Bragging Rights

Bragging rights for all

Have you ever been invited to introduce yourself in a group?

The usual stuff; name, where you’re based, what you do.

Fairly simple so far.

Though you may already have experienced a bit of anxiety as it comes to your turn:

What if I say the wrong thing? Oh, oh, she just remembered to thank the organizer sweetly, mustn't forget to do that. Will I be too voluble or too abrupt? Geez, got to make a good first impression...

And then comes the bombshell.

‘Say something that you’re proud about, talk about some of your achievements and wins.’


How many times have you been told NOT to ‘toot your own horn’? Not to boast and brag? Not to talk about yourself in glowing terms?

If you are, like me, a performer, you are someone who longs to share, to be in the spotlight, to say ‘Ta Daaaa!! I’m here. Look at me! Listen to me!’

(And BTW, you’ve worked darned hard at your craft, to be, well not perfect, but at least good enough to justify the attention.)

But I’m betting that you, ironically, got the ‘stop showing off’ message even more than most. No bragging rights for you!

As you were growing up, you came across an army of people – parents, authority figures, siblings, peers – who told you to pipe down, to be less of who you wanted to be. Less of who you were born to be, in fact.

And you may have reacted one of two ways.

Either by rebelling, becoming even MORE of who you are - and getting into a whole lot of trouble as you did so - or by conforming and becoming LESS, toning yourself down to avoid trouble.

Either way, it can be super-painful.

So, it’s hardly surprising that that assignment is so challenging.

It can bring up emotions and physical sensations and memories (OMG, first days in new school classes, or mistakes in group etiquette.)

I still cringe at one of my school report cards:
‘Jennifer must learn to be more modest. This will certainly help her in her relationship with her peers.’

Oof, message received and understood. And worked hard at. 🙂

If it still gives me a shot of shame and guilt now all these years later, how must I have felt back then?

Or a Facebook group I joined a few years ago. And I merrily offered tapping (for free) to anyone who was interested, and had my post summarily removed and a strict telling off.

I left the program, I was so mortified.

And then I used tapping on myself to clear the embarrassment and shame - and to remember not to blame myself - after all, my intentions were good, but next time, maybe it would be a good idea to check with group admin before sharing!

Do you have any similar memories? Traumatic stories which jump into your mind every time you have to do the personal introduction round? Events which still trigger strong emotions?

I had to do a LOT of tapping - and get a lot of encouragement from my coach - before I could acknowledge any of my memories.

And in the ‘real world’ this doesn’t get talked about much. Too squirmy-making.

So I WANNA HEAR YOU! Bragging rights for all!!

I’d LOVE to hear YOUR WINS. Comment below and I reply with heart stickers to every single one.

Time to CELEBRATE PROGRESS people – let’s make it easier for ourselves, not harder. ❤️

Comments 6

  1. Joyce McCallum
    April 11, 2020

    Not sure if this counts but lots of trauma about parents and teachers and control. Children should be seen but not heard etc control and the different ways as a child you can be manipulated by words and authority figures.
    However at work on another training weekend ( most of the team knowing each other) we were told be the senior staff we will do an ice breaker dread fear came up .so myself and my boss decided to opt out.. Refused to participate in whatever strange let’s introduce ourselves to each other performance they had arranged. Following us was the rest of our team and most of the course. So we didn’t do Ice breakers any more.

    1. Jenny Clift
      June 9, 2020

      Hi Joyce,
      Oof, what a story. Something which used as an icebreaker creates so much fear and tension – it’s crazy! I once did a course and we spent the first 5 minutes chatting to the person next to us, asking them questions, and then introduced them instead of ourselves. It was SO much easier and a lot of fun!
      Maybe that would be a good one to try.
      Thank you for commenting. 🙂

  2. Elaine H MacDonald
    April 12, 2020

    Not going to brag here, but I have to tell how much I appreciate one particular phrase in tis screed. You wrote: “If you are, like me, a Performer…”
    Oh My Goodness! Are you saying it is OK to be “a performer”??? Do you mean that the desire for applause & acknowledgement can be part of a person’s DNA, so to speak?
    Somehow I’ve always believed that the Desire for A & A was some sort of psychological/emotional flaw or shortcoming … something of which a person like me ought to be ashamed.
    Now that you’ve brought it to my attention, It makes perfect sense that this Desire for A&A is a gift, not a curse – something to build on, not to dissemble. Thanks for the eye-opener, Jenny.

    1. Jenny Clift
      May 6, 2020

      Thank you so much for commenting Elaine (and many apologies for not replying sooner.)
      OF COURSE you are a performer – through your wonderful writing and through so many activities.
      And I love your desire for A&A and that you no longer have to be ashamed of it. That is HUGE. Let me know where this new freedom takes you. <3

  3. Steven Gottlieb
    April 12, 2020

    Hi Jenny.. At first, I didnt realize how much this relates to me, even though I am also an on stage performer, and a practitioner that is still not comfortable negotiating bragging rights.

    As I let myself scan through my life’s memory I recalled the time when I was still new at a job with a prestigious British based company and was criticized for being ‘too’ enthusiastic. I almost forgot about that shock!

    As for bragging rights, I had an EFT coaching session with a new client yesterday. Her original issue was mainly about how her younger son is so disruptive, and judgmental and condescending with her. We tapped on a recent event where this was evident (just that morning) and then we resolved psychological reversals around the empowering affirmation that “I can love my family even with all these challenges”.

    She emailed me this morning to say that she did feel a lot better after the session and then had a “good, honest, healing conversation with my son (even with his anger present)”. And then I realized how perfect this was. I wrote her a note back to reinforce the notion that her love was more powerful than her son’s anger.

    I think this simple but profound shift for the positive is the kind of thing we EFT coaches need to be ‘bragging about’ to help others understand the importance of our work. Thanks for all your great efforts in this regard.


  4. Jenny Clift
    May 6, 2020

    Hi Steve,
    Thank you so much for commenting (and apologies for not replying sooner.)
    I know, the challenge of ‘negotiating bragging rights’ is real for so many of us in so many areas of our lives.
    I love the case history of your client and all the amazing realisations she came to tapping with you.
    As EFT coaches we have an incredible tool, which gives us a way of really listening to, and acknowledging our clients, and helping them into a place of love and acceptance, for themselves and others.
    I agree – that is certainly worth bragging about. <3 <3

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