August’s Hot Topic – Romance Central

Next month’s series is all about how to cultivate healthy intimate relationships and get the most out of your love life! I’ve designed the series so it’s just as applicable for singletons seeking relationships as for those already in relationships and I’m really excited to share some tips and tricks to keep the spark, deep connection and appreciation between you and your partner alive.

 

In this series we will explore:

 

 

  1. Warning signs to look out for that you are in a toxic or abusive relationship
  2. Unhealthy relationship models – the dynamics that foster unhealthy intimate relationships and why
  3. Unhealthy relationship behaviors and how to avoid them
  4. Healthy relationship model – the dynamic that fosters healthy fulfilling intimate relationships
  5. Healthy relationship behaviors; how and why they nurture your relationship (including the brownie points game)

 

I’m so excited to hear your thoughts on this series as they weeks pass by, please do comment! I have to say this was by far one of the most enjoyable series to write and I hope it will guide you towards a fun, loving and fulfilling intimate relationship or serve to strengthen your existing one.

 

Wishing you all a truly wonderful week!

 

x X x Jenny x X x

How to teach self-esteem without teaching narcissism

As someone who has always wanted a child I have often thought about how amazing it would be to shape someone’s life. I envisaged myself reading the latest parenting books, written by child psychologists and experts. One of the reasons parenthood is such a huge responsibility is that early childhood experiences can shape a person’s personality, beliefs and approach to life.

 

Interestingly in previous generations there was a big emphasis on boosting children’s self-esteem which inadvertently led to some parents teaching their kids entitlement – one of the essential ingredients of narcissism.

 

If you are thinking of starting a family or already have one of your own here are some useful tips on how to encourage your child’s self-esteem without teaching them entitlement.

 

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The Growing Epidemic Of Narcissism And Your Complete Guide On How To Deal With Narcissists Part Four

Photo courtesy of Shutterstock

Photo courtesy of Shutterstock

 

Last week we dealt with how to handle your narcissistic boss, co worker or friend. This week we examine what to do when your partner or family member is a narcissist, the two areas of your life where it is most difficult to be in relation with a narcissist.

 

When your partner is a narcissist

 

This is a tricky one. Narcissists are notoriously charismatic and charming and when their attention is on you, you feel like the center of the universe. They will stop at nothing to woo you and will pull out all sorts of grandiose romantic gestures to have you under their spell and captivated by their charms.

 

Why do they do this? Well, I’m glad you asked. They want to win you over so you will be intoxicated by them, shower them with adoration and place them on a pedestal – which ultimately feeds into their sense of superiority and entitlement. Actually, they often perceive that their status has increased after ‘conquering’ you because they only pursue people who are perceived by others as attractive, cool and desirable – this is known as the trophy syndrome. As you can see, nothing can be taken on face value when dealing with a narcissist as there is almost always an ulterior motive, however well hidden.

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How to encourage a narcissist to have empathy

This is a difficult one. The number one rule of getting along with a narcissist is not to question their thinking or rational. However, when they aren’t showing you any empathy and you are having difficulty in your relationship with them a little empathy from them goes a long way in potentially solving the relational issue. The best way to cushion the criticism is therefore to start with a positive and end with how you feel.

 

For example:

 

I love how you used to listen to me, it made me feel very understood and special. Recently I have been feeling sad and rejected because I sense a difference in how you listen to me. Please may you try to listen to me the way you did back then now?

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Why narcissists never suspect they are narcissists

 

One of the core elements of narcissism is that narcissists cannot acknowledge or accept their weaknesses as they find it too threatening to their sense of self. In order to compensate for their weaknesses they present a flashy charismatic persona to the world in a bid to cover their true self, often becoming consumed with love for the false self they present to the world and using the admiration or attention from others to feed their often fragile egos.

 

It’s not surprising therefore to understand why narcissists are the last to suspect that they are in fact narcissists – this is simply just too threatening to their sense of self.

 

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How to tell if someone is moderately narcissistic

There are many ways to tell if someone is moderately narcissistic. Ask yourself the following questions and rate the person in question out of ten, 10 being very much so and 1 being not at all.

 

  1. How hard does the person find it to forgive others?
  2. How hard does the person find it to say sorry?
  3. Does the person ever get angry or ignore those who question them or their opinions?
  4. Does the person always have to be right?
  5. Does the person ever agree to disagree with others?
  6. Does the person continually and consistently commandeer conversations?

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The Growing Epidemic Of Narcissism And Your Complete Guide On How To Deal With Narcissists Part Three

Photo courtesy of Shutterstock

Photo courtesy of Shutterstock

 

So far we have covered the signs and symptoms of narcissism, this week we will look more in depth at what to do and how to deal with the narcissist in your life, whatever your relationship to them.

 

Whilst researching narcissism I discovered a fabulous article in The Huffington Post by Jeffrey Kluger, the author of ‘The Narcissist Next Door: Understanding the Monster in Your Family, in Your Office, in Your Bed — in Your World’.  Below are some useful tips for workplace narcissists, friends and family members that I gleamed from the article and some of my own tips on partners that will ensure you successfully avoid the minefields narcissists create, enabling you to deal with them more strategically and making your interaction with them that little bit easier.

 

When your boss is a narcissist

 

It’s highly likely that either you or someone you know will have had to deal with a boss who’s a narcissist at some point. Power is to narcissists what pollen is to bees and they gravitate to positions of authority faster than you can blink. Their charismatic charm, manipulative tactics and ability to make decisions autonomously usually allow them to climb up the career ladder unimpeded and as a result the majority of bosses out there are, well, narcissists.

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How to get along with a narcissist when you have to

If you really have no choice but to try to get along with a narcissist there are things you can do to make the relationship smoother. Here are my top tips for getting along with a narcissist, please do let me know if you have some of your own.

 

  • Don’t make demands and lower your expectations
  • Listen – A LOT
  • Give affirmations and positive comments to them often

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How to recover from a toxic relationship with a narcissist

 

The devastation a narcissist can leave in their wake can be awful. As someone who has rebuilt their life after a toxic relationship with a narcissist I can say that life can be happy, meaningful and beautiful again, however unlikely that may seem when you first make the split.

 

Below are my top tips in order of priority for recovering from a toxic relationship with a narcissist, please do let me know if you have any tips of your own to add.

 

  1. Narcissists can work to isolate you from friends and family to gain more control over you. Take time to nurture relationships with friends and family to strengthen your support network and explain to them why you maybe haven’t seen them much during your last relationship.

 

  1. Most narcissists lack boundaries and often they may expect to dictate how you spend your free time (which they usually say has to be with them). One of the first steps towards healing should therefore be to learn assertiveness so as to protect you from similar hurt in future. Please read ‘How to free yourself and assert your rights’ which looks at how to protect your own personal rights that you were born with. Please also read ‘Assertiveness: A Journey Worth Taking’ to discover how to create healthy boundaries in your future relationships.

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