Workplace Narcissism

I know this appears to have almost nothing to do with chromosomes or scientific research but everything in life is connected. Dysfunctional personalities are the bain of everybody’s existence, including scientists.  I’ve seen several posts about this subject. One in particular simply says to steer clear of them. This is great advice unless you happen to be employed by one or work with one. I’m sure the next piece of advice would be to quit your job and find another one. If you do that, you’ll be doing a lot of job hopping, and that doesn’t look good on a resume. Sadly, the best answer is to learn how to cope with them; which of course requires the ability to know one when you see one. The second step is to outsmart them by using their narcissim against them. (They’re not half as smart as they think they are). There is a number of approaches here, but one of my favorites is to make their lives more unpleasant to be around you than for you to be around them. Do not reward their narcissism with a desired reaction. Instead, treat them like they are mental and do so in a very condescending way. Of course, this doesn’t work with a boss or one of their mouthy pets. In this case, you need to be subtle and passive aggressive. Punish them in a way that they can’t really put their finger on it. You know, be as stupid as you can get away with. If and when they back off, your level of intelligence can suddenly rise to a newer and more productive level as a means of rewarding their behavior. If they backslide, you can always get stupid again.

About frankabernathy

I am a retired cell biologist and alumnus of Ohio State University. I became interested in chromosomes as far back as the 1960's when I wrote a term paper on the effects of radiomimetic drugs on chromosomes. I was fascinated at how they could break apart and reform new structures so easily. I became further involved in the early 1970's after taking a cytogenetics course at the University of Arkansas. I took that knowledge with me to Ohio State in 1980 where I eventually worked on my research and completed my Ph.D. dissertation, "Studies on Eukaryotic DNA Superstructure". My studies and later research suggested that the DNA within the eukaryotic chromosome is not the simple, linear molecular thread so widely suggested in all the classic textbooks published today. Instead, it may be the culmination of a geologically rapid set of endosymbiotic events where microorganisms plug into each other to create something greater than themselves. Feel free to contact me at
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