It's your friend's time to be recognized, but suddenly it's all about you. Whether you mean to or not, you've stolen your friend's spotlight. Doing this often could lead to resentment or worse, the loss of a friend. It's not hard to avoid stealing your friend's spotlight. Making sure your friend gets his or her moment to shine will make you and them feel better and help the relationship last longer.
1. Give Them Time to Speak
Sometimes when your friend gets recognized for doing something, it takes them a moment to figure out how to respond. This isn't a opening for you to jump in and talk about you. You might have helped out, but wait until your friend has had a chance to speak. The moment you steal their thunder, they lose all interest in talking. Everyone becomes focused on you and your friend gets forgotten.
2. Keep Your News Quiet
How many times have you seen one woman announce she's getting married only to have another pipe up that she's pregnant or vice versa? There's a time and place for you to deliver your good news. It's not at the same time your friend does. Wait a few days at least after your friend announces their news. Everyone will still be excited for you, but you won't still your friend's spotlight at the same time. After all, everyone deserves their own moment.
3. Be Supportive
Instead of focusing on yourself, be supportive of your friend. Congratulate them or help them write their thank you speech. Tell them how proud you are of them. You're their friend and should be one of their biggest supporters. Help them bask in their spotlight. Basically, be their shadow for now and let them know you're there for them. Your time will come and they'll be just as happy to be there for you then.
4. Talk about Them
If your friend is the quiet type, others might turn to you during your friend's big moment. You can help your friend out and still help them stay in the spotlight by talking about them. Talk about what they've accomplished. Brag about all the good things they've done and how they've impacted your life. While you'll be the one doing most of the talking, everyone will be focused on your friend instead of you. It's a great compromise and still makes your friend the hero of the day.
5. Think about You
I'm not saying you should focus on you with this one. I'm talking about the golden rule – treat others like you'd want to be treated. If it were you, would you want your friend stealing your spotlight? Would you really want her wearing the better dress or sharing her big news while you're supposed to be the center of attention? Odds are, you'd be insulted and hurt. Think about what you're doing and how it would make you feel if roles were reversed.
6. Ask Others What You do
Many spotlight thieves don't actually realize what they're doing until it's done. At that point, you can't really fix it. If this is you, talk to your friends. Ask them what you typically do and how you could stop. Trust me, they'll be happy to tell you everything you've done wrong, especially if they've been on the receiving end. Take their advice and use it to change your bad habits. It might be difficult to hear, but their advice could help save your friendships.
7. Stand Back
If you simply can't resist and just crave the attention, the best thing you can do to avoid stealing your friend's spotlight is to simply stand back. Congratulate them and then move out of the way. Try to find someone to talk to as a distraction. Your friend will appreciate it and you'll avoid ruining their big day. Sometimes simply getting out of the way and being quiet is the best solution.
We've probably all experienced that one friend who just had to stomp all over our big moments. For many of us, we're no longer friends with that person. Whether you're the guilty party or has a friend who does this, try these simple tips so everyone can enjoy their own spotlight. How do you handle spotlight stealers?