Narcissists Can Feel Empathy, Study Finds

People high in narcissism were capable of feeling empathy when they were instructed specifically to take the other person’s point of view. 

Narcissism is a trait characterized by feeling an excessive sense of self-importance. Narcissists are often described as selfish people who are not empathetic. In a new study, researchers set out to see if this stereotype is real. The team from the University of Surrey discovered that narcissists can feel empathy if taught how to.

“Our results clearly show that if we encourage narcissists to consider the situation from their teammate or friend’s point-of-view, they are likely to respond in a much more considerate and sympathetic way,” said lead author, Dr. Erica Hepper from the University of Surrey. “This is not only good for the people around them, but also for their own wellbeing in the long-run as empathy helps to form and maintain close relationships. 



A new study found that narcissists can
feel empathy when instructed
to do so.