With the advent of the front-facing camera in daily life, an issue that I have observed popping up far more than others is that of the selfie-addiction. Among other things, this is a sure-fire sign of an age-old dilemma called narcissism: overtly adoring oneself. It is good to love yourself, yes, but not to an extent where it becomes hard to stand you. Do you want to know how to stop being a narcissist? Read on to find out more!
10 Tips on How to Stop Being a Narcissist
Accept your flaws
Now it is rather improbable that a full-blown narcissist is going to be reading this, but in case you are that person and you want to change ways, you have to first acknowledge the fact that there is a problem with you. Most narcissists tend to miss this step, simply because they are too blind to see their own flaws. Those who do, however, are already on the way to being less self-obsessed. You are not perfect and in fact, no one is. Acceptance is the first step to therapy.
Heal your past
Your narcissism may result from the way you were brought up as a child. So you will have to deal with the ghosts of that past sooner or later. A big part of changing your self-obsessive habits is by thinking about them and making peace with yourself. Realize that while it may not be your fault that you are this way, it is always up to you to change your ways and be a better person. Look into your past and see what made you see the world this way, and then take steps to change your thinking.
Accept people as they are
Once you start accepting people as they are and not as you want them to be, you will start finding ways to receive authentic love and acceptance in return. Don’t try to change in the person what you see as flaws; that is bordering on self-obsession and elitism. Instead, try to make them feel comfortable and accepted. Giving love is the best possible way of receiving love in return and the love you receive that way will be honest and authentic. Just what you wanted.
To know how to stop being a narcissist, you have to do this some time or the other. Empathy is like understanding. You have to want to develop it in order to develop it. You need to choose to look at things from the other person’s perspective instead of just asserting your own views over it. Understand that other people come from different walks of life, they have all had different experiences which have made them the way they are. Once you start getting that, you will cease to be a narcissist in the eyes of the others. Because narcissists do the exact opposite of being empathetic: they decline to understand.
Just as everything else, you will need to treat this psychological instinct of always putting yourself first. The best but also the hardest way to do that is to invite criticism upon yourself. It will be difficult, massively difficult and it would take some serious mental strength to get through it, but if you persist you can, and you will have solved almost every bit of that problem. Criticism would hurt at first, but gradually you will start to get accustomed to it and you will be more aware of your flaws than ever before. It will also weed out that misplaced sense of arrogance that is brought about by narcissism.
Laugh at your mistakes
Everyone makes mistakes and only a fool is always correct. Knowing how to stop being a narcissist requires you to make fun of yourself. It is the complete antidote to the poison of self-obsession. Once you learn to make fun of your shortcomings, they won’t be a source of narcissism anymore. You will have eradicated the very root of the problem. It is a skill that takes a lot of time to master but once done can lead to a much happier path!
Ask about others
One of the key features of a narcissist is that of the non-stop talking about oneself. There’s one very simple way to remedy it and that is by talking and asking more about others. It is very implementable and it works wonders to changing others’ perception of you and your perception of yourself. You will no longer be the self-obsessed maniac that people tend to make you out to be, instead you’ll be respected by others for the right reasons.
Pay attention to details
Paying attention counts. It shows others that you can go the extra mile to understand them. Narcissists don’t just miss the details, they often tend to miss the whole matter. A good solution is not just to listen but listen closely so that you can pick up the nuances of what someone says to you. Once you are able to do that, you are no longer a narcissist. You will start becoming a more empathetic human being.
Change your point of reference
Your point of reference which dictates your behavior is most likely always something external. What you want to do is change that fulcrum to something intrinsic so that you can control it when necessary. Don’t react to externalities, think before you speak out so that you can process and filter your thoughts better. This way people will be hearing less of the narcissistic you and more of the real, empathetic you who is surely still down there inside!
Learn to love
Finally, just love. Give love and receive love. This is the ultimate secret to knowing how to stop being a narcissist. Love someone for who they are instead of who you want them to be. Similarly, love yourself for who you are but make sure you aren’t alienating any others in that process. Doing this would enable you to have real relationships in your life, ones that make you truly and genuinely happy.