Narcissistic Personality Disorder
All about narcissistic personality disorder
Narcissistic personality disorder is a personality disorder characterised by an extreme sense of self-worth or self-importance, a lack of empathy and a preoccupation with success and power. Those with NPD think that they are superior to everyone else, and feel that they are special. They also have little regard for how other people feel. The lack of empathy is very marked and many narcissists have little awareness of the impact they have on other people. The overly confident exterior is however, generally a mask for low self-esteem and being highly sensitive to criticism or defeat. If you have NPD, your reactions to criticism can be very strong and often you will constantly think about what was said, and the slightest comments can often lead to you feeling degraded or humiliated.
Signs and symptoms of narcissistic personality disorder
Narcissistic behaviour impacts all aspects of your life including your personal relationships and you work. Some common signs include:
Grandiose sense of self-importance and a tendency to exaggerate your achievements, talents or abilities
Believe that you are special or unique and deserve special treatment
Seek continual and excessive admiration
Often arrogant, self centred and boastful
You believe you are entitled to things and are envious of others that have thingsv
Lack empathy and have little awareness of how others feel
Easily hurt or slighted
You will often take advantage of others
Causes of narcissistic personality disorder
No single cause has been identified for NPD and the cause is likely to be a complex combination of genetics and environment. How you were raised as a child is thought to be one cause of NPD, being overly pampered or spoiled as a child may result in you becoming use to being treated as special. NPD may also result from extreme neglect.
Treatment of narcissistic personality disorder
Those with NPD rarely seek treatment as they don’t believe they are behaving inappropriately and have little empathy to understand how their behaviour impacts others. Therapy can help the narcissist relate better to others by gaining greater insight on the impact of their behaviour on others. Therapy also tries to help narcissists develop a better self-esteem and more realistic expectations of others. Therapy can also help the associated symptoms of anxiety and depression. Unfortunately, therapy also often has limited success because those with NPD are often unwilling to acknowledge they have a problem.
Recovery from narcissistic personality disorder
As few with NPD actually seek treatment, recovery is challenging. Also once in treatment, they generally do not stay in treatment as they do not believe there is a problem. Generally NPD is a life-long disorder with periods where the symptoms reduce, but also periods where they get worse.
However, it’s good to know that recovery from narcisstic personality disorder is possible if the person is willing and able to seek treatment. Did you realise research has shown that the relationship between you and your counsellor is one of the most important elements for a successful outcome? How do you know if the counsellor you find will be the best fit for you?
Select Counsellors provides a unique client counsellor matching service to ensure you see the right counsellor for you, first time. We have a pool of highly trained Sydney based counsellors, psychologists, psychotherapists and psychiatrists and will match you with the right therapist based on important information collected in a personalised assessment about you and your needs. To book an assessment click here or call on 1300 123 680 to speak in person with a Select Counsellor.
Click on the links below to find out more information on personality disorders:
The Helpful Guide