If you’ve ever shared your life story with someone you’ve just met, then wouldn’t it be justified to call you an oversharer? I’ve done my fair share of, well, oversharing in the past, but I’ve learned to reign it in when it matters the most. It’s easy, isn’t it? To overshare?
If you keep finding yourself oversharing and want to stop, it’s easy too. But, when I say oversharing, do you truly understand the meaning of the term?
Oversharing is when you speak more than what’s considered appropriate in a situation with a person. Lately, oversharing has become synonymous with social media, however, it can happen in-person, over texts, and on calls too.
Of course, sharing becomes oversharing when you don’t have a connection with another person and open up your thoughts with a stranger or an acquaintance in an unsafe space. It’s less to do with what you say and more with why, whom, and when you share.
Keep reading to learn the signs you’re oversharing, why we tend to overshare, and how to stop oversharing.
Are You Oversharing? Check Out The Signs
1. Your loved ones feel like therapists to you: You love talking, but where sharing and venting to a trusted one can be good, you often venture into oversharing without considering your loved one’s needs.
2. You don’t like silences: If you’re always the one breaking the silence with those around you, then it’s a sign that you might be an oversharer. The need to speak during awkward silences often makes you overshare.
3. Your relationships feel unbalanced: If everyone knows everything there is to know about you, but you don’t know anything about them or know only a little bit about them, then it’s also a sign that you might be oversharing.
4. You constantly say things without thinking them through: Or as people like to say, “Putting your foot in your mouth”. You often find yourself saying inappropriate things at inopportune times. Sometimes you land in trouble because of that too.
5. You love being on social media: If something is happening in your life – big or small – you will be the first to go on social media and post about it. It’s another sign that you are oversharing.
6. You ask people to hang out, constantly: Going for a cup of coffee with friends or coworkers after work is fine, but if you’re someone who constantly wants to hang out with other people, then it could be a sign that you like talking…sometimes talking too much.
Why Do We Overshare?
The burning question is; Why do we feel like sharing everything with anyone we meet? Is there a reason for it or is it just the way we are? Well, according to psychologists, there are reasons why we tend to overshare.
We feel a sense of intimacy, albeit a false one
We find solace in sharing our vulnerabilities with a stranger
Sometimes, it’s the misguided attempt to fast-forward a relationship
We have poor boundaries
Sometimes, we overshare to make others feel comfortable sharing their problems
So, when you find yourself enclosed in an elevator ride with your new coworker, it brings a false sense of security that might make you overshare your problems. Or when you find yourself sharing the embarrassing thing you did back in college with your flight seatmate, it is comfortable because you won’t see them again, so what’s the harm right?
Understanding what makes you overshare can help you find the right way to stop oversharing or recover from oversharing.
Let’s take a look at some of the ways that can help you stop oversharing.
How To Stop Oversharing?
1. Start By Asking For Once
When you’re in the middle of a conversation, practice active listening and listen with the intent to learn rather than formulating a response. This practice will help you understand your conversation partner better and will help you stop oversharing. When you’re focused on asking questions, you’ll find yourself not oversharing. At least not much.
2. Think Before You Speak
Before you speak, pause and think about what you’re about to say. If you don’t find the information, you’re about to say beneficial for you and the other person, then stop. Try to say something that will interest your conversation partner. Try to engage them in the conversation instead of you doing the speaking.
3. Understand Why You Overshare
When you know the reason behind your habit of oversharing, it can become a lot easier to stop and recover. Once you know the pattern, you can stop it the next time you find yourself surfing toward the oversharing territory. It’ll also help you stay alert when you’re in a setting that can be triggering.
4. Lighten The Mood
Instead of speaking to avoid silence, try to lighten the mood with a joke. When there’s nothing serious to talk about, you won’t find yourself oversharing either. We tend to overshare because we want to eliminate the awkward silence, right? So, instead of being serious for once, try to crack a joke and make the conversation lighter.
5. Re-read What You’re About to Share
If it’s a written communication you’re worried about, then you need to get into the habit of re-reading what you’ve written before clicking on the send button. Whatever it may be – an email, a social media post, or a text, read it again before you hit send. This practice will help you get a new perspective on your sharing before the recipient reads it all.
Oversharing is a habit that can take a turn for the negative and become toxic oversharing if we’re not careful. There could be many reasons why we overshare – from a sense of false intimacy to making others feel comfortable. Understanding your reasons behind oversharing can help you find the right way to stop oversharing.
I hope this blog helps you find the right way to stop oversharing for you. For more, you can write to us at email@example.com or DM us on social media. You can also share your thoughts and tips in the comments section below.