Incentive Equals Focus.. what's your agenda, really?

If the incentive for a person to do a job is money, then obtaining money will be their focus,
If the incentive for a person to do a job is fame, then fame will be their focus.
If a person's incentive for doing a job is a good reputation (for social or career advancement reasons), then their reputation will be their focus.
This means that their main focus will not be the job itself, or the point of doing the job, or the well-being of the people around them. That will be secondary, or for a Narcissist, not even on the radar.
This can be applied to ANY FIELD, and any task, any interest, and any occupation.
Whatever a person's real focus is, that's what everything else will be tailored to.
A poignant example that most of us have dealt with (especially those working in the field alongside them) are medical doctors who's reasons for becoming a doctor was NOT because of a desire to heal people or help them stay well, but because it would make them "important", or because they thought it would make them rich.
These are the doctors who found out the hard way that it's not all fun and games and getting to walk around like the actors on ER, or being the "boss" of everyone, or getting to be the "important one" in the family or community. Since their reasons for becoming medical doctors had not much at all to do with caring about PEOPLE, they have very little motivation to treat their patients with professionalism or even actual medical care; they're just not interested; they passed the tests and did what they had to to get through school, get their license, and get hired.

If they happen to do well in school, then others will often ASSUME that becoming a Doctor was their "Passion", but the truth is a person can be really good at something they don't actually care about.  We tend to assume that our talent, skill, and passions align, but it just seems that way. What really happens is that we pursue what we're interested in. In these cases, the interest they were pursuing was filling their bank account and garnering a certain reputation for themselves, NOT "healing people".

Their presence in the medical community makes everything much more difficult for those doctors who are ACTUALLY "passionate" about caring for and healing people. They create more problems and obstacles than they fix, and that affects everyone, patients and the (genuine) medical community alike. They're "wolves in sheep's clothing", basically.

Every field imaginable attracts people who's interests are NOT about the actual job, or the people or animals it serves, but about the MONEY, the reputation, or the power they think they'll get. 
Name a field, name a government agency, name a religion, name a civil rights group, a non-profit group, any occupation at all, and you will find lots of workers in that field who are there ONLY for money, reputation, or "power".
NOT for the job, task, or position itself.

That includes psychiatry, education, social work, music, art, government agencies, medical care, military, healing arts, anything at all. The position a person works in, or their career, is NOT an indicator of the "kind of person" they are.

People tend to understand this concept more clearly when we're referring to organized crime, street gangs, and motorcycle clubs; most people are aware that many members join only because they're seeking to create a reputation for themselves or get rich, so they'll do things that are unethical or criminal in order to get what they want, because that's all they care about. But those people cause trouble even in those types of groups as well. If that's ALL a person cares about, they don't care who they step on to get it.

This is also found, rampantly, in social clubs, arts groups, community organizations, religious groups and organizations, and obviously local businesses and government.

Of the more tragic places it's found, besides healthcare, are education,  non-profit organizations, DMR (dept. of mental retardation) and DCYS (state children's social services). Those who are in need, who don't have a "voice", and who aren't in the position to stand up for themselves are at the most risk of becoming prey of those who are in the field for their own gain, be it monetary, reputation, or social status and acceptance.

Those who are in the education field for their own reputation, agenda, and paycheck are not interested first in the students, or the student's well-being.
They will step on certain students and help other students in order to further their own reputation, agenda, and comfort.
They will maintain the status quo when it helps them, and try to destroy it when it's not helping their personal agenda.
They tend to create factions, and participate in smear campaigns and gossip.
They tend to see families and parents of the students as "ignorant" or the "enemy".
They tend to contribute to the zeitgeist of accepted bullying in a school, instead of helping to diminish it. 
They tend to openly participate in faction-oriented politics.
Their focus and interests are on themselves, their personal interests, and their personal agendas, and NOT on the students.
Helping CERTAIN students that one LIKES does NOT make up for ignoring or stepping on other students due to one's personal issues.  

Co-Parenting WIth A Narcissist

"Co parenting" with a Narcissist means that our kids get their control issues, arrogance, assumptions and manipulations shoved down their throats.
So they might be really, really NOT be into hearing any discipline or advice from the OTHER parent.
The Narcissist might be doing the OTHER thing where they do anything to make the child (adult child included) LIKE THEM BETTER by giving the kids certain things, especially things that we would not allow them to have for their own safety and health, and well being.
So, since the Narcissist is "more fun" to be with (even if it's just brief periods of time when they're not acting mean or cold), and that "more fun" person is painting us in a ridiculously terrible light, of course our kids are going to be affected by that.

Kids don't know what's going on, and they're not SUPPOSED to know. They're not "supposed to" be dealing with this crap at all.
Before we go beating ourselves down about hooking up with a Narcissist who's messing with our kids' heads, though, remember that we didn't create the Narcissist, who they are, or what they do. Unless we're a Narc. ourselves, if we had insight into the way they would act down the road, especially toward our kids, we would have ran in the other direction, fast.
We don't have to feel horrible about our mistake in choice of partner, our misread; that just adds to the vortex of pain, it puts more energy into the dark spots instead of the Light spots.

Our kids are dealing with the Narcissists in a different way than we are, and they are directly affected. Sometimes, regardless of their outward behavior, our kids have insight that we can learn from.

The best thing we can do for our kids besides obviously protecting them as much as possible from Narc. behavior is healing ourselves, finding who we are again. Put yourself in their shoes; how would I want my own Mom or Dad to be? Let their recovery and development be their own, the thing they need most since they don't have a whole family of healthy relatives, is to have at least ONE who they can identify with and follow their lead. Kids need someone to follow, someone's footprints to walk in. It can't be the Narcs', so it has to be us.

Buying Into Politics

The lifeblood of a Political career is that your constituents buy into the belief that you and your Party are the "good guys" and the other Party are the "bad guys". Then they all focus on the "bad things" the other party is doing, and completely ignore, or make excuses for, what you're really doing. It's typical Narc. manipulation, no different than Narc. manipulation found in personal life or business, just less direct and so less obvious.
So is casting shame on a target (the other party; individuals who belong to the other party).
Without these tactics, humans lose interest and don't follow or vote because they don't feel like they're personally involved. Inciting emotion in voters about each party is the only thing that keeps them in office, especially in such a dysfunctional society.
If you believe that politicians from both sides of the aisle aren't doing this on purpose, think again. They want your votes, so they're trying to get your "loyalty", so they create a "good guy" image of themselves, and smear the other party. Just like Narcissists do in regular life. It's POLITICS, it's not reality.

You will find these same tactics in advertisements. Remember the Coke vs. Pepsi commercials? Give us a break, it's soda pop... let's create RIVALRY between people who like Coke, and people who like Pepsi... And how many people fell for that?!

You'll find the same tactics being used over and over by those whose jobs and careers depend on Public Opinion and Loyalty. Like comedians and journalists, and talk show hosts on television, especially those who regularly commentate on politics, "social issues", and government. They are careful to stay in line with who their audience THINKS they are, because that's where the money is. Lose the audience by saying the "wrong thing", lose your paycheck. It's that simple. If you think they're "Super Rebels" and actually always speak their real mind, think again, they all have writers, producers, and sponsors. And teleprompters.

Look at Major League Sports! Keeping "rivalry" going keeps people buying tickets and feeling loyal to "their team"; it doesn't seem to phase them that team members are being paid huge money to be there, they're not volunteers, they're not "loyal" just because they're so faithful to the team. They get HIRED, they get TRADED, they're not there on that team of their own volition. If Major League Sports didn't pay well, most of those players would be doing something else for a living. If another team offered them more money, they would FLY LIKE THE WIND. Rivalry between "teams" is part of the illusion of the game. They're not GLADIATORS who are fighting for their LIVES, or the lives of their families. They're not soldiers who are fighting for their fans... it's not real, it's a show.

Same as Politics.
All those who hold Office in a country should have the same main interest in mind: the well being of and respect for ALL of the citizens, NOT just the ones who vote for THEM, or who AGREE with them. That's what Narcissists do. 
And that responsibility falls on every citizen as well in a free country. When we stop listening to and trying to understand the Point of View of those in other parties, we have lost our main objective, and our focus. We have willingly become a "nation divided", and that's how Narcissists take over: Divide and Conquer.

It's tried and true, it's been done a thousand times before in governments, and countless times in personal relationships.

Playing "Leader"

Another very common Controller/Narcissist behavior:
Putting themselves in the "Lead" position in any situation, and especially when the situation already had a "Leader".
~Taking over another person's project, big or small. 

~Acting like an idea someone else had was their own, and taking over the "planning" and "delegation".

~Taking the "lead" after being asked to assist.

~Making themselves out to be an Expert when someone asks their opinion, or just a question (not just answering the question).

~Inserting themselves in a person's project or task when NOT being asked to assist (more severely, trying to take over the task or project without even being asked to assist).

~Standing and watching as a self-assigned "Supervisor" while someone else is doing something, and volunteering advice and criticism.

~Taking it upon themselves to "assist" total strangers who did not ask for assistance, in a tone that implies the stranger is NOT CAPABLE of the task they're doing.

~Giving orders, delegating tasks, and implying that someone is "forgetting something", or is about to make a mistake, in someone else's project, plan, or idea, just for the purpose of giving themselves a feeling of "Leadership" over others.

These are all domination display behaviors.
Many primates and other animals get a chemical reward from the feeling of domination, and will try to get a "fix" from that chemical whenever they can.
And, since those who are addicted to this chemical reward are addicts, they may become very agitated, even angry, sometimes enraged, if one does not ALLOW them to get their fix.

The behavior is often learned from an older family member, but could also be learned from outside the family.
The behavior suggests that the person was not taught how to treat others with respect, or why they should be treated with respect, or what that looks like.

OR, the person may have been taught by someone outside the family that their values were "wrong", and that they should be more controlling and domineering toward certain others, and that it's perfectly okay to "get off" on the feeling it brings.
(Which can easily lead to a person getting hooked on that chemical reward fix from domination.)

It also suggests that the person may have been taught that only certain people should be treated with respect (whatever that might mean in that circle), but that it's fine to assert "control" or "leadership" over others, or that it's fine to rebel against the "Lead" of those certain others.
Therefore, the person feels perfectly ENTITLED to assert control and domination over certain people, as if there's nothing at all wrong with it, and if a person protests, then that person is the one doing something "wrong"; besides, the person is blocking their fix.

To be clear, for example, in a culture where one sex is treated with less respect than the other, BOTH sexes will treat that sex with less respect than the other. So people from BOTH sexes will often try to take over the projects or rebel against the "Lead" of people of the one sex, but not the other. They were BOTH taught through modeling from adults that it's fine to assert control over one type of person, and get the chemical reward from domination, but to allow control and accept leadership FROM another type of person.

They can also get a neurochemical reward from following and being lead by certain types of people, so they're getting a chemical fix BOTH from dominating one type of person, and ALSO from FOLLOWING another type of person.

And since this is usually a cultural behavior, they give themselves yet ANOTHER chemical fix from following the CROWD, doing a behavior that's accepted by others and therefore being accepted in the group.

Just because someone gets a rush from domination and tries to do it a lot does NOT mean they are CAPABLE of LEADERSHIP, or MORE CAPABLE, experienced, talented, informed, or intelligent than the person or people they are trying to "Lead".

In conclusion, those who try to assert control and Leadership over others when they were not invited to do so are probably seeking a neurochemical reward, either because they think they're "doing the right thing", or purely from the rush they get directly from dominating others. Those who rebel against the assigned Leadership of others are quite often also seeking a similar chemical reward. Those who FOLLOW and accept Leadership from one type of person (but not another) are also most likely seeking a chemical reward. A "fix". So, anyone who gets in the way of their fix is not going to be taken kindly to.
Be prepared; bucking cultural stereotypes and "hierarchy" behaviors means messing with addicts who don't know they're addicts.

And yes, we are all susceptible, because we are all human. It doesn't make it "okay" or "right" just because we're all susceptible; we're all susceptible to viruses and infection as well.

Narcissism Flag: "Me Too!"

Flag For Envy, Resentment, and Narcissism:

(It's not what you think.)

When a person talks about themselves in a positive way, like if someone mentions a subject and the person says "I do that too" or "I went to school for that" or "I used to do that for a living", or "I used to work there/go to school there", or something of that nature,
and the RESPONSE they get is:
Implication that they're "making it up"
All of these indicate that the person responding to their "me too!" holds a fixed image of the person in their mind, and that this "something" they're saying "me too" about is thought of as "ABOVE" this person's ability, experience, and/or status.

Them: "My Uncle is a contractor, he's working on a remodel job out in Middletown right now."
Target: "Oh that's interesting, what kind of remodel job? I used to do remodeling too~"
Them: "Oh well he's been doing it for 25 years..."

Yup, the person talking was not just sharing information, they were bragging about their Uncle because they thought it would make them appear in important in some way, AND they assumed the Target was not a person who would be capable of doing such a (masculine? difficult?) job as remodeling, and so would be impressed. "I used to do remodeling too" was not in the script. Now they're annoyed because their goal, albeit very short-term, was spoiled.
Also, the fact that the Target did remodeling wrecks the whole premise of remodeling being "masculine" or "difficult", and/or it also wrecks the whole assumption that the Target was incapable.
So now... the Target Must Be Punished.. ... ... ... for ruining the bragging session... ... ... ...

When a person is bragging and you say "Me Too!" you're wrecking it!!! (whaaaa!) You're supposed to just be impressed or feel intimidated, not be all happy about finding a new colleague, peer, or kindred spirit!

It can also indicate that another Narcissist has gossiped about the target, and so when the target speaks, the target is doubted or dismissed. But either way, whether the dismissive person is acting of their own volition, or if they have bought into implications from a Gossip, this is a Flag about THEM.
Do not trust a person who treats you like a "silly child" who "exaggerates" or "makes things up" when you say positive things about yourself, especially if you know you're not a braggart.

There is a HUGE difference between the narcissistic behavior of diverting conversation and subject back to one's self, and saying "Oh me too!" when someone else makes mention of something. Like, you meet a person at a friend's house and they start talking about how their brother has Asperger's syndrome, and you say "Oh my niece has it also!" That's not diverting the discussion back to yourself, that's NORMAL HUMAN communicating.
Now if you kept cutting the person off and going on and on about your niece, instead of listening to them say what they were going to say, THAT would be diverting the conversation back to one's self. It's not even close to the same thing.
In a "healthy" conversation, it would be more like "Oh my niece has it also" and the other person would say something like "Oh no kidding." and then they would keep telling what they were telling, and you would listen and hear them talk, and then there would be discussion about dealing with it (no gossip, just information exchange about Asperger's and life with Asperger's, with luck you've found a new ally for your niece and so has the other person.)

It's easy to tell that a person was not just sharing information and talking WITH others by the way they react when someone else says "Me too".
People who are bragging either about themselves or someone they're associated with DON'T LIKE IT when someone else says "Me too".
They weren't seeking a "kindred spirit", and they weren't "sharing information", they were playing King/Queen of the Hill"
Trying to display some kind of uniqueness, specialness, something that makes them better, or "just as good", depending on the individual.

People who aren't trying to display "better than you" or "as good as you" don't feel anything negative at all when someone says "Me Too!"
(unless the person is actually a Narc and does it all the time no matter what, but that's the other side of this coin.)
No, people who are genuinely sharing INFORMATION, or just talking about something they did, they're working on, or someone else did or is working on are either slightly pleased or very pleased when someone says "Me too!" because for Non-Narcissists, kindred spirits are a positive thing. Someone who gets what I'm talking about; someone else who does this interesting or cool thing; someone else who understands.

Is it "them", or is it "me" who's being self-centered...?

Test this:
How much do they listen to you at all? What kinds of things do they listen to you about, and what kinds of things do they seem uninterested in? Time them talking, and time them listening.
What do they talk about? Whom do they talk about?
Do they seem interested in details of your projects, work, or interests? Or are they just glossing vaguely over 'how you're doing', and then dive into details about themselves and about OTHER people they know (probably who you don't know very well, or even who THEY don't know very well, or at all).
Pay attention to how much they talk about themselves and gloat about others they know, and compare it to how much time they seem to tolerate YOU referring to yourself, your life, your accomplishments, and your experience.

Narcissists will brag about OTHER people in order to "show you up", show that they're attached to IMPORTANT people doing important things, and that you're NOT... and that THEIR friends, family, and associates are more important than YOU, more talented than YOU, more intelligent than YOU, more accomplished, more educated, more famous, more wealthy, more good looking, with bigger breasts or pectoral muscles.... fuller lips... bigger ~ .. truck....  etc ad nauseum...

Narcissists will even use family members as someone to boast about, TO OTHER family members, AS IF they're not related to the target also... (selective memory...)

The point is, the intention and goal is to send the message that YOU ARE NOT VALID, YOU ARE NOT AS IMPORTANT, and THEY ARE MORE IMPORTANT,
they want to do it in a way that appears to be just normal, regular conversation
(so they don't get CAUGHT, and so it seems more valid; if they get noticed it will wreck it.
So, notice it! )