Are overt narcissists vengeful
The Wolf in Sheep's Clothing - Covert Narcissism (1)
Narcissism is not always loud, not always grandiose, not always self-portrayal - and therefore not always easy to recognize. Aside from the overt braggart, there are the easily vulnerable narcissists, too covert narcissists called. Covert narcissism doesn't reveal itself immediately. Therefore, caution is advised with a person whose character structure is characterized by a covert narcissism. If you put your trust in them and show their weaknesses, such a person is also threatened with a narcissistic undermining of your self-worth. What are the characteristics of covert narcissism?
Covert Narcissism: The Quiet Among the Loud
Covert narcissists can come across as very shy and withdrawn. You come across as very personable, politely reserved and well-versed on the social floor in dealing with others. They will rarely be seen to show signs of narcissism during superficial interaction. With a covert narcissist, his true intention often only comes to the fore in the course of a partnership, friendship, etc. Most of the time you notice that there is something wrong with this interaction. You feel kind of destabilized, but you can't figure out why. Covert narcissism is like one slow draining of your self worthwithout the cause of it being obvious to you. We've rounded up some signs that you can use to tell if you might be dealing with a covert narcissist.
He is insecure, but sublime
The digital self-presentation belongs in today's time. (All changes made to the image settings are applied to the selected photo only.) © CamponeZ under cc
Every now and then you subliminally perceive this contradiction between a strong insecurity versus a high level of self-conviction. Your conversations are accompanied by your feeling that your counterpart speaking to you from a higher position seems. So to speak: from above.
Watch out! Check yourself against yourself. If you feel like this in almost every social interaction, you are probably also based on a great deal of self-insecurity.
This mixture of the special self-confident charismaticwhich is inherent in covert narcissists, and the slight introversion makes these people so attractive to others. Such a charisma is very charming and mysterious, and also very confident and sexy according to the design: "hard shell, soft core". This paraphrase is just one of the reasons why covert narcissists can be equated with a wolf in sheep's clothing.
The covert narcissist is not the focus, but demands attention
A person with a covertly narcissistic character structure isn't that great entertainer at a party. On the contrary: He even takes a step back. What you can't see in his behavior, however, is that he is feels offendedbecause it is not being given the attention it deserves. He expects to be approached, so to speak, precisely because he sees himself as something special.
He expects the bad
Someone who is covertly narcissistic will likely reassure you at the beginning of your acquaintance that they don't mean anything bad to you. But he himself often assumes you have a negative request and regularly feels misunderstood. Covert narcissists are very suspicious and disproportionately easy to feel rejected. They display a sacrificial attitude, which is accompanied by a reversal of guilt. When there is an argument, you will ultimately be the person who is always to blame for everything.
Covert narcissists are very much sensitive. Everything you say (even a factual statement that is not meant negatively), they perceive as an attack and accordingly withdraw offended or feel challenged to fight. Not infrequently they then distance themselves from you and hold grudges for a long time.
Covert narcissism: he wears values like medals
Covert narcissists take a lot of things very personally and withdraw. © Seth Capitulo under cc
Because people with a covertly narcissistic character structure often do quite intelligent they know what is important in society. They act appropriately - like a wolf in sheep's clothing - and know exactly how to get encouragement from others. Therefore, they often seem very committed and as if they only want the best for humanity, but actually they mainly want it for themselves.
The commitment of a covert narcissist often does not go far. Many of their social actions are often just ambitious on the surface and only go so far that they can impress and dazzle with it.
Example: A covertly narcissistic man who pretends to be a woman who understands women and who packs his wisdom in a guidebook that is only superficially written down and is just 30 pages long.
More appearance than reality
As a result, a narcissist does not really take responsibility for his "projects".
Example 2: A covert narcissistic man who runs his own small business with two employees. On the surface, it looks like he's a great pike who can manage his life and has everything under control, and also manages to employ two workers. But over time you notice how he is covertly and aggressively treating his employees, that he talks badly of them when they are not in the room, and that he pays them miserably, although more payment is possible within the budget. If at some point the employees break away because they no longer want to tolerate such treatment, the entrepreneur begins to swim miserably. It becomes clear that he has absolutely no idea when it comes to company organization and management responsibility. It also shows that the former employees who have stood by his side since the company was founded have basically done the majority of the work in the company.
If the entrepreneur is suddenly alone because the long-term employees are fed up with his lack of appreciation, he doesn't tackle it and takes on responsibility. He is not looking for new employees or trying to bring back the former. He does not rethink how to deal with them or revise his concept, as a righteous entrepreneur would, for example. No, he starts whining and rowing. He peddles his suffering because he expects someone to help him. Because, in his opinion, he deserves help. You might think this example is a made-up one, but no, this man exists in reality and his company is floating right now.
He allegedly shows excessive self-criticism
In the company of a covert narcissist, there will always be phases at reliable intervals in which he is almost fatalistic lows reached. He whines about how bad his day and life is, but doesn't blame himself on listening closely. Rather, in his own opinion, he is a victim of the circumstances or is in a bad position because he was taken advantage of by others.
Often they also refer to traumatic experiences from childhood, which they tell over and over again in relatively the same wording.
He thinks he deserves more
Covert narcissism shows itself in a gap between one's own over-idealization and insecurity. © Axelle Geelen under cc
With the Victim attitude a covert narcissist is associated with the belief that he deserves more professionally, privately, etc. He complains and complains, but doesn't really change anything about his situation.
Professionally, undercover narcissists are often found in the second row. They prefer to live in hers Fantasy worldin which they want to make themselves and you believe that they are basically capable of more.
He is opportunistic and imitative
According to the psychoanalyst Otto Kernberg, undercover narcissists tend to imitate. This appears often artificial and not authentic. They develop the same style, the same language, the same ideas about life as their "role models". However, all of this seems somehow empty.
In addition, covert narcissists adapt their opinions a little bit to their counterpart if they want something from them selfishly. Often you wonder because you remember that he said it very differently the day before in a conversation with someone else.
He makes self-centered statements
If you put your focus on the signs of covert narcissism, you will find that covert narcissist is more likely to be self-centered compliments makes. "You make me happy" may be very flattering as a single sentence, but such sentences only come if you are pricked up your ears.
If you ask a covert narcissist how he imagines his partner to be, he will primarily give answers that make it clear how much the other should care about him.
He shows contradicting behavior and lies
What they say is not what they mean. As a result, in a relationship with a covert narcissist, you will often pause in confusion because you think: He actually said this and that. You will remember a lot differently than he did and be amazed about it. If you pay attention, you can catch him lying and then "turning your own truth back into shape".
Your behavior works so many times childishwhen they feel offended, but also when they are full of exuberance. On the other hand, they often display an overly serious and over-correct facade reminiscent of a sixty-year-old Conservative.
Inside he is jealous and blasphemous
Covert narcissists are often haunted by envy. You feel that they cannot really grant another success. Their joy with you is subdued. Many of them also tend to gossip about others behind their backs, even though they outwardly assert that they are not a slanderer.
you downplay the lives of othersunless they put the person on their own level. Since covert narcissists assume that they deserve more, they often see themselves on the same wavelength as celebrities or VIPs. If they can find similarities in this regard, there will be less devaluation.
Your views correspond to one Black and white thinkingwhich knows few gray levels and relativizations. Someone is good, someone else is bad. The smarter a covert narcissist, the better they can verbally disguise these views.
In the next part of our series of articles, "Covert Narcissism," you will learn how the subtle manipulation of a covert narcissist takes place.
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