Feels grandiose and self-important (e.g., exaggerates accomplishments, talents, skills, contacts, and personality traits to the point of lying, demands to be recognized as superior without commensurate achievements) – One of Nine Narcissistic Personality Disorder Criteria DSM 4

Narcissists tend to live in a bubble. They surround themselves with Yes-men or women, who hang off their every word. If you don’t dance to their tune, that they are something really special, then they will dismiss you and you will find yourself, very quickly,  on the uninvited list. You won’t find too many Narcissists hanging out with those that put them down or constantly criticize them. They generally just don’t engage with any, who don’t see them in a favorable light.

When your primary objective in life is to constantly be consuming attention and admiration, you need to be around people that will continually feed you a generous supply. You also need to seek out potential new sources, because you never know when you’ll have to replace old supply and new supply always trumps old supply.

They are often so convincing and so dominant in their role as a superior, that you will often find them in supervisory positions within companies. They are assertive and dominant and are very good at rallying people around to their side and their fake version of reality. On the outside this looks like leadership, but a Narcissist isn’t a company man or woman. They have only one interest – self-interest. If you get in their way or try to expose them don’t expect them to play fair. They will attempt to destroy you and when you speak out against their abuse you will end up looking like the one with the problem.

One of the tools they use to spread their delusions of grandeur is story telling. Because they are compulsive liars, they are adept at spinning tales of their heroism, feats of daring and acts of brilliance or bravery. Rewriting the truth is a skill that they have mastered. A Narcissist will challenge anyone who doesn’t support their version of reality. They will attack their adversary’s character. They will tell lies and try to turn people against them. Anything to take the attention off of their own duplicity.

“In less than two years, my administration has accomplished more than almost any administration in the history of our country,” – Donald Trump

The delusions of grandeur that a Narcissist exhibits are not the same as those suffered by other impairments like Schizophrenia, or like those of patients that have experienced brain injuries that have scaring on the frontal cortex. They aren’t walking around thinking they are Jesus Christ or Napoleon.

A Narcissist is aware of the lie they are telling, but the process becomes like a room full of Dominoes. They will change the story to make themselves look good and then in the next retelling, they will change it a little more and so on and so on, until they are illustrated in a way that makes them look more talented, more accomplished, more heroic and just displaying characteristics that are far superior than everyone else. Because they surround themselves with admirers, they seldom get any negative feedback or resistance, so they feel entitled to claim the lie as truth.  And everyone knows if you repeat a story enough times the lie gets lost and becomes the truth. Repetition is how the subconscious remembers and how the legend survives.

They will also fudge credentials, degrees and step into roles and jobs they know they aren’t qualified for, all in an attempt to gain an even better level of supply.

They advance their agenda by challenging the character of the opposition and slandering anyone who opposes them. The truth can never come out, so they deflect, deflect, deflect and fight their adversaries with a ferocity that is unwarranted and often, cruel.  It’s all about winning and in this game where their fragile ego is on the line they must win at all costs.

Because they spend all of their time around people that they have carefully sculpted as their followers, it does come as quite a shock to them that someone would disagree with them. They’ve spent a lifetime in this bubble and so the reality of the real world often alludes them, which is why they seem to lack insight into their own behavior and how people actually perceive them.

At the same time, narcissists are walking contradictions.  While they exude the perception of confidence and at every turn display a bombastic ego, what’s really going on inside is a very different story.

They are slave to the opinions and validations of others. They need their legion of minions and followers just to get to an emotional level of ‘feeling good.’ They cannot regulate their own self-esteem or their own sense of self-worth, so while they need these others to make them feel good, the Narcissist will hate them for his or her dependence on them and their gullibility for following someone he or she knows is a total fraud . They also hate their own weakness for needing these same people they believe are so beneath them.

When you understand that their primary objective is to obtain supply at all costs, their behavior starts to make sense and can actually become predictable. They lie to make themselves look good and attract followers (supply), they make up stories and tell the tale over and over again and each time it’s an even greater exaggeration of the truth. Anyone that opposes them or threatens to expose them gets the wrath of all wraths, which is meant to destroy their antagonists and serve as a warning for others. They lack insight into their own behavior so they cannot see it for what it is and they are so used to having people agree with them and pumping them up, that they believe the are entitled to lie and blow their own horn.

If you’re ever at a point where you are wondering if the person you’re with is lying and telling stories I’d say the mere fact that you’re wondering is a very big red flag. Every story, achievement or victory should pass the sniff test. That means – is there proof? Is there a record of it? You can’t always trust witnesses because if they are followers their version of reality isn’t necessarily truth. The most important factor is how your partner reacts. If you question a supposed event and they fly off into a rage, deflect or attack you – you’ve got your answer.

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Written by Savannah Grey
Savannah Grey is a Freelance Writer, a Hypnotherapist, Consultant, Sports Fanatic, and Philosopher and has a degree in Psychology. She is the founder of www.esteemology.com, a website dedicated to educating and healing survivors of abusive relationships.