The concept of higher self-esteem or self-evaluation comes hand in hand with democratic norms of the society. In a nutshell, these norms involve the rule of law, the freedom to think, speak and choose, the respect for the right of other human beings as well as the protection of the environment. Consequently, higher self-esteem or self-evaluation arises when we are aware of our responsibility in maintaining the health of others and the maintenance of the integrity of the environment. On the other hand, narcissists lack this awareness, in that they place themselves above the law and the order of things, believing that they are exempt from morality, etiquette and right-wing authoritarianism.
When we speak of higher self-esteem or self-evaluation, we refer to the positive side of human nature and the innate ability of human beings to act and feel in accordance with what they want. On the other hand, it is a clear fact that narcissism and other similar personality disorders are related to feelings of social dominance and the need for a hierarchy over others. This is not to say that people with such personality disorders do not have good qualities like intelligence, creativity, honesty, integrity and so on. Rather, their social dominance and the need for a place in the sun are more important than their good qualities.
It must be mentioned here that higher self-esteem and self-evaluation are not the same thing as democratic norms. What I am saying is that we do not live in a perfect world. What we see as right or wrong, are not absolute, even if these are derived from the most revered philosophers and religions. We should take this into consideration when we are assessing the human species and its potentials. Higher self-esteem and self-evaluation are very important, but we should never forget that the narcissistic type of personality disorder is not left wing authoritarianism.
As we said, the concept of higher self-esteem are not the same thing. In fact, only a minority of individuals with narcissism display a high level of higher self-esteem. Most of them are right wing authoritarian personalities. The concept of higher self-esteem and self-evaluation is important, but we should never forget that these traits are not equivalent.
Narcissistic people have the inability to understand that they are not the right people to trust or listen to. This means that they do not care about the opinions of others and are not concerned about what the majority thinks. Those who suffer from narcissistic personality disorder, or are driven by an inner narcissism are more likely to use threats, physical violence and blame others for their failures and mistakes. These characteristics are not acceptable in a close relationship with someone whom you love and care about.
If you want to know what the difference is between self-esteem and narcissism, you need to look at the people on either side of the argument. It’s important to realize that just because one person considers himself superior to another does not mean that he actually is. In fact, these people believe that they are better than everyone else simply because they believe that they possess qualities that others do not. These people lack the ability to see things from other people’s perspectives and to listen to other people’s needs and wants. They also believe that they are entitled to an inferior lifestyle and/or superior financial status than most people.
In order to understand what the difference between self-esteem and narcissism really is, you have to look first at those on the left side of this equation. Left-wingers are paranoid about the opinions of others. They project their own beliefs and resentments onto others. On the other hand, right-wingers want to be respected and are convinced that they deserve all they have. They are also suspicious of other people’s motives and often question how those they work with truly feel. Those on the right side of the self-esteem vs. narcissism debate tend to be more self-confident and self-governing, while those on the left side tend to be more insecure and self-destructive.
The truth is that there really isn’t a clear answer as to what is or isn’t true about self-esteem and narcissism. What you do know, though, is that each type of character trait is likely to be present in varying degrees in different people. Narcissistic people are notorious for boasting to other people about their achievements, while self-esteem people often put little focus on their own accomplishments. It is possible, then, to have a very high self-esteem and a low self-control, and still be a good person. And it is possible to have a very low level of self-esteem and a high degree of self-control, and be a very bad person.