The Weaponizing of Narcissism: Positive Lessons to Learn





The Weaponizing of Narcissism: Positive Lessons to Learn


by

L.T. Force, Ph.D.

Gerontologist

"Time is of the now!". We have been tried and tested!. It’s a new world out there - with new mannerisms, new thoughts, new mores....and new ways of doing business in this world....we have been: “COVIDITIZED!”. However, with this experience - we have also been drained, exhausted and overwhelmed. We hear the daily reports of the untimely: ‘off-time deaths’. We have watched graphs and charts come across our TV and Virtual Screens - showing the upward arrows - pointing to an increase in the spreading of COVID. But then we have heard the: “Whispers of Hope” - informing us - of social postures (the wearing of masks and employing ‘social- distancing’ strategies)....coupled with the arrival of the COVID Vaccine - will help lead us to safety! There is a sense of hope - and it’s here now....but we are drained .... exhausted....and overwhelmed. However, our work is not done - the question is: “How best can we find the wellspring for: renewal, strength and resiliency - to guide us forward?” I think we can find answers and guidance to that question - by looking around....looking at other areas we can learn from - where strength, tools and resources can be drawn from. In fact, I think we can look at particular personality constructs that have assisted in guiding others during difficult times....I think we can look at: “Weaponizing Narcissism”.

I have a friend - who will go unnamed....(that will probably irritate him - but for ‘the protection of his family and friends’ - it makes sense). He knows who he is - and so do others that know him. My friend has a wonderful personality, a quick wit, funny and engaging.... and far from quiet. The one thing my friend will admit readily - is that he is: “Narcissistic” - and proud of it! And then follows-up with the statement: “Aren’t most people....because I know most people want to be like me” - as he continues to: ‘own his space’ whether it be a: restaurant....coffee shop....theater....locker room....etc. - you name it and: “it’s his” - according to him....while continuing to: "work the room" and handing out his Business Cards - in the shape of pocket-size mirrors. (And again, anyone who knows him - will agree with this statement. As my friend, wholeheartedly....upon immediately entering: "a room....a space" - will take ownership of the discussion and ongoing activities).

****

The definition of narcissism is:

narcissist

[ nahr-suh-sist ]

(Source: Dictionary.com)


noun

a person who is overly self-involved, and often vain and selfish.

Psychoanalysis. a person who suffers from narcissism, deriving erotic gratification from admiration of their own physical or mental attributes.


Narcissus was a handsome Greek youth who rejected the desperate advances of the nymph Echo. As punishment, he was doomed to fall in love with his own reflection in a pool of water. Unable to consummate his love, Narcissus 'lay gazing enraptured into the pool, hour after hour',[3] and finally pined away, changing into a flower that bears his name, the narcissus.

(Source: Wikipedia)


(Please note - I have "Bolded" the entire definition font - as he would want me to.)

****

As you can see - this definition, and others more psychologically driven, has a somewhat negative connotation. But I also think - if we get beyond this inference - there are also positive strategies we can draw upon regarding: “Narcissism”. You see, my friend, for whatever reason, has aligned himself with this title - and in fact, has drawn from it: "both strengths and engaging interpersonal interactions" .... he is energized....and engaging....and alive!. Yes, he has a focus on himself (but in all honesty - who doesn't?) The difference here is: he is honest about it. He has centered himself around: “his-self”.... and it has empowered him. As I tell my students: “Everybody has stuff!” And in this case - there is no denying it - “My friend has stuff!....but it’s good stuff!....protective stuff!"....shielding stuff!”

So now, as we line-up to: “inoculate ourselves”...."to protect ourselves"...."to vaccinate ourselves"...."to acquire immunity."...."to acquire strength"....”externally”....we also need not forget the: "strength and resilience" we need “internally”....as we move into this: “Time of Recovery”. A question: “What will protect us and shield us as we move into the year 2021? And what is the armor we will need to draw upon and wear to protect us?” The answer is found in: “unraveling the dynamics of Narcissism - with an ‘eye-on’ the positive-side of focusing on the strengths and reliance on: 'self’.”

You ask about my friend? Where is he now? Well, if you look over there - you will find him quietly staring into a small pool....in a: ‘"trance-like state"- focusing intently on his reflection and image. You see, that is where he: "draws his strength....energizes himself....and re-charges his batteries"....because his work is not done and we need him....to captivate the room....the space.....allowing us to: take our mind off of the current conditions - as we focus on him....(as he would expect us to - and he knows that!)....as he entertains us and makes us laugh. Thank-you my friend for: Sharing Your Gifts...

(Aside: It is not a coincidence I begin this year of 2021 - with my 1st Writing of the year.... focusing on: my friend and “Narcissism” - he would expect nothing less - as he has never waited in line for anything....nor should he! Why would he start now?








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