I attended the wedding of a relative in Delta State over the weekend and I couldn’t hold back my disappointment at what I witnessed. People who barely have enough to live on will chose this occasions to show off – by spraying money! I felt so disturbed seeing people showing off even when there was announcement against doing that. Why do people always love to show off for one reason or the other? Is showing off ever healthy?
The environment one is raised in often influences people’s behavioral pattern, and that includes the urge to show off. We regularly come across people who like to show off. On the surface, they may seem cool, superior and admirable because of what they possess. But the reality is that those who show off have different reasons for doing so.
What Is Showing Off?
According to the Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English, showing off happens when people try to make others admire their abilities, achievements, or possessions. Sometimes too, showing off is used to show disapproval of another person’s personality traits. People show off when they think that others don’t consider them important; then they will they try to prove that they’re important.
Entertainment & movie stars, sports men and women, politicians and wealthy people have been known to show off their achievements. Many people often show off abilities, attires, physical looks, possessions and even relationships. Sometimes, some may even show off with something they don’t own.
There’s no doubting the fact that everyone may show off every once in a while; it is a normal human behaviour. However, when showing off becomes constant, it is an indication of deeper issues. On social media, many people have become specialists at presenting themselves to be what they are not. Millions of social media followers have been deceived by these false impressions. Is showing off ever healthy, no matter the motivation for doing so?
Is Showing Off Ever Needed?
A showy person usually doesn’t show off in front of everyone but only in front of those whom they’re trying to impress. If a person likes someone, then they’re likely to show off in front of them to gain their love and acceptance. Many times, such showy display comes with painful consequences.
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Recently, I witnessed how a woman’s show off landed her in big trouble. I was walking along a street here in Port Harcourt when a Toyota Camry with an “L” sign drove past me. A few meters ahead, I heard a scream from the direction of where the Toyota Camry was. When I got closer, I saw a man lying on the wet ground obviously in pains. I was still trying to understand what happened when I heard some women who witnessed the incident explain what happened.
The driver of the Toyota Camry is a woman who is their neighbor. She recently bought the Camry and was still learning how to drive it. As she drove home that day, the driver saw the women seated in front their house and she tried to show off. This made her lose control of the wheels, and she hit the young man I saw lying on the ground. The woman was visibly shaken by the incident. I don’t think she would be showing off again any time after. So I ask myself: Is showing off ever healthy?
Showing Off in Nigeria
Here in Nigeria, one of the biggest way to show off is spraying money at weddings and other occasions. This money dance is a cultural tradition at many weddings and events where guests shower the celebrants money as they danced for them. The custom is basically to show how much the newlyweds are loved and appreciated. However, people now use it as opportunity to showoff what they or may not have.
For many people, this money dance is their main attraction whenever they attend any wedding, especially for a relative or friend. When that is not included in the ceremony, they get upset and leave the occasion early. I saw this happen when I attended a wedding of a friend. The couple asked that they would prefer the guests to drop their money gifts in an envelop instead of spraying it on them. When some of the guests heard the announcement, they just hissed and simply walked away from the wedding with the money they intended to spray the couple.
Aside from being a sign of flamboyance, spraying money on the celebrant shows his social status. Yet, the Central Bank of Nigeria has recently passed a directive about spraying money at occasions. Any one who sprays money at parties risk going to jail for about six months or made to pay a N50,000 fine. It is important, therefore to ask: Is showing off ever healthy?
In reality, those who are always inclined to show off in anyway can be rightly classified as proud and arrogant. Being modest is sign of mental strength, whereas showing off is a visible sign of insecurity. Although many would disagree with me, the fact remains that we must not show off to feel ‘important’ or appreciated. People would eventually come to appreciate and love you when they see how modest you really are!
“Comes pretentiousness, comes dishonor; but wisdom is on the side of modest men.”Proverbs 11: 2 Byington
Have you witnessed incidents of showing off and the possible reason why they happened? Is showing off ever healthy? We would like to hear about your experiences from you. Please tell us about it in the comments section below.