A narcissist may portray themselves as somebody special; however, they really are not. It is nothing but a depiction. The only distinction from other people is their oversensitivity. It is said that oversensitivity is both their strength and weakness. It is something that you can use to outsmart a narcissist. How do you outsmart a narcissist?
Here are 5 ways you can outsmart a narcissist. Read this article until the end as we give you the strategies.
Number 1: Raise the red flag.
Once you become a narcissist’s target, you become part of the game, the one being played. The game is developed by narcissists themselves, pre-programmed for them to always have the winning end of the stick. However, such a game cannot be played if they have nobody to toy with. When you refuse to be a toy, when you say no and unfold the red flag, it means you are refusing to be controlled, declining any type of abuse and exploitation.
Red flags irritate narcissists as it confronts them with reality, going against the fantasy they are trying to live. They may view your refusal as a challenge, making them even more interested in targeting you. But by setting firm boundaries and raising the red flag higher, the narcissist will eventually stop and ultimately let go of you. They become frustrated when they cannot destroy the red flag and may go on a rampage, but they will eventually tie themselves down and stop.
Number 2: Be rational.
Rationality beats the sly fox. Narcissists are nothing but sly foxes who want to have it all. Be rational and make them starve. Set aside your feelings and emotions, for they make you an easy target for narcissists. When they try to degrade or invalidate you, do not feel devalued or invalidated. Counter their harsh remarks by acting based on facts rather than reacting based on emotions.
Narcissists are skilled at manipulating one’s emotions. Do not laugh or be swayed by their attempts to tickle your emotions. They may shower you with gifts and favors, but never feel indebted to them. By being rational, you can outsmart them and understand that you are not obliged to return favors. Nobody ordered them to do what they did in the first place.
Number 3: Practice independence.
Narcissists are obsessed with being in control, so they manipulate people around them to depend on them for validation and other needs. They want others to believe that they are the only ones capable of doing things right. However, you can exclude yourself from that equation by practicing independence. Stop doing things their way and take complete control of your own life, a control that cannot be taken away by anyone, not even cunning narcissists. You are the sole owner of yourself, so do not be swayed by their charms and gifts. You can do and provide for yourself just as well.
Do not be discouraged when they claim you cannot manage without them. Simply stop listening to their words and start listening to yourself instead. Do not hand them the key to your car, as they will either steal it or return it with scratches and irreparable damage. Take the wheel and move forward independently. Independence acts as an electrified barbed wire fence for narcissists, posing a challenging barrier for them to breach. There will be no opening for them, even if they attempt to cut through it with any type of pliers.
Number 4: Wear their shoes (not literally, of course).
The best way to catch a fish is to think like one. Put yourself in the shoes of those you want to outsmart, including narcissists. Imagine yourself walking in the shoes of a narcissist. How would you feel? What would you do? If you can answer these questions, you can surely outsmart a narcissist. For example, by understanding their portrayal of power, you can counter it by attaining power yourself and becoming more effective than the narcissist.
This threatens their sense of superiority, making them realize that everything does not revolve around them. They will be intimidated and may start treating you with respect. Putting yourself in their shoes helps you understand their weaknesses, giving you a card to use against them and prohibiting them from committing narcissistic acts against you. It helps you develop a strong offense that leads them to view you as an equal instead of someone they fear.
Number 5: Heal.
Before you can be effective, you must stabilize yourself and heal. This applies especially to those who have been victims of narcissistic abuse. You cannot outsmart a narcissist if you are still caught up with them or if you are still tied to the abuse they inflicted upon you. If the answer is yes, attacking them in such a state will leave you vulnerable, like a wounded soldier going to war. Take the time to recover while deepening your understanding of the enemy. No victim wants the abuse to happen again, but you must prioritize complete healing.
Recommended: Healing from Hidden Abuse: A Journey Through the Stages of Recovery from Psychological Abuse.
Healing is the first step towards moving forward, and it can be achieved by letting go, learning, and applying what you have learned. This way, they cannot repeat the things they have done or come back to you. Healing brings awareness, and awareness leads to caution. Being prepared for possible situations can protect you, as narcissists cannot effectively manipulate those who are well-informed.
Being a victim of narcissistic abuse may seem like a curse, but it can also be a blessing if you choose to see it that way. Only those who have gone through it themselves can truly understand narcissistic tactics and effectively counter them. The secret lies in using what they dislike to your own advantage. However, be extra careful. The goal is to stop or avoid being targeted by them, not to make an enemy out of them.
Read More: 10 Best Comeback Phrases to Disarm Narcissists.
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