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How to communicate with a Narcissist?

Before discussing how a Narcissist communicates, let's start with...

How does a Narcissist perceive the world?

They have a sense of being exceptional, differentiating themselves from others through their abilities and talents. Because they have such a vision of themselves, they believe they are entitled to more than others.

They are driven by ambition to have success and hold an important status, as these positions align with the image they have of themselves. Anything less than that is seen as a mockery of their own abilities.

Often highly concerned with appearance and clothing, they emphasize the image they present to the world as a way to showcase their status and abilities. They tend to be superficial, judging people around them based on such criteria.

They can be creative and innovative, but most of the time they believe that in a professional setting, their ideas are the best and should be the only ones considered. They will do everything in their power to prove and convince their coworkers of their ingenuity. As a result, they can become stubborn and hinder the work of their colleagues.

The life of a narcissist can be compared to a play, where they are the protagonist and everyone else is either a supporting actor or the audience. And in the end, they eagerly await the praise and recognition they believe they deserve for their work.

Many narcissists have a slight awareness of their situation. Given their inability to connect with others and develop a relationship based on love/authenticity, narcissists often report feelings of boredom or a sense of meaninglessness. Wanting to be above everyone else, they preserve their respect and create an aura of expertise, but condemn themselves to a rather lonely life. After all, emotional intimacy requires two people to let go of the illusion of power and status differences, creating an intolerable vulnerability for the narcissist. Realizing this, some narcissists yearn for more authentic and deeper emotional experiences to compensate for the emptiness they give/receive.

How does a Narcissist communicate?

The communication style of a narcissistic person, or someone with narcissistic personality traits, is characterized primarily by the directive approach they take in relation to others. This directiveness is accompanied by a tendency to dominate the other person.

How does this type of communication manifest?

In a conversation, this person will tend to dominate the conversation, often interrupting the other person without realizing it or appearing completely uninterested in what the other person has to say.

In a professional setting, they will give instructions (or rather, orders) to their colleagues about how they should carry out their tasks and will reprimand them at the slightest mistake.

These habits contribute to an attitude of superiority, which is characteristic of this personality type. They feel the need to be treated specially and consciously or unconsciously impose this treatment because a narcissistic person will never tolerate being treated like "everyone else."

This shatters their belief that their skills, talents, and intelligence are far superior to the people around them.

Another habit they may exhibit is gaslighting.

What does this mean?

Gaslighting is a form of psychological abuse where the victim is made to doubt their own memory, perception, and mental health. The abuser uses various techniques, from denying past abuse to creating situations that leave the victim disoriented. These behaviors are typical of narcissistic personalities who are unable to fully take responsibility for their actions or who distort reality to make it easier to accept according to their expectations.

How do you talk to a Narcissist?

Practically, how does a Narcissist behave with others?

Their heightened self-confidence and constant overestimation of their own abilities are often perceived by others as arrogance.

They frequently behave in a "superior" manner towards people who do not share their interests or are not on the same "level."

Manipulation - they exploit others to achieve their goals or gain personal advantages. They tend to take credit for teamwork achievements and blame others when facing obstacles or failures.

They expect attention, favors, and privileges without feeling obligated to reciprocate. When they don't receive attention, favors, privileges, etc., they become frustrated, irritated, and do whatever it takes to be the center of attention.

Lack of empathy or partial lack of empathy - generally, they are not impressed by the emotions or sufferings of others. Most of the time, the narcissist is too absorbed in their own feelings and experiences to have time or energy to pay attention to others' feelings.

You can anticipate being treated as an audience to the narcissist's performance. They often need people around them to validate, praise, and admire their efforts, whether or not they end in success. For them, these people are the audience of their "own show."

In conclusion, here are some Do & Don’t when you talk with a Narcissist:


  1. Set clear boundaries: Establish and communicate your boundaries in a firm yet respectful manner. Narcissists tend to push boundaries, so it's important to stand your ground.

  2. Stay calm and composed: Narcissists thrive on emotional reactions and drama. By staying calm, you can maintain control of the conversation and prevent them from manipulating you.

  3. Be assertive: Clearly express your thoughts, feelings, and needs without being aggressive or confrontational. Use "I" statements to communicate effectively and assertively.

  4. Seek support: Narcissists can be draining and manipulative, so it's crucial to seek support from trusted friends, family, or professionals who can provide guidance and help you navigate conversations with them.

  5. Focus on facts and logic: When discussing matters with a narcissist, it's best to rely on logical reasoning and factual information. Emotional appeals are less effective as they often dismiss or downplay emotions.

  6. Maintain your self-worth: Remember your own value and self-worth. Narcissists may try to belittle or criticize you, but don't let their words undermine your confidence.


  1. Fall into their manipulation tactics: Narcissists are skilled manipulators who use tactics like gaslighting, guilt-tripping, or projecting blame. Avoid falling for their manipulative techniques and stay alert.

  2. Try to change them: Accept that you cannot change a narcissist or make them see the error of their ways. Engaging in arguments or trying to change them will likely lead to frustration and disappointment.

  3. Take their criticism personally: Narcissists often criticize others to maintain their own superiority. Remember that their criticisms are often rooted in their own insecurities and should not define your self-worth.

  4. Provide excessive attention or admiration: Narcissists crave attention and admiration, but giving in to their demands only fuels their behavior. Set healthy boundaries around excessive praise or attention.

  5. Engage in power struggles: Narcissists seek power and control, so engaging in power struggles will only escalate the situation. Focus on maintaining your own boundaries and emotional well-being instead.

  6. Expect empathy or understanding: Narcissists struggle with empathy and are unlikely to


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