Anyone who has ever dealt with a narcissist on a long-term knows how they can be paranoid sometimes. If you observe carefully, you will realise that their paranoia tend to come when they are going through some life difficulties, and when things are not going their way.
After doing some searches online, I realised that most people have a superficial understanding of paranoia, including some professionals. Some people believe that paranoia is caused by mental disorders such as schizophrenia. Others believe that a combination of genetics, chemical imbalance in the brain, and environmental factors are the main causes of paranoia. Of course that is completely true. The reason why I don’t like such explanations is because they are so shallow that they apply to all mental disorders.
All mental mental disorders such as anxiety and depression are caused by chemical imbalance in the brain but this imbalance is just a symptom of a certain problem.
Before I tell you why narcissists are so paranoid let me first explain why paranoia happens.
Unconscious Mind Goals and Paranoia
Each person has some psychological goals that they try to achieve. Examples of those goals are: becoming superior, being the centre of attention, replicating a pleasant past, and so on. The subconscious mind, can use irrational fears such as paranoia in some people, to help them achieve a certain psychological goal that they can’t achieve in a different way.
Let’s take for example a man who started being paranoid after breaking up with his girlfriend. After facing a devastating breakup, he started believing that his colleagues were planning to ruin his life. This man accused his colleagues of betraying him without any evidence. This might sound weird but when you look at this man, he had an important goal of being loved. His parents were always cold and distant so he never felt loved. Now when the breakup happened, his road to reach his psychological goal of being loved was blocked.
This experience was so devastating that he couldn’t accept it. To him, being dumped by his girlfriend meant that he was worthless. So, he developed paranoia in order to feel important again. He subconsciously chose to believe that his girlfriend dumped him because his colleagues were plotting against him and not any other reason. This helped him restore his self esteem and feel good about himself again. (See: do narcissists feel guilty)
What Causes Paranoia in Narcissists
Paranoid narcissists are not different. When a narcissist who badly want to feel important fails to get their need satisfied in an acceptable way, their subconscious mind usually helps them achieve the same goal using a different method such as becoming paranoid.
Their unconscious mind uses the logic,” If everybody wants to harm me, I must be very important. They want to see me unhappy because they are envious of my achievements.” This makes a lot of sense because powerful people usually have a lot of enemies.
The reason why narcissists are likely to get paranoid than normal people is because they all have a common psychological goal of becoming superior. While each narcissist strives for superiority in his own way, those who fail usually use unconventional methods to achieve that goal.
How to Deal With a Paranoid Narcissist
Paranoid narcissists may become aggressive and irrational but when you understand them you will realise that they are in need of help. If the narcissist is not someone you care about that much then you should avoid him. If you try to get close to him, he may form false beliefs about you. You should not be surprised if he starts saying that you are one of the people who are planning to harm him.
One the other hand, if the narcissists is your loved one, you should first try to understand what kind of psychological goal he is trying to achieve and help him achieve it a healthy way. (See why are narcissist so mean)