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. Here are ten ways you can spot an attention seeker so that you can avoid them and make life a little more simplistic.
1. Persistently 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 storytellers 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. 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 on Social Media
Do 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. They can change the direction of a 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.