If a person refers to you as a show-off, it may be for either of these three reasons:
1) You try to impress or sway other people by displaying how good you are at doing something
2) You behave in a certain way with the sole aim of attracting attention or admiration, and that other people also find irritating or annoying.
3) You make a deliberate, obvious, or conspicuous effort of displaying something in order to be the center of attention.
Most people never know that they are show-offs until someone brings it to their attention. If you see yourself displaying any of the underlisted characteristics, then you are a show-off:
‘You have a need to consistently garner acknowledgement’
‘You have an entitlement mentality’
‘You are not a good listener’
‘You have the need to be complimented always’
‘You seek to assert your status and value to those around you’
‘You have low self-esteem’
‘You are a bully’
You may or may not be any of the above. It may be that some people misunderstand your confidence for showing off.
It is especially hurtful when you are a simple and genuine person, but people just tend to misunderstand you. Most times, you would not know what to say in situations like that.
I have piled up a list of most appropriate responses to give to such people on those occasions. Before we look at them, these are the things you have to pay attention to before you respond:
You have to listen beyond the words the person speaks to know if their words are just a means to bait you and cause you to react in a certain way. Do not respond negatively or interrupt so that the situation will not escalate rapidly.
If you allow them to finish what they have to say, you can then calmly correct their impression of you.
Do not slump your shoulders
Do not ever give them the satisfaction of losing your composure. Remember to always stand tall and stand your ground. Do not let the person know that their words are affecting you in any way. This will show them that you are not the type to be easily intimidated.
Look at them as they speak.
Don’t ever look down or avoid their eyes when they speak. If you do that, it will strengthen their belief that you are guilty of showing off. When they are speaking, look them straight into the eyes and do not break eye contact till you’ve had your say.
Sometimes, looking at them challenges them and causes them to become uncomfortable quite quickly.
The 20 Best Responses You Can Give to Someone When They Call You a Show-off
Whatever the case may be, if someone calls you a ‘show-off’, here are the 20 most suitable responses to give to such a person.
“I would never assume or call you a show-off, I would appreciate it if you refrain from referring to me as such”
Use this response if the person is calling you a show-off for the first time. Even if the person meant it as a joke, use this response to make it clear that you do not tolerate such name-calling.
In a situation where you do not quickly correct that impression or put a stop to it, it will slowly graduate to something more offensive. This reply is your best bet to prevent that from ever happening.
You use this response when you choose not to resort to anger, retaliation or violence. If you want them to take you seriously, then make sure that you are not smiling at all and that you maintain a steady level of eye contact.
This reply also gives them a chance to mend their statement. It lets them know that you are willing to overlook it the first time, but that if it ever happens again, you cannot promise to be calm.
“I have genuinely achieved what I boast of. What about you?”
You can use this when someone wants to make you feel less of yourself for something that you have genuinely worked hard for and achieved.
Most times, people call you a show-off not that you garner attention but because they are jealous of you. So, you can use this to put them in their place.
“You’re certainly not in the right mood. Maybe we can continue this conversation when everyone has cooled off”
When you notice that things are getting a little bit out of hand and tilting towards disrespect or aggression, you can choose to be the bigger person and end the conversation. You can suggest that you both reconvene when the person is calmer and can better express themselves.
“I do not think I heard you clearly. Could you repeat that?”
This sarcastic response is used when the person calling you a ‘show-off’ is probably worse off than you. To sell the act, you can hold your ear and pretend you didn’t hear them well enough.
“I know you have nothing to boast of.”
Use this response when someone is trying to belittle your achievements. It may be that your aura and achievements intimidate them. Do not allow yourself to feel bad for what you have achieved. If you do, they will use that as leverage to keep attacking you.
“Wait till you have half enough of my successes.”
People will never know what it is like to be in your shoes, especially people who are lower than you. Some people calling you a show-off do so because they have not yet achieved what you have achieved or gotten to the level that you are.
When they do, they will probably behave worse. So use this response when you come in contact with those classes of people.
“Oh well, I have been called worse. Come up with something better.”
You can use this response to show the person that the words that they speak do not affect you as much as they want it to.
This will clearly piss them off as their aim of calling you a show-off was to get you all riled up. When you react in a way opposite of what they hoped, they will think twice before they attack you again.
“Can’t recall asking for your opinion”
Apparently you are not in the mood and using this response will communicate the same to the speaker. This is you telling the person that you couldn’t care less about their opinion and that they should endeavor to keep what they think to themselves.
“You’re rubbing off on me”
In some cases when you may not know what to say, you can use lighthearted replies like this one.
Replying to the person with this, is you trying to communicate to the person that they are just as much a show-off as they presume you to be. Also, that it is probably their habit that rubbed off on you.
This is outright mockery and a challenge to the person’s intellectual capacity. You are telling the person that all they are capable of doing is calling you a show-off but that they are not intelligent enough to know the meaning.
“You know what? Write an essay on it and I will agree with you”
This is another way of mocking the person’s intelligence. Using this response is a sarcastic way of telling the person that they do not have what it takes to write an essay of who a show-off is. You can use this response if you want to ruffle some feathers.
“Alright! Arrest me then”
When you use this response, you are clearly adopting an ‘I don’t care’ attitude. So what if the person thinks you are a show-off? Their opinions should not matter to you. This response will make the person feel silly.
“It takes one to know one”
If you are already used to people calling you a show-off, then it shouldn’t affect you that much. You are already aware that only a show-off would react when they see someone behaving exactly like them.
You can also use this response to let the person know that he must have been a show-off to attract a person just like him. Afterall, the same type of people tends to appear in the same social scene or strata.
“This will be the final lab. I’m blocking you”
If the person calls you a show-off during a phone conversation, through text or one social media platform, then you can use this response. Be careful not to be sucked into the case. Such a person may have nothing to lose.
Once you say it, make sure you go ahead and block the person. It is wise to permanently disconnect yourself from such people so that you will not have to deal with them again.
“Okay Gen-Z, I guess you know everything”
You use this response to jeer at the person calling you a show-off. This response is best suited to give the person a reality check as to the fact that no man is an island of knowledge.
This means that he does not know you well enough to conclude that you are a show-off. When the person is corrected, he or she will learn to take it easy on others.
“I refuse to allow your negative energy spoil my mood”
If you are in a good mood, it is best if you protect your joy. Someone may call you a show-off for the singular aim of spoiling your mood.
If you are sensitive enough to detect such a person, be quick to let them know that you will not allow their negativity to taint your energy.
After giving this response, you can smile before walking away. This will humble them and probably let them know that what they were trying to do was wrong.
“It appears you are a bully. I will allow someone else deal with you instead”
If you do not like confrontation or you are aware the person has an aggressive nature, then allow someone else to deal with them. Once you give them this response, walk away from them for your own peace of mind.
Also, if the person is occupying a higher position than you are – like a parent or a boss – this is the best way to avoid entering into a confrontation with them and it will save you a lot of stress.
“I think I will pass. I am not in the mood”
Use this response when you feel like you are being baited, especially if the person speaking to you is a close family member like a spouse.
If something had previously spoiled your mood, it is wise you give this response before walking away than to react to the person’s statement.
If you allow yourself to be pulled in, you may overreact and take the situation to a point of no return. This response will enable you to put an end to the situation peacefully.
“I care about myself too much. And won’t let you tamper with my mental health”
The first rule to good mental health is love yourself. Whatever you will not say to yourself or entertain because of how it may affect you, do not allow someone else to tell you such things.
This response may not even be spoken, it can be demonstrated by your reaction to their statement. Instead of arguing, crying, or overthinking it, you can take yourself on a lunch date or go shopping.
Listen to music or read a book. Feed your mind with only positive things and disconnect from all naysayers.
Instead of going into a fight with anyone that calls you a show-off, you can also use words with the person that will show how you feel about the comment.
Any of the statements above will help. Sometimes, you just have to listen to them and see how to reduce your excesses.