Feel-Good Friday Book Series: Power

FEEL-GOOD FRIDAY

BOOKS THAT GAVE ME SEEDS TO THRIVE (Click link for the introduction to the series)

Power: Surviving & Thriving After Narcissistic Abuse by Shahida Arabi was one of THE most important books I ever read to complete my healing from narcissistic abuse. For me, it was the final piece of the puzzle that I couldn’t understand. I had no idea how calculated narcissistic abuse was. She would say thing that were said to me verbatim. All the research studies I read didn’t cover that. I remember listening to the audiobook and just sitting there with my mouth opened as I listened to what seemed like old memories. Arabi helps the reader detach from the part of ourselves that wants to play rescuer, at least that is what she did for me.

After reading this book it was much easier for me to stick to my healthy boundaries and create a healthy distance. When I was coming out of the haze of narcissistic abuse I had a lot of resources I was using to build my self-worth, heal, and find my inner peace. So many of the tools I used were mentioned in this book, which is why I recommend it to ANY person coming out of or still in a relationship with someone who could possibly be a narcissist or sociopath.

Power: Surviving & Thriving After Narcissistic Abuse is available on audiobook and paperback and I have both. If you are the beginning of your recovery, you will definitely want to read this book multiple times. My wish is that people read the book all the way through because there are so many jewels of wisdom throughout and it will help you thrive if you do the work.

There were many passages in this book that gave me seeds to thrive, so picking one quote is very challenging. I keep going back and worth on which one to do. So here’s what I landed on, because this was the piece of the puzzle that was missing from my recovery before reading this book.

Favorite Quote from Power

(click on the book title to check out the book for yourself)

“It’s not that they can’t help it, or that they’re utterly helpless to their disorder—it’s that they selectively choose which victims to devalue and discard, and those victims ten to be loved ones.”

-Shahida Arabi, Power: Surviving & Thriving After Narcissistic Abuse, p. 99

With Love and Gratitude,

Rachael Wolff

Catch up on Your Feel-Good Friday Book Series Here:

I Am What’s Wrong 

Your Creative Brain

Hope for the Flowers

The Tao of Pooh

A New Earth

The Four Agreements

Healing the Shame that Binds You

5 Ways Narcissists Use Social Media as A Weapon

5 Ways Narcissists Use Social Media as A Weapon

Everywhere we look on social media we can read about narcissists in and out of relationships. We can sympathize with the person who has had experiences with him or her, and many times we can even relate. Yet, we don’t pay attention to all the lists and think about our responses in our everyday life on social media. Often we don’t know how easy we make it for narcissists to attack their victims. The worst part is that we can often jump in and become apart of the abuse, gaslighting, and/or shaming without ever knowing we’ve become a pawn in the narcissist’s game. Is that the narcissist’s fault? No! They have a psychological condition where they can’t process morals, emotions, and reality in a healthy way. The only way to stop narcissistic abuse on social media is to take responsibility for what we are contributing to. Staying aware is key!

1.  Personally Attacking Others

Personally attacking another person on social media is not healthy behavior, but that in itself doesn’t make a person a narcissist. A narcissist will thrive on turning people against his/her victim. They will use people to attack their target. They will feel fulfilled when they get other people to join in on the attack. The more people they can get to attack their victim, the better. They may post a picture of a person in a vulnerable moment, but write a false tagline. They might clip a video where they were attacking, but what you see is the other person reacting to their abuse. If you see or read abusive, violent, shaming, blaming, and/or harassing posts don’t engage. Social media is not the place. If you are only looking at one side, you could be contributing to an attack on someone without even knowing it. You just played into the narcissist’s hand.  Don’t forget there are narcissists in finance, media, politics, non-profits, religious organizations, etc. Staying clear of personal attacks is your best option.

2.  Getting You on Their Side

Charming narcissists will do anything to convince you to side with them. They are the victim of every person, place, and thing. Life keeps happening to them, yet they are better than everyone else. They are entitled to more. They will do their best to trigger your hate and rage towards someone who is their target. DON’T ENGAGE! This doesn’t mean we don’t stand up for the human rights of others. Just be cautious of what the person’s intentions are. Are they standing up for a cause or trying to engage your hate? Keep the bigger picture in mind. Support what you want to see in the world (peace, compassion, love), not what you don’t want to see (violence, hate, and fear).

3.  Spreading Blame

Watching the blame is the quickest way to spot a narcissist on social media. They don’t understand how their family, friends, partners, kids, co-workers, and strangers can do what they do. Everything is someone else’s fault. Now, this can get tricky as our social media culture has become a giant blame cycle, which is what makes it a feeding frenzy for narcissists. Our relationship with drama is a weapon to them. If we feed the blame cycle, we are feeding their cycle of abuse.

4.  Taking Shaming Viral

Narcissists thrive on shaming their victims. They might put them on a pedestal, then they drop kick them down to the dirt. The victims crave to be back on that pedestal, so they may accept or think they deserve the shaming. It’s all in how narcissists groom their target(s). Other times narcissists use social media to groom the target into submission by public shaming. Sometimes the narcissist is targeting groups of people to shame. Watch out for that word “ALL” when it comes to groups such as ALL Christians, ALL Muslims, ALL Politicians, ALL gays, ALL women, ALL men, ALL police officers, ALL minorities, ALL immigrants, the list goes on and on. This is dangerous thinking and it is how we give narcissists power on social media and in our everyday lives.

5.  Searching for their Next Victim

Narcissists can use social media to hunt for their next victim. They need a person who will engage with them. If you are agreeing with their stories of shame and blame while supporting them as the victims, they want you. Whether you are apart of a large group or they are looking for that next romantic relationship to turn into an utter nightmare, there are signs you can give off to help them pick you as a target. Engaging with them on social media makes you a prime candidate.

 

Here is the real question, how do we know when a person is just hurt, angry, or enraged posting or if he/she is a narcissist? It doesn’t matter. A narcissist is probably watching the post either way, so even if you engage on a post that is not theirs, you are feeding them. You are contributing to their wicked game. If the person posting is a good friend, send them a text or call them. If the person is someone you don’t know very well, knew from school, or a public figure, remind yourself that you don’t know all the sides of the story. If someone is using ALL language, STAY AWAY from engaging. Narcissists are trolling the Internet waiting for places to feed.

Remember healthy people don’t attack others. If we are the ones attacking, we show the narcissist that we are ready to be apart of their army. Spread what you want to see more of on social media. Don’t make social media feeding grounds for narcissists. Make them want to steer clear of you by not contributing to using social media as a weapon of attack. Keep yourself and others safe while preventing playing on a narcissist’s playground—stay kind on-line!

 

With Love and Gratitude,

 

Rachael Wolff ©2019

If you want help getting out of your own way and stop attracting chaos to your life, check out the FREE 90-Day A Better Me Series. No sign-up required. Just click, scroll to DAY  1 read, and do the work to transform yourself into the best version of you.

 

Social Media: A Narcissist’s Playground

How did we get here?

How did we become easy targets to allow narcissists to abuse their victims?

How is it possible for good people to become perpetrators of narcissist abuse?

How do we open the door unknowingly to be the next victim of narcissist abuse?

Come on, most of us are good people. We are not capable of being perfect. We don’t want to believe that we are capable of perpetuating the abuse of another person. We want to believe what we read. We want to believe that no one would post or say something harmful about someone else if it wasn’t true. We struggle to put ourselves in a narcissist’s mind because we can’t possibly think of calculating such a horrible attack on a person if it wasn’t (in our own minds) deserved.

Rule number one of a malignant narcissist is that they NEVER do ANYTHING wrong. They are the victims of their families, friends, romantic partners, business associates, and communities. You would think that we would be able to spot narcissists easily. Yet, according to the professionals who specialize in the field of Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD), it’s not as easy as one would hope.  That being said: There can be narcissists in all forms of business (even non-profits), in our communities, on our friend lists, in politics, and sometimes even in our homes.

What Makes Social Media a Narcissist’s Playground?

We are trained to focus on hate, fear, shame, blame, and overall judgment. Of course, a narcissist would love this playground. If you have ever read anything about how a narcissist operates, you know that they calculate turning people against their victim. They attempt to isolate their victim to make the victim become the alleged perpetrator. Social media makes this so easy. We can’t put it past a narcissist to record sections of an argument where the victim is reacting to their abuse, so it comes off sounding like the victim is the crazy one. They find pictures that show the victim not in a good light and without social media knowing the background of that particular moment, get people to engage in commentary bashing the actual victim of the abuse. They can say how innocent they are and how a “CRAZY” mom, dad, sister, brother, girlfriend, boyfriend, wife, husband, ex-lover, child, friend, co-worker, boss, employee, and the list goes on an on, DID THIS TO THEM! Wait, you may be thinking we have all done this at some point. The difference, a narcissist has done it to everyone on that list that pertains to his or her lifestyle. Everyex is the crazy one. Everyemployer is in the wrong. Everyemployee is to blame.  Everyfriend has abandoned them or used them. I think you get the point.

Narcissists also use social media to hunt for their next victim. The instant they break up with someone, lose a job, have a fall-out with family, etc. they come to social media to prowl. You might start seeing them everywhere when before the interaction was limited. They look for people to comment on their “poor me” posts and all the sudden instant messages start popping up from them because you understand them and “nobody else understands them.” You are the only one who can rescue them and all the sudden you are on a giant super hero sized pedestal. Then they systematically will destroy your relationships with others and then—

Bang! THEY ARE IN! They prey on people-pleasers, empaths, and caring individuals who have problems with self-worth, self-image, self-esteem, and self-respect. The people who do things for others to gain their own personal value are their perfect targets. We may think we are helping or rescuing them. They act like they care and try to get you to reveal as much personal information as possible so they will be able to use it against you later. A narcissist will attack using anything you possibly have guilt or shame around. If you are a people-pleaser, social media is the perfect grounds for attack because their victim is mortified that people could think that they are anything like the image the narcissist is portraying.

Don’t forget, narcissists can be VERY charming. They act one way when they want something from you and a whole other way when you aren’t there. The question becomes how do we see through this and know when we are contributing to a narcissist’s abuse and/or opening the door to become their next victim?

The answer is we have to become vigilant and really aware of what we are doing on social media. We have to INVESTIGATE! If you don’t have enough time to investigate:

  • Don’t engage
  • Don’t perpetuate in hate, fear, or negative commentary when you don’t know the whole story
  • Don’t JUDGE based on a simple post
  • Don’t like or comment before you know facts
  • If a person is ALWAYS blaming other people…question your connection with the person.
  • If you don’t want to be involved in any potential hate, abuse, or fear tactics edit your friend list and LIKE and FOLLOW pages that don’t engage in it. Only have friends on your list that you truly want IN your life.
  • If you lack self-worth, self-respect, self-esteem, and/or are a people-pleaser, work on you so that you don’t become a victim.

Let’s not contribute to letting narcissists use us to hurt others. If you see abuses that can be reported—report them. If you see someone endlessly blaming and shaming others—block them. If you don’t want to perpetuate the hate—stop contributing to it. Be self-aware and vigilant. We are all capable of being fooled on social media. Research before you post or comment.

I hope you will read the companion piece to this one on https://lettersfromabetterme.blogspot.com. Let’s start spreading more love and stop contributing to the energy that gives narcissists a perfect playground.

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With Love and Gratitude,

Rachael Wolff ©2018

 

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