It can feel good to get compliments (when we let them in, see How to Take a Compliment from last week), and it can also feel pretty good to give them too! So why don’t we give compliments more often? There’s a few reasons I think. See if you recognize some of these.
Jealousy/envy: it can be difficult to compliment someone on something that you don't have but you want. But that is the time to compliment them on it! Recognizing that they have it and being genuinely happy for them dispels feelings of envy and bitterness toward the person.
Resentment: old simmering anger about something from the past can creep into the present moment and make you hesitate to make that person feel good. Sort of, “If they hurt me, I’m not going to make them feel good.” Giving this person a heartfelt compliment can foster forgiveness to dissolve that old resentment and work toward healing the relationship.
Lack of reciprocation: this attitude of “He never gives me a compliment, so why should I?” misses the point of compliments entirely! Giving a compliment in order to get a compliment is not the purpose. A compliment is meant to make the other feel good. Give compliments, and build the other up. You will feel good as a side effect, not as the main goal.
This week’s challenge: give a compliment every day, at least once a day. Don’t just say it to get it over with. You have to feel it and say it from the heart!
Here's to conquering Stress,
The Stress Experts
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