Are you dealing with a narcissist and feel like you will never win? By the end of this article, you will have five secrets to outsmart that narcissist and beat them at their own game.
Number one is agree with them. And I know what you’re saying, “What? Agree with them? They’re crazy. They’re pathological liars. They say anything they want to, they accuse me of stuff that’s not true.” I get it. I do. I’ve dealt with them, I’ve represented them, I’ve had them on the other side of my cases, had to deal with them in my own life. So, nobody’s immune. Narcissists are everywhere, right? But I’m talking about ways that you can bring them down. Because remember, that a narcissist’s game is to manipulate you. I mean, you’d think it’s to beat you, but it really isn’t. Beating you, isn’t the outcome. There’s really no outcome. They don’t really have a goal or an outcome. Their outcome is just manipulating you, messing with you, making themselves look as good as possible. And the only way that they can make themselves look good is by putting you down.
So if you steal their thunder, if you take their ammunition away, then they don’t know what to do with that. So you just say … if they say to you, “You’re always late.” Just say, “You know what? You’re right. I’m always late.” And they’re going to bristle at that at first, “Oh, you’re being … you’re talking down to me, condescending,” whatever, they can say whatever you want, just say “No, I’m always late.” That’s what you say. “I’m always late.” And you’re not saying it in a smug way. Be careful not to say it in a way that’s sarcastic or they can tell that they’re getting to you, because the whole purpose of this is to just show them that you’re not affected, that you’re completely nonplussed by what they’re saying and how they’re saying it. That’s their perspective. You’re always late, whatever. And they’ll be thrown off their game with that.
Now the one little caveat I will say, is if you’re going to court with a narcissist, you definitely don’t want to say this, like in a deposition or in court or something like that. I mean, this is where you’re just having a conversation with this other person, and you’re just coming up with ways to outsmart them and kind of beat them at their own game. So, by them trying to manipulate you by getting a rise out of you and you just saying, “You’re right,” it stuns them. They’re not quite sure what to do with that.
Number two is the EAR method. This comes from Bill Eddy who is an Author and Attorney and a Psychologist, and he’s written books like, Splitting, and BIFF, and the Five Types Of People That Will Ruin Your Life. This is especially effective if you’ve got somebody who’s just completely out of control and just losing their mind on you. You show empathy, attention and respect, EAR. E-A-R. And I know what you’re thinking. You don’t want to show them empathy, attention or respect because you don’t empathize with them. You don’t want to give them attention. And you certainly don’t respect them. I get it. This is to outsmart the narcissist, remember? So if you act the way the narcissist expects you to act, then they know they have you. If you act in a way that they don’t expect you to act, just like in number one where we said just agree with them, this is where you’re giving them a little bit of attention and remember, that’s what the narcissist wants. They want attention.
So you’re just giving them just enough to say, “I see that you’re upset. It must be difficult to travel …” or whatever it is that you want to say to them, but you’re just saying it without emotion. Just show them a little bit of empathy, attention and respect. And if you’re dealing with a narcissist in your life, just put “Yes” in the comments.
The third thing you can do is figure out leverage against them, even if you’re not negotiating with them in a formal sense. Figuring out a way that you can gather around them and find their inconsistencies and figure out what it is that they’re saying that they’re lying about. Catch them in their lies. Now, what I want you to do when you’re doing this though, is not show them right away what you’ve got, because if you’re showing it to them real time, real time, real, time, then they’re constantly out-gaming you, which they’re very good at. I mean narcissists are master manipulators, especially covert narcissists.
Covert narcissists are great at looking really, really wonderful to 99% of the world. I know, I’ve had to deal with them myself. But in the meantime, while you’re gathering leverage and you’re gathering motivation for them to want to have a conversation with you or do what you want them to do, you’re just gathering, gathering, gathering. You’re waiting to use that leverage at a time that is most opportune for you, and that the time that you’re going to use that is when you have them fully surrounded and there’s no … it’s like air tight. It’s like soldiers that are surrounding a city.
There’s no escaping, because that’s when they go crazy and their true colors really show through, which again is more leverage that you’ll be able to potentially use down the road.
Fourth is throw them off the scent. So, what I mean by this, is don’t show a narcissist what you really want, because the minute you tell them what it is that you definitely don’t want or you definitely do want, then that’s the thing that they’re going to do whatever they can to make sure you don’t get it. Because if you’re trying to outsmart a narcissist here, you don’t show your hand, you don’t show what it is that you want. You throw them off the scent. You act nonchalant about the thing that you really want the most, and then the thing that you don’t care about, you act like that’s the most important thing ever.
And especially if you’re negotiating with the narcissist, this is very, very critical. Don’t show them what it is that means the most to you, because that’s what they will then target. Because then in the end, if you end up with what you want, who really cares? If they knew that that was what you want, and if they think that you didn’t get what you wanted, act like, “Oh my gosh, this was just horrible” or whatever. And then when you go back to your house or you go back to your room or whatever, you can just be like Dr Evil and squeal and ha ha ha ha, you got what you wanted. So, who really cares if he or she knew that you got what you wanted.
The fifth way to outsmart a narcissist has nothing to do with the narcissist at all. It has everything to do with you. In my book, Negotiate Like You Matter, I explain that the most important thing is your internal feeling of value. So, you focus on your own power. You focus on your own value and your own internal feeling of value. Remember that narcissists have no internal feeling of value. They get all their feeling of any sort of value from the external. And the more you can just be that Oak tree and you can just stand in your power, the less the narcissist will get to you. That is really the best way to outsmart that narcissist.
If you are dealing with a narcissist and you want to know more about how to communicate with them, come join me at my FREE Webinar, the 3 MUST HAVE Secrets for Communicating with a Narcissist. You can sign up for that RIGHT HERE.