Many years ago I hosted a business colleague from another country. While driving to visit a company facility he told me a little story that illustrated a way to deal with narcissists. The colleague was from a little country next to a big country that spoke the same language. The larger mother country was known for being very prideful and while in decline still envisioned themselves as great. Other countries around this big country used to describe them as having a “prestige imperative”. In other words decisions the big country made were based on whether it made them appear to be a great country or not.
The colleague from the little country told me that the way the little country – who was looked down on by the big country – used to treat people from the big country was to “tell them they’re the king and then take their money”. The people from the big country would be so wrapped up in the exaltation that they would be blind to everything else.
The point of this story is that many times a narcissist will put so much emphasis on their self-exaltation that they are oblivious to the prudent steps in their lives which actually make for successful living.
This is one application of the Proverb