Embrace compliments with grace

Share this article

Over the years, I’ve noticed that I’m awful at taking compliments. After talking to several people about it, I realized that many people feel the same way about themselves! So I thought a post on the topic would be appropriate and useful.

Reasons you are not good at it

[list type=”check”]

  • You are shy
  • You are super conscious
  • Growing up, you didn’t get too many of them
  • You still don’t get them too often
  • You want to be humble
  • You are unsure of how to react
  • You’re caught off guard
  • You find it a little awkward



Reactions in the moment: Do’s and Dont’s

[list type=”check”]

  • Don’t think about what the appropriate response would be or plan an elaborate thank you.
  • Do genuinely thank them. Let them know it’s very sweet and your appreciate their words. Say something thoughtful and simple. Say something thoughtful and simple.
  • Do give them a big smile.
  • Don’t be afraid to show your true reaction of surprise or happiness. There’s no need to be stoic.
  • Do remember practice makes perfect.
  • Do make the other person feel good about their decision to compliment you. Positive reinforcement will lead to getting more compliments even more often!
  • Do return the compliment if there is something you genuinely want to compliment them on.



Things you can do to improve

As with everything in life, you can improve your compliment-taking skills with a little work in the right area.

1. Compliment yourself. Do so every morning and throughout the day. The more you do it the better. After all, practice makes perfect. This self loving will improve many different aspects of your life with near to no effort. Many star athletes use this technique before performing to empower themselves and boost their confidence. Look in the mirror and say it out loud, or use it as the anchor to mental meditation. You can use the same compliment each time or change it up every time. You are the boss. Find a mantra that makes you feel good. What needs to happen, is you need to get used to hearing good things about yourself. People often don’t hear good things from their spouse, siblings, children or colleagues. Various reasons for it, but none justified. Also, if you really want to do something nice. Start telling the people in your life good things about themselves. I’m not saying be fake, but it is important to share genuine thoughts you hold about them. There is nothing more special than knowing you’ve made someone’s day a little brighter.
2. Expect the unexpected. Another thing you can do is to pack away all your preconceived notions about people and intentions. Don’t try to be a detective on a mission to uncover why someone completed you. In most cases, people only give genuine compliments. So when you get one, don’t go about your day over analyzing the true motive of their words. It doesn’t matter. What matters is they were kind enough to appreciate you. So be flattered & smile! Even if you didn’t expect it from a certain person, learn to expect the unexpected.
3. Allow it to empower you and flatter your ego. Many of us have low a self esteem. Whether it is because you’ve bought into all the advertising about the ideal body build of a man or woman, or you’ve had a history of abuse and neglect, the fact remains that these ideas are simply not true. You are beautiful and exactly how you are supposed to be. Realize that most people only give genuine and honest compliments. So when they do, don’t overthink. Just run with it! Be flattered that they find you or something of yours worthy of appreciation. Allow it to make your day and empower you. All this while, remain humble and be gracious. And of course, thank the compliment bearer for making your day!