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How To Recognize a Psychopath

By: Julie Michelle Smith

Psychopath

Do you think your neighbor, boss or boyfriend shows psychopathic behavior? Are you afraid things might get out of hand?

With the help of Canadian forensic psychiatrist Dr. Hare's book "Without Conscience" (www.hare.org), we've compiled a list of twenty characteristics of a psychopath.

The twenty characteristics of a psychopath:

  1. He has superficial charm: he is a smooth talker and very charming.
  2. He is self-centered and thinks he is way more important than others, even if in reality he isn't.
  3. He has a need for stimulation and is prone to boredom.
  4. His behavior is deceptive: he lies and cheats without difficulty. He doesn't mind being caught.
  5. He manipulates others for personal gain.
  6. He shows little remorse or guilt. Sometimes he'll say he's sorry, just so others will stop bugging him.
  7. His emotional response is shallow.
  8. He is callous with a lack of empathy. He feels no pity.
  9. He lives off others or has a predatory attitude.
  10. He has poor self-control.
  11. He is promiscuous.
  12. He had behavioral problems at an early age already.
  13. He lacks the ability to set realistic long term goals.
  14. He has an impulsive lifestyle. He is a risk-taker.
  15. He behaves irresponsibly.
  16. He always blames others for his behavior.
  17. He can only commit to short term relationships.
  18. He's been in jail before the age of 18.
  19. He breaks parole or probation.
  20. His criminal activities are varied.

And a final note: trust your instincts! Research has shown that 77% percent of care workers have a physical reaction when talking to a psychopath: they get goosebumps or start shivering. These primitive responses are tools of your survival instinct: your body warns you for a potentially dangerous situation.

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