Known for their exaggerated sense of self-importance, narcissists think that the world literally revolves around them. Their actions, attitudes, behavior, and the language they use determine their state. They draw their main satisfaction from making other people see them as persons of great importance who know everything. They do not care whether their actions may have an undesirable effect on others.
Who is a Narcissist?
Narcissists are smitten with an idealized self-image, which they wear around other people to escape reality. Deep down they are wounded creatures who are just too scared to admit it to themselves and other people around them. To compensate for their injuries, they create a “perfect person” who is flawless in an attempt to make themselves feel better.
Psychotherapy has proven to work just fine for the majority of people diagnosed with this condition. It’s not that narcissists are very dangerous people, but spending too much time around them might have adverse effects on you. Their alter-ego may begin to make you feel like a failure or worse still stop you from living to your full potential.
The games narcissists play may also leave you vulnerable to other strangers. Narcissists live on making other people feel less achieved about themselves and regard them as some form of a superhero.
The Mind Games Narcissists Play
Narcissists play mind games to manipulate our thinking. Long encounters with them may even change your perceptions about certain aspects of life. Be on the lookout for the following signs:
Narcissists want to have in-depth knowledge about their next victim. During conversations, they will always ask questions about you, which they will exploit later to their advantage.
These con artists will feed you tones of information on topics you are not familiar with. The intention is to show how smart they are and how dumb you are. In the end, they will have exerted a form of influence over you, which is always their primary objective.
Creating fear and aggression
This is the weapon they use to get people’s attention and manipulate them eventually. Fear attracts negative energy, which is where they thrive best. They will also use your insecurities to mask their own. Though sad to say, deep down narcissists feel like the ugly duck. To cover this up and make themselves feel better, they will consistently bring up your insecurities during the conversations to make you feel inferior and bad about yourself.
An act of innocence
Narcissists are the sly fox, and that is how they end up taking the blame off them whenever they mess up. They have perfected the art of pretense so much that it is almost impossible to notice when they are putting on a show and when they are sincere (which rarely happens).
Narcissists will also twist information with made up stories that portray them as the helpless ones. They are always shifting the blame for their actions onto others including you.
Exerting unnecessary pressure on you
The primary goal is to render you emotionally unstable so that you can’t make independent sound decisions. You will notice once they start trying to comfort you right after ticking you off; though this might seem elusive since the emotional charge is in play.
How to Deal with Narcissists
You don’t have to be completely helpless against narcissists. Below are strategies to help you play their own game against them to prevent them from using you. The first step, however, is to identify these games narcissistic play first.
- Whenever they confront you with multiple questions, look them straight in the eyes. Eye contact makes them face the other direction. Only a sincere person can maintain a clear eye gaze.
- Change the conversation. Narcissists want to know a great deal of information about you. Don’t be too quick to give it to them. Slow them down by asking questions about themselves or changing the topic whenever they shift focus on you.
- Question more. Once they start showing off with figures and statistics, question the sources of their information. You will notice some skepticism, and gradually they draw away from you. This is one of the most effective ways to protect yourself from the games narcissists play. Don’t readily take in everything they present to you lest you fall victim to their scams.
- Have self-confidence. Narcissists prey on people who are less confident and have esteem issues. Work on your confidence so that when they come blowing their sense of self-importance, you can quickly shut them off.
- Loosen up a bit. If you get emotionally unstable quickly, try lighting up the mood. Whenever a narcissist tries to destabilize your emotions, go ahead and say something funny to shift the focus.
- Preserve your personal space. Don’t let just about anyone invade your personal space. If you have had enough of someone, it is prudent to tell them so or just distance yourself from them.
- Stay calm and decompress. You can do this either through meditation or just taking some time off. It is normal that there will always be people with more achievements than you have made. Do not let this get to you. Sit back and re-strategize on ways of living to your full potential without necessarily comparing yourself to others.
- Identify your insecurities. We all have a sense of insecurity one way or the other, and this is perfectly human. Know what your insecurities are and if you can’t fix them don’t let someone use them against you. This may be difficult, but once you get the hang of it, you become a stable, productive being.
The Bottom Line
Life comes with its challenges. The games narcissists play might overwhelm you, but you have to outsmart them. Eventually, its either you put them in their place, or you fall prey. To help these people, encourage them to attend psychological counseling. But as for you, stay safe from the games narcissists play.