Through rose-coloured glasses: An empirical test of narcissistic overestimation

Jill Lobbestael*, Anique de Bruin, Ellen Kok, Marisol Voncken

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

9 Citations (Web of Science)
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BACKGROUND: Grandiosity is designated as a hallmark trait of narcissism. The current study tested whether narcissistic traits are related to overestimation of a range of agentic performances.

METHOD: Eighty-five non-patients executed six objective tasks to assess their level of (emotional) intelligence, first impression, attractiveness, social skills and learning performance. They were also asked to estimate their level of functioning in these six areas. This estimation was given on two moments: before and after performing the objective tasks. Our main variable of interest was the degree to which subjective estimation exceeds objective scores.

RESULTS: Narcissistic traits were related to overestimation of (emotional) intelligence, attractiveness and social skills, particularly at a global level before performing the tasks.

LIMITATIONS: The use of a homogenous student sample; Mainly agentic performances, were studied.

CONCLUSION: Overall, the findings provide a theoretical validation of unwarranted feelings of grandiosity as a core narcissistic criterion. Copyright © 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)305–316
Number of pages12
JournalPersonality and Mental Health
Issue number4
Early online date13 Jul 2016
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2016



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