Not to Brag but… {This Title is Sarcastic}

fountainI  made a strange resolution recently. I’m not sure I’ll be good at keeping it, but I’m going to post it publicly here to hold myself accountable.

I’ve decided to stop bragging on social media. That includes Twitter, Facebook, and this blog here.

There are moments throughout my life in which I have good news to share, but I’m now personally convicted that it’s not polite to shout this news from the internet mountaintops. I want to bend back toward something the resembles real, authentic life. That means, in order to share my good news, I’ll do it through personal communication with the people who matter.

This is the crux of the issue for me: So many times, when I’m logged onto social media, browsing my feeds, I’ve become deafened, drowned, and overwhelmed by pictures and posts that inspire depression or envy in the pit of my chest. “I wish I was there.” I’m never as lucky and successful as that.” “Why is my life so dull in comparison?” etc etc.

Is it ultimately my responsibility for how I react to these stimuli? Yes. Responsibility accepted. But then I realized I played my own part in the online bragfest.

So I’m pulling myself out.

I’ll still share good news. I know the difference between bragging and thankfully reflecting on something wonderful that has happened, and I know that everyone has to draw the line differently for what they feel is healthy to share. If I need to tell someone directly about my news, in a burst of excitement, I’ll tell friends and family. If they want to pass along the news, that is their freedom to do so. I’ll still be online. I’ll still be marketing my work. I’ll still share things. I just want to stop bragging. (And I’m not sure exactly what this balance looks like. Insight welcomed!)

This is what I know: there are unquestionably moments when I know that sharing a particular bit of news online would only be done to boast about how lucky or talented or special I am, essentially, to ride a boost of e-cheers that often come at the silent emotional expense of others.

I’m no the only one who’s found the news online difficult to endure. And I don’t want to just close the door on everything and walk away.

So I’ll just stop tooting my own horn.

I’ve tried this out unofficially for a few weeks now. My life feels less fake, which is strange to say. And, in a few surprising moments, I’ve felt more receptive to gestures of love from my friends.

Who would have thought?


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This Post Has 8 Comments

  1. That’s inspiring that you’re doing that! I try not to do that too much too. It is a hard balance. 🙂

    1. I hope I can actually do it, even when my need to show off is screaming inside. If I just think “Would I really shout this in a crowded room?” it might help give me a litmus test!

  2. Elise that is a great thing to think about, would I shout this in a crowded room? Love it! Thanks for as always thinking about how you can make a positive difference.

    1. Thanks, Jen! I hope I have the self-control to stick with it. 😉

  3. Good idea and worth a try for sure, I also don’t know what that will look like for marketing. People put on such a happy face for selling products…. I know, just stick with your profile picture. That’s the perfect theme of intriguing, quirky happy, possible disapproving, questioning. Not a bragging face, yet very interesting indeed. 🙂

    1. I like that you think my profile picture is a good balance of intrigue without too much bragging-aura. Never thought of it that way. Yes, marketing is the biggest challenge here, since we authors are expected to self-promote, and beyond being shy, it’s hard to figure out a way to still walk in genuine authenticity and humility.

  4. I completely agree … this is one reason I’ve been slow to move into the spotlight of social media. I have accounts on most major social media platforms, but so far, I’ve been mainly observing. What I observe is a lot of horn-tooting, and while I recognize the necessity of letting people know when you have something to offer, there is a line that is too often crossed … and I think you put your finger on it when you said you felt “less fake.” It IS a strange thing to say, since your online presence has a sense of integrity, from what I’ve seen. 🙂 But I know that line is often crossed, and perhaps only the individual who’s crossing it can really know when and how. Thank you for bringing this topic into the light, and continuing your quest for integrity in your work and life.

    1. It’s such a tricky balance! I understand why so many authors want to avoid it altogether. I’m glad you feel my presence has integrity to it. I feel its a constant challenge, not something to be mastered once and for all. 🙂 Thanks for reading, Virginia! I want to strive for integrity and authenticity, and if that means tooting my horn less and “missing” some opportunity to share news, that seems a worthy price to pay.

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