Don't you hate it when people are too full of themselves? Everything has to be about them and their opinions are the ones that matter the most to them. But while you may think that these narcissistic people are going to be this way for the rest of their lives, think again. A new study has found that narcissism begins to fade over time and this starts once a person lands their first job.
For the study, the researchers studied nearly 750 people to see how narcissism changed from age 13 to 70. The researchers found that certain traits these people showed like being full of oneself, being sensitive to criticism and imposing their opinion on other people, began to decline as a person grew older. Other character traits like having high aspirations for oneself became more prominent in their lives.
"There are things that happen in life that can shake people a little bit and force them to adapt their narcissistic qualities," said study co-author William Chopik from MSU. "As you age, you form new relationships, have new experiences, start a family and so on. All of these factors make someone realise that it's not 'all about them.' And, the older you get, the more you think about the world that you may leave behind," Chopik said.
The researchers were also able to find that the very first thing that prompted a reduce in such narcissistic behaviour was landing the first job. "One thing about narcissists is that they're not open to criticism. When life happens and you're forced to accept feedback, break up with someone or have tragedy strike, you might need to adjust to understanding that you're not as awesome as you once thought," Chopik said.
"There's a sense in which narcissists start to realise that being the way they are isn't smart if they want to have friends or meaningful relationships," he added. "One of the most surprising findings was that - also contrary to what many people think - individuals who were born earlier in the century started off with higher levels of hyper-sensitivity, or the type of narcissism where people are full of themselves, as well as willfulness, which is the tendency to impose opinions on others," Chopik said.
"But now that Baby Boomers are aging into that phase of life, it's a huge part of the population that we need to be looking at," Chopik added. Well, this certainly proves that even narcissistic people can change over time. Stay tuned for more updates.