Everybody on Earth has red flags. No one person is completely free from negative traits, and we all have bad habits we wish we could kick. This doesn't make you, or anyone, a bad person right away. The red flags matter less than what you do with those traits and how you let them affect the people around you.
There are certain types of people who either believe they don't have these red flags or don't really care about them, and that's when it can become dangerous. For these types, even seemingly innocuous behaviors can have sinister, underlying meanings.
The bad traits we do have can seem amplified if you struggle with low self-confidence, feeling like your worst aspects are all others can see. Trust me when I say that they're not, and if you want to see that, too, there are tools that can help.
This free audio program can help rewire your brain and not only steer you away from these negative thought patterns but actually boost your confidence and leave you feeling more assured of yourself. Click here to learn more and get started today!
Head On A Swivel
For those who have dealt first-hand with narcissists or know someone who did, you have likely learned how to spot common narcissistic traits in others as a means of survival, able to steer clear of these types of people once those red flags are waved.
With such close interaction, maybe you've even picked up on some of the lesser-known narcissistic traits, ones that are much more subtle, invisible to those without long-term exposure to someone with narcissism.
Even with that experience, there's one narcissistic trait you likely haven't heard of.
Narcissists are terrible are recognizing faces, even those of people they know well.
Being able to recognize a face is a natural human trait that many of us don't even think about. Some people are better at it than others depending on how vivid their mind's eye is or how good their photographic memory is, but it's something most of us are at least capable of to some degree.
However, a study published in the Journal of Personality revealed that narcissists are much worse at this natural human skill.
Committing To Memory
The study's authors began by wondering how narcissism, a known disorder, would affect the way someone experiences and perceives facial recognition. After all, a common narcissistic trait is being uninterested in others, so would that translate into less of a need to recognize the people around them?
As it turns out, yes. The study consisted of participants being shown 40 faces for 3 seconds each, then being told to do some other, unrelated tasks as a distraction. After they were finished with those tasks, the same 40 faces were shown mixed with 40 new ones.
It's All A Blur
The participants were then told to identify which 40 faces they saw before they were given the tasks. They also conducted a second experiment that was exactly the same, but the faces were shown upside down.
In both experiments, those with high levels of narcissistic traits weren't able to remember nearly as many faces as those with low levels of the same traits.
Not only that, but they found that this worse recollection extended beyond just faces. Narcissists also did terribly at remembering things like houses, cars, and household items, even more so than faces.
You could speculate a few different ways as to why that is, like saying that narcissists only ever consider things and people that they can use or manipulate to work in their favor while disregarding the rest, but the study's authors have a theory of their own as well.
As Miranda Giacomin, the study's lead author and a professor at MacEwan University, said, "If people focus more on themselves, they may spend less time attending to other information."
Watch And Learn
They decided to look into this phenomenon further. Another experiment had 187 graduate students watching a virtual lecture. The students had to have their webcams on so a small window with their camera's feed would appear in the bottom corner of their screen.
Researchers then measured how much time each student spent watching themselves in the corner versus watching the actual lecturer.
Perhaps predictably, those with high narcissistic traits spent much more time watching themselves compared to those with low narcissistic traits.
Additionally, a general memory test showed that the narcissists remembered less of the presentation, too busy admiring their own image.
The study's conclusion reads, "Devoting attention to oneself may inhibit noticing, recognizing, or remembering what is happening elsewhere, leaving narcissists particularly prone to miss and subsequently fail to remember events occurring around them.”
So if you notice someone who's spending a little too much time in their own world, forgoing the things happening around them, or someone who cannot put a face to a name for the life of them, you might want to watch out. You never know who could be hiding the worst of intentions.
That doesn't have to be your life, though, you can change for the better starting today. This free audio program will provide you with tools to help boost your confidence and start advocating for yourself. Click here to learn more and see what it can do for you!