31 December 2008

Do You Like Yourself Too Much? 6 Ways to Tell

Recognizing your accomplishments – and demanding respect for them – are two signs of emotional well-being. Less clear-cut is the point at which healthy appreciation turns into unhealthy narcissism. Psychologist Steven Berglas, Ph.D., author of The Success Syndrome: Hitting Bottom When You Reach the Top, points out six signals of self-love overindulgence.

1. You toot your own horn excessively – not out of a healthy sense of pride, but out of a deep-rooted need to be noticed, praised and reassured of your self-worth.

2. You have an inflated sense of yourself. To satisfy your yen for admiration, you exaggerate your talents and assets to an extreme degree. For example, you may brag you’re a terrific hostess, yet you haven’t thrown a party in years.

3. You have an unwarranted sense of entitlement. Because of your feelings of grandiosity, you always demand the best – expensive cars, clothes, jewelry, etc., and in particular, special treatment from others. You don’t insist on a good table at a restaurant, but the best table.

4. You are exploitive of or insensitive of others. You magnify your own gains, you callously point out others’ shortcomings. “It’s too bad you didn’t get the account, Bob. Of course it was given to me because I have a better track record.”

5. You’re overly sensitive to criticism. You perceive it as a life-threatening blow to your self-esteem, responding with rage instead of mild indignation or acceptance.

6. You’re told by others that you’re selfish and demeaning. The outside world may pick up on the telltale signs of unhealthy narcisissim long before you do; listen to the feedback.

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