I am trying to understand the different between narcissism and egotism. No matter, why I am trying to do this (hmmmm). Let's just say, I am intrigued by healthy vs. unhealthy self-love. I am interested in knowing where self-love falls off the edge and becomes unhealthy.
Some interesting facts I uncovered in my research are that Narcissus, the man every one knows as "in love with his own image" was actually in love with his reflection, but he did not know it to be his own image. He didn't realize he was in love with himself because his concept of reality was so skewed, he was unable to understand that he was only able to obsessively love the object that was actually himself, instead of others. This set up a house of cards for the poor guy. Everyone around him was a projection of himself. Everything he saw or experienced as reality was constructed to keep his own fragile self from pulling back the curtain.
An unhealthy condition, the narcissist is unable to love anyone but his or herself. There reality is as faltering as a reflection in a pool.
An egotist is about self-promotion and being a celebrity in their own life. They are unable to acknowledge and empathize with others' thoughts and needs. "Looked at differently, the conceit of egotism describes a person who acts to gain values in an amount excessively greater than that which he or she gives to others."
After a lot of reading and studying this morning, I've come to the conclusion that the Narcissist lives in a self-reflective reality whereby he or she can only see things that are bounced off his or her own self. An Egotist lives in a bold world colored brightly by his or her self in it. I think of the Narcissist as viewing the as an extension of themselves and the Egotist viewing the world as a play where they are at the center and the star character. Both struggle wholly and completely with putting themselves in someone else's shoes.
As a final note, I think I am overly concerned with issues of self, but I am neither a Narcissist or an Egotist...well, anymore than the next guy.
As Ann Landers once remarked, "At age 20, we worry about what others think of us. At 40, we don't care what they think of us. At 60, we discover they haven't been thinking of us at all." - Source: http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/fulfillment-any-age/201204/it-s-fine-line-between-narcissism-and-egocentrism