Self Love Versus Narcissism

Many people wonder: If you are investing in self love are you a narcissist? 

Let’s think about self love versus narcissism and what is the difference.

What is Narcissism?

Psychology Today Defines Narcissism as “characterized by a grandiose sense of self-importance, a lack of empathy for others, a need for excessive admiration, and the belief that one is unique and deserving of special treatment.”

Does that describe you? 

Both a narcissist and a non-narcissist would say “No.”

However, a narcissist is fueled by an underlying motivation to avoid shame. When they feel any amount of shame for anything they have done, they will do ANYTHING to place the blame on others. 

Due to this, self love could be very stressful for a narcissist because self love means you have to own your actions and life. Consequently, you are taking responsibility for yourself.

Generally, a narcissist is only motivated by manipulating others. They would look into self love work as a way to boost their image.

What is Self Love?

Self love is a chance to get to know all the different layers of you. It is an exercise in continual healing. 

Simultaneously, it is you building a relationship with yourself. You are getting to know and love your mind, your heart, and your soul. Just like all relationships, it grows and changes with time. A self love relationship cannot be ignored or neglected, it needs to be cultivated so it can grow.

Self love is guided by your needs and you follow your intuition to where you feel called. It’s about you AND your connection with others.

Narcissists are Welcome Here

This might sound contradictory, but if a narcissist moves towards self love, it can be a good thing.

A narcissist getting to know their layers, healing their inner child, or working through how to communicate with love, can only help the world. 

In many cases, narcissists developed their personality traits as a response to trauma. If they are confused about how the world is responding to them, working on a deep love of self can be healing.

This doesn’t mean that you need to feel sorry for a narcissist, or allow them to manipulate you. The work of self love involves understanding your boundaries and asserting them against any narcissistic abuse.

You Have to Decide

Along this journey you have to decide if your motivations are selfish. If you are finding that you feel isolated and alone on this self-love path, then maybe you need to work on communicating with self love. 

If you are surrounded by toxic people, this was a choice you made before moving into a space of working on loving yourself. It could be time to take stock. I do not recommend you clear out all your friends, but those who support this path you are on will be obvious. Surround yourself with that support and be sure to support others, too.

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