We all love attention, let’s be real.
If it wasn’t true, it wouldn’t feel good when someone likes our selfie, comments on our Facebook status or loves a pic we posted on Instagram.
For some of us, myself included, social media wasn’t the manner in which we measured our popularity, but it still feels good as hell when a hot guy get’s caught staring at the extra cleavage we so carefully adorned. You know what I’m talking about. 😉 Let’s face it though, we’re living in an age where our self-worth seems to be correlated to how many likes we get on pictures, how many favorites we get on tweets and how many people share our Facebook statuses, it’s inevitable that the desire to grab attention has been imprinted in our tech-savvy brains.
But, the real issue lies behind the selfie filters and clever captions equipped with a glowing sense of humor and clever puns.
At the end of the day, we’re desperate for attention, and a lot of us go way too far to achieve it. I ran out of fingers to count the number of scandalous look-at-me pictures I saw on my Instagram feed just last week.
I’ll let you in on a little secret, though: There’s something even better than attention, and it’s respect.
I always overhear people talking about how generations lack “respect.” But, I think it’s because we are so busy seeking attention, we’ve forgot what respect looks and feels like… Attention is twisted up to look like respect. We’ve fooled ourselves into believing that attention IS respect.
It was kick-ass, female, rebel rock star Pink who said:
“Once you figure out what respect tastes like, it tastes better than attention. But you have to get there.”
Respect isn’t just a song Aretha belted out syllable by syllable, however; earning respect is something that will change your life in a way that will always beat out attention. Respect lasts longer
Respect lasts longer than attention. Hell, it lasts longer than most relationships.
When people respect you, it means they admire you deeply, as a result of your abilities, qualities, or achievements.. It doesn’t matter what your beliefs are, what race you are, what gender or sexuality you identify as; when someone respects you, none of this matters.
People who respect you see you for the person you are inside. Respect is about more than materialism; respect is deeper than surface-level.
There’s no such thing as bad respect.
There IS bad attention, though. There’s the kind of attention you get when you get too drunk at a party and barf all over the host’s living room.
Respect heightens your reputation instead of hindering it.
If there is anything I’ve learned from my mother, it’s that the only thing we leave behind in this world is our reputation. Once you’re gone, people can only talk about the legacy you’ve left behind.
Think about it: Would you rather people talk about your selfies when you’re gone? Or, would you rather them speak about the fierce woman who chased her dreams and never gave up?
Respect takes you further in life.
According to the Association for Psychological Science:
“New research suggests that overall happiness in life is more related to how much you are respected and admired by those around you, not to the status that comes from how much money you have stashed in your bank account.”
So, you may want to grab attention for your brand new car or designer handbag by posting a thousand pictures, but that isn’t what’s going to ultimately lead to your happiness.
Happy people go way further in life than temporarily satisfied people.
You won’t crave respect.
Once you have someone’s respect, you have it. It’s pretty hard to lose, unless you royally f*ck up. Even then, the road to forgiveness is shorter. If someone doesn’t respect you and you f*ck sh*t up… good luck getting back in their graces and beware if you do. Likely you’ll be the butt of jokes or kept around for reasons not good for your self-esteem.
It’s no secret that our attention spans are slowly getting shorter as the generations progress. As the saying goes, “We always want what we can’t have.”
It’s no wonder we’re always craving attention. People always want attention from those who usually don’t pay them any mind, and they go above and beyond to get it.
Respect means you’re doing something right.
If someone respects you, that ultimately means you already have his or her attention; you’re kind of killing two birds with one stone.
But, the best part about earning someone’s respect is that trust is built upon respect. After someone respects you, the relationship can only become stronger and grow further from there.
Whether it be with coworkers, friends or love interests, earning respect is the key to succeeding in almost any situation in life.
But it’s not all rainbows and unicorn farts…
For some, attention has become an addiction. Is it for you? For someone you know? Keep reading for 10 signs you or someone you know is an attention seeker.
An attention seeker is someone who acts solely in a way that is geared towards garnering the attention of other people. The attention they get makes them feel better about themselves, boosts their self-esteem, and it doesn’t matter if that attention is good or bad.
Some people can’t help but seek attention, and they can mistake it for earning people’s respect. However, some attention seekers are willing to sink to devious levels just to get the attention.
1. Persistent Bragging
Attention seekers are very good at showing off their achievements, even if what they’re telling you about isn’t really an achievement at all. Prepare for some particularly over exaggerated stories that are probably based on half-truths, as attention seekers are some of the most impressive story tellers and will happily embellish any and all stories that they have to tell.
2. Fishing for Compliments
Attention seekers are constantly looking for reaffirmation of who they are, or who they perceive themselves to be. Not so slyly asking you if they look good or telling you they think they look bad then waiting for you to compliment them is a classic attention seeking move. They’re not seeking respect here, they’re simply looking for a little ego boost and compliments are an easy way to get it.
3. Professional Victim
Attention seekers are very good at playing the victim if it was an Olympic sport they would win gold every time. Attention seekers never seem to be wrong, and always seem to have been wronged. <strong>Be aware that this is just an act, the sympathy that you’re willing to give them will give them the attention they need to feel special for a little while until they want more.
4. Constant Complainer
Nothing is ever good enough, even the best is not good enough. There is always a boyfriend problem, a parent problem or a friend problem. Failing that, there will almost definitely be something else to complain about. This cynicism is a simple ploy to draw people to them and harvest their sympathy.
5. Always Causing Trouble
Attention seekers will always go for war rather than peace. Stirring up trouble is one of their favourite past times and they will stop at nothing to create chaos. They may not opt for all-out war initially, but their old wars are by far the coldest.
6. Never Dull
Their lives are much more glamorous than yours without a doubt. They will never answer a question with a simple answer because their lives are so filled with excitement that they just have to tell you about at any opportunity. They will give you the impression their lives are so grandiose that you should feel lucky to even be their acquaintance.
7. Dramatic Social Media
You know those people who post leading statuses but never actually explain what the problem is? This is typical attention seeking behaviour. They’re fishing for people to give them a message and ask what the matter is, because seeing that people care only makes them feel better.
8. Never Ending Stream of Selfies
Attention seekers like people to know what they’re doing at all times, and what better way to do that than to post a quick selfie of where they are and what they’re doing. Plenty of people are partial to a cheeky selfie, but not everyone has the capability to post seven a day, even if they’re really trying.
9. They Seem to Know Everyone
Attention seekers have an odd way of connecting with everyone. No matter who you talk about, even if they’ve never met, the attention seeker will somehow know them. Their endless sea of connections can be a pro as well as a con, they can help you meet people or find out gossip about people you know.
10. Can Change the Direction of any Conversation with Ease
And steer it towards themselves. It doesn’t matter what the conversation is about, it could be about your favourite band and they will have seen them perform in Glastonbury. It’s amazing how they can turn any conversation around to be about them before you’ve even noticed they’ve done it.
It can be exhausting constantly having to cater to the needs of a person who craves attention, and it can take a lot out of you. Attention seekers may not always act in all of the ways above, and some of these are particularly extreme, but they’re useful to know about to stop yourself from spending all of your time and effort trying to keep an attention seeker afloat. Keep an eye out for some of these behaviours to save yourself a bit of time and effort in the future.