Narcissism And Me

A lot of people throw around the term narcissist to describes someone with an inflated sense of self. I’ve done it and I’m sure you have also. But are we using it correctly and can we actually identify a narcissist when we come in contact with one.

The definition of narcisssist is: a person who has an excessive interest in or admiration of themselves.

Okay. Well… maybe I am using the word right. But what about a chronic narcissist? A habitual, toxic behavior that affects everyone and everything around them?

That’s called Narcissistic Personality Dissorder. It is defined as:

A disorder in which a person has an inflated sense of self-importance.
Narcissistic personality disorder is found more commonly in men. The cause is unknown but likely involves a combination of genetic and environmental factors.
Symptoms include an excessive need for admiration, disregard for others’ feelings, an inability to handle any criticism, and a sense of entitlement.

Yep, I’ve met a few of those in my time.

It is no surprise to meet people like that in television or radio. The talent can sometimes have a very high opinion of themselves, while the producer and editors tend to feel intellectually superior. I get it. Been there, done that, got the T-shirt.

But what other fields have high levels of narcissistic behavior? According to Stewart Cook, an advocate for victims of Narcissistic Abuse & NPD, says:

  • Politicians – their all-consuming hunt for popularity quickly transfers to the voting ballot. Power hungry, short-term vision, an openness to treachery and backhand deals, thriving in the cutthroat environment amongst birds of a feather, fame and recognition. (I KNEW IT)
  • CEOs – wealth, status, trappings. An ability to make touch decisions unemotionally, regardless of the numbers of staff whose life may be wrecked with redundancy. Natural risk takers greedy for success and recognition. Power wielded as they rule over a flock of sycophantic and fawning subordinates.
  • Lawyers – a delight in making money, lots of it, especially if it can be done at the expense of someone else’s misfortune. A good churn of clients on a daily basis. A profession with status and influence – well suited to the cerebral narcissist.
  • Doctors – one’s natural instinct to think of doctors as caring, empathic types and the majority of them are. But this is also a profession that attracts – the positions of power, the opportunity to enjoy someone else’s heartache, the high turnover rate of appointments. Moreover, general practice is a great cover for the narc – projecting a caring reputation and commanding respect in return. The dead giveaway is what would have been referred to in times gone by as an awful bedside manner.
  • Surgeons – as for doctors, but with the added buzz and excitement of high drama and unpredictability that the operating theatre offers. Moreover, it their ability to make calm, quick and unemotional decisions (that can potentially have life implications for patients) can be a big bonus.
  • University Lecturers – centre of attention, admiration of juniors, the chance to laud their wisdom over a large and captive audience – all attractive to the cerebral narc. Particularly as students provide a regular turnover of fresh new faces.(That makes sense. The Child Nerd of the past who was probably bullied and picked on now has the center of attention!)
  • Media and film – widespread recognition and fame.
  • Sportstars – this is an interesting one. There is much logic in there being an attraction to the somatic narc – physical supremacy, the chance to show off in front of thousands of adoring fans, stardom and recognition. But whilst individual events are golden opportunities, team sports pose a problem to the narc – the close proximity to others in pretty intense and testing situations, having to put the team needs ahead of their own. All a bit of a high-risk environment for the narc.
  • Chef – thriving in chaos, a high turnover of less-educated staff, an accepted atmosphere of fear and abuse. We can all picture the irate chef lambasting juniors with all kinds of expletive, controlling the kitchen with an iron fist, the fearful reverance and exaltation they command.
  • Law enforcement – with a smart uniform, shiny badge and side-arm to hide behind, the ultimate narcissistic mask. Wielding more power that they perhaps should, it is easy to understand how a narc policeman might end his career outed as a rotten apple.
  • Military – as per law enforcement. But with the added buzz of being empowered to commit the ultimate act of supremacy – taking another human being’s life. Unlike the policeman, however, the soldier lives and works in teams, again under pretty extreme and intense conditions. Harder therefore to get away undetected.
  • Priests and Clergy – particularly the gentler type who lack confidence in their sexuality. An uniform and stereotypical and ready-made persona to hide behind, the opportunity to work with the more vulnerable in society; the voyeuristic access to personal information, secrets and situations, the protection that their host organisation has traditionally provided them, a ready-made flock of acolytes.
  • Public relations – the manipulation, the acting, the lack of moral compass for a theme, or empathy towards individuals affected by stories, the thrill of chaos. (EEK… I’m in that world… yeah, I can see it. And yes, I am probably guilty. Pot & Kettle, you know?)
  • Criminals– drugs dealer, pimp etc. For the low-functioning narc, crime is a natural haven and it is of little surprise that studies show a quarter of the prison population typically having NPD. For them, a life of crime offers excitement to the risk-seeker.

Cook really nailed these descriptions on the head!

What I am learning, is that when you are surrounded by narcissists, the environment can be super draining. Just this morning, someone came into my office to discuss a wide variety of topics. Most of it was classic mansplaining and the other half were these half baked ideas on what we should be doing. We as in – Me and doing as in – already done. (Clueless person.) I try to avoid this person, because everytime I spend any amount of time with them, I feel like all of my energy has been drained from my body. A true emotional vampire.

According to starbentrecovery.com, there are signs you have been around one:

For starters, although it may sound strange, but being around a narcissist can leave you with wildly conflicted feelings. For example, do you find your emotions swinging from unconditional love and utter devotion for this person to a nagging, gut feeling of wanting to run far, far away? Yep.

That’s because narcissists run hot and cold. So you can expect to experience sublime feelings of bliss and elation when everything is going well. But if you displease or irritate this person, he or she is likely to get angry, become dismissive, or punish you through rejection.

Narcissists do one thing exceptionally well, and that is playing the drama card. Feeling emotionally drained after spending time with a narcissist is commonplace, as is having the feeling of extreme happiness or devastation when you’re with them.

According to Psychology Today, it is important to carefully assess those we allow into our personal space. We must go beyond what looks good on paper, and instead focus on character traits and value systems. When you consider getting involved or working with someone new, you may want to ask yourself the following questions:

How does this person treat other people?
How do they behave in public?
How do they treat their children?
Do they display kindness and empathy toward others?
Are they judgmental or critical of other people?
Are they intolerant of differences in culture, race, religion, or gender?
Are they inclusive and tolerant of other people’s opinions and values?
Do they always have to be right or win?
Another vital litmus test when becoming involved someone new is to ask yourself, “How do I feel in the presence of this person?” And you have to keep asking yourself this question, particularly when you have become vulnerable or have shared your vulnerable feelings, problems, or personal issues with them.

I think the best we can do today is keep our heads up, our hearts open, and our narcissist blocking shield elevated! What about you? Do you have any experience with a narcissist?

Keto Chocolate Glazed Donuts & A Little Rebellious Whiskey

Let’s Talk about these Whiskey Rebels! In particular, the book by David Liss.

What a spectacular biographical historical fiction novel! This is my first book by Liss and I definitely plan to read more. This book was set post American Revolution and featured two different story lines that eventually combine. (I love when a writer does that.) You have Joan Maycott – an aspiring novelist married to a war vet. They find themselves with useless war bonds and are swindled into trading those for property “out west” (aka Pittsburg area,) for bountiful land. As you can imagine, they run into what they call “savages,” and thick woods and rough necks with nothing to lose. Then there is Ethan Saunders, a former Captain in the army that worked as a spy but was falsely accused of being a traitor and British sympathizer. He is in love with a Mrs. Pearson and spends his days trying to right his name and win her love. I won’t go into too much detail, because that would totally give the story away. However, there is a lot of historical accuracy in this book, as well as some delicious fiction.

Despite the title, the story actually does not go into the Whiskey Rebellion of 1794. It does however deal with the proceeding years, when a Whiskey tax was placed on distilleries. Obviously, the rebels were very upset with the taxes and went right after Hamilton and the American Banking System. The book introduces us to some real characters in the world during that time and you travel from the woods of Pennsylvania to New York.

READ IT. I loved it. Seriously.

Okay… now for those donuts… the REAL reason you clicked on this page!

Low Carb – Keto Chocolate Glazed Donuts

Donut Ingredients:

  • 1/2 c. coconut flour
  • 1/2 c. Swerve, confectioners sugar
  • 1/3 c. unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp sea salt
  • 5 large eggs
  • 1/2 c. unsweetened almond milk (I used Lactaid – Whole milk)
  • 1/2 c. butter, softened
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Glaze Ingredients:

  • 3/4 c. heavy cream
  • 1/3 c. Swerve, confectioners sugar
  • 2 ounces unsweetened baker’s chocolate, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Grease Donut pan.

Preheat over to 350 F.

Donuts: Combine all of the dry ingredients in a bowl. Then add the wet ingredients to that bowl. Mix with a hand mixer until smooth.

Pipe into the donut wells to 2/3rds full. Bake 20 minutes, then cool on a rack.

While cooling, make the glaze:

Add cream, Swerve, and chocolate to a double boiler and simmer.

Turn heat to low and add the vanilla and stir until the chocolate melts.

Dip the donuts in the glaze and let cool. (I placed in the frig for an hour or so.)

That’s it! Have a great day!!

Welcome October!

I am so excited that it is October! This HAS to be one of my favorite months of the year!

But first… to catch you up on the things I am not going to write about:

I’ve had a bit of a delay in writing because last week was super busy! We are preparing for Halloween at my office and that includes a few activities (that will mainly be virtual!) I ordered that adorable pumpkin above from Amazon. As many of you know, I am a HUGE fan of anything that is themed out or involves a costume, so obviously, that makes Halloween on of my absolute favorite holidays!

In Americus, the Downtown Main Street group asked all of the businesses to decorate their windows for the Great Pumpkin Wars. I took the task to heart and called all of the departments in the city, as well as all of the tourist attractions, to donate a decorated pumpkin that represents their brand. I’m looking forward to seeing what we end up with. On Monday, the 26th, the displays will be uploaded to FB for the People’s Choice Award. That means, I will provide a link here and you can go online and “like” your favorite display. Then on that Wednesday, judges will come by and pick the best. I most certainly hope we win!

Plus, I’m having my staff dress in costumes each day. This will also be uploaded to FB for a “Who wore it best?” Halloween costume contest that people can vote on!

Last week, I got a chance to wish my neighbor, former President Jimmy Carter, a very happy birthday!

All of the neighbors went onto the compound and did a drive-by parade to wish him happy birthday! It was really sweet. He spoke to everyone as we passed! The media were not invited in, so this was really, super special for the people of Plains.

Speaking of media, on Friday, we had a media day with SAM Shortline. television stations from Macon, Albany, and Columbus rode the train in the super private, luxury car known as the Dearing.

We had a little reception and basically spent the day chatting with journalists and doing interviews.

I ran into one of my old tv news anchors I used to work with, Suzanne Lawler. It was great to see an old friend!

I even took some time to eat at the Buffalo Cafe with my buddies Nichole from the newspaper and Qaijuan.

The weather was perfect and it was a great day! It almost felt normal again.

On Saturday, I kicked the morning off with my final photography class.

I am thrilled I got the opportunity to understand manual digital photography so much better. I am considering taking Photo II in the coming months, but for now, I want to master what I have learned.

After the class, I ran downtown to the Peace Day celebrating at Lenny’s Market in Americus.

My friend Jeni & Laura held a very successful event that attracted over 100 people. Everyone was socially distanced and wore face masks.

Dorian was such a good boy. I took him with me! Can you believe he is 7 months old now?

That night, Tim and I had a little beef stew and watched our first of many upcoming Halloween movies.

Later, we tried this new KETO dessert… but…. it was waaaay too sweet. I’d recommend.

The next day we got up and I wanted to try out my new photography skills. So we drove to Dawson, about 30 minutes south of us and headed to Mark’s Melon Patch.

As always, the farm stand was awesome! However, it was super crowded and very few people were wearing masks. We kept our distance and kept our masks on. I zipped in and took some pics and we headed out.

Here are some of the crops I took pics of:

There is a whole field of Zinnias.

You could get fresh peanuts, dried peanuts, fried peanuts or boiled peanuts. I’m more partial to the boiled peanuts, however, there was a huge line and too many people.

They have a corn maze. Folks can even come at night with flashlights and navigate the area.

Scoppernogs!

Beautiful sunflowers

Craft area for kids to paint pumpkins

And of course, an area to pick your pumpkins!

There are games, food , hay rides, and music. This really does click off many items on your Fall bucket list!

And finally, to wrap up my first week of October:

Need I say more?