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  • Writer's pictureKristen Herring-Asleson

Narcissists . . . Derail Everything!

Although a narcissist appears charming and charismatic, what can lay underneath will rear its ugly head sooner or later.

Working with people, specifically co-workers versus customers or clients, is not always pleasant. Bouncing from job to job, thinking the “grass is greener on the other side” is a fantasy. For many, staying put is the only option.

Unfortunately, just as in personal relationships, there are toxic people in the workplace who just won’t go away or chase the above said fantasy. So how does one deal with toxic coworkers, more specifically narcissist coworkers? Sadly, not everyone can jump ship when faced with this type of person, so tolerating, handling and dealing with it head-on is the only solution.

For those who do not know how a narcissistic person behaves, it is best described as one who has an extreme level of self-involvement that makes them ignore the needs of those around them. Now, we all may show this type of trait occasionally, but a true narcissist frequently disregards others or their feelings. In addition, they have a way of twisting realities and situations into someone else’s fault or problem, which results in the victim feeling or appearing “crazy.”

Heather, a close friend, describes this type of person in her personal life as “Someone who knows no compromise or honest communication.” She adds, “I state my point, set boundaries, and do not allow arguments. If the conversation engages, it takes a sharp left off course. It’s the only way.”

But what if you worked with a person with such a disorder? Work life is not always unicorns and rainbows, so to speak. Although a narcissist appears charming and charismatic, what can lay underneath will rear its ugly head sooner or later.

In the workplace, these types of people undermine and ridicule.

As described in Psychology Today, they also:

  • Take credit for your hard work.

  • Give you backhanded compliments.

  • Ridicule you in front of your coworkers.

  • Blame everything on you.

  • Know your weak spot and exploit it.

  • Actively try to get you demoted or fired.

  • Lie to get ahead.

  • Seem to compete with everyone to be “the best” at work.

  • Spread gossip about you, and denies doing it when you confront them

  • Sabotage your work.

  • Pressure you to do something unethical.

  • Get jealous of your accomplishments instead of congratulating you.

No matter the situation, these toxic coworkers want to be viewed as the best, even if it means cutting down others.

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