Love is Not Narcissism

Learning what love is, what it looks like and how it impacts our lives will inevitably lead us to confronting the toxicity and destruction of narcissism. Many are asking about narcissism and how it fits into the picture of discerning, healing and working through brokenness in our lives. 

Some would say we live in a culture influenced by narcissism. Others are worried that the concept of love or even learning to love yourself will lead into narcissism and feed narcissistic traits. Some ask, am I a narcissist? 

Narcissism has been around for ages, but we are learning to understand a certain set of traits, combined together form a narcissist. I believe understanding narcissism can be very helpful to understand things we see in culture, your past interactions and help make sense of some very difficult people you have dealt with in your lifetime. 

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I know I have had many moments where it dawned on me, “That person was a narcissist!” I didn’t see it before. 

While only a small percentage of people have what would be called narcissistic personality disorder, I believe that narcissistic tendencies are widespread. And there are reasons for this that I will get into. We can all benefit from a bit of a narcissistic detox, in patterns you may have developed and even detoxing from being around a narcissist.

Many of you have been under the influence of a narcissistic parent, spouse, boss or even church leader. And it has taken some intense learning for you to work through the healing process. 

I think it is important to identify what healthy love really is, while exposing the counterfeits and learn what happens when true love is absent. In fact, when love is missing or distorted in someone’s life, a whole domino of struggles, problems and battles can be unleashed. One of the toxic traits that can arise in the absence of healthy love is narcissism. 

So today I want to address narcissism and narcissistic tendencies. What is narcissism? What are the signs of it? What does the Bible say about it? How can we live in a way where the influence of narcissism does not overtake our lives? 

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