C. Poor autonomic arousal
Why are sociopaths or narcissists so different from us? Sociopathy or psychopathy is a personality disorder that is characterized by impulsive and remorseless antisocial behavior. “The prefrontal cortex (PFC) is likely to play an important role in psychopathy,” explains a 2012 study. They are dysfunctional people with different physiology and brain structure. Due to their emotional deficit, they can often remain calm intense, and stressful situations. They have a lower resting heart rate which enables them to calmly strategize how to abuse and humiliate you while you start to freak out. Violence is not always equal to rage when it comes to psychopathy. Remember “Dr. Hannibal Lecter?” A person’s temperament is one of the signs of a sociopath.
Read also: Is Your Partner A Sociopath Or A Narcissist?
8 Traits of a sociopath
Here are some prominent characteristic traits and other signs of a sociopath, psychopath and narcissist:
1. They are superficially charming
They can make you feel special like you have never felt before. However, they can rapidly shift their attitude, personality and behavior once they gain your trust.
2. They often have distorted and contrived reactions
They are masters in driving you insane and make your question yourself. They can effectively use gaslighting to make you react negatively while they remain calm. They will then use your reaction to prove that you are crazy and they are the victims.
3. They are pathological liars
Compulsive lying is one of the warning signs of a sociopath. For them, lying is an instinctive trait that they use to make them look better. This is often motivated by their feeble self-esteem. Telling unreal, fantastical stories, and lying is an intrinsic part of their identity.
4. They don’t feel shame or guilt
Sociopaths, psychopaths and narcissists are unable to feel shame, remorse or guilt even when they have hurt another person beyond repair. They never regret their actions and will never apologize for hurting you. They are sadistic individuals who love abusing others for pleasure.
5. They are not trustworthy
Sociopaths are not loyal in general. In romantic relationships, they are likely to cheat repeatedly with multiple partners. In friendships, they may betray and backstab you when you least expect it for their own personal gain. They are deceitful people who do not value loyalty.
6. They spread toxicity and negativity
When you are in the company of a psychopath, you will start hating everyone around you. As they spread their inner toxicity and corrupt your thoughts, beliefs, and perspectives, you will begin doubting everyone, even your loved ones. They will make you feel jealous, insecure, and distrustful of others.
7. They will make you doubt yourself
Being in the company of sociopaths and psychopaths can often lead to cognitive dissonance. It is a mental state where you have contradictory thoughts, beliefs, values, or attitudes, particularly regarding attitude change and behavioral decisions. One recent study explains “Cognitive Dissonance Theory proposes that individuals experience psychological discomfort when they are confronted with inconsistent cognitions.” Psychopaths will project themselves as perfect and make you question your every thought and decision. They will lie, manipulate, cheat, and con you until you doubt your own sanity.
8. They are spontaneous and intense
Sociopaths tend to be highly intense and erratic.They often do weird things that lack logic and act spontaneously without putting much thought into things. They are prone to take unnecessarily high risks only to prove their version of the story.
Dealing with sociopathic behavior
Psychopaths are not always murderous maniacs. People with high-functioning antisocial personality disorder are part of our society and our lives. They can be your spouse, your boss or even your parents. If you have a sociopath in your life, then the best thing to do is to get away. If you are in a relationship with this person, then walking away is your safest bet. However, in case ending the relationship is not an option, then make sure to set strong personal boundaries to protect yourself. Trust your instincts, identify the warning signs and be assertive.