Narcissistic Personality Inventory

The Narcissistic Personality Inventory is a 40 question quiz that measures narcissistic traits. It is not a diagnostic tool for narcissistic personality disorder and should not be used to diagnose yourself or anyone around you as such. That's best left to the professionals.

This narcissism test is a shortened version of the original and has been used since the 80's to study subclinical or borderline narcissism. This means that even a high score on the test does not mean that the person fits the criteria of narcissist personality disorder.

If you are actually having significant problems in your life, taking the test to know your score probably won't make any difference. It is not a substitute for professional help.


Want to do the test??

You can do the Narcissistic Personality Inventory now if you like. Just make sure you do it all in one go, it will only take you a few minutes. And you are not allowed to ask for help!

There are 40 pairs of options and you have to pick one. If you think neither or both apply to you, pick the one that you consider is the most important. Write down the number and either A or B for each one. Then we'll add up your score...

- A. I have a natural talent for influencing people.
- B. I am not good at influencing people.

- A. Modesty doesn't become me.
- B. I am essentially a modest person.

- A. I would do almost anything on a dare.
- B. I tend to be a fairly cautious person.

- A. When people compliment me I sometimes get embarrassed.
- B. I know that I am good because everybody keeps telling me so.

- A. The thought of ruling the world frightens the hell out of me.
- B. If I ruled the world it would be a better place.

- A. I can usually talk my way out of anything.
- B. I try to accept the consequences of my behavior.

- A. I prefer to blend in with the crowd.
- B. I like to be the center of attention.

- A. I will be a success.
- B. I am not too concerned about success.

- A. I am no better or worse than most people.
- B. I think I am a special person.

- A. I am not sure if I would make a good leader.
- B. I see myself as a good leader.

- A. I am assertive.
- B. I wish I were more assertive.

- A. I like to have authority over other people.
- B. I don't mind following orders.

- A. I find it easy to manipulate people.
- B. I don't like it when I find myself manipulating people.

- A. I insist upon getting the respect that is due me.
- B. I usually get the respect that I deserve.

- A. I don't particularly like to show off my body.
- B. I like to show off my body.

- A. I can read people like a book.
- B. People are sometimes hard to understand.

- A. If I feel competent I am willing to take responsibility for making decisions.
- B. I like to take responsibility for making decisions.

- A. I just want to be reasonably happy.
- B. I want to amount to something in the eyes of the world.

- A. My body is nothing special.
- B. I like to look at my body.

- A. I try not to be a show off.
- B. I will usually show off if I get the chance.

- A. I always know what I am doing.
- B. Sometimes I am not sure of what I am doing.

- A. I sometimes depend on people to get things done.
- B. I rarely depend on anyone else to get things done.

- A. Sometimes I tell good stories.
- B. Everybody likes to hear my stories.

- A. I expect a great deal from other people.
- B. I like to do things for other people.

- A. I will never be satisfied until I get all that I deserve.
- B. I take my satisfactions as they come.

- A. Compliments embarrass me.
- B. I like to be complimented.

- A. I have a strong will to power.
- B. Power for its own sake doesn't interest me.

- A. I don't care about new fads and fashions.
- B. I like to start new fads and fashions.

- A. I like to look at myself in the mirror.
- B. I am not particularly interested in looking at myself in the mirror.

- A. I really like to be the center of attention.
- B. It makes me uncomfortable to be the center of attention.

- A. I can live my life in any way I want to.
- B. People can't always live their lives in terms of what they want.

- A. Being an authority doesn't mean that much to me.
- B. People always seem to recognize my authority.

- A. I would prefer to be a leader.
- B. It makes little difference to me whether I am a leader or not.

- A. I am going to be a great person.
- B. I hope I am going to be successful.

- A. People sometimes believe what I tell them.
- B. I can make anybody believe anything I want them to.

- A. I am a born leader.
- B. Leadership is a quality that takes a long time to develop.

- A. I wish somebody would someday write my biography.
- B. I don't like people to pry into my life for any reason.

- A. I get upset when people don't notice how I look when I go out in public.
- B. I don't mind blending into the crowd when I go out in public.

- A. I am more capable than other people.
- B. There is a lot that I can learn from other people.

- A. I am much like everybody else.
- B. I am an extraordinary person.

Remember the score in the Narcissistic Personality Inventory simply indicates the level of narcissistic traits you have. In some contexts, various narcissistic traits are actually useful. For example, in dangerous situations or in moments of intense stress it is useful to have a lot of confidence in yourself. Creativity is often better in those who are more narcissistic than normal.


What's normal in the Narcissistic Personality Inventory?

The average score on the test is 15.3.

Roughly 66% of people fall between 7 and 22 and 95% fall between 1 and 30. That means that if you get more than 30 you score higher than 95% of people. (Not very likely!)

If you score more than 20 it is useful to note in which areas you scored highly and if you are so inclined (remember malignant narcissists don't consider that they need to change!) you could pay some attention to these areas if they are causing problems for you in your work, social or family life.

So, time to have a look at your scores...


Counting your score

Add one point if your answer in the Narcissistic Personality Inventory matches the following:

1, 2 and 3 - A
4, 5 - B
6 - A
7 - B
8 - A
9, 10 - B
11, 12, 13, 14 - A
15 - B
16 - A
17, 18, 19, 20 - B
21 - A
22, 23 - B
24, 25 - A
26 - B
27 - A
28 - B
29, 30, 31 - A
32 - B
33, 34 - A
35 - B
36, 37, 38, 39 - A
40 - B


Delving deeper into the Narcissistic Personality Inventory

The Narcissistic Personality Inventory has 7 areas that it assesses: authority, exhibitionism, superiority, exploitativeness, vanity, self-sufficiency and entitlement.

You can determine where you scored highly by looking at your answers to specific questions. This list tells you which questions relate to which area.

  • Authority: 1, 8, 10, 11, 12, 32, 33, 36
  • Exhibitionism: 2, 3, 7, 20, 28, 30, 38
  • Superiority: 4, 9, 26, 37, 40
  • Exploitativeness: 6, 13, 16, 23, 35
  • Vanity: 15, 19, 29
  • Self-sufficiency: 17, 21, 22, 31, 34, 39
  • Entitlement: 5, 14, 18, 24, 25, 27

So, for example, if you scored a lot in questions 1,8,10,11,12 etc there may be room for improving how you respond to and use authority.

Some areas tested in the Narcissistic Personality Inventory have the potential to be more problematic than others. For example, those with high scores in exploitativeness and entitlement are more likely to have difficulties than those with self-sufficiency and superiority.



Remember that the Narcissistic Personality Inventory is not a diagnostic tool. It can cause problems to label someone with a personality disorder based on this. Of course, you may be absolutely right! But you still need to be careful. Those with narcissistic disorder can be dangerous when threatened, or even if they perceive a threat!

And if you really are dealing with a narcissist, then the best way is to educate yourself about narcissism and mind control so that you can liberate yourself from the web of lies and deception that they weave around them...

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