In every company, there are narcissists who can either help the team achieve their goals or make it hard for others to succeed, so their position is not affected. Working with these kinds of people can be tricky because of the lengths they will take for their interest, and if you fight them, you will be in for a tough one.

If you find yourself on the periphery of a narcissist, here are several ways to protect yourself:

Record Everything

When dealing with narcissists, it is best to record everything they are doing. Narcissists will lie and manipulate people to stay in a positive light. Considering this fact, it is best to deal with them in writing or have a witness around if you need to speak to them so they won’t have the opportunity to manipulate the situation to their benefit.

Establish Clear Boundaries

It can be tricky to find out when you are first under the radar of a narcissist. You may just be humouring them like how you would humour others when they ask for your help. But, as you do one favour for these narcissists, it will become a regular occurrence, and you will find yourself being taken advantage of, leaving you no time for yourself and your work.

If you feel uncomfortable when these people approach you for a favour, don’t ignore it. Narcissists don’t care if you feel uncomfortable with them and even become upset if you refuse them. But, you don’t have to respond to it if you don’t feel happy doing these people a favour. Be firm with your decision, and don’t let yourself be bullied into complying with their request.

Stay On The Topic

Narcissists regularly bait people for them to get your attention or get the opportunity to turn the tables to their advantage. Don’t let them do so by staying on topic and not getting into an argument with them.

Don’t Let Your Ego Influence Your Actions

When you discover that a narcissist is manipulating you, the first response you will have is telling them off and letting them know what you think. However, this should be avoided because they could retaliate against you and make you look like the culprit for their situation.

To combat this, you need to be firm with your ego and don’t let it push you into engaging with these narcissists.

Detach Yourself From Them

Narcissists relish the fact people need them and their talents. When they spot someone needing their help, they will exploit this person and make sure they are constantly wanted.

If you can overcome the need to request the help of these narcissists, do so because this will weaken their hold on you. They may retaliate and accuse you of being selfish, but if you don’t let them become attached to you and stay neutral, you will come up on top.

When a narcissist is intent on making your work life a living hell, you may find it hard to deal with them efficiently. But, if you utilise one or all of the tips above, you can deflect their actions and protect yourself. If you persist and stay calm, you will grow stronger from experience and face any challenge that may come your way at work.

A workplace have different types of characters and personalities. Here are some colourful characters to read about:
How to Manage Having a Competitive Coworker
10 Type of Characters You will Bump into in an Office Party (Part 1)
10 Type of Characters You will Bump into in an Office Party (Part 2)

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11 replies on “How to Protect Yourself When Working With A Narcissist

  1. Kally, great advice. Having worked with a narcissist, what I observed he was a better teammate if he was the leader and a worse one when he was not. I like the use of the word “detach.” What I did was minimize contact as I just got tired of him running everyone else down. I am 100% certain he talked about me, but at least I was not present hear it. Keith

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Good that you were not around to hear all the negative things spoken about you. I would have been pretty upset even though I know it is not worth it since it came from a narcissist.

      Like

  2. The “detach” method can help most definitely, and also be cordial and civil genuinely, keep it strictly work nothing personal, and also make copies of documents and save anything set individual ever sends to you as they have the tendency to turn things around and be compulsive liars.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Very useful! I’ve recorded , and was once told it couldn’t be used because the other party wasn’t aware. I still record, also engage in written documentation. It’s insane what some people willingly put in their emails. Love your content !

    Liked by 1 person

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