This article is part of our Don’t do that. Do this instead series.*
Compliments are lovely. We all like to hear nice things about ourselves, don’t we?
While most of us like hearing compliments, not many of us feel comfortable receiving them.
Justify a compliment: DON’T DO THAT
Instead of being left with a sense of accomplishment when someone pays us a compliment we find ourselves slightly embarrassed; we stumble for words, look at our feet and probably mutter something self-deprecating.
Often the conversations go something like this:
‘Job well done!’ …‘Oh, I was just doing my job.’
‘You look gorgeous!’ …‘Oh, I, um…in this old thing?’
‘Great presentation.’ …‘Oh, anyone could have done that.’
Not only does this leave us feeling slightly embarrassed but it also leaves the person giving the compliment feeling awkward and takes away from their good intentions. When we make excuses and try to rationalize the compliment we run the risk of turning it into a much bigger ‘event’ than the other person intended.
DO THIS INSTEAD: Say ‘thank you’