The relatively interesting image here (compared to, like, a generic sunset) makes the relationship between that image and the quote feel ambiguous.
It is good that their head is full of puffy clouds and moonbeams, or is it a cause for concern?
Is the silhouetted head giving the advice to other people?
Like, is their head full of all kinds of beautiful things already, and they’re just like, “Please stop talking to me”?
Or is the silhouette the one to whom the advice is being given?
Like maybe they are under the impression that all the stuff they have in mind is super important, but they are actually just an insecure over-sharer?
Variants of this piece of advice are pretty common, so I understand why the quote is simply credited as “Unknown.”
And Power of Positivity as an organization doesn’t seem too bothered about copyright or intellectual property, in general.
When it comes to images, it seems like the basic attribution policy is to assume that the creator is “unknown.”
Probably it’s because most of the photography is already in the public domain, but there are still usually other design choices being made.
This image here, for instance, required at least two photos, and someone to put them together.
At that point, why make the effort to specifically establish that the words originated from an unknown sources?
Your heart’s in the right place, anonymous macro creator, if a bit misguided.
I get that you want to make it clear that you are not the brilliant philosopher-poet behind these words of pithy wisdom.
You just felt compelled to design a space for those words to exist in a social media-friendly medium.
But where do your design choices begin and end, my friend?
Did you Photoshop the moon onto this person’s silhouette?
Is it your own silhouette, or an image of a stranger from Shutterstock?
Do you truly know, person who humbly acknowledged distance from the creation of these words, the face of the human whose profile graces your macro?
I have the sense that when the author of a quote is left unspecified in a context like this, it’s kind of implied that they’re either unknowable or so well-known that it there words can be expected to be common knowledge. (Including those situations where a quote is commonly but erroneously attributed to a very famous person.)
The advice in these anonymous words is actually potentially useful, but ironically it lacks sufficient context to account for how and why it’s useful.
A reductive but useful example of finding The Right Amount of Information is the IT classic: “Have you tried turning it off and back on again?”
Opening your conversation with tech support with a play-by-play of everything you’ve tried already, just to prove to them (but actually to yourself) that you’re not totally incompetent, is an example of “telling people more than they need to know.”
I imagine that most of us have put our foot in our mouths at some point, insisting something like “Of course it’s plugged in!” only to have to later sheepishly admit that it wasn’t.
But the person whose job it is to troubleshoot whatever is preventing you from getting your work done has no obligation to care about your pride or sense of self-worth. (Not that IT folx are uncaring, of course. Just that it would be unreasonable for them to invest that much emotional energy into each case.)
Then again, you often have to be able to explain your problem before they can begin to help you fix it.
My own anxiety often compels me to explain exactly how I arrived at any given decision to anyone I’m communicating with, so “telling people more than they need to know” is kind of my default.
I’m aware that my process is not always efficient.
It’s been suggested by very patient and wise people at various points in my life that it’s okay if I provide just a little information to get started, and remember that whoever I’m talking to has the freedom to decide whether they have any follow-up questions about what they need or want to know.
Apparently, it’s not a failure on my part for not having already predicted and preventatively addressed every conceivable reaction to my very normal bids for reasonable responses.
I’m still getting used to it.
On the other hand, one of the reasons I developed a tendency to overcompensate with Too Much Information was how often people bring up things that I’ve already considered, dismissed, and/or attempted.
I know I’m always on about this whole “context matters” business, but…
stop framing situationally-specific advice as generalizable imperatives that are more likely to reinforce shame and silence among mentally ill and/or traumatized and/or marginalized folx who’ve developed those targeted behaviors as coping mechanisms than they are to promote understanding, mindfulness, or useful self-reflection.
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