Do you fully embrace your compliments?
Think about it. How do you respond when someone gives you a compliment? Let’s try it out now. Imagine you’re at the grocery store, schlepping along in your ratty old laundry-day jeans (admit it, you have one) in search of some double extra-fudge ice cream when. . .oh no! Someone calls out your name! You look up and see an old girlfriend (your old college roommate, perhaps?) running up to you. She hugs you, takes a look at you, and says. . .
“Love your hair! It’s been so long and gosh, you look amazing!”
After reading that, stop for a moment and notice how you feel. What would you tell your old college roommate? And what are you telling yourself right now? Are you nodding along and saying yes, my hair is fabulous! Thank you for noticing!
. . .or are you shaking your head and saying oh, well. . .I’m just having a good hair day. It’s no big deal. Or are you looking down at your shoes (which are fabulous, by the way) and blushing, unable to say anything because you’re too embarassed or frightened to respond?
All too often, we have a habit of not fully accepting a compliment. Instead, we deflect, minimize, and rationalize it. It’s almost as if there is some kind of built-in mechanism that says NO to hearing that we are smart or pretty or did a good job. In some cases (especially for women), this happens because we’re praised from a very young age for deflecting or minimizing compliments. In other cases, it happens because we’re afraid. We fear that if we really celebrate our greatness, someone will come along and take it away from us. We fear that if we truly embrace ourselves, people embarrass us or shame us. Regardless of why we do it, the end result is the same: compliment deflection, a bad habit that not only diminishes the kind words of our family and friends. . .it diminishes us.
And the key word here is habit. That’s what makes compliment so dangerous. Choosing not to accept a compliment may feel like no big deal in the moment, but once it becomes a habit it becomes part of who we are. I think Tony Robbins said that we are the sum total of our habits. If you are, then what is the habit of compliment deflection doing for you? It’s a scary thought, isn’t it?
So instead of holding onto this negative habit of compliment deflection–a habit which surely doesn’t serve you–try to get into the habit of embracing your compliments.
Try it out. The next time someone gives you a compliment, sit with it for a moment. Close your eyes. Really feel your friend’s kind words. Acknowledge that they’re coming from a place of sincerity and love. Let their words sink in before responding.
What if you don’t get any compliments today? No big deal. Just give one to yourself! Become aware of every compliment you receive, and if you don’t receive one – give one to yourself …. Even if it is to say “ I did a great job waking up … nobody wakes up better than I do.”
Play with it. Have fun and don’t be afraid to laugh at yourself a bit! Woke up with crazy hair? Tell yourself “I have the best bed head in town. It is so fabulous, I think I will have to take a picture of it and share it on Facebook!”
And here’s a fun tip: in my experience, the more fun you have in your everyday life–including giving yourself wacky compliments–the happier you’ll be. That joy will start to rub off on others. People will start to feel good around you, and then. . .guess what? People will start to compliment you more. Which means you get to feel even better about yourself because hey, guess what? You’re pretty darn awesome!
So this week, get playful. Remember to set yourself up for success. Acknowledge all your successes (remember, you wake up better than anybody else!). Write down all of your successes, no matter how big or how small. Were you kind to a stranger, did you listen to a friend in distress, did you do the dishes for your partner, or did you take your dog for an extra-long walk? Write it all down. Each day you forget to celebrate your success, you diminish not only yourself. . .you diminish those who love you, too.
Try it for a week and let me know how it goes. I will be waiting.
Want to start another amazing new habit? Try making the switch to organic! No, I’m not talking about that triple-shot double mocha-fudge latte (that’s definitely not organic). I’m talking about your beauty products! Did you know that everything you put on your skin gets directly absorbed into your bloodstream? I’ve created an amazing new organic vitamin C serum that helps reduce fine lines and wrinkles, fade undereye circles, and brighten skin. Best of all, it’s vegan, cruelty-free, and chock-full of pure plant-based ingredients that you can actually pronounce, like green tea, lemon oil, and aloe. I’d say that you could eat it, too, but the high vitamin C content makes it a little bitter. It’s a wonderful way to start (and end) your day. Check it out here: http://amzn.to/1FF68pM