IM – 6 | 8
Activity 6.5 Group Bragging
Students should be able to discuss their feelings when disclosing positive information about
themselves; to state the reasons why people are uncomfortable about disclosing positive
information; and to recognize their own responses to positive evaluations from others.
Divide the students into groups of four or five. Have group members sit in a circle, facing
each other. In turn, each student should make one positive statement about him- or herself. It
may be some accomplishment, some positive self-image, or any other information the student
regards as positive. The procedure should be repeated until each group member has made
three positive comments. Discuss the exercise as a class.
After class discussion, have the students return to their groups and vary the exercise. This
time, they are to make positive comments about each other. The students should focus on one
person in a group at a time, and each group member should make one positive comment
about that person.
In discussing the first part of this activity, the students should identify the specific areas of
their self-images that were the topics of the statements. Did the comments tend to be
primarily about physical, personality, or role components of their self-images? If specific
actions were described, what did they reflect about the students’ self-image? The students
usually find that a large proportion of their comments about themselves had to do with their
personalities or with the attainment of goals related to their roles. The students should also
describe their feelings and nonverbal behavior as they self-disclosed. Eye contact and hand
movement are obvious nonverbal behavior that becomes especially noticeable during self-
disclosure and indicates the comfort of the self-disclosing person.
In discussing the second part of this activity, the students should again describe their feelings
and nonverbal behavior as they received compliments from others. They should compare the
feelings that they had when they received positive evaluations of themselves with the
feelings that they had when making positive evaluations of others. It is also interesting to
compare the topics of the compliments of others with the areas the students initially bragged
Finally, the discussions should identify the factors that hamper positive self-disclosure and
the effect that positive self-disclosure has on our communication and our self-concepts.
This activity illustrates the ways in which positive self-disclosure affects our
communication with others. It gives the students a chance to explore their own behavior
during self-disclosure and to observe the behavior of others as they self-disclose. The activity
is especially effective when used in conjunction with the “Word Association” activity