I was thinking the other day about how the narcissist turns the table on their victims, by love bombing and putting you on a pedestal.
In the love bombing stage, the narcissist puts you on a pedestal with grand gestures and admiration. They shower you with ”love” and have you thinking they’re your dream come true. Putting you on this pedestal makes you feel important and they purposefully put you above themselves.
The narcissist treats you like a celebrity and you treat them like a fan. That’s their way of making you think you have the control or power at the start of the relationship.
Speaking to survivors of narcissistic abuse, many express that they are codependent. Meaning they’re needy. Where does that come from though? When you have low self-worth, self-esteem and a skewed self-image. You have thoughts like, “I’m not worthy” “I’m not enough” “I’m unlovable” You begin to look outside of yourself to fulfill your sense of worthiness by gaining validation from someone that’s on a pedestal.
Now if you really think about it, isn’t this what the narcissist is doing in the love bombing phase? It’s clear that someone with Narcissistic Personality Disorder has inner unhealed wounds, low self worth and seeks validation from those they abuse. So in those initial stages, what looks to the victim like “love”? It’s clearly manipulation and the narcissist using that person to attempt to fill an empty void.
Stemming from childhood trauma
If we experienced any kind of childhood trauma, we experience emotions of shame, guilt and unworthiness. Your core beliefs of not feeling worthy cause you to think that you deserve to be in toxic relationships that reflect that belief back.
If you haven’t healed childhood trauma, similar toxic relational dynamics will exist in your other relationships. We replay the stories of shame, guilt, and being emotionally unavailable. You may want to fix people – because maybe then they’ll love you. You’ll have certain attachment styles like anxious, abandonment etc and these are what a narcissist can use against you initially and throughout the relationship.
You’ll get a direct reflection of what you think you deserve.
Once you heal, you realise that it’s not your fault. You’ll recognise that you’re already worthy. Your sense of self worth will increase. You’ll shift the attention and focus back into yourself and not give the narcissist excess meaning – or put them on a pedestal. You’ll no longer seek external validation.
When the narcissist turns the tables and moves into the devaluation phase, they put their foot down on abusing and manipulating you to the point that your self-esteem, self-worth and self-image is eroded. At this point they make you put them on a pedestal but have you put all their needs first. They become more important than anything or anyone else in your life.
Ways To Take The Narcissist Off The Pedestal
Here are some ways which you can take the narcissist off the pedestal by becoming aware of your own sense of self:
- Become aware of your own sense of self-worth.
Take some time to evaluate your own sense of self. What are your beliefs about who you are? Where did they stem from? Why do you believe them?
- Observe your thoughts every day
… and realise you are not your thoughts. Don’t identify with those negative thoughts for 5 mins a day. Don’t internalise them.
- Find your passion
Immerse yourself in doing something you love. Especially after being in a toxic relationship, one of the best things to do is to focus on yourself. By finding and following your passion you’ll reconnect with yourself, your love and your needs. I feel that this IS self-love.
- Create boundaries
Boundaries not only keep you clear on your core values (because they are based on them) but they also keep you safe. They are a way of recognising your own self worth by telling someone what you will and won’t tolerate.
If you don’t have self love its hard to maintain what I mentioned above. Why? Because if you don’t have self love as your foundation, you’ll constantly put other’s needs first. Self love is the foundation to build everything else on. It’s OK if you don’t feel it initially. Considering what you’ve been through, it can take time to build it back up. However, a little self love can go a long way..
- Recognise that you are your own source of validation -no external validation needed
When we’ve experienced narcissistic abuse or past trauma, we tend to look for validation outside of ourselves. This is because we weren’t validated in the past. Our emotions we dismissed. We were made to feel shame and guilt about ourselves.
- Put yourself first
Your needs are important. Putting other’s needs before your own is dismissing your own needs. Recognise that when you put yourself first, it’s not selfish. It’s self-love.
- Stop abandoning yourself
Anything or anyone we make more important than ourselves, energetically we separate ourselves from it.
- Get rooted in your reality
It’s important to get out of the false reality the narcissist created and step back into your own. Only then can you make decisions that are in your best interest.
- Live in alignment with your true core values
In order to be in alignment with your core values, you need to know what they are. Once you know what they are you can live in alignment with them by setting boundaries. Boundaries are your way of expressing what your core values are.
- Drop outer importance, increase inner importance.
It’s natural for you to experience real love when you already love yourself. You’re in your own reality rather than the narcissist’s. You’re worthy whole and complete already.
Question what you believe (stories about yourself) and you will lower the level of importance you are giving to a narcissist and take them off that pedestal.