January 26th, 2018

An Overlooked Mistake People Make that Lowers Their Reputation

When you’re finished spending time with someone (or a group of people), how do you bring the interaction to a close?

How do you bid them good-bye?

Do you ever thank them for hanging out with you?

You know, do you ever say things like: “Thanks for coming down,” or “Thanks for having me over”?

If you do, have you ever questioned what you’re really communicating to them?

Are you aware that you’re actually communicating something negative about yourself by doing this?

What is it?

Well, let me ask you this:

How do you perceive yourself in relation to the people you express gratitude to for spending time with you?

Do you view them as having more value than yourself?

Do you perhaps even put them on a pedestal?

Or are you just being “polite” by thanking them for spending time with you?

But have you ever questioned how they interpret this?

When we thank people for spending time with us, aren’t we communicating to them that they’ve just done us a favor?

And if they pickup on that message, won’t they conclude that we perceive them as the more important person in the interaction or relationship?

Aren’t we almost “forcing” them to view us as having less social value than themselves?

But is that something you want?

Do you want others to view you as being “less” or “inferior” to them – or do you want them to see you as an equal?

So why frame ourselves in way that lowers our social value and elevates the other person’s value?

After all, have you ever had someone treat you like you were better or more important than themselves?

If you have, didn’t you notice that your opinion of them dropped somewhat because of it?

Didn’t you actually view them with less esteem or respect?

And do you really want to lose peoples’ esteem and respect and have them view you as having less social value than yourself, all by making a simple statement that could easily be avoided?

I challenge you to stop thanking people for sharing their company with you.

Stop treating them like they’re doing you a favor by giving you their time and attention.

After all, is their time and attention really that much more valuable than your own?

Well, it is if you communicate that it is, and you communicate that by thanking them for spending time with you.

So what do you do instead?

What’s a better way to bring an interaction to a close?

How do you do it in a way that doesn’t lower your social value?

Well, why not simply tell them about how you felt about hanging out?

Why not say something like:

“It was great to hang-out tonight. I had a good time. See you next time.”

Or an alternative is to wish them well in their endeavors. If you made good conversation while you were hanging out, you would have discovered what their upcoming future plans are.

So if you learned that they have an interview coming up, you could simply say:

“I hope your interview goes well. I look forward to hearing about it next time. Take it easy.”

In these examples, you can see that you’re not lowering your social value like you would if you concluded the interaction by thanking them for hanging out.

Instead, you’re keeping your power for yourself.

If you’ve been in the habit of thanking people for spending their time with you, I encourage you to reconsider your approach to ending those interactions in the future. Think about what it does to their perception of your social value and tweak your approach so that you don’t frame them as being the “prize” in the relationship.




A Shameful Way People Damage Their Relationships (and What to Do About It)


A Fatal Conversation Blunder that Kills the Connection with People