the use of flatter oneself

JapanForever

Senior Member
French
Hi there
I would like to know: is "flattering oneself" always used negatively? I saw once that it was related to vanity (with the expression "dont flatter yourself!") but I also saw that it could be used for feeling pride after having made an act, an accomplishement.

Two examples:
"I flatter myself that I'm the best writer"
and
"I flatter myself that I could go well with my presentation"
The first sounds really negative to me but less with the second.
What do yo uthink about it?
 
  • Glasguensis

    Signal Modulation
    English - Scotland
    No it is not always used negatively. Your "best writer" example is not negative for me. Your other example I don't find idiomatic at all.
     

    JapanForever

    Senior Member
    French
    Well I found somewhere it was often showed negatively.
    For example
    "I flatter myself that I am the best" sounds like the person thinks of himself as being superior to others
    "I flatter myself that I take care about my daughter/that I am a good father" sounds more taking pride in than feeling superior
    I just wonder
     

    Glasguensis

    Signal Modulation
    English - Scotland
    But that is not a negative use. It is a synonym for "I like to think I am the best". Whether the person thinks of himself as superior is a separate question and doesn't make the expression negative in either case
     
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