Five ways to protect yourself from a narcissist

A narcissist has the ability to destroy your mental and emotional wellbeing.

People who suffer from Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD) believe that they are superior and special. Furthermore, they lack empathy and for this reason, can easily hurt anybody in their life without feeling any remorse. They are masters at manipulation, deceit and thought control as they use tactics to get what they want from those around them. If you are a victim of a narcissist’s abuse, you need to learn how to protect yourself so as to save your mental and emotional wellbeing.

There are five things you can do to protect yourself:

1. Ignore them and do not argue.

As narcissists truly think that they deserve everyone’s special attention, ignoring them will crush their confidence. What is more, Karyl McBride Ph.D. explains that like a bully, a narcissist will receive no satisfaction from hurting you if they are ignored. Instead, they will find another person to bully, abuse, and criticize.

2. Understand that their criticism is not your problem.

If you learn how to ignore their constant criticism, you will be able to see that the criticism which they direct towards you is not actually your problem. Put differently, their constant criticism is a result of their disorder and it is not something which is your fault. Therefore, try to work on not taking the things they say personally.

3. Set clear and distinct boundaries.

It is not always possible to walk away from a narcissist. In some cases, instead of leaving, you need to sit them down and have a serious conversation about your boundaries. Naturally, this will be a difficult conversation and one which will most likely anger them. Nevertheless, it is important to have this talk in order to protect yourself.

4. Know that you have the right to protect yourself.

You might feel guilt and grief after setting harsh boundaries or withdrawing from this person. When you feel this way, it is important to remind yourself that it is your right to protect your happiness and your health. You should not be apologetic or regretful.

5. Remind yourself that everyone deserves compassion.

Being compassionate and kind is essential. It is these emotions which have the power to change the world. If someone in your life lacks compassion, empathy, and kindness then they do not deserve you. Taking the previous point further, if you feel guilt and grief, remind yourself that just like everybody else, you deserve compassion. 

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