Five Factor Model Of Personality Traits

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In the following chapter (2.4), narcissism is investigated in the context of personality psychology to get a more comprehensive understanding of the term as well as to gain a better insight into narcissism as a personality trait. Therefore, the relationship between narcissism and a more general assessment tool of personality, the five-factor model of personality (or the Big 5), and particularly the dimensions extraversion, agreeableness and neuroticism, is explored. Thereby, first the relationship of the pathological narcissism and the Big 5 is investigated, followed by the relationship of trait narcissism and the Big 5.
The five-factor model of personality psychology suggests five broad personality dimensions describing human personality.
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It was found that individuals diagnosed with the NPD (pathological narcissism) show a personality related to high extraversion, low agreeableness as well as a mix of low and high neuroticism (Blais, 1997; Miller et al., 2010). These results might be explained by the fact that individuals diagnosed with the NPD are characterized as attention-seekers who need the presence of other individuals to constantly receive admiration and attention (APA, 1980; APA, 2014). Hence, they might show high extraversion to get in contact with many individuals and compete for their attention. Further, individuals diagnosed with the NPD are characterized as exploitative, arrogant, envious and lacking empathy (APA, 1980; APA, 2014). As a result of their uncaring and ruthless behavior, individuals may show low agreeableness. Further, the mix of low and high neuroticism could be explained by the fact that individuals diagnosed with the NPD vary in their degree of vulnerability, which is associated with neuroticism (McGlashan et al., 2005). Moreover, vulnerability and neuroticism are linked to similar characteristics, such as anxiousness, hostility, and negative emotions (Costa & Widiger, 1998; Pincus & Lukowitsky, 2010). Some narcissistic individuals are very vulnerable and, as a result, they might show characteristics that are associated with higher levels of neuroticism. However,…show more content…
Therefore, Paulhus describes individuals scoring high on trait narcissism as disagreeable extraverts (Paulhus, 2001). Furthermore, healthy but narcissistic individuals are often perceived as charming and talkative. They are good at socializing and easily make new contacts and friends (Bierhoff & Herner, 2009). Researchers found that individuals scoring high on trait narcissism constantly seek new relationships with people who are successful, attractive or famous in order to improve their own status (Campbell & Foster, 2002). They enjoy being associated with successful individuals and, as a result, receive the admiration and recognition of other individuals. However, their relationships often stay superficial (Campbell, 2005). Further, individuals scoring high on trait narcissism are often perceived as self-confident and, further, exciting and entertaining (Foster et al., 2003; Paulhus, 1998). They enjoy being the center of attention and thereby can satisfy their need for recognition. Taken together, individuals showing higher levels of trait narcissism need to get in contact with many people to receive attention and ensure an audience to show their grandiose self. To do so, they might need an extravert
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