Deceit is the hallmark trait of manipulative characters. And there are many ways to deceive. Some disturbed characters are so skilled in the subtlest forms of lying that they have raised it nearly to an art form.
Revering truth is crucial to character. To have healthy intimate relationships, we have to be honest and sincere with others. And to be psychologically and spiritually healthy, we have to be honest with ourselves.
Narcissists refuse to recognize or subordinate themselves to any higher power or authority. They see themselves as above the need. Besides, in their own minds, they’re always right. Reality sometimes clashes with that distorted self-perception. And that can prompt a narcissist’s rage.
Reverence for the truth builds character and can truly set us free. But narcissists and other disturbed characters have declared war on truth. For them, reality is what they say it is. Believing themselves superior, they know they’re right and everyone else is wrong.
Hitting bottom is utter defeat combined with the inability to deny the true cause of that defeat. When the lofty fall and can blame no one but themselves, opportunity opens for constructive self-reflection and character growth.
Egomaniacal characters are grandiose narcissists. And their grandiosity sometimes borders on the delusional.
Our egos serve an important purpose. They help us navigate this world and deal with its slings and arrows. But we can identify too much with them. And when we do, we lose touch with our more authentic self. To see the bigger picture, be more fully alive, and treat each other justly, we must eventually surrender our egos. Narcissistic ego inflation interferes with that.
Self-esteem is about our sense of what we have going for us. Self-respect is more about what we have done with our gifts. And both reflect the kind of relationship we have with a “higher power.”
It’s hard to develop a balanced sense of self-worth in a culture that promotes and rewards egomaniacal thinking and a sense of entitlement.
Covert narcissism is narcissism under cover. Covert narcissists can be quite lovable and charming. So, beware. What you can’t readily see can hurt you.