“Your hair looks great today!”
“I love your shoes!”
“You have a beautiful smile!”
Compliments. Daily we receive compliments in some form or another from friends, family members, strangers. When caught off guard, sometimes, a positive affirmation about ourselves can leave us standing there blank, empty handed, how do I react?! It’s simple really…
I remember when I was younger, like elementary years, I LOVED receiving compliments and I was pretty good at saying “Thank You” to the person who gave it to me. To be honest, I was too shy to know what to say after that and, as it turns out, that was okay.
Somewhere over the teenage angst years and into college, as much as I enjoyed receiving compliments here and there, they started to make me extremely uncomfortable. I just didn’t know how to ACCEPT a compliment and be done, I did not know how to react to a compliment anymore. During this time, I also learned to be very good at GIVING compliments, so much so that giving compliments is something I feel so comfortable with that I have heard myself giving a compliment in lieu of receiving one! Anyone else ever do this?
It wasn’t until TJ, my husband, pointed out to me while we were dating that I didn’t take compliments very well. He wondered, at one point, why it was that I couldn’t just say a simple “Thank You” and accept the compliment. Done. That was it, smile and move on. Not until he pointed this out to me did I began to consciously realize what I was doing. For example,
“Hey Lisa, I love that dress!”
“Thank You!” (but I can’t stop there because compliments made me feel uncomfortable) “I bought it at H&M and it was on sale, I think the sale runs through Saturday, you should go take a look!”
I don’t think my recommendation-bouncing-off-a-compliment like that has ever had anyone racing to the stores to go and get something on sale.
The fact is, someone was telling me something nice about my appearance and for many years I always felt the need to follow up their compliment with a statement. If you are guilty of this, STOP. It’s basically a slap in the face to the person who gave you the compliment, it’s another way of saying “Thanks, but I really don’t believe you.” Most people are actually GENUINE when it comes to giving compliments. I’ve never expected (nor wanted) anyone to say anything more to me than a simple “Thank You” when I hand out compliments – so why did I feel the need to start doing that myself? Probably an insecurity somewhere, just as I mentioned above, “Thanks, but I really don’t believe what you’re saying because I think this dress is rubbish.” Or whatever the situation. Sound familiar?
After becoming consciously aware of how I reacted to compliments, I began to change that. This is still something I work on today that I do want to follow up with a fact BUT I have learned not to follow up with any statements unless I’m prompted further questions, ie: “Where did you buy that dress?”
So – what SHOULD you do when someone compliments you?
1) Make eye contact
3) Say “Thank You”
Be humble. Be kind. Lead your life with love.
Just a little something that was on my mind today. I hope you enjoyed it 🙂 I know it’s not the direction I normally write. But hey, my goal is to write more for 2015 – I want to expand my audience! So don’t be surprised if you see more simple posts such as this.