Narcissistic people can be difficult to deal with at any time. If you know someone in your social circles who exhibits narcissistic behaviour, you can simply try to avoid them if you so choose. It’s an entirely different scenario though, if you’re working with a narcissist every day or, even worse, your employer has a narcissistic personality.
Having a narcissistic boss is far from being an ideal work situation, so if you’ve found yourself in this unenviable position, what can you do about it? Let’s look at some tips and ideas after discovering exactly what a narcissist is.
What is a Narcissistic Personality?
Narcissism is considered a personality disorder and people who are narcissistic tend to have little or no empathy for others and often desire constant attention, praise, and approval. An over-inflated sense of importance and self-worth are also closely associated with a narcissistic personality. What’s generally being concealed beneath this outgoing facade is a person with self-esteem issues or someone who is trying to overcompensate for a lack of confidence or insecurity.
Narcissists struggle to form deep and meaningful relationships on both a personal and professional level. They often belittle others to self-promote, can be arrogant, monopolise conversations, and have little or no consideration for the feelings of other people.
Let’s now look at what you can do if you find yourself working for a narcissistic boss.
You Could Simply Quit
While it’s never a good idea to get into the habit of quitting, in some circumstances, it’s the right (and best) thing to do. If you’re working a job that doesn’t really mean much to you and you end up working for a narcissist, perhaps you could simply look for a different job and quit the one with the narcissistic boss? It’s an easy way to solve the problem, provided you line up a new job before leaving the old one.
But what if you don’t want to quit?
Avoid Being Alone With a Narcissistic Boss
Narcissists are often at their worst when others can’t witness their narcissistic traits and actions, so it’s important to avoid alone time with a narcissistic boss, or you’re bound to bear the brunt of their negative personality traits.
It can be hard enough handling a narcissist in a group situation. One on one it’s likely going to be a nightmare.
Remain True To Yourself
Don’t allow yourself to be influenced by a narcissist’s behaviour and stoop down to their way of doing things. Try and remain true to yourself, no matter what is said or done. It can be so easy to get sucked into their behaviour patterns when responding to a narcissist’s ways.
Try and ignore your narcissistic boss as much as possible when they are exhibiting their narcissistic traits. Keep in mind who you are and not let their words or actions affect you or change you.
Understand What a Narcissist Is
The more you know about narcissism and understand it, the better equipped you’ll be to deal with your narcissistic boss. Narcissists are not likely to change but you can change how you respond to them by understanding their behaviour and why they are the way they are.
It doesn’t change the fact that you’ve got a narcissistic boss but you’ll feel a little better about things and you’ll know how to handle the situation more effectively.
Don’t Feed Their Ego
Always remember that one of the overriding character traits of a narcissist is their ego and the need to be admired and praised. Therefore, don’t feed this insatiable ego or their behaviour is likely to get worse, not better.
Don’t Be a Follower
Even though that person may be your boss, that doesn’t mean they are a true leader and that you have to be a follower. Give respect to their position, yes, but just go about your day, doing your job to the best of your ability. You don’t have to follow someone you don’t admire, respect, or even trust just because they happen to be the boss.
It can be possible to successfully deal with a boss who is narcissistic but if things are simply becoming too much for you, it might be time for a change of jobs for your own sanity.