The Highly Sensitive Person’s Guide to Dealing with Toxic People: How to Reclaim Your Power from Narcissists and Other Manipulators

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Reclaim your power from narcissists, manipulators, and other toxic people.

If you’re a highly sensitive person, or identify as an “empath,” you may feel easily overwhelmed by the world around you, suffer from “people-pleasing,” experience extreme anxiety or stress in times of conflict, or even take on the emotions of others. Due to your naturally giving nature, you may also be a target for narcissists and self-centered individuals who seek to exploit others for their own gain. So, how can you protect yourself?

In The Highly Sensitive Person’s Survival Guide to Dealing with Toxic People, you’ll learn evidence-based skills grounded in cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) and dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) to help you recognize and shut down the common manipulation tactics used by toxic people, such as gaslighting, stonewalling, projection, covert put-downs, and love bombing. You’ll also discover targeted tips to protect yourself from the five main types of toxic people:

  • Garden-variety boundary-steppers
  • Crazymakers and attention-seekers
  • Emotional vampires
  • Narcissists
  • Sociopaths and psychopaths  


Finally, you’ll learn how to heal from toxic or narcissistic abuse, and find strategies for establishing healthy boundaries and a strong sense of self. If you’re an HSP who is ready to take a stand against the toxic people in your life, this book has everything you need to survive and thrive.



“With remarkable detail, corroborating science, and content vetted by a therapist, Shahida unravels the mystery of why so many highly sensitive people are vulnerable to the machinations of persons of disturbed character. A must-read for those looking to reclaim their lives and fulfill their true potential.”
George Simon, PhD, author of In Sheeps ClothingCharacter DisturbanceHow Did We End Up Here, and The Judas Syndrome“Outstanding work! Once again, Shahida masterfully blends her own insight and wisdom with evidence-based research and practical strategies for empowering survivors to heal from narcissistic abuse, and effectively disentangle themselves from toxic encounters with individuals that meet criteria for narcissistic or antisocial personality disorders. I regularly recommend Shahida’s books to clients in my private practice, and without exception, they emphatically find her writings personally beneficial in multifaceted ways.”
—Athena Staik, PhD, licensed marriage and family therapist; and author of What a Narcissist Means When He Says I Love You on her blog, Neuroscience and Relationships with Dr. Athena Staik

“Another invaluable recovery resource from Shahida Arabi. This book exposes new types of toxic personalities, offers practical advice for protecting yourself, and dives into the hidden strengths that so many survivors share. An essential guide that teaches us how to empower our empathy.”
—Jackson MacKenzie, author of Psychopath Free and Whole Again

“Shahida has become the voice of our generation, a global expert, and a fearless thought leader. In this book, she not only illuminates the highly sensitive person (HSP) experience, she invites you to nurture your authentic self and discover how to use your ‘superpowers’ to thrive! If you are sensitive, intuitive, and attuned to the emotions and energy of others, you’ll learn not only how to become wonderfully emotionally intelligent, but also how to change your life and our world for the better.”
Monica M. White, LMHC, licensed mental health counselor

“I’m a big Shahida fan. Her writing is thoroughly researched, cited, and written in a way that is engaging, witty, and oh-so knowledgeable. This book will help the beginner just realizing what narcissistic abuse is, as well as anyone fully educated and aware. I highly recommend this to therapists, lawyers, judges, and survivors.”
—Kristin Sunanta Walker, founder of Mental Health News Radio (MHNR) Network: the world’s first podcast network dedicated to mental health, with over twelve million listeners

“A must-read for HSPs and for anyone who has ever struggled to understand, handle, and survive toxic people. Shahida has written a book that provides all the answers and information you could ever need in a wonderfully clear, relatable way. This is a book that I wish I had when I was trying to find my way through the minefield of being around toxic people. It will, surely, change lives.”
Annie Kaszina, PhD, emotional abuse recovery specialist, and author of Married to Mr. Nasty

About the Author:

Shahida Arabi, MA, is a summa cum laude graduate of Columbia University, and best-selling author of three books, including Becoming the Narcissists Nightmare and Power. Her work has been featured on Psychology TodayPsych CentralSalonHuffPostBustle, the National Domestic Violence Hotline, the New York Daily NewsThought Catalog, and VICE Media Group. Find out more about her at

Foreword writer Andrea Schneider, LCSW, is a licensed clinical social worker in the San Francisco Bay Area, and has over twenty years of experience counseling thousands of individuals and families. She specializes in narcissistic abuse recovery, maternal wellness, trauma recovery, special needs parenting, grief, and loss.

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