From Feeling Good About Ourselves to Meeting New People

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“Suzanne Gelb Image”

”Compliments – Why Don’t They Help?”


Dear Dr. Gelb:

I am a sophomore in college and when I do presentations in class, afterwards people come up and compliment me on my talk. But I still feel insecure about my talk. Why aren’t the compliments enough?


A: Dr. Gelb says . . .

Dear Insecure:

Many of us missed out on a wonderful developmental period, which occurs from age four until seven or eight years. This phase, called the narcissistic stage, offers the child opportunities to establish self-love, self-worth and self-respect, and out of that, the child can develop self-pride. Children who experience this stage can develop into adults who take pride in what they do, in themselves, in the way they talk, walk, think, and the way they behave, for example. With self-pride in tact, when one reaches the podium and begins making a presentation, one can feel like a giant among all others. Happy Landing.

”Networking – What’s Appropriate?”

Dear Dr. Gelb:

I attend a monthly networking lunch, and last month this person I did not know asked me to sit with him. I could have sat at another table with some important folks, but I wanted to accept the invitation from the person because he really wanted to sit with me. When do we do what is politically correct, and when do we be sincere and treat each person with importance, even if they are not a public figure or someone who could pull strings?

Pulling Strings

A: Dr. Gelb says . . .

Dear Pulling Strings:

I believe I would have made a similar decision to yours. A gathering such as you mentioned offers a wonderful opportunity to meet new and interesting people and I try not to turn down such an opportunity. I also know that I will have opportunities at other gatherings to spend time with those colleagues and dignitaries who I already know. So, in my book it is appropriate to take every opportunity to meet new and interesting people. We never know when we will meet the goose that laid the golden egg.

Dear Readers:

Answers to questions in today’s column can be supplemented with excerpts from “Yesterday’s Children” (Q1: p. 70) written by psychologists Marti Barham, R.N., Ph.D. and Tom Greene, Ph.D. For more information visit my Web site at

”’Suzanne J. Gelb, Ph.D., J.D. authors this daily column, Dr. Gelb Says, which answers questions about daily living and behavior issues. Dr. Gelb is a licensed psychologist in private practice in Honolulu. She holds a Ph.D. in Psychology and a Ph.D. in Human Services. Dr. Gelb is also a published author of a book on Overcoming Addictions and a book on Relationships.”’

”’This column is intended for entertainment use only and is not intended for the purpose of psychological diagnosis, treatment or personalized advice. For more about the column’s purpose, see”’ “An Online Intro to Dr. Gelb Says”

”’Email your questions to More information on Dr. Gelb’s www.DrGelbSays.comvailable at”’