Why Are People Selfish? Why Are People Selfish?
There are times when anyone of us can be selfish. Sometimes it is good to be selfish such as when you need to avail... Why Are People Selfish?

There are times when anyone of us can be selfish. Sometimes it is good to be selfish such as when you need to avail your civil or basic human rights, educational rights and so on. All the topics we talk about have a center point that works as a boundary and separates normal behavior from abnormal. In the same way, when selfishness moves far from a normal point this becomes a problem and results in some people around us being extremely selfish. Lets read something more about this personality characteristic.

How does this system work?

The logic is opposite to what a person expects from others. If you do good to someone, the person will also do good to you, if they respect what you do for them. But what we call selfish people don’t follow these conventions of giving back and hence behave different than socially approved norms and rules.


Machiavellian is a term which can denote some selfish traits. The term became popular in the 16th century due to a political advisory book written by Niccolo Machiavelli called The Prince. The book detailed ways of being cunning to achieve one’s own personal objectives even at the expense of others. The term is now widely used in literature and is also used as a psychological analysis term.

The role of the brain

A recent study by neurologists found that the activity of the brain in selfish people works on how to misuse the person who is good to them. When someone is doing them a favor they are thinking of ways to exploit the person helping them.


What are the reasons behind this behavior?

  • Different brain scans and activity
  • Lack of ability to understand and share other’s emotions
  • Upbringing in a family where relationships are not selfless
  • Lack of emotional security at early ages of life
  • Natural ability to deceive and take advantage of close relatives
  • They are from the bad or careless category of people
  • They are slaves of their body’s sensations ands chemicals and depend on their thought system to behave this way.
  • It might be short term for the attainment of some benefit, monetary source, or any other favor and may be biological, present in genes.
  • People who are in environments where selfishness is needed to tackle tricky people, such as jails, health care settings etc.
  • Self-involved, consider life as miserable and feel hopeless
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  1. No sense about the feelings and needs of others
  2. Only involved in thinking about own self

The above-mentioned are two primary traits you find in selfish people around you.

How to manage?

The interactions with selfish people can only be managed; they cannot be avoided or ignored because usually they are very dear to you. These people are themselves less responsive than others but you need ways to deal with them:

  • Keep in your mind the understanding of purpose behind the powerful behavior
  • Whatever a selfish person does or says, take it as their act and do not thinkof it as an attack on yourself.
  • It is very dangerous to assume anything about such people, simply unpredictable acts are done by selfish people, try to be as detached from them as possible.

Recognizing selfish people through their actions

It is really a hard task to identify selfish people, but still here we are going to discuss some solid patterns of how the selfish people represent themselves before they start doing something against you. This will stop you from believing that if you do any good to them you’re going to get something back.

  • They do not care for anyone, seem strong and always want to be first.
  • Their mind and talk is centered on planning against other people to harm them.
  • They have poor self-image, low self-esteem and confidence.
  • They never help others up and pass negative comments only.
  • They only think about themselves.

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Nazish Idrees

Nazish Idrees

My name is Nazish Idrees and I have been practicing in the field of Clinical Psychology since my graduation. I have dealt with various kinds of vulnerable population in public and private sectors for therapeutic services, psychological and psychometric assessments, took part in research projects and community interventions. My MS in Clinical Psychology is in process from the University of Central Punjab Lahore, Pakistan. For over three years, I have been a ghostwriter for diverse content niches. These cover psychology and nutrition. This has also lead to other therapies and natural treatments including herbal skincare and aromatherapy. Feel free to join the Facebook Group - https://www.facebook.com/groups/631743936955535/