The word “narcissist” often gets tossed around as just another descriptor for someone who is vain, boastful or arrogant.
And although those characteristics may be found in some narcissists, the actual definition in the psychology community is more complex.
“The truth is that not all narcissists care about fame, looks or money,” said Craig Malkin, a clinical psychologist and author of Rethinking Narcissism. “Some can be extremely quiet, so if we get too stuck on these images — really, stereotypes — we miss signs of trouble that have nothing to do with vanity or greed.”
What all narcissists have in common, he said, “is a strong drive to feel special — or stand out from the other 7 billion people on the planet — but they go about it in different ways.”
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