The Impact of Narcissistic Terms on Everyday Conversations

by | Aug 2, 2023

Narcissism in Today’s Modern World


Lately, in the world of psychology and therapy, there has been a noticeable change in how we talk about certain behaviors and relationships. Words like “narcissist,” “gaslighting,” “hoovering,” and “love bombing” are showing up more and more in our everyday conversations, on social media, and in popular culture. This blog will explore where these words came from and how they’ve become a part of our daily lives.


The word “narcissist” comes from an old Greek story about Narcissus, who was so obsessed with his own reflection that he fell in love with it. In today’s psychology, it’s used to describe someone who’s overly focused on themselves. Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD) is a clinical condition where a person thinks they’re extremely important, constantly seeks admiration, and lacks empathy for others. With the rise of social media and individualism in our culture, we use the term “narcissist” more often in our conversations to recognize and make sense of this behavior, whether it’s in ourselves or others.


The word “gaslighting” has its roots in a play and movie from 1938 called “Gas Light.” In that story, a husband tricks his wife into thinking she’s losing her mind. Nowadays, gaslighting means when someone purposely makes another person doubt their own memories, feelings, or sanity. Recognizing gaslighting as a harmful tactic has given people the ability to spot and confront this kind of emotional manipulation, whether it’s happening in relationships, at work, or in politics.


Named after a vacuum cleaner brand, “hoovering” is a word used to talk about a sneaky move people use, especially in unhealthy relationships. It’s when someone tries to pull the other person back into their life after they’ve been apart for a while. This term has become more popular, especially when we’re talking about abusive relationships and how survivors can spot this trick and keep themselves safe from more harm.

Love Bombing

Coming from the world of cults and psychology, “love bombing” is when someone or a group showers someone else with tons of affection, attention, and praise. They do this to make a really strong emotional connection fast, usually as a way to manipulate them. In regular personal relationships, love bombing can be a warning sign for possible emotional manipulation and mistreatment. As this word has become more common, more people are aware of unhealthy relationship patterns and are more careful when starting new relationships.

The Impact: Therapy Talk

These words becoming more common in everyday talk can be explained by a few things. One big reason is that people are talking more about mental health and feelings on social media. They share their experiences and get support from online communities, which makes these therapy words seem normal.

Also, there are lots of self-help resources out there like books, podcasts, and online forums that talk about these ideas. When people learn about psychology, they can recognize when something’s not right and get the help they need.

But we have to be careful. Using these therapy words without knowing what they really mean can cause misunderstandings and maybe even make some people feel bad. It’s best to turn to mental health pros for real help.

The fact that we’re using therapy talk more in our everyday lives is a good thing. It means we’re becoming a more open and understanding society. By learning words like narcissist, gaslighting, hoovering, and love bombing, we’re getting better at spotting bad behaviors and taking care of our emotional health. But we still need to keep talking about mental health and making sure people can get the pro help they need.

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