I have a strange hobby: I like to listen to group discussions and analyze the group dynamic.
As people share, I like to observe how the subject changes, who changes it, and what caused the subject to change.
More than anything, however, I like to pick out the A.S.S. in the group.
There almost always is one. Sometimes it is I, though I try hard not to be. I don’t want my children to be the A.S.S., either.
A.S.S. stands for Attention Shift Syndrome. A.S.S. people cannot keep the conversation focused on someone else. As soon as they hear something reminding them of an incident in their own lives, they “steal” the conversation and turn the focus on themselves.
It is one thing to add to a conversation with one’s personal anecdotes. It is quite another to constantly shift the focus to oneself as if to say, “Hey, everyone, we are not spending enough time talking about ME!”
We can help our children with this narcissistic tendency. If they continually turn the conversation to themselves, we can gently say, “I don’t think she was through telling us about…” Or, “Excuse me. Were we through talking about me?”
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For 14 years, I have taken homeschooling families to tour biblical Israel. Check out my travel site at Experiencing Israel (also on Facebook)