This is a question that has baffled many people over the years – self-esteem vs. narcissism. Basically, self-esteem is a self-image or perception we have of ourselves, whereas narcissism is a complete lack of self-worth. Many researchers believe that those who suffer from narcissism have low self-esteem and possibly even low self-confidence. The reason that people with this personality disorder do not have a positive self-image is due to all of the lies and deceptions they engage in order to gain the attention of others. They are convinced that they are great, when in reality they are nothing close to that.
In order to better understand self-esteem vs. narcissism, it helps to take a look at the way that we normally evaluate those who we consider to be successful and influential in our lives. Typically, we only look at those people who manage to get ahead in life, those who are financially successful, those who are happy with their personal relationships, and those who are respected in their professions. Those who display traits in any one of these areas are deemed to be successful, since they are displaying what is considered to be a positive characteristic. However, we should also keep in mind that in order for someone to be successful, he or she must be able to create a positive impression in others as well.
Sadly, a lot of narcissistic people do not feel worthy of being self-evaluated. Instead, they would rather go to misrepresent themselves and acting like nothing is wrong. Narcissistic people view self-worth in a completely different way, often comparing themselves to fictional characters. Generally, these types of individuals will rate themselves far lower than the average person, almost never considering themselves to be overly self-appreciative.
One of the reasons why so many people find narcissists so hard to deal with is because of their bad personality traits. narcissists have a deep need for admiration and are not willing to accept criticisms. They have a tendency to take other’s perceptions to heart, believing that what others think about them is usually true. They tend to use dishonest tactics to garner support and enlist followers in order to further their agenda.
A healthy self-image starts with an honest assessment of oneself. If you have a healthy self-image, you will be able to recognize your own flaws and own up to them. A healthy self-image also requires a realistic self-evaluation in order to improve. A narcissist’s distorted self-image feeds his need for social media in order to reinforce his image and reinforce his self-worth.
Those who have high self-esteem are not susceptible to the abuse of social dominance. A person with high self-evaluation is unlikely to succumb to a mob mentality because she or he knows that they are right. A person with high self-evaluation self-esteem will not engage in victimization, bullying, or manipulation of others to advance their agenda. This type of person is likely to develop a sense of fairness and social responsibility. The individual is not likely to tolerate false information being spread about him/her.
Those who lack self-esteem are susceptible to right-wing authoritarianism. Right-wing authoritarianism stems from a distorted self-image and a reliance on social networks. Right-wing authoritarianism feeds on the misrepresentation of social networks as a force for societal justice. Thus those who lack self-esteem are susceptible to the abuse of social dominance. A person with a distorted self-image is likely to become a member of groups whose misrepresentation of social networks is considered justified by the use of violence or threats of violence.
Narcissistic personality disorder is the basis for the other two personality disorders – sadistic and psychotic. According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), narcissistic personality disorder is characterized by traits such as grandiose self-esteem, self-reflection to the point of deriving pleasure from knowing about one’s body, an inflated sense of responsibility and power, and an intense need for admiration. Those who have narcissistic personality disorder do not believe that they deserve any kind of empathy or compassion, and they have no compassion for others. According to the International Journal of Neuropsychology, those who have low self-esteem are more likely to develop narcissistic traits.