Self-love and narcissism – where’s the difference?

“You are a narcissist”, “Stop being so narcissistic”, “You are so self-centred” – I have heard it so many time in my life. Whenever I say that I love myself and I think I’m beautiful people seem to be offended, giving me the weird looks. I never really understood what they actually mean. Is it disappointment or disgust? Why are you looking at me like I’m some kind of weirdo? People say that we never should be too boastful or prideful. Maybe that’s why self-love is such a tricky thing but we have to know that it is different from narcissism.

Let’s start from defining the words.

Narcissism is defined by Cambridge Dictionary as too much interest in and admiration for your own physical appearance and/or your own abilities.

Self-love is regard for one’s own well-being and happiness.

Needless to say, there’s a huge difference between two of them. We can obviously say that self-love is so much more important in life. We have to love ourselves and we have to be happy with the way we are. But where is the line? Well, I gathered a some of the points that will show you how self-loving individuals are much different than narcissists. The line is pretty thin between and we have to know where is the limit.

Need For Recognition

For those who are practising self-love and those who have high self-esteem don’t need recognition. They are not expecting to hear “congratulations” for their accomplishments. They are aware of their success and the effort they have put in to achieve the goals.

Narcissistic people have the need to be recognised. They need to feel good about themselves by listening to all the praises. They don’t feel like the accomplishment was a success if no one is around to say a good word about it. Narcissists are living for people to see their successes and if there’s no one around to make them feel good – the win feels empty.

Accepting Flaws

Self-love is all about accepting the flaws within yourself and feel good with them. People who know what self-love means believe that all of our flaws makes us who we are – special, unique people. Some of them can acknowledge their flaws and they are willing to work on them to improve if they need to be improved.

Being narcissistic means that you act like they do not have any flaws. They feel perfect and everything they do – they do better than you. They act as if they were perfect and any flaw you’d point out to them must be a misconception. There’s no way hey posses any flaws.

Accepting who you are

Self-loving people not only accept their flaws, but they are comfortable being themselves. They don’t feel the need to change and appreciate things they can offer to the world. They know that their life isn’t perfect but they create happiness within it and achieve the positive state of mind by doing it so.

While narcissists are never happy people who are never satisfied with who they are. They are always aim to perfection. They are often think about better lifestyle, more money, better job. We all do it, but narcissistic people are always occupying their mind with that kind of thoughts. They can’t appreciate what they already have. They also think that they deserve better but never put effort to achieve their wishes.


People who practise self-love have strong sense of humility and empathy. They are celebrating when other people succeeded in their life and their not afraid to be happy for others. They support their friends, encourage them and are always proud of them achieving goals.

Jealousy is the first thing on narcissists list. They are unable to feel happy for others doing better than they do. They will always try to undermine others to be on the top. They will sabotage your happiness and will keep going until you are doing worse in life.


Self-love individuals can level with other’s feelings. They are receptive to emotions. They will always offer you advice or help if needed. They care about how you are feeling and they care about problems in your life. They are always a good friend that we sometimes need.

In contrast with self-loving people, narcissists will feed off of your emotions. They sometimes will show fake concern about your life but it is never genuine thing. It makes them feel better about themselves, again. It is one more person that is doing worse than them in this world.


With high self-esteem people treat other as their equals. They don’t have the urge to compete with others and accept the fact that all people in the world deserve to achieve their dreams and goals equally.

Needless to say, narcissism is all about doing better than your peers. They feel good when they are thriving off of dominance and manipulation. They always have to be in control of things because otherwise they don’t feel happy. They will drag you down with their attitude for life. Narcissistic people will always choose a carrier where they will be in the centre of attention.


Being a person that loves the way I look, I can obviously say that sometimes self-love and narcissism cross themselves. What I mean by that is that we all are jealous sometimes about others life. We all want to do better. But I think the biggest difference between these two is how self-loving people can help and advice, and how they treat you as your equal. That’s what is important. And that is what we all need to aim for.

Stay Positive!

7 thoughts on “Self-love and narcissism – where’s the difference?

  1. Hey Monika , trust me you are far from being anything close to Narcissism. I loved your post , and i wrote something similar (about narcissistic personality-I think you might like it ). Anyway stay true to yourself, keep loving yourself , there’s nothing wrong with that!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Great post Monika. Most of the time, there is definitely a huge difference between being narcissistic and simply understanding your own identity. I think self-esteem flows from a place of knowing who we are. When we know who we are, we look to no one and nothing (except our Creator) for our value and our worth.
    Knowing that you have worth and loving you for who and how you are is wonderful. That’s simply self-esteem. If we all felt positive about your inner and outer selves, we’d be in much better shape as a nation and a world! Sending you lots of love. Keep on lovin’! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Monika

    Excellent, mature, well written post, my favourite so far 👌👏 Your deep understanding of difference between self love and narcissism is striking! Thank you Monika! Good job❣

    Liked by 1 person

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