They really want someone to feel their pain, sympathize with it and make everything the way it wants.

But they have little ability to respond to your pain or fear or even your daily need for care and sympathy. That is in practice very skewed and one of the things that makes narcissists so difficult.

7: They leave a trail of destruction

Often one of the signs of narcissists is that they have bad work experiences and many, short relationships.

This is one of the signs that a person is a narcissist. With narcissistic people in leadership positions, you often see that when you start something, the company is often good.

Once the narcissist gets in, the ship quickly begins to sink and things quickly get worse and worse, leaving a trail of destruction (literally) behind.

Shortly afterwards, the narcissist decides to leave.

It is also highly probable that they did so in some kind of impulsive decision or because it turned out that they did not like it after all. If you live with a narcissist, a lot of patience is therefore essential.

8: they will never plead guilty

It may sound vague, but narcissists are really bad at making excuses ‘normally’.

Often they don’t even know they feel guilty, but on a subconscious level they will naturally recognize some guilt.

If you are living with a narcissist, it is very important that you learn to recognize their way of making excuses. This can manifest itself in many ways, but gifts and pampering are the most common.

If you argued with the narcissist in your life last night, they might give you a bunch of flowers or make a reservation at the restaurant you love.

9: they will blackmail you

This may sound extreme, but because narcissists are so emotionally manipulative, they won’t be afraid to use this ‘weapon’ once things start to go wrong.

Even if you are still living with a narcissist and things are going well, this can happen.

They will threaten that if you leave or do something they don’t want, they will take the kids, keep the house and leave you without money and pension.


They can also take a different tack by telling you that you are nothing without them and that living with them is the only option you have.

Although that is difficult, you should try to rationalize the situation as much as possible and think logically about what would really happen. If you do, you’ll soon find out that that’s not how things will turn out at all and that what the narcissist said is just what he would like you to believe.


Living with a narcissist can be very difficult and frustrating. It is therefore important that you get support from others at times when it is difficult.

This is not a sign of weakness or deficiency. It’s just the opposite.

Narcissists can be very difficult and asking for help or support is a sign of personal growth.

Knowing when things are not going well is a very important thing to know and to lean on someone else for a while is therefore more than normal and not bad.

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