December is the month of family newsletters, of seeing old friends, of awkward family Christmas parties. It's the time when people catch up on each others lives and pretend to care as they talk about their son-the-soccer-player, and their daughter-the-math-genius. It is a time for bragging, but in such a way that no one is called out for being obnoxious, but that's exactly what everyone is secretly thinking about everyone else.
So what do I brag about? No husband. No kids. No blockbuster career. Nothing to invoke those feelings of, "Gosh she's obnoxious," from anyone. More likely I get pity, which just won't do.
So I'm a church calling-dropper.
You know, like name-dropping. "I met Elder Nelson in the airport." "Oh yeah? Pres. Eyring came to my FHE." "No way. Well Pres. Monson AND Pres. Uchtdorf came to my house for dinner last week and complimented my crescent rolls."
(Not to brag, but I DID shake Elder Scott's hand when I was 14. Just saying.)
So, I decided to mention my calling when put in situations where I feel the need to compete for the "Who's Life is of More Worth" award. This mostly happens with semi-friends and old acquaintances that I run into at the grocery store, bridal showers, donating blood — you know, the regular hangouts. "Oh, fun, you're celebrating your two-and-three-quarter month wedding anniversary? That's nice. I would've come to your party, but I was in a meeting with the Stake Presidency because I'm the Relief Society president. Yeah, being the Relief Society president can make things busy, but I love being the Relief Society president. It's the best. You know, being the Relief Society president."
That's right, I've got something to brag about too, Miss My-Life-Is-Seemingly-So-Perfect-With-My-Perfectly-Curled-Hair-and-Perfect-Engineer-Husband-with-a-Perfect-1988-Toyota-Camry-and-No-Student-Loan-Debt.
I've only done it a couple times so far, but it seems effective. I mean, everyone gets married, but how many people are Relief Society president? ... Yeah, that's what I thought.
I'll have to try it out when I get released and called as Ward Greeter. "It's a tough job," I'll say, "But someone's got to do it." And then they'll be all like, "... Wow, my life is crap."
That's the goal: Boost yourself up by devaluing others.