So I just found out that January 24 was National Compliment Day. And guess what, I’m absolutely using it as an excuse to write about a topic I’ve been meaning to for a while now. I’m the worst at accepting compliments gracefully. The absolute worst. That’s why it’s so easy to sit behind my phone and reply “Thank you” to all of your amazing compliments on my Instagram photos. And now that Instagram introduced a “Like” option for comments, I can further cozy up in my shyness. You can only imagine how hard it was to accept compliments as a bride.
How many of you are the same way? For some people it’s a culture thing; they’ve been raised to be highly modest and attribute compliments and personal successes to something or someone else. “Thank you, but it’s because my parents pushed me to be my best.” There are so many other reasons and it’s a very common discomfort amongst people. I’ve been trying to work on this because I’ve learned that there’s actually a very good reason for being able to accept compliments: grow and maintain self esteem. Compliments are good for our mental health being so let’s learn to accept them the right way. Here are a few things I’ve been doing.
Drop the “but”
If you’re just starting to learn how to accept compliments the right way, this is my best advice. Dropping the “but” and still providing a reason is a huge step up from attributing the compliment entirely to someone or something else. Rather, you’re saying thank you, and yes it is also because of such and such reason. So imagine saying “Thank you, my parents always pushed me to be my best”. This isn’t a total shift from deferring the compliment but dropping the “but” allows you to partially accept the success and compliment.
Would you say this compliment to someone else? Would you mean it? What would you want to hear in return? Probably a simple “Thank you”. So believe and respect the other person and do just that in return!
People who can’t accept compliments feel a strong urge to provide an explanation. Do yourself as well as the person a favour and do not explain anything. Accept it in all of its entirety so that you grow your self esteem and also don’t make the other person regret making the compliment. Just say “Thank you” and smile. End of story.