University Presentation Showcase: Undergraduate Division

Project Title

Examining Narcissism and Self-esteem Through Attachment Styles

Presenter Information

Megan AlexanderFollow

Presenter Hometown

Richmond

Major

Criminal Justice & Psychology

Department

Psychology

Degree

Undergraduate

Mentor

Jonathan S. Gore

Mentor Department

Psychology

Abstract

Narcissism and self-esteem are highly correlated yet distinct constructs, which requires researchers to exercise caution when examining psychological outcomes of the two. One of those outcomes is how people become attached to others, or their attachment style. Past research has shown that narcissism and self-esteem are associated with various attachment styles, but little research has accounted for both in the same study. The purpose of this study was to examine how narcissism and self-esteem predict unique variance in attachment styles. A survey assessing narcissism, self-esteem, and attachment styles was administered as an online study to college students (n = 322). The results showed that both self-esteem and narcissism were positive predictors of a secure attachment style. In contrast, self-esteem was a negative predictor of insecure attachment styles whereas narcissism was a positive predictor. Insecure attachment styles may therefore be one of the important indicators that distinguish narcissists from people with high self-esteem.

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Examining Narcissism and Self-esteem Through Attachment Styles

Narcissism and self-esteem are highly correlated yet distinct constructs, which requires researchers to exercise caution when examining psychological outcomes of the two. One of those outcomes is how people become attached to others, or their attachment style. Past research has shown that narcissism and self-esteem are associated with various attachment styles, but little research has accounted for both in the same study. The purpose of this study was to examine how narcissism and self-esteem predict unique variance in attachment styles. A survey assessing narcissism, self-esteem, and attachment styles was administered as an online study to college students (n = 322). The results showed that both self-esteem and narcissism were positive predictors of a secure attachment style. In contrast, self-esteem was a negative predictor of insecure attachment styles whereas narcissism was a positive predictor. Insecure attachment styles may therefore be one of the important indicators that distinguish narcissists from people with high self-esteem.