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What Makes Someone an Attention Seeker & How to Read these Traits

They’re annoying, they’re always talking about themselves, and they’re always in your face. But what makes someone an attention seeker in particular?

What Makes Someone an Attention Seeker

We all demand attention from time to time. We’re human, we do crazy things occasionally! But what makes someone an attention seeker in particular?

Some people just can’t help themselves. Everything has to be about them, and, by hook or by crook, they will grab that attention and pull it firmly in their own direction. Yes, this is the famous attention seeker… they’re more than annoying to be around.

Some try and avoid attention, but at times we need it. We have an in-bred desire to hear praise in our direction. While we might not want to admit it even to ourselves, it’s there.

These people don’t have a sign on their forehead which says “warning, attention seeker at large,” but they do have certain traits which are clear from the get-go.

So, what makes someone an attention seeker. How can you tell how you’re in the company of someone you really should avoid in the future? [Read: 14 ways to instantly recognize fake people and stay away]

Traits to watch out for: What makes someone an attention seeker?

Don’t go around labeling everyone who might exhibit slight attention seeking traits as an attention seeker per se. As I’ve already mentioned, we all do it occasionally. However, if you meet someone who is always demanding all eyes are on them, they’re not difficult to identify as an attention seeker.

The reasons for someone acting in this way can be wide-reaching. It might just be a one or two time thing, or that they’re particularly lacking in confidence and want to feel better about themselves. It could also be that they’re feeling threatened by a new person who has entered their social circle or their work situation. As a result, they’re acting out and pushing themselves into the limelight instead. Of course, narcissists are also huge attention seekers. [Read: Why some people love attention and go looking for drama]

If you’re not sure, here are a few traits which might make you want to give someone a wide berth next time you see them.

#1 They’re always trying to get you to drop a compliment. Fishing for the odd compliment is normal from time to time. If they’re doing it a lot, it’s super-annoying and a major sign that they’re attention seeking.

#2 Pretending they’re inept at something just to show how good they really are. We’ve all done this occasionally, but if someone is doing it all the time, they’re doing it to show off! Telling someone that you’re not good at something means they’re more likely to ask you to do it; you then go ahead and blow their socks off by showing how good you are! In terms of what makes someone an attention seeker, this is a big one!

#3 They talk about themselves all the time. If they’re always talking themselves up and never really pausing to ask how you are or how your day went, they’re showing you that they’re all about number one and fishing for attention. [Read: 10 clever ways to get out of an annoying conversation]

#4 They like to show off with a little controversy online. As you scroll through your Facebook or Instagram timeline, look for the one who is always being a little thirsty, or the one who’s always posting controversial content. Why do they do this? Because they’re after attention!

They live for the likes and the comments. They might also post something on Facebook saying how upset they are, and when someone asks why, they simply say “oh, it’s nothing.” Why post it then? [Read: Things you do online that makes you look like a pathetic attention seeker]

#5 Exaggerating every single detail. It’s not just raining, it’s like a monsoon. It’s not just hot, it’s boiling. They’re not just a little sick, they’re extremely ill. You get the picture. If someone is always exaggerating small details and making mountains out of molehills, they’re looking for attention.

#6 Being negative all the time. Constant complaining is a sign of attention seeking, because we like to make people feel better. As a result, when someone is always negative, we ask what’s wrong. It gives them the attention they’re craving. The other problem is that being around someone who is always negative simply drains the life right out of you!

#7 Always being over the top and a little too quirky. While being quirky is a good thing, it is possible to be too quirky. In some ways, this is what makes someone an attention seeker. Don’t get me wrong, some people are simply quirky in the way they dress and in their character and that’s fine, because you know that’s who they are. However, when someone isn’t usually like that and then they go out of their way to court attention by being over the top quirky, that’s a red flag. [Read: 16 clearest signs someone’s an insufferable attention whore]

How many of those signs can you recognize in the people around you? It’s important to remember that we all court attention from time to time. We’re human and sometimes want a little attention to feel better about ourselves. But, some people just can’t help themselves and want it all the time! Do you have someone like that in your life?

Dealing with someone who is an attention seeker

Now that you’ve identified them, what are you supposed to do about them?

It really depends on who they are. If they’re a member of your family or a close friend, you might sit down and have a chat with them, Figure out what the issue is and call them out on their behavior. If it’s your partner, again, talk it out. See if there’s something deeper causing a temporary bout of attention seeking. [Read: 16 clear signs you’re in a narcissistic relationship]

However, if it’s an acquaintance prone to such attention seeking bouts, do you really need that in your life? Remember, there is always a reason for needing this much attention. Unless you can pinpoint it, there’s not much you can do other than pander to their needs. Do you really want to do that for the rest of your days?

No! It’s exhausting! You constantly must tell them how wonderful they are. It gets very boring after a while!

Look at the other traits in their personality and determine whether the attention seeking is coming from a narcissistic viewpoint. Being friends with a narcissist or being in a relationship with one isn’t an easy ride. If you’re dealing with other issues, such as manipulation, think seriously about whether this is really someone you want in your life. [Read: 16 characteristics of a narcissist that give them away instantly]

Let’s flip this conversation! Think about times when you display attention seeking behavior. When exploring what makes someone an attention seeker, don’t assume that you’re angelic on this front. We all do it occasionally! Think about your character and work out whether you’re guilty of this more often than you should be. Looking for negatives in others means we assess whether we’re displaying the same traits too.

[Read: 15 annoying things people hate about other people]

What makes someone an attention seeker? It’s a constant need for the spotlight to be firmly on them, and it’s annoying, tiring, and draining. It’s really not worth the time or the effort!

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Nicky Curtis
Nicky Curtis
Having stumbled from one relationship drama to another throughout her 20s, Nicky is now somewhat of a guru in the crazy world of life and love. Telling it how i...
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