As I was watching GMA Weekend this morning, I saw them highlight something that I think is SO. IMPORTANT. (And I’m actually serious!). They showed the story of two college guys who hand out compliments (warning: video) on their college campus every Wednesday. They do it as a way to boost morale in people during these tough times, and I applaud their spirit. I am a firm believer is giving out compliments, as I think they can make someone feel better, doesn’t cost a dime to do it and has such a positive ripple effect.
I think a smile is a beautiful thing – it can light up a room, and a compliment can make that happen, if it’s actually TAKEN. I think it is such a shame that most of the time when a compliment is given, esp to a woman, it is usually followed up with something along the lines of “Yeah, but (something negative about themselves)” or “Oh, this old thing? I’ve had it (forever, it doesn’t really fit, etc.)”. All of that basically negates what was complimented and makes the complimenter feel like a big dummy for thinking they noticed something good. That’s stupid. Sorry. We need to learn how to TAKE A COMPLIMENT.
I know it’s hard, because our knee jerk reaction is to temper the compliment so we don’t appear to cocky. Forget that! Take it and rock it. Someone took the time to notice the fact that you made that extra effort in some way, so appreciate that someone noticed! I have a gorg coworker who might not have the best self-esteem and would always dismiss my compliments. Well, I got sick of that, so I told her that when I complimented her that she had to say “Thank you” and walk away. I would take nothing else. Well, the joke is now she says “Thank you and walk away”, but she now says it with a smile and accepts the compliment. You can say I wore her down, but I know that I have changed just a little bit in how she carries herself – which not only affects her, but makes me happy, too. See how that whole ripple effect works?
Seriously, I know there isn’t any of us that doesn’t like to get those warm fuzzies, even if we do automatically want to dismiss it. But, while we work on accepting our own compliments, we can make it a habit to give them out to others. Does it really! take much effort to say something nice to someone? Not really – it just take practice, and you know what your mom would always tell you, “Practice makes perfect – or at least pretty damn good”.