Monday, 12 May 2014
When Does Sharing Become Bragging?
I have a friend who loves talking about herself.
I don't even think she realises it, or at least doesn't have that intention.
But in saying that I do think she tries to make herself sound or be better than others.
I enjoy hearing about what is going on in her life, and of course want to support her and be excited with her... but it is getting harder when every week there is a new guy that is the love of her life, who she sleeps with straight away, and doesn't understand why they all of a sudden disappear...
Which is a lie... because I flat out tell her, and warn her, and give her advice on how to prevent that. But still this vicious circle continues. Honestly I think she actually enjoys the drama, and victimising herself because then it is the guy's fault and not hers.
Because we are in the same or similar career, she also enjoys telling me about all her new job opportunities and has even laughed and said to me how she will finish her uni degree before me and get all the jobs... yep.
She is the one up friend.
Here are some thoughts and tips on the difference between sharing and boasting.
Being a Good Sharer:
- you pride yourself in being a good listener
- you ask how the other person is first
- you remember details of their life and bring it up, for example 'How did that big presentation at work go?'
- you listen to their stories as much as you tell them your stories
- you use words or sentences such as, 'Wow that is great news!' 'You must be so proud of yourself!' 'How exciting'
- you are actually interested in what the other person has to say
- you are respectful to the other person
- you don't talk negatively about others to make yourself sound better
When Sharing Becomes Bragging:
- you only talk about yourself and/or share your stories
- you do not listen to the other person's stories, or pay attention when they do
- you frequently forget what is going on in their life
- your response to all this is 'but they don't like talking about themselves'... Really? And you know this because you live inside their head?
- you enjoy competition, but it includes the kind where you think you are better than everyone else
- you get jealous when the other person has success
- you try to one up the other person's story of success by fabricating or exaggerating yours
Of course we should all be proud of our successes, but we also should celebrate others.
We are social creatures and love talking about ourselves and what is going on in our lives, but just be mindful that you are engaging in an equal relationship.
Remember, friendship is a two way street, it should not be one way.
Comment below your thoughts and experiences with this.