Can Someone Recover From Narcissism?

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narcissism disorder

Recovery from mental health sounds odd to some people. Are mental health disorders things that go away in the brain or do they live on like cancers in remission? Relapse is a word commonly used for the treatment of depression, for example, but the recurrence of depression can’t be found through imaging scans. Recovery from mental health encompasses the critical life changes, therapy, and treatment which takes place mind, body, and spirit. With dedication to therapy, diet, nutrition, exercise, medication, lifestyle changes, communication, and spiritual wellness, recovery is possible.

One writer who struggled with narcissism and found a way to recover from it explained her story to Salon. She writes about a significant trauma which happened in her teenage years and caused her relationship with attention and validation to become overwhelming. As a coping mechanism, she increasingly adopted the attitudes and behaviors as well as many of the characteristics of a narcissist. Rather than cope with negative experiences in life, like emotional pain, she became hardened and attached to inflation of the ego. Thankfully, she realized that she wasn’t truly living and needed to change. Realistically, she explains to her readers that doing “the work” isn’t as glamorous as it is made out to be. “I wish I could say it’s amazing to do the work to course-correct from the dangerous entanglements of narcissism. It’s not, but it is worth it.” She describes, “Disengaging and moving forward is lonely and disorienting. You’re constantly tested with new scenarios in which you continue the pattern or not. I have often felt confused, weak or forgotten because I’m no longer a pawn or a player in a high-stakes chess match.” The most challenging part, she expresses, “is the challenge of defining your healthy self and determining how to wield that newfound self-respect and freedom.”

Recovering from narcissism demands a certain element of self-awareness and a desire to change. Confronting a painful and traumatic past takes hard therapeutic and emotional work. When the payoff of narcissistic tendencies is no longer beneficial, being stuck within the behaviors can become painful in itself. Having healthy relationships with others is possible. More importantly, it is possible to restore a healthy relationship with yourself.

Avalon Malibu wants to see you thrive in a  harmonious balance of mind, body, and spirit. Our residential treatment facility dedicated to primary mental health treatment is located on a beautiful estate overlooking the iconic Malibu coast. For a confidential assessment and more information on our trusted programs, call 1 888-958-7511.

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