Monday, 20 February 2012

Sometimes I fear excessive self-referencing

When we are sure that we have a large number of years behind us, say twenty-five or thirty, it is easy to fall into the self-referencing trap unconsciously. I have seen this increasingly in people, and recently to my chagrin, even in me. I guess it is to do with the age. Maybe not. I did not realise that this was something which seems as a parade of the self until I read in a magazine; one of the women had written about how she was annoyed with one of her friends who used self-referencing for almost everything. Now, that article got me thinking. I observed that I did it almost on a regular basis that I started dreading when the word/letter 'I' started surfacing in my mind. Now I exercise caution.

I believe that excessive usage of the personal pronoun 'I' also means that one has certain amount of knowledge and experience on something which is spoken of. But not everyone is as kind to accept that experience makes one use the personal pronoun 'I.' Some of the people attribute it to an extreme case of self-conceit and pride which always points in the direction of ME. How double-edged can simple self-referencing become.



Sometimes the self-referencing could also try to used by attention seekers who somehow invariably turn the direction of any conversation to themselves. "When I did it last time, it was absolutely fine," When I tried that, I had no problems," When I visited Dubai . . ." and so on and so forth. Sometimes I loathe the attention monger who tries to refer to himself/herself all the time. Hello, there are others with experience as well.

I tried to look at self-referencing from two sides and found out that moderation is the key, in this case. Maybe my moderation would be loathsome to some and normal to certain others. All said and done, one should be aware of what comes out of the mouth, I reckon.

Now, what do you think of self-referencing?

Image: Internet

23 comments:

  1. One has to talk about oneself right? Attention seeking and talking about yourself and your work, I think there is a very fine line there between the two.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. W do have to, Janaki but sometimes it is just a bit too much, I reckon. But I guess we know the limits.

      Delete
  2. i think we have to look at our motives...if it is to makes oneself look good or one up others, we really need to cut it....

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Quite right, B. But in the heat of the conversation, we seldom look at what our intentions are.

      Delete
  3. There is a balance there. I think the attitude one has and the intent behind comes through.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Balance, yes. Sometimes attitude overrides the intent.

      Delete
  4. I think it all depends on the context, Susan. In a situation when a person is sharing something with you, self-referencing could be awful. Some people can't wait for you to finish your story and they quickly jump in with theirs. However, when we're asked for advice or our opinions we need to self-reference. Too much of the 'I' and you become an 'I-specialist' ;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am striving to be anti-I Specialist and the road is sometimes bumpy, dear Corinne.

      Delete
  5. Hello Susan. How are you these days?
    As imperfect humans, we tend to slip into the "I" mode a lot. Like everyone before me has said, moderation is key & I do think it depends on the context/situation. It's good that you recognize it and are trying to work on it.
    Thanks for sharing Susan.
    Have a great week ahead!

    A Flower In My Mirror

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am doing great, Andy. thanks. I'm happy that you have stopped by to write an insightful comment. Self-awareness is indeed the first step to truth. You have a wonderful weekend.

      Delete
  6. Yes, I think we need to balance the use of "I". Many of us would have little to say if we eliminated this word from our vocabulary. But, some do overuse it, perhaps more out of a sense of insecurity, they try to seem superior.

    Good thoughts as always Susan. Hope you're having a great day. Hugs.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Since we've been with us for quite some time, it is slightly difficult to avoid the 'I'. But it is not as difficult. With perseverence and practise, one can surely try.

      Delete
  7. Very true in what you have said.. I dont know what to say, I think I should but I DONT... :) ok ok bad joke sorry , but seriously I do agree with you.
    Thank you for sharing

    Bikram's

    ReplyDelete
  8. Well, I guess I need to follow your footsteps, and exercise caution. I tend to do that. Plus there is another concern that needs mention. It is the excessive referencing of thinkers/ philosophers/ writers that many indulge in, including myself. This too should be curtailed. But, it's is so attractive!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Wow! I like the allusion to the philosophers and in turn you. This is another blog post, now.

      Delete
  9. Well Now that you mentioned It, I think most of us haven fallen prey to (excessive) self referencing. And as you said, it depends on how much is too much for an individual. And one should definitely watch One's words! Yes.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. SOmetimes the emphasis on ourself also brings the larger picture into focus: the world which glorifies the 'I' syndrome. Everything focusses on giving the self importanc eover everything else. Perhaps that also contributes to the 'I' syndrome.

      Delete
  10. Being that my blogs are about my life, I self-reference a whole lot! lol! I do share my experiences with others, mostly to show empathy and not for boasting. I hope that makes sense?

    ReplyDelete
  11. I guess there is nothing wrong in using ones experiences to make a point. In fact I often learn from others this way. I think this kind of self-referencing can become annoying when the only way one can carry a conversation is to be totally self centered, referring to every subject in a discussion as something one has tried or done.;)
    Yes indeed, moderation is the key dear Susan, I agree.;)
    xoxo

    ReplyDelete
  12. I'm a huge attention seeker myself, ha! Kind of ironic that I comment on this post. I have this problem, I refer to myself way too much. Even when I shouldn't, I still do. I'm very self-centered, I'll admit that, but I'm trying to change. I try to shut up and listen because I've been told I talk too much. A bit of a chatterbox, you see. So, anyway, what I want to say is - this is plaguing me, but I'm trying to avoid the pronoun "I" as much as I can. God, it's impossible!

    Great post, Susan.

    ReplyDelete

LinkWithin

Related Posts with Thumbnails