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Narcissism, substance abuse, and reckless behaviours - psychology


Pathological conceit is an habit to Egotistic Supply, the narcissist's drug of choice. It is, therefore, not amazing that other addictive and reckless behaviours - workaholism, alcoholism, drug abuse, pathological gambling, enforced shopping, or reckless forceful - associated on this chief dependence.

The narcissist - like other types of addicts - derives pleasure from these exploits. But they also sustain and enhance his ostentatious fantasies as "unique", "superior", "entitled", and "chosen". They place him above the laws and pressures of the mundane and away from the mortifying and sobering anxiety of reality. They render him the centre of interest - but also place him in "splendid isolation" from the madding and lesser crowd.

Such necessary and wild pursuits give a psychological exoskeleton. They are a alternate to quotidian existence. They allow the narcissist with an agenda, with timetables, goals, and faux achievements. The narcissist - the adrenaline junkie - feels that he is in control, alert, excited, and vital. He does not connect with his acclimatize as dependence. The narcissist decisively believes that he is in accuse of his addiction, that he can quit at will and on short notice.

The narcissist denies his cravings for fear of "losing face" and subverting the flawless, perfect, immaculate, and supreme image he projects. When trapped red handed, the narcissist underestimates, rationalises, or intellectualises his addictive and reckless behaviours - converting them into an at the heart of part of his flamboyant and fantastic False Self.

Thus, a drug abusing narcissist may claim to be conducting first hand examine for the allowance of humanity - or that his substance abuse fallout in enhanced imagination and productivity. The dependence of some narcissists becomes a way of life: busy corporate executives, race car drivers, or expert gamblers come to mind.

The narcissist's addictive behaviours take his mind off his inherent limitations, inevitable failures, agonizing and much-feared rejections, and the Grandiosity Gap - the abyss connecting the image he projects (the False Self) and the damaging truth. They relieve his concern and resolve the tension connecting his unrealistic expectations and overblown self-image - and his inadequate achievements, position, status, recognition, intelligence, wealth, and physique.

Thus, there is no point in treating the dependence and haste of the narcissist exclusive of first treating the underlying personality disorder. The narcissist's addictions serve greatly entrenched emotional needs. They intermesh seamlessly with the pathological build up of his disorganised personality, with his appeal faults, and ancient defence mechanisms.

Techniques such as "12 steps" may prove more efficient in treating the narcissist's grandiosity, rigidity, sense of entitlement, exploitativeness, and lack of empathy. This is as - as disparate to accepted care modalities - the prominence is on tackling the narcissist's psychological makeup, considerably than on behaviour modification.

The narcissist's overwhelming need to feel unstoppable and a cut above can be co-opted in the curative process. Overcoming an addictive behaviour can be - candidly - accessible by the analyst as a rare and impressive feat, admirable of the narcissist's distinctive mettle.

Narcissists fall for these transparent pitches surprisingly often. But this accost can backfire. Be supposed to the narcissist deteriorate - an approximately a selection of occurrence - he will feel ashamed to admit his fallibility, need for emotional sustenance, and impotence. He is apt to avoid action completely and encourage himself that now, having succeeded once to get rid of his addiction, he is self-sufficient and omniscient.

First in print in my
"Narcissistic Personality Disorder"
Topic Page on Suite 101

About The Author

Sam Vaknin is the biographer of Malevolent Self Love - Self-absorption Revisited and After the Rain - How the West Lost the East. He is a correspondent for Chief Europe Review, PopMatters, and eBookWeb , a United Press Intercontinental (UPI) Chief Affair Correspondent, and the editor of mental shape and Essential East Europe categories in The Open Address list Bellaonline, and Suite101 .

Until recently, he served as the Cost-effective Advisor to the Command of Macedonia.

Visit Sam's Web site at http://samvak. tripod. com; palma@unet. com. mk


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