Delusional Things Narcissists Believe About Themselves And The World

Delusional Things Narcissists Believe About Themselves And The World

Narcissists have an extremely inflated sense of self-importance, a deep craving for admiration, and a total lack of empathy. This often manifests in a warped perception of reality, wherein they see themselves and the world in ways that completely defy logic. Here are some of the more delusional things they convince themselves of (and try to get everyone else on board with too).

1. They are superior to everyone else.

Narcissists don’t simply have high self-esteem; they genuinely believe they are inherently better than everyone else. They see themselves as more intelligent, more attractive, more talented, and simply more deserving than those around them. This sense of superiority leads them to look down on anyone and everyone they meet, often with contempt.

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2. The world revolves around them.

To a narcissist, they’re the star of their own movie, and everyone else is just a supporting character. As PsychCentral notes, they struggle to understand that people have independent thoughts, feelings, and needs of their own. They expect to be the center of attention, and their sense of entitlement knows no bounds.

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3. Rules don’t apply to them.

Narcissists feel that laws, social norms, and basic moral codes are for “lesser” people. Cutting in line, breaking commitments, and disregarding boundaries are justified because, in their minds, they are above such mundane restrictions. This mindset can lead to harmful, reckless, and selfish behavior.

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4. They’re incapable of ever being wrong.

Admitting fault would shatter the narcissist’s fragile ego. They possess an almost supernatural ability to deflect blame, distort reality, and rewrite history to maintain their image of infallibility. Even when caught in a blatant lie, they’ll shift the narrative, gaslight, or become enraged rather than ever take accountability.

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5. They’re experts in every field (even if they know nothing about it).

A narcissist has no qualms about spouting off opinions and lecturing people on subjects they possess zero knowledge of. They’ll confidently argue about economics, science, or medicine even with experts in those fields. This delusional belief in their own expertise stems from their need to feel superior and in control over any conversation.

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6. Everyone is jealous of them.

Narcissists find it difficult to fathom someone not being obsessed with them. If you criticize them, they assume it’s out of jealousy. If you ignore them, they convince themselves that you’re secretly intimidated by their greatness. Their worldview dictates that everyone is either vying for their adoration or seething with envy.

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7. Everyone is constantly trying to exploit or manipulate them.

A narcissist’s paranoia runs deep. They struggle to trust anyone’s intentions, assuming hidden agendas behind even the kindest acts. Their fear of being exposed as the fraud they fear they are makes them see enemies everywhere. Anyone who dares to challenge their superiority, even respectfully, is labeled a threat.

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8. They’re masters of manipulation.

Narcissists are keenly observant – not to empathize with people, but to identify their vulnerabilities. They become experts at playing on your emotions, insecurities, and kindness to achieve their goals. Whether it’s through guilt-tripping, gaslighting, or calculated love-bombing, manipulation is their primary tool to get what they want. The thing is, these tactics are often much more obvious than they realize.

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9. People only exist to serve their needs.

Narcissists see people as tools to be used for their own gain. They have no problem exploiting friends, partners, or coworkers for validation, favors, or to climb the social ladder. Genuine connection or reciprocity doesn’t factor in – the narcissist believes they deserve to be served, and those who fail to satisfy their demands are discarded.

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10. They’re entitled to special treatment.

Whether it’s demanding the best table at a restaurant without a reservation or trying to use their charm to get out of a speeding ticket, narcissists believe the world should bend to accommodate them. Equality feels like a personal insult; they crave preferential treatment and get angry when they don’t receive it.

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11. Everything bad that happens to them is someone else’s fault.

A missed promotion, a failed relationship, any setback is the result of sabotage, unfairness, or other people being incompetent. As Verywell Mind points out, they just can’t accept that negative consequences might stem from their own actions or shortcomings. This victim mentality fuels their resentment and rage, further alienating them from those around them.

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12. Any criticism is an attack on their very existence.

To a narcissist, even the smallest, constructive critique is a deep personal wound. Their fragile self-image can’t tolerate any implication that they aren’t flawless. They often deflect with anger, lash out at the person giving feedback, or spin it as proof that people are out to “bring them down.”

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13. True love means you’re completely devoted to them (even at your own expense).

man with striped shirt looking serious

Narcissists don’t understand healthy love dynamics with give and take. Their concept of love is all about control and what you can provide them. They expect unwavering sacrifice, absolute loyalty, and the abandonment of your own needs and boundaries to cater to theirs.

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14. They only form relationships with people who enhance their status.

Man looking serious at the camera while standing in front of a group of people. Team and leadership concept.

Narcissists’ friendships and romantic relationships are carefully curated to maintain their “personal brand.” They associate with those they see as boosting their image – attractive partners, wealthy acquaintances, or popular social groups. Genuine connection matters little; it’s all about the superficial benefits.

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15. Deep down, they are terrified of being exposed as frauds.

serious man looking off to the right

Underneath the bravado, the narcissist is constantly battling feelings of inadequacy and deep-seated shame. Their elaborate persona is a defense mechanism to hide their deepest fear – that they aren’t actually worthy of the admiration they crave. That vulnerability is what fuels their need for control and their paranoia that everyone is out to get them.

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16. They can change their destructive behaviors at any time (they just don’t want to).

Narcissists rarely seek professional help, as doing so would expose the cracks in their carefully crafted facade. However, if confronted, they often weaponize the idea of therapy, implying that they could change if they really wanted to. This false promise is used as a manipulation tactic to avoid immediate consequences while shifting the narrative that they are the one holding the power in the dynamic.

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Phoebe Mertens is a writer, speaker, and strategist who has helped dozens of female-founded and led companies reach success in areas such a finance, tech, science, and fashion. Her keen eye for detail and her innovative approach to modern womanhood makes her one of the most sought-out in her industry, and there's nothing she loves more than to see these companies shine.

With an MBA from NYU's Stern School of Business and features in Forbes and Fast Company she Phoebe has proven she knows her stuff. While she doesn't use social media, she does have a private Instagram just to look at pictures of cats.