Something has been bothering me for the last couple of years and I couldn’t quite put my finger on it until just recently. A series of events gave me that “ah-ha” moment. Amazingly, it started with Donald Trump. Sorry, I can’t say thank you to him for that because what started the awakening was reading an article from Trump’s ghost writer and a quote he used to describe Trump.

Confidence without humility is delusion.

What a powerful quote. A thought that involves a wonderful word to me – humility.

What was bothering me was a superior I had in a previous life. I can look back at my forty plus years in the workforce and can give you the names of former bosses who I really respected, as bosses and as co-workers. Right there says it all. Bosses… and… co-workers. Not once did any of these bosses introduce themselves as bosses. They never referred to themselves in that way. They didn’t need to do that. I knew who the boss was and so did everyone else.

In fact, I would introduce them to others as my boss. Which to me was the ultimate form of respect, an acknowledgement of who they were and their working relationship with me.

Fortunately for me I have only known a couple of people who had to introduce themselves as the boss. They would get down right upset if their power wasn’t recognized.

I wonder if these people truly enjoy their job or that title that they so crave to be recognized? The narcissist lives to show the world how important they are, yet with every sentence they show their illness. “These people work for me.” Say what? Does this boss write the paychecks?

To me, it is very belittling to have a boss say I work for him. I work with him. I help him achieve his goals because by doing so, my future with that job is secure. He is not my master. He wants the same thing I want in a job. It’s not a competition, nor is it suppose to be about power and control.

The sad part with the narcissist is that while they want the power, control, and recognition, they also want to be your best friend. The best bosses I ever had were not my friends. We got along wonderfully at work but that is where our relationship ended. They knew where a healthy working boundary needed to be set and as an employee it was never questioned.

As a codependent I know what it is like, not only to work with/for a narcissist, I also know what it is like to be married to one. It is so easy to lose our identities in these relationships. The boss, feels threatened and cuts you out of conversations which should involve you. They give answers for you without your consent. In reality, whether consciously or subconsciously, they are undermining you. Is that what a friend would do? No. Is that what a successful manager would do? Absolutely not. A good manager would never feel the need to do such things. A good employee gives the manager respect, which in turn is repaid by the manager back to the employee.

For the narcissist these thoughts are impossible to understand. Everything revolves around them. They are the centre of the universe and everything else can not be comprehended.

I have no idea how to stop a narcissist from behaving in such a manner. I do know that the recipient of the behaviour does have a choice. They can feel insecure, like the narcissist, or they can be humble and confident that they are OK. After all, doing a daily inventory of our own life will tell us if what we are doing is healthy or unhealthy and how to proceed.

My life with narcissistic people has never ended well. It has led to loss of family, divorces and walking away from jobs. At first it hurt but in the end it was about my survival and my life.

Author's Bio: 

Dave Harm is a recovering alcoholic who has been sober for over 20 years. He is an NLP Master Practitioner, Hypnotist, and Life Coach. He is the author of three books and the creator of two musical CD's.

He shares his experience and journey on his website