General Question

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

What is so bad about tooting your own horn or claiming your successes?

Asked by Hypocrisy_Central (26798points) February 23rd, 2010

Why is it considered low class or poor sportsmanship to tout you winnings or success? As Mohamed Ali said; “It ain’t bragging if you can back it up”. If you are like Shaun White, Simon Ammann, Michael Jordan etc why can’t you claim the title of the best? Why do you have to wait until you are old and not the best that you can say how great you was? When in sports your time at the top if it ever comes is not all that long, you will eventually get replaced by another. While you are still great not to say so would be a waste, after you are old or too old to be the best and try to say how great you was seems a little like trying to hand on to something you no longer have or try to convince people who weren’t there to know you were.

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

20 Answers

YARNLADY's avatar

In most places, bragging sounds too much like putting other people down, rather than being proud of your own achievements. To keep from making others feel bad, we learn to keep our success to ourselves.

Vincentt's avatar

Also, does it really feel that much better to announce you’re the best if you clearly are? I find it much more satisfying if other people tell me I’m good at something than if I tell other people.

Furthermore, you risk thinking you can back it up, but not actually being the best. It’s hard to objectively view your own accomplishments, so it may quickly be bragging.

Mikelbf2000's avatar

Because it is rude to keep rubbing in your success to others. If you are a great professional athlete everyone is already going to know it. Bragging about it is pointless. Screaming ” I’m the Greatest” makes you look like a douchebag. Not everyone is cut out for being an athlete. They have other attributes that makes them more valuable to society than an athlete. Athlete’s play a game. Play for a “living”.

BoBo1946's avatar

My grandfather said many times, “don’t toot your own horn and don’t talk bad about others!”

People know your achievements, you don’t have too remind them!

Cruiser's avatar

True champions know some day they will lose and or step down and know that process can be dignified even celebrated or be a braggart “winner” and their subsequent defeat be a humiliating “loser” headline.

ChaosCross's avatar

Most of the time people do not really care if you are the best at something or not, usually they care that you are better than them and if you make a deal about it, they will likely hate you for it.

Pride is normal, it is simply rude to others to keep it under control. Which is why it is good that being prideful is a choice and not a requirement in life :D .

marinelife's avatar

If you are the best, you know it, and that should be enough for you.

Why would you get pleasure out of telling others that you are the best?

Saying you are the best means saying you are better than someone else. What is the purpose of that?

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

It can be a bore to listen to.I usually tell then how wonderful they are straight away.Sometimes it stops other times it doesn’t and I have to take small naps during the conversation.

Mat74UK's avatar

If you are at the top (very top) of your sport you have obviously earned the right to brag and let everyone know how good you are!


If you are mildly better than your opponents in the local sunday league/beach game/local friendly and you have “a good day” at whatever you’re doing, then you should remain magnanimous. Many of the people you are playing against will only develop an opinion of you that you probably won’t like. They will also probably not want to play against you in the future.

wundayatta's avatar

Whether or not you tell me you’re the best, I’m going to make my own judgment about that. If you do tell me you’re the best, to me that sounds like you’re insecure about it, which suggests you really aren’t the best. If you are the best, you don’t need to say it. Everyone knows.

If I’m seeking to hire someone, and they tell me they are the best, I am very wary. Usually I’ll steer clear of them. I need references and evidence. Preferably evidence I have gathered on my own.

If you tell me you’re the best, it tells me that you want to rest on your laurels. You probably won’t be looking to improve. You will be more careless because you think you’re doing the best job. I really don’t like the self-proclaimed “best.” I prefer people who always feel like they need to improve and who never feel like they are good enough. Of course, I understand such people far too well.

J0E's avatar

What’s bad is how you toot your own horn. There is being modest and sharing what you have accomplished and then there is bragging and just telling someone how awesome you are. The latter is what’s frowned upon.

Captain_Fantasy's avatar

There’s a relationship between how often people about their successes and how highly people will think of those successes. It’s am inverse correlation.

It’s like how Apollo Ohno keeps talking about what a momentous thing he’s done by winning every medal in the Olympics. It’s like “cmon man! Shut up about your achievements already and leave that to Bob Costas.” It makes him look like a douche.

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

@J0E “What’s bad is how you toot your own horn. There is being modest and sharing what you have accomplished and then there is bragging and just telling someone how awesome you are.” That what you said my friend is probably the most telling. What most of the other posters are stuck on is that declaring you are the best golfer, downhiller, swimmer, hurdler, boxer, ski jumper etc even when you have the titles and hardware to prove it is wrong solely because it make those who were not good enough feel bad they were not good enough. In many other situations one is not rebuked for stating the facts of their accomplishments. If you are a lawyer you are going to say how good you are if you have the goods to prove it. You say who you bested in court, that you will get them the settlement, the proceeds from the divorce etc. same as if you were an executive you are going to say if you graduated suma cum laude, magna cum laude or any other accolades you have coming out of college. Do you want a brain surgeon that can’t say how good he/she has done and how many reviews, awards, citations etc they have gotten? If you try to state fiction as truth, if you are ranked 15th in the world and to say you were ranked wrong and that you are really #1 but you can’t really back it up. Or if you try to graft your success in sports as trying to say you are a better person all around or are more valuable then that would certainly be wrong. It is one thing to claim what you earned another to try to believe because of your accomplishments you are better in every facet than the next person. But when athletes and such say “I was just looking to do my best and I am just happy I came out on top” sounds a fake when they know unless they had a major catastrophe you know you were not going to be bested. Don’t play me for stupid just say what I know you are thinking, if you say the truth and people who hear it take it personally, that is them taking it personally. Logically someone has to be the best or we would not be keeping score.

MorenoMelissa1's avatar

I think it’s good to be proud of your successe you work hard for it, so why shouldn’t you brag about it a little.

Mikelbf2000's avatar

@MorenoMelissa1 because it’s rude. It not even necessary. Being proud of your success is good. Bragging about it makes you an arrogant jerk.

MorenoMelissa1's avatar

@Mikelbf2000 well maybe I am wrong, I wouldn’t want to come across as an arrogant jerk.

SufiClown's avatar

Mostly because logic demands that if you are willing to toot your horn when successful then you should also be able to man up and accept your failure, if and when it arrives. However, as most people do not want to consider the latter option, they, intuitively and wisely, choose to be “humble”.

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

@SufiClown ”The first and greatest victory is to conquer yourself; to be conquered by yourself is of all things most shameful and vile.”

I would not say that broadcasting how great you are (if you have the goods to back it up) is the same as victory but if you have self-control it is certainly no defeat. I find it kind of hypocritical and playing me as some schmoe when some athlete, entertainer etc. who as won numerous prestigious awards and accolade stand up and say they were just like anyone else, they were just lucky to come out on top. Even if you take those hi-tech slippery suits away from the last Olympics Michael Phelps would have still won most of the races. He might not have won as many but he would have won most. I know it, he knew it as well as most he swam against, so why not just come out and say I am the one to beat for instance, when in deed you are?

Answer this question




to answer.

This question is in the General Section. Responses must be helpful and on-topic.

Your answer will be saved while you login or join.

Have a question? Ask Fluther!

What do you know more about?
Knowledge Networking @ Fluther