The Truth About Narcissism

Narcissists cut a wide, swashbuckling figure through the world. At one end of the self-loving spectrum is the charismatic leader with an excess of charm, whose only vice may be his or her inflated amour-propre. At the far end of the spectrum reside individuals with narcissistic personality disorder, whose grandiosity soars to such heights that they are manipulative and easily angered, especially when they don't receive the attention they consider their birthright. Here's how to figure out whether the big talker in your office really believes his or her own hype.

Recent posts on Narcissism

A Better Term Than Extremism

By Jeremy E Sherman Ph.D. on December 08, 2016 in Ambigamy
"Radical" and "extremist" are vague and relative terms. The better term is absolutist and it applies to any and all beliefs.

Bully Bingo

By Jeremy E Sherman Ph.D. on December 08, 2016 in Ambigamy
56 tricks adult bullies use (all variations on "I know you are but what am I?"). If you're dealing with someone who uses a lot of them, then Bingo! you're dealing with a bully.


By Alfie Kohn on December 02, 2016 in The Homework Myth
To grasp what Trump might do, we have to understand who he is. The clearer that picture becomes, the more horrifying the implications.

The Art of High-Stakes Psychological Diagnosis Pt 1

By Jeremy E Sherman Ph.D. on November 29, 2016 in Ambigamy
Don't let your gut impulses decide how you diagnose people's problems. It will only make the problems worse. Be careful, patient, expansive and strategic instead.

Why Narcissists Feel They Need to Look So Good

It’s well known that people high in narcissism have an endless need to look good. What’s less clear is why. A new study sheds light on why, and how, narcissists seek to seem ideal.

An Updated Snapshot of the Online Narcissist

By Romeo Vitelli Ph.D. on November 24, 2016 in Media Spotlight
Are we really experiencing a narcissism epidemic, and does social media use play a role? A new meta-analysis raises some disturbing questions.

When Democracy Fails

By Steve Taylor Ph.D. on November 21, 2016 in Out of the Darkness
It’s time we had psychological checks on power, in addition to constitutional checks.

The Psychology of Insults

By Nigel Barber Ph.D. on November 21, 2016 in The Human Beast
Having been through an election that was won on the basis of insults, it's time to study why we so often put others down.

5 Tips for Adult Children of Narcissists

Adult children who do not end the narcissistic cycle through direct action are the ones most likely to perpetuate the detrimental patterns in their own adult relationships.
K. Ramsland

Power Assertive Murder

By Katherine Ramsland Ph.D. on November 20, 2016 in Shadow Boxing
Some serial killers are motivated by anger and the need to harm those they think have wronged them. Todd Kohlhepp appears to be in this category.

Five Reasons Why Millennials Helped Elect Donald Trump

By Jean M Twenge Ph.D. on November 16, 2016 in Our Changing Culture
How could so many young people have possibly have voted for Trump? Here are five reasons.

5 Types of Toxic People You Need Out of Your Life

By Ralph Ryback M.D. on November 16, 2016 in The Truisms of Wellness
Toxicity presents itself in all different forms and can play out like a Greek tragedy, where actors walk out on stage wearing various masks.

Shame Management and the Trump Supporter

By Joseph Burgo Ph.D. on November 13, 2016 in Shame
Many white working class voters who feel likes "losers" supported Trump because he promised to restore middle-class jobs that provided a sense of "basic human dignity."

He's Abnormal, She's Normal: That's (A Reason) Why Trump Won

By Nassir Ghaemi M.D., M.P.H. on November 11, 2016 in Mood Swings
Trump won despite the repeated critique that he wasn't fit to be president because of narcissistic temperament. This critique was wrong, psychologically and politically. Here's why

The Rise (And Demise) of Financial Narcissism

Whether we like it or not, we are at a high point of Financial Narcissism, a psychological mindset in which Self-Worth = Financial-Worth

Narcissists Are Aggressive Jerks!

By Brad J. Bushman Ph.D. on November 07, 2016 in Get Psyched!
Does self-love or self-hate underly aggression and violence?

Trump: The Master Distractor

What psychology says about our presidential election and the American public

Jealousy as a Narcissistic Wound

A psychological state that feels like jealousy to one person may not feel like jealousy to another.

Narcissistic Men and Their Mothers

There comes a time when the boy of a narcissistic mother will come across to the mother as a mysterious and dangerous testosterone-filled creature.

Is It a Circumstantial Setback or a Conspiracy Against You?

By Jeremy E Sherman Ph.D. on November 01, 2016 in Ambigamy
Sometimes they're out to get you, sometimes it just hard circumstances. We do better when we attend to the difference.

Why Do Some Narcissists Need to Be So Perfect?

A new article analyzing personality data from over 9,000 participants sheds light on why some high in narcissism need to see themselves as destined for perfection.

Narcissism and Exotic Pets: Is There a Connection?

By Hal Herzog Ph.D. on October 31, 2016 in Animals and Us
New research examines how narcissism and "dark personality traits" affect our attachments to pets and why some people are drawn to companion rats, snakes, and tarantulas.

Should You Marry a Narcissist?

In heterosexual marriages, which is more problematic: a man's or a woman's narcissism?

Trump & Questions about Sociopathy and Narcissism

By Robert Klitzman M.D. on October 30, 2016 in Am I My Genes?
Many people have begun calling Donald Trump not only "narcissistic", but "sociopathic". What, though, does this second term mean? A psychiatrist provides some insight.

Men Who Refuse to Satisfy Women

Cunnilingus is not the only way to stimulate a woman to orgasm but it is an effective way and one that can lead to a very intense orgasm. Yet some men refuse to perform.

The Many Benefits of Self-Compassion

By Lisa Firestone Ph.D. on October 29, 2016 in Compassion Matters
In many ways, self-compassion is more beneficial to our psychological well-being than self-esteem.

Narcissism and the U.S. Presidency

What is the relationship between narcissism and leadership, particularly the U.S. Presidency? You might be surprised.

The Trump Profile: Narcissistic and Predatory?

By Stanley O. Gaines, Jr. Ph.D. on October 26, 2016 in Deep Focus
Narcissism, especially in its most maladaptive versions, consistently emerges as higher among perpetrators than among non-perpetrators of sexual assault. Is this Trump's profile?
eldar nurkovic/Shutterstock

Bringing Gaslighting to Light, Part III

Do you know how to recognize the signs of gaslighting?

Faces of the Narcissist: The Critic and the Judge

Eight tips to protect yourself from a critical and judgmental narcissist.