Social scientists are obsessed with defining Millennials, and we can’t blame them.
As the first generation to grow up with social media, we’re pretty fascinating.
One popular theory is we’re a generation of narcissists, fueled by our obsession with selfies and tweets.
The good news is there’s no reliable evidence to support that claim. In fact, narcissists comprise only about 1 percent of the population. But, they are using social media just like everyone else.
Therefore, they may be more visible than they were before.
The bad news is, in the midst of all this pop-psychology, the real danger of narcissism is being trivialized. The term is becoming a normal, everyday concept when there is nothing normal or everyday about narcissists.
Narcissism is one of the more difficult traits to dissect, but there is agreement a major characteristic is a grandiose sense of self, which affects relationships, behaviors and beliefs.
This is where things get tricky: Tweeting your every thought and taking endless Instagram pics does not a narcissist make.
According to the diagnostic guidelines, narcissists tend to be exploitative, envious and arrogant.
They lack empathy while simultaneously demanding admiration and attention from others. They are very difficult to cope with, constantly causing others frustration.
I’m just spitballing here, but it’s probably important to distinguish between generational tendencies and straight up crazy.
Derived from my personal experience of more than 15 years, here’s a brief guide to identifying and dealing with the infamous narcissist: