(HealthyResearch.com) – For people who have narcissistic personality traits, COVID-19 is a whole new world. Most people are wearing masks and avoiding places where they might put themselves or others at increased risk. For the narcissist, this can all seem like a silly idea. That’s because, according to PsyPost, narcissists have a general lack of interest in the health and wellbeing of others.
What Does It Mean to Be a Narcissist?
Mayo Clinic defines a narcissist as someone who sees the world as mostly revolving around them. They may be controlling and even cruel to get what they want, and they’re often manipulative, becoming masters at twisting facts. With any narcissist, being told what to do can be a problem. They aren’t fans of following other people’s rules, and that can extend to laws and regulations that are for the greater good, such as being asked to wear masks in public places, wash their hands frequently and practice social distancing due to COVID-19.
The Narcissist and the Dark Triad
Narcissism (vanity and ego), psychopathy (antisocial and impulsive behavior), and Machiavellianism (being calculating and manipulative) are referred to by mental health professionals as the Dark Triad. Psychology Today warns that people who have these three traits are much more likely to do things like refuse to wear masks, hoard food and toilet paper and protest the regulations officials are imposing in an attempt to slow the pandemic.
Not every narcissist has all three traits, but the more they have, the more significant their resistance might be. Some will go along with the requirements if they can gain personally from it, but they operate on their own terms; if they don’t see the value for themselves, they’re going to fight back about a new regulation. They’re also more likely to insist the problem is made up or isn’t as serious as others believe it to be. For a narcissist, if it’s not about them, it’s not important.
Is Noncompliance a Real Health and Safety Risk?
Because of the easy ways COVID-19 spreads from person to person, narcissists and others who refuse to comply with basic safety protocols can be putting large groups of people at risk. These people can spread germs and leave them on surfaces where they can be picked up later by others. A narcissist can be especially dangerous in places where social distancing may not be as easy. People who work in high-risk locations, such as nursing homes and jails, could quickly spread the virus to dozens or even hundreds of people in a short amount of time.
Interacting with a narcissist can be dangerous and upsetting for a number of reasons, but the best course of action anyone can take is to minimize contact. Additionally, make sure to take the right precautions as laid out by the CDC, even if the other person refuses to. Practice good social distancing and regular handwashing, use sanitizer and always wear a mask when out in a public space. You may not be able to force a narcissist to do the right thing, but you can avoid being a part of the increased risk by doing everything possible on your end to slow the COVID-19 spread.
~Here’s to Your Health & Safety!
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