Narcissism makes it all but impossible for people to have happy and mutually fulfilling relationships. In fact, despite their charming demeanors and seemingly limitless charisma, narcissists can struggle in all of their social and professional interactions.
Surprisingly, narcissism can also have a very detrimental impact on a person’s driving abilities. While defensive driving is a responsible approach to helping everyone on the road stay safe, narcissists are only concerned with themselves.
Their need for admiration and their drive to impress make them take risks that other motorists might not. In short, their self-centred take on everything and everyone around them can make narcissists a unique danger behind the wheel.
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The Connection Between Narcissism and Aggressive Driving
Narcissists are people who live with feelings of self-superiority. Their inflated views of themselves cause them to experience extreme frustration with those around them. While their interactions with others often entail a noticeable lack of empathy and extraordinary impatience.
These thoughts and feelings also surface when they take to the road. Narcissism causes drivers to overlook many standard guidelines for defensive driving including, maintaining reasonable stopping distances, obeying speed limits, and signalling before lane changes.
Known for rule-breaking, manipulation, and bullying, a narcissist will bring these same unfortunate personality traits to the roadways. While unpleasant in general, these behaviours on the roads frequently lead to accidents.
Beyond self-importance, many narcissists need admiration and acknowledgement. Thus, they often want to drive the fastest, out-manoeuvre others and make visible displays of their driving skills that cause others to take note.
Narcissism can exist in varying degrees with some people displaying low to moderate narcissistic behaviours and others having a full-blown narcissistic personality disorder, whether diagnosed or undiagnosed. According to research, the more narcissistic person is, the more likely they are to engage in risky driving practices.
Speeding and Narcissism
Narcissists see their own time as being incredibly precious and more valuable than of those around them. They cannot fathom why other people are going slow, failing to take risks, or manoeuvring in ways that keep things moving at the best possible pace for meeting their own needs. As such, they often:
- Hurry pedestrians through walk signals by advancing with their vehicles
- Overtake and cut other motorists off
The need to gratify themselves is what governs their whole driving style.
Waiting for others simply doesn’t fit into their world view. Due to their perceived sense of superiority, the needs and safety of others are never a top concern.
Off-road driving is a fun and adventurous way to explore terrain that lacks the infrastructure and preparations of paving, striping, and other like features. When narcissists go off-road, however, this means something else entirely.
A narcissist who is unable to reach their desired speed by tailgating, weaving in and out of lanes, and overtaking, will often use the emergency lane, the bike lane, or even cross the centre line and attempt to navigate through oncoming traffic. When this behaviour results in a car accident, suing the driver personally may be the best legal course of action.
Everyone Is a Bad Driver According to a Narcissist
Riding in the passenger seat of a narcissist’s vehicle is guaranteed to be a hair-raising experience. Not only is this person’s driving aggressive, but they’ll also launch verbal attacks at nearly every motorists around them.
According to a narcissist, only their own driving methods are ideal. Everyone else is too slow, too fast, under-skilled, or simply inept. Narcissists deal with constant frustration and road rage, and they frequently blare their horns when obscene language and hand gestures don’t get them the attention they want.
Dealing with a Narcissist on the Road
Dealing with a narcissist is never fun. Encountering one on the roads, however, can be downright dangerous. Extreme narcissism and related aggressive driving tactics can result in serious injuries and loss of life.
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