From childhood, women have been taught not to accept compliments. Rather than responding to a genuine compliment at face value with a simple “thank you,” we respond with “Oh my gosh, no!” or “What, this old thing?” Learning to accept compliments from others is not only a valuable social skill, but, for many women, it is also a stepping stone toward greater self-acceptance. Find out the three reasons you should start accepting compliments now.
It Shows Us Our Own Value
For someone who has never truly listened to or accepted a compliment before, it can be unnerving. Women are socialized to be humble, so many feel embarrassed when accepting a compliment. If someone gives you a genuine compliment, they are demonstrating an admiration for a skill or attribute that you possess. Having good listening skills or being self-motivated is something to be proud of, so listen to compliments rather than brushing them off. It can give you a perspective on yourself that you never saw before.
It Shows Others That We Value Ourselves
Contrary to popular belief, accepting a compliment does not make you stuck up; it shows that you are confident and see value in yourself. By responding to a compliment with a “thank you,” rather than diverting the conversation away from yourself, you are showing not only that you appreciate what someone has said to you, but also that you agree with his or her statement. It’s okay to show other people that you value yourself. In fact, when faced with a world that enforces the idea that women should have a low self-esteem, it’s encouraged to think highly of yourself.
The first time you respond to a compliment with just a “thank you,” it’s daunting. It feels like you’ve stopped mid-sentence and the other person is waiting for you to go on. However, you’ll quickly notice that this is not the case. Most of the time when someone offers you a compliment, they are being sincere and expect nothing in return. Understanding this removes pressure from the situation.
This realization is empowering. You no longer need to worry that the compliment was given as a joke or that your returning compliment seemed insincere. For the first time, you are fully able to enjoy the moment and glow with the knowledge that someone has taken the time to recognize some of your best characteristics.