The boundary between public and private information is no longer as defined as it used to be. These days, a random stranger can know everything about another random stranger just by checking their social media platforms. In fact, almost everyone has overshared at a point in their lives. But oversharing isn’t always a habit to be proud of. This is why this article has been written to teach you how to stop oversharing.
Here, everything you need to know about oversharing will be discussed; from why it is a bad habit, to signs that you do it, why you do it, and finally how you can overcome it.
Why is Oversharing a Bad Habit – How to Stop Oversharing
Oversharing is when you provide more details than is necessary.
It involves telling people things that they should not know or do not care to know about you.
From the surface, oversharing may not seem like a bad thing to do.
However, it is and there are several reasons why it is bad.
The first thing you need to do to stop oversharing is to recognize that it is not good social behavior.
You need to realize what makes it a bad habit so that you can be more determined to let go of it.
With that being said, below are some of the reasons oversharing is a bad thing to do.
People May Think You Do Not Respect Boundaries
When you overshare, you send a bad message to people around you.
You unconsciously tell them that boundaries mean nothing to you and you have no issues disrespecting them.
People who are big on boundaries will not be comfortable around you and would always look for means to get out of a discussion with you.
Disrespecting peoples’ boundaries is very inconsiderate.
This is why you need to learn how to stop oversharing.
People May Think You Are Bragging – How to Stop Oversharing
There is a thin line between oversharing and bragging, this is especially true when you are oversharing things that make you good.
People don’t like people who brag and they may have misconceptions about you because of this.
They may think you are saying all that you are saying because you want to look impressive.
Even though this wasn’t what you were trying to do, people will still believe it is your intention from the start.
Empathizing With You Will Be Difficult – How to Stop Oversharing
People may not know how to empathize with you because they won’t want to even talk to you in the first place.
You may not be able to connect with people well because of this.
Signs That You Overshare – How to Stop Oversharing
What is considered oversharing is often based on several factors such as where you are and the relationship you have with the person you are speaking with.
For instance, you can comfortably share some intimate details about your life with your spouse and it won’t be considered oversharing.
But it becomes oversharing when you share the same information with someone else that you are not that close to.
Because of these factors, it may be hard to know if you are oversharing.
However, there are certain signs that you may notice when you are oversharing.
Below are some of them.
Silence Scares You
If you are often the one that breaks the silence, then you may be oversharing.
The people you are around may love the silence and when you break it, they may not be comfortable with it.
In cases like this, you do not need to be sharing personal information for it to be considered oversharing.
As far as you say things when saying anything wasn’t necessary, you have overshared.
You Have Unbalanced Relationships – How to Stop Oversharing
If people you know tend to know things about you more than what you know about them, then you may be oversharing.
Sometimes, this sign of oversharing isn’t obvious until you try to remember something about someone you thought you are close to and you realize you do not know the person as much as you thought you did.
You Don’t Have Social Media Interactions – How to Stop Oversharing
Sure, you can’t always interact with everyone on your social media platforms.
However, when close friends do not interact with you and even ignore your posts and status, it may mean something more.
You might be posting private information about yourself on your accounts and people are tired of how you constantly overshare.
Your Conversations with Your Friends Feels Like Therapy
You should be able to confide in your close friends and family.
But when you do this, you are supposed to have a balanced conversation with these people.
Once you start going to vent to them and expecting them to become your therapist, then you may be oversharing.
Your friends may not want to hurt your feelings by telling you this, but they most likely would be thinking it.
You Are Reading This Article – How to Stop Oversharing
The fact that you are reading this article means that you are wondering whether or not you are oversharing.
The truth is, once you start feeling like you are oversharing, then you most likely are.
Why Do You Overshare – How to Stop Oversharing
Another thing you need to know to help you battle your habit of oversharing is why you do it.
When you know why you often overshare, you will know where the problem steam from.
This way, you can accurately take out the problem from its root.
This would not just remove the problem, but it’ll also ensure it does spring up again.
That being said, below are some of the reasons people tend to overshare.
You Use Oversharing as A Means to Get Close with Other People
A lot of people that overshare do so in a bid to get close to other people.
If this is the case with you, then your approach when you are being social is always very optimistic.
Because of how excited you are about getting close to others; you unintentionally start oversharing.
You Are Always Emotional When You Communicate
Maybe you do not intend to overshare but you just can’t help it because you are emotional about the story you are telling.
Because of how emotional you get you may end up sharing intimate and unimportant details.
You may speak for a long time, repeat details, and generally just bore everyone listening to you.
You Are Surrounded by People Who Overshare – How to Stop Oversharing
If your closest people often overshare, this could be why you find yourself doing it too.
This is especially true for those who grew up with people who overshare; like a parent or sibling.
You most likely were exposed to the habit when you were quite young and you thought it was normal behavior.
Typically, you start doing it too without realizing how wrong it is.
But now that you are an adult, you have come to realize that it’s a bad habit.
You Are Socially Inept – How to Stop Oversharing
You may tend to overshare if you are socially inept.
Because you don’t have the skills needed for social situations and interactions, you find yourself sharing more than you should to make up for it.
Mental Disorders – How to Stop Oversharing
Sometimes, oversharing may be due to a mental issue.
A mental condition that often causes this habit is attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.
If you have this condition, then you should see a professional.
Tips On How to Stop Oversharing
Now that you have figured out whether or not you tend to overshare, it is time to work towards eliminating the habit (if you have it).
Also, you should have already figured out why you have the habit of sharing at this point.
Although every tip that will be shared below will help you overcome this habit regardless of its cause, some tips are better suited for certain causes than they are for others.
So, as you read through this section, keep your eyes peeled out for techniques and tips that specifically address the reason you overshare.
1. Learn to Have Balanced Conversations
When having a conversation with others, make a conscious effort to not be the only person speaking.
Ensure you do not dominate the conversation while the other person keeps nodding or chipping it a word or two.
Make sure the other person is also contributing to the discussion.
If they aren’t saying enough, try to engage them more.
Ask them questions, if they ask you a question, reply and then throw it back to them, when you provide a piece of information, encourage them to provide the same information.
No matter what you do, just make sure you stop turning conversations into monologues.
2. Be Articulate
A common trait that people who overshare have is not being efficient with words.
Because they aren’t efficient with words, they tend to say several unnecessary things and end up talking longer than they should.
So, one thing you can do to stop oversharing is to become articulate.
Learn how to use your words efficiently.
If something isn’t relevant to what you are saying, there’s no need to say it.
Trying to be more efficient with words will take a while, especially if you are very inefficient before now.
However, you can get better by practicing.
One way to do this is to listen to yourself telling an exciting story; you can do this by recording yourself.
When you listen to yourself, evaluate your delivery of the story.
Cut off irrelevant parts and words and know how often you tend to divert from the point.
Once you are done reviewing the story, make another recording and tell the story again; ensure you remove all the unnecessary parts and words you noticed the first time.
You should sound better this time around.
Keep practicing until you can tell your story articulately.
When you have a conversation with someone, remember to use what you have practiced.
Make sure you use your words efficiently and with time, you’d realize that you do not overshare the way you used to.
3. Know the Things You Should Not Share Immediately
Most people who overshare would meet a person, spend a few hours or even minutes with them, and in the end, this person they just met knows all the nitty-gritty details of their lives.
This is because people who overshare often do not know that not everything should be said at first contact.
If you just met someone, there’s no reason why they should know personal things about you.
Your personal information should not be shared with someone you recently met for two major reasons.
One, oversharing things like these can make the person discontinue the conversation because they aren’t comfortable with how it’s going.
Two, you can’t trust a random stranger.
Telling someone whom you have just met everything about you is not being security conscious.
You can’t tell what that person would use the information you willingly provided to do.
This does not mean that you should become skeptical and untrusting of everyone you meet.
It simply means you need to be careful at all times and not reveal your secrets and personal details to someone you hardly know.
4. Be Self-Aware – How to Stop Oversharing
You need to improve your self-awareness.
Being self-aware can help you to stop oversharing.
When you are self-aware, you would be more careful and deliberate with your words.
You would be able to realize when you have said too much and when it is time to stop talking.
Your communication and social skills will significantly improve if you are self-aware.
This will make it easier for people to interact with you.
One way to become self-aware is to assess everything you do and say immediately you do/say them.
Evaluate what you say to see whether they are relevant to what is being said or not.
It will typically take you some time to get used to it.
But when you continuously do this, you would get better at assessing your actions and words.
With time, you’d be able to assess your words even before you say them.
Visit here to learn more tips on how to improve your self-awareness.
5. Learn to Listen More – How to Stop Oversharing
Speaking and listening are the two components of a conversation.
Therefore, apart from your speaking skills, you also have to improve your listening skills.
Listening doesn’t stop at hearing what a person is saying; it also involves understanding what is being said.
Apart from the words being spoken, you also need to watch a person’s body language.
People often use their body language to communicate things they do not want or know how to say.
If you can listen well and watch body language, you will know how to respond to people and have balanced conversations.
6. Do Not Force Sympathy from People – How to Stop Oversharing
You should not force people to show you sympathy.
If you want sympathy from people so badly, you will end up sharing too much in a bid to garner it.
This is why you should refrain from looking for sympathy.
Realize that people would know to show sympathy if the situation warrants it.
When you tell your story, do not sound pitiful.
Simply tell it without making it look like you are looking for sympathy.
7. Stop Seeking Attention
When you constantly seek attention, you’d do almost anything to get it, including oversharing.
You may then end up looking desperate to those around you.
You won’t just be someone that overshares, you will also be someone that overreacts.
This is why you need to stop seeking attention.
People will pay attention to you if you socialize well.
So, instead of oversharing, work on your socialization skills.
But as you socialize, do not make getting attention the main reason behind your socialization.
Instead, your main goal should be to connect with people and make friends.
8. Do Not Say Irrelevant Things During Conversations
Another way people overshare is by saying things that are not relevant to the discussion.
So, you need to be careful not to do this.
Always go straight to the point and do not waste time saying irrelevant things.
If something won’t add value to your story, do not say it.
9. Be Calm and Collected – How to Stop Oversharing
If you are someone that gets excited and emotional when interacting with people, you may end up oversharing.
So, you need to learn how to stay calm and collected even when you are excited about something.
You can channel your excitement to something else.
For example, instead of talking too much because you are excited, listen more.
Be excited about what people have to say rather than what you have to say.
Just make sure you do not ruin a chance to connect with someone just because you are excited.
10. Try Not to Sound Like You Are Bragging – How to Stop Oversharing
Most times, you may not be bragging but people will think you are because of how much you overshare.
Being self-aware will help you realize when you sound like you’re bragging and you can then call yourself to order.
Stop sharing too many details that make you look good and impressive in front of others.
You will get a step closer to your goal of overcoming the habit of oversharing if you can stop sounding like you are bragging.
11. Create Accountability – How to Stop Oversharing
A bonus tip that would help you as you try to stop oversharing is creating accountability.
Tell a close friend of your goal to stop oversharing.
So, whenever you start oversharing, they can caution you about it.
Conclusion on How to Stop Oversharing
Just like with any other habit, you may have a hard time letting go of the habit of oversharing.
This, however, does not mean you can’t overcome this habit.
If you put in the effort, you will reach your goal.
Whenever you find yourself going back to your former ways, call yourself to order at once.
It may take a while but with effort and determination, you will eventually stop oversharing.