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Narcissists thrive on control, entitlement, and a constant need for admiration. They’re not easy to deal with, but knowing how to communicate with them can make interactions smoother. Here are 8 phrases that can help you disarm a narcissist and regain control in a conversation:

  1. “I understand your perspective.” While this doesn’t mean you’re agreeing with them, this phrase acknowledges that you’re listening without feeding their need for constant validation.

The Narcissist You Know: Defending Yourself Against Extreme Narcissists in an All-About-Me Age by Joseph Burgo

  1. “Let’s stick to the facts.” Narcissists often twist narratives to fit their version of the story. By focusing on objective facts, you’re redirecting the conversation away from personal accusations and towards the truth.
  2. “I’m not going to argue with you.” This sets a boundary, signaling that you won’t be dragged into an endless debate where the narcissist might be seeking to dominate or belittle you.

Highly recommended journals for self-reflection. It helps you process interactions and understand your emotions better.

  1. “This discussion is over.” If things get too heated or circular, it’s okay to assertively end the conversation. Remember, you have the right to protect your mental and emotional well-being.
  2. “No.” Sometimes, the simplest response is the most effective. You don’t always have to justify your decisions. A clear and firm “no” can be incredibly powerful.

Boundaries: When to Say Yes, How to Say No, to Take Control of Your Life by Dr. Henry Cloud & Dr. John Townsend

  1. “I appreciate your input.” This is a polite way of acknowledging their opinion without agreeing or committing to it. It’s neutral, non-confrontational, and leaves little room for a counter.
  2. “Let’s discuss this when you can speak respectfully.” Requiring respectful communication sets an important boundary. If they can’t engage without belittling or insulting, it’s okay to pause and revisit the conversation later.
  3. “I see things differently.” You’re allowed to have your own perspective. This phrase conveys disagreement without directly challenging or confronting their viewpoint.

Disarming the Narcissist: Surviving and Thriving with the Self-Absorbed by Wendy T. Behary

In interactions with narcissists, maintaining your own boundaries and mental well-being is crucial. Remember, it’s not about winning an argument; it’s about preserving your peace and self-respect.