Friday, March 28, 2008

interesting discussion

I have a question. I have had this question on my mind for quite some time, but a recent "blogger" conversation brought it to the forefront again, and I want to get everyone's opinion. Literally. If you think I'm totally off, say so.

My question has to do with the fine line (or not so fine according to some people) between sharing exciting information and bragging. I love to talk. And I love to share things. If you work with me, hang out with me, or have ever had a conversation with me, then you know all about my husband, all about "our" teenager, and all about our hermit crabs. I know--lame.

But because I'm like this, I love to share things that I'm excited about, and I want people to share the same with me. Did you accomplish something? Great! Let's hear all about it!

"My baby girl is already rolling over--way before she should!"

"I won a golf tournement!"

"I got a promotion at work!"

"I ran my fastest marathon last week!"

"I have gotten my kids to eat vegetables every day this week."

"I got an A on my test!"

"I lost 30 pounds!"

"I wear a size four now."

"My son just got the lead role in the school musical!"

"I love the fact that I can see the muscles in my arms."

"I'm lucky to have a naturally pretty face."

"I've always just been a natural at tennis. It comes easy to me."

"I love doing community service. In fact, I try to help once a week."

"We say family prayer every night."

"I run an 8-minute mile."

I know that being humble is a great asset and should be something we strive for, but does being humble mean that we have to pretend that we aren't accomplishing anything?

When someone says, "You're so thin!" can I say "Thank you" or do I have to say "No. My butt is totally growing"?

When someone says, "Great golf game!" can you say "Thanks! I've been working really hard at it" or do you have to say "I just got lucky"?

What do you think? Where's the line between being excited about accomplishing something (or just being honest about yourself or your accomplishments) and being vain?


Kaylynn said...

I think there is difference between being a proud person and being proud of yourself. I think it's the most self depricating thing to always be making excuses for your accomplishments, but we all do it, including me. It feels awkward to just sit back and say, "Thank you", but I think we should all practice doing it. Nice blog Molly! (thanks, Kaylynn!)

Sally Teeple said...

Molly, every time I read your blog, I get the theme song from "Elmo's World" stuck in my head! Haha.

I used to have hermit crabs, too! But I can't really brag about them: they didn't live very long. Poor things.

Mer. said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
d/b/c/m said...

i think there is a difference between an accomplishment and something you're born with. For example, if you worked hard to exercise and eat right and lost 20 lbs then you should be proud and can say "I'm a size 4!" But, if you happen to have a great metabolism and you have nothing to do with it, i think it's best to just be quietly thankful.

very quiet. and never complain about it. (especially around your vicious brothers.)

Molly said...

Kaylynn--I need to work on that, too.

Sally--I'm so sorry I remind you of Elmo's World! That little red monster really annoys me.

B--Love it. Your brothers are just jealous.

And to my brothers (just in case you read this)--that last comment was about her own brothers--not you! :)

Josh, Veronica, and Savannah said...

I think (like you said) there is a fine line between bragging and sharing good news. I think you can distinguish the difference better when you are in the conversation (verses e-mail or something). The way I read your statements, most of them seemed like in a conversation they would be genuine and to share good news. It is even less likely to determine bragging and that bragging would even be considered if a pervious conversation was had and you are getting the update.

I also think if you get a compliment you need to give thanks for it. I often think about the negative (my butt is still big) instead of the overall improvement. If you did good, regardless if you think so or not, you should always receive a compliment gracefully and with thanks; doing so is not a sneaky way of bragging.

Tyler said...

Molly, you're thinking about this all wrong. Talking about good news or accomplishments can be done without a hint of bragging or self promotion. This happens to be one of my best qualities. Some day I'll teach you how to do it. ; )

Brody said...


Molly-- this is your blog. Have you ever read mine? Its not ever about anything important, but it's certainly always about me. This is you forum to talk about whatever you want.
but man, if you could tone down the marathon talk in real life... HAHA-- kidding. I kid. Really. I'm kidding.
And its kind of a fine line, but lets face it-- if you talk about running a marathon, or saving starving children, or helping a hobo, or anything else good and healthy, people are going to be a little (for lack of a better term) jealous. Thats what makes people want to be better people. Its fine.