There are times when the matter at hand being discussed is truly about you. But that is not all the time. Being an effective communicator- not to mention an excellent friend or lover- depends a lot on knowing when its about you and when its not. Here’s a useful perspective:
Every Conversation Is Not Your Promotional Opportunity
There are times when this mistake is harmless and others where there is a real risk of damage. If you are talking to a friend who has just lost his father, DO NOT shift gears and begin discussing your pain and anguish from losing yours five years ago. That’s not the time. It’s about them, not you. A friend just got a big promotion? Great- just help him celebrate. It’s NOT the time to talk about last year when you landed your big gig. Your friend just got asked out by the hot guy at work? That’s NOT your cue to talk about the six guys who proposed to you last year. Get the picture? Conversations are like planes at Hartsfield-Jackson Airport- constantly taking off and landing. So just be cool. You will get a chance to remind your friends just how awesome you are and how lucky they are to have you. I’ll bet my check they already know.