When most people think of narcissism, they think of someone who is conceited, manipulative, and over-powering. Negative perceptions often surround this term, as many people associate this with someone who has low emotional intelligence and is arrogant. Narcissistic personality disorder (NPD) is real, but most of us have traits of narcissism, believe it or not. On a ground level, narcissism isn’t unhealthy. You likely have tendencies of narcissism that have helped you reach various forms of success over the years.

Psychology Today claims that NPD is a disorder of self-esteem, but healthy narcissism involves a healthy self-esteem and self-worth. Healthy narcissism is considered a “love affair with the world” because it is “that joyous, euphoric feeling of taking pleasure in oneself and one’s impact on the world.” If you have had the opportunity to build your self-love, you likely have healthy narcissism. To feel grateful for the talents and beauty that you have been given, as well as how you can apply your beauty and talents to make the world a better place, is way of exercising healthy narcissism. You may use this when you take part in extracurricular activities, or you may recognize what you have to offer before you go into a job interview.

Healthy narcissism can lend itself well to many things. What most people don’t understand is that narcissism is a spectrum – it is simply not true to either “have it” or “not have it”. There are healthy forms and unhealthy forms; obviously, unhealthy forms can develop into NPD which involves a fear of judgment and craving to be the center of attention. The Huffington Post further states that healthy narcissism can facilitate leadership, love, greatness, and ambition. When we believe in ourselves and what we have to offer, we can go farther. Perception is everything and recognizing our self-worth is a beautiful thing.

Many industry leaders prefer someone with a few traits of narcissism; Entrepreneur listed self-awareness, collaborative, earner, flexible, firm, respectful, team player, and emotionally intelligent as several narcissistic traits that do well in the workplace. The key is knowing how far to go with these traits, and not to go overboard.

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