I don’t know if it’s ever OK for someone to be selfish. Perhaps there’s a time and place to be self-centered, but I think selfish never wins the race.

Jessica Capshaw

Self-centered people usually do not know that they posses such attitude. Self-centeredness can be easily mistaken for self-esteem, self-love or self-confidence.

A person is referred to as self-centered when he only looks out for himself. Such people’s actions are devoid of consideration and respect for others. All they care about is their personal self gratification.

They can also be referred to as egoistic, selfish, narcissistic, self-absorbed, self-seeking or people who are wrapped up in themselves.

A higher degree of self-centeredness leads to a narcissistic disorder. A person with narcissistic tendencies is more dangerous especially if bestowed with political power.


Self-centered leaders manipulate when they move people for personal benefit. Mature leaders motivate by moving people for mutual benefit.

John C. Maxwell


If you asked this question, then you probably do not fall into this category of people. A self-absorbed person is less likely to second guess his actions or conversation with other people, if they were unfavorable to them.

It is also much easier for others to tell if we are self-centered or not than it is for us to tell by ourselves.

People tend to feel bad or even angered when other persons refer to them as self-centered. For this sole reason, Many close friends or relatives would rather choose the other way, trying to cope with your narcissistic tendencies than telling you to your face, so as not to jeopardize the friendship ties you both share.

However, if one or two of your close friends or family members have more than once complained about your ‘not giving a damn about others’ attitude, then you must have a rethink about how you have treated them.

A personal self evaluation will go a long way to determining if you fall under this category of self-centered people or not.


There are certain ways you can do a self-assesment of yourself to find out if you are self-centered or not.

Who does more of the talking?

While hanging out with friends, your spouse or partner, who does more talking than the rest? Do you love arguments and is never willing to look at other perspectives? It is true that personal convictions about a topic may also trigger your talkativeness but when you are not ready to even listen to other people’s views, there is a high tendency you are self-centered.

Do you insist that everything be done to your taste and satisfaction?

Wall colours, decorations and sitting arrangements, all must be to your taste or satisfaction. Your partner or other persons around may love what you dislike or dislike what you love. If you are never conscious of this fact, then you are most definitely self-centered in the way you think.

Do you freely give or you give out of necessity?

Generosity is yet another important characteristic of selfless people. A selfless person does not put material gains in sight whereas self-centered people would either have conditions attached to favors or only give out of necessity.


If you have a pass mark in doing the following to others, then you are most likely not self-centered.

Putting it the other way, narcissistic or self-absorbed tendencies can be tamed by doing the following;

1. Helping those in need of assistance.

2. Being genuinely interested in other people’s lives.

3. Not forgetting friend’s birthdays and other important dates.

4. Knowing that saying sorry does not diminish your dignity

5. Giving wholeheartedly and not expecting any in return.

6. Saying ‘sorry’ when you are wrong.


No one wants to be around self-centered people. They have certain attributes that may severely hurt another’s self-esteem. With a grandiose feeling of superiority and a “better than thou” attitude, they are never hard to spot in the crowd.

They are usually talkative, others see them as incredibly annoying. We all have such persons in our families, as friends, acquaintances or colleagues and even on the street or in our neighbourhood.

Some behavioral attributes clearly makes these people distinctive.

1. They expect their views to be taken as the status quo.

2. They drive as if they own the road, do not stop at crossings, refuse to wait or respect traffic signals.

3. Always change every conversation to their story or past life experience.

4. They seek to dominate every verbal conversation interrupting intermittently and not letting others speak.

5. Usually highly impatient.

6. Usually complain about almost everything.

7. They are unapologetic even if its clear that they are wrong.

8. Always on a habit of trying to jump the queue.

9. Completely insensitive to the emotions of others.

10. Extremely Arrogant.


Self-centered people are easy to identify but not easy to live with. As earlier said, their attitude is incredibly annoying.

Psychologists have found self-absorption to be rooted firmly in poor parenting. Overindulgence of parents may in another way make a child start thinking everything about him should be more important than the rest of the world. This is the root cause of it all. Understanding that this attitude did not just come overnight makes it easier to cope with such persons, especially if they are close relatives or friends.

Here are some ways you can cope with friends or family members who have developed a selfish attitude over time.

1. Talk less, let them talk themselves out.

2. Never put yourself in a situation that would lead to an argument.

3. Compromise, talk about what they want to talk about.

4. Change the direction of the conversation.

5. Avoid them completely if you feel you should.

6. Instead of arguing, ask them questions.

7. Show them love, they may learn to reciprocate.

8. Implore diplomacy, tell them when they go wrong.

9. Be definitive about where you stand, politely tell them you don’t agree with their views.

10. Be patient with them.


If we live a self-directed, self-motivated, self-centered life, always needing to get our own way, then we’re going to be miserable. In fact, many times we believe it’s our problems that are making us unhappy when, in reality, it’s because we’re focused on ourselves!

Joyce Meyer

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