Spoiler alert: There's nothing you can do to make a narcissist happy.
If you've never encountered a narcissist, go out and buy a lottery ticket because you're a very lucky person. Most of us have had a friend, partner, co-worker, or parent who is a narcissist. Sometimes it can take a while to figure out that they're a narcissist, but once you do, it seems very clear.
Some of the classic characteristics of narcissists are that they are arrogant, self-centered, self-important, manipulative, and are lacking in empathy. While they may not be great at compassion or sensitivity (towards others), they're geniuses at making everything about them and at leaving a trail of wreckage behind them.
Narcissists love to get into people's heads so they can control them, and if you're in a relationship with a narcissist, it's even worse.
In an article on Thought Catalog, writer Kim Saeed writes about the secret things that narcissists use against us and how to turn those things around.
1. You'll never please a narcissist, no matter what you do.
Narcissists want you to think that no matter how hard you try, nothing will ever be good enough. They do this to control you so you'll keep trying to get their approval and will continue to fail.
Are you doing everything, from working long hours at your job, paying all the bills, and acting as some kind of personal assistant for the narcissist, and yet they never thank or praise you? This line of manipulation works for the narcissists because it makes sure you'll always be willing to do whatever they ask of you at a moment's notice, and it destroys your confidence and self-esteem.
It's a win-win for the narcissist and lose-lose for you. In order to counterbalance this tactic of the narcissists, stop doing whatever they ask you to do and take your power back.
2. Narcissists have an extra sense that enables them to see other people's vulnerabilities.
Narcissists and other manipulative people are able to detect vulnerability by looking at various facial expressions, body language, and tone of voice. People who feel insecure may avoid direct eye contact with others or speak softly. Narcissists use psychological manipulation to control their victims... I mean, loved ones, and to get them so invested in the relationship with the narcissist that they can't see a way out.
You may have been in a relationship with a narcissist, but the best way to turn this pattern around is to break the cycle by focusing on yourself and your recovery. The best thing you can do is get out of the relationship and be diligent about never getting in one again.
3. Once a narcissist has succeeded in isolating you from your friends and family, they'll use the silent treatment on you.
After an initial honeymoon period is over, where the narcissist seems too loving and wonderful to be true, they'll start to blame your relationship problems on the other people in your life, cutting you off from the people who might give you any positive emotional support. Once isolated, the narcissistic partner will criticize you and stop talking to you.
The silent treatment is extremely cruel, sadistic, and damaging to your psyche. For your own mental health and sense of self, you need to detach completely from the narcissist. With time you'll get to the point where you can heal.
The narcissist will try to reel you back into their life, but you need to be strong. While narcissists may seem likable and amazing, they're never going to be there for you or be what you need to be a healthy, happy individual.