Some of the people with whom we interact challenge us. At times, we might even wonder if someone is narcissistic. Dr. Ramani Duvasula calls these personalities “high-conflict, difficult personality styles.”

Whether we know what we’re dealing with or not, how do we work with difficult people while maintaining our own positive approaches and without enabling this type of person?

Difficult People Aren’t Always What They Seem

Narcissism isn’t necessarily a diagnosis but a description, in terms of what we’re focusing on in today’s post. We tend to think of a person in this way if they seem self-focused and abrasive. The behaviors might actually cover up distorted self-esteem and disregulations of various areas.

A person with narcissistic behavior might seem larger than life, intense, and exaggerated. They might also be argumentative, deceptive, and unempathetic. For these reasons, the behaviors might make us feel like withdrawing or opposing this person.

Yet, it’s helpful to know that someone with narcissistic behaviors is often out of balance. Working with someone who behaves this way needs others to live with clear boundaries, clarity, and emotional resilience.

For more suggestions and ideas about people we face who appear to be narcissistic, I highly recommend Dr. Ramani Duvasula’s book: Don’t you know who I am?”