The art of the compliment, along with the thank you, is something I believe in.
The giving of a compliment is one of the greatest gifts and there is nothing more potent than making someone feel happy. It can nurture our self-confidence and there is nothing that makes you feel brighter and stronger than an unsolicited compliment.
When someone compliments in an unexpected way it feels wonderful. It puts a spring in the step; pushes the shoulders back and make us stand tall.
It doesn’t really matter what form the compliment takes, what counts is to offer them. Compliments are easy to give; all they require is observation and a generous mind. We have the ability to make those around us feel more confident and sure of themselves. Why not?
I forget to give praise and compliments sometimes because it is easy to slide through life omitting the obvious. Each day my practice has become, when appropriate, to compliment a stranger. It is incredible how it can break the ice or make a face light up. A genuine observation given with the best intention is about as powerful as it gets. If someone says something generous to me it really can make my day and make me feel way better. I am happy to reciprocate.
Thinking something kind towards another person is not quite the same as voicing it out loud and it is not the same as a thank you. A compliment is truly individual and unique to that person alone; that is why it is so special to give and receive them.
What is the best form of compliment?
Some would say flattery but flattery only counts if it’s genuine and made with affection. There is flattery and then there is flattery, the kind we don’t like, know what I mean?
Copying? Is copying a form of compliment? I choose to believe it is. Some say copying is the highest form; I chose to go with that approach. The compliments I hold dear are those that truly come from the heart and suggest in some small way I have made an impression and that is a mighty fabulous feeling.
It’s easy to be shy when it comes to the compliment and I don’t know why we hold back but I see it in myself at times. Why not compliment our friends and our families as often as we feel? They won’t mind, quite the opposite.
And strangers what about them? Shouldn’t we tell them if they make an impact or something about them catches our eye? Those who move through our lives in small ways shouldn’t be neglected, or passed without notice.
Do you have an all time favourite compliment?
And next time we should talk about the art of receiving compliments; that’s a complicated one too. xv