Empathy vs Narcissism

Outwardly, there are some similarities between HSP-ness and narcissism. Internally, the difference is huge though.

While narcissists also appear “sensitive” they lack the needed introspection to see the need to change internally. So instead, they perceive all their own issues as a direct result from other people’s actions.

HSP’s on the other hand tend to blame themselves for a lot of things that are not their responsibility at all.

For HSP’s the combination of being self-blaming with hanging out with someone who is other-blaming (aka, narcissistic) often leads to a very negative downward spiral.

That’s why it’s super important for HSP’s to get knowledgeable about narcissism, how narcissists function, how to spot a narcissist and ultimately, how to heal ourself.

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The Missing Piece on Healing from Narcissists

June 28, 2018

There are a lot of helpful books and programmes out there on understanding narcissists. You can spend years in therapy talking about them and wondering why they did what they did and how they impacted you. But the missing piece is this: how does all this relate to you? At first, it’s helpful to focus […]

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Reader Question: Am I the Crazy One?

June 20, 2018

A reader wrote in with the following question: Am I the crazy one? I have been in a relationship with someone that may be a narcissist but I am confused. I was always someone that went out of my way to help people. I wanted it to be my mission and have made it so […]

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Sensitivity Minus Empathy is Narcissism

May 27, 2018

I hear from a lot of HSPs who write in to ask if their sensitive parent / friend / partner who is clearly really sensitive but who gets offended easily, is not open to other people’s point of view and demonstrates little to no empathy, is just a Highly Sensitive Person but doesn’t know it? […]

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3 Common Approaches to Dealing with Narcissists – that keep you stuck

April 9, 2018

Dealing with narcissistic people is tough! Yet, without the right core strategy, it’s even tougher. So much so, that many people end up feeling like there’s no effective way to deal with narcissists and be rid of them at all. Here are 3 common approaches that are easy to get stuck in:   1. The […]

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What if you’re in Love with an Empath?

February 19, 2018

On a recent Clarity Call, this question came up. Thinking about it after the call, I realised I have a lot more to say on this, so here goes. Situational sketch: you’re in love with an empath, but nothing is actually happening. You’ve known this man (or woman) for months now, you see each other […]

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Energy Sensitivity is not the Same as Empathy

November 22, 2017

Curious fact, you’d think that if someone is very sensitive to the energy of others that they are also very empathic and good at putting themselves into someone else’s shoes. Yet, some people are very sensitive to energy but at the same time quite clueless about their impact on others, or the needs of others. […]

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When a Narcissist is in Power: 7 things that happen & 6 things you can do

December 11, 2016

If you grew up with one or two narcissistic parents, then one of the biggest “OMG not again” experiences you can have is to end up in a workplace, social group (or country!) that has a narcissist in charge. You thought you made it out, and now you’re “back there”. You find yourself slipping back into old, […]

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The Role of Narcissistic Projection in Self-Doubt and Relationship Drama

February 12, 2014

Someone with narcissistic personality disorder, or a significant amount of narcissistic traits, doesn’t see you for who you are. In fact, they don’t see you at all. For practical purposes, you’re more like a projection screen. Yet, since this is -for many of us- such a foreign concept to wrap our heads around, we tend […]

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What if your parent is a narcissist?

December 8, 2013

A reader of this article left the following question as a comment: “What if the narcissist is one of my family members (like my dad)? I love him very much, but it’s unbearable being around him. He’ll pick me apart for what he sees as my problems, and even say that he loves me more […]

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The Key-and-lock of HSP-co-dependency and Narcissism

May 15, 2013

It’s a theme. Caring, committed person taking care of grumpy cold partner. Perhaps people on the outside see it, perhaps they don’t. At the point of heartbreak, relationship break-up and a gleam of returning sanity, the scenario often plays out something like this: Co-dependent HSP: my partner is really a good person at heart. Things […]

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Narcissistic Love versus Unconditional Love

August 10, 2012

Anyone with a giving persona, and a desire to help others, attracts narcissists. You give, they take. It’s a match made in heaven  hell. It’s an utterly confusing dynamic, not least because it’s so surreal. One of the keys to sanity is understanding that, when it comes to love, narcissists come from a completely different […]

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How to Stop Being Empathic and Become a Complete Narcissist (a.k.a. Arsecissist)

February 27, 2013

Let’s play devil’s advocate here for a bit. Admittedly, that can be hard (and let’s be grateful that it IS hard to understand those with Narcissistic Personality Disorder). Yet, for us HSPs, it’s essential to stop assuming that narcissists are “just like us”. It’s essential to stop assuming that we want the same things or that […]

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