“Wow! You look fabulous today!”
“You inspire me every day!”
“Your smile brightens up my day!”
“I loved your article on the PTPA blog!”
I am pretty sure you’ve received at least one, if not all of these compliments.
“A compliment is verbal sunshine” – Robert Orben
A compliment is an expression of praise or admiration for someone – anyone!
Every human has a basic need for recognition and being appreciated. It encourages them, motivates them to be better. Compliments can be powerful because the emotional gain is tremendous.
Even in the business context, compliments are proven to increase productivity and commitment, energizing the recipient and helping build a happy workforce.
I learned the impact of complimenting from my Mom, who had a warm heart and always had an encouraging word for everyone she met.
There is more hunger for love and appreciation in this world than for bread. ~ Mother Teresa
Compliments are more important than ever today, what with the rising tendency to be negative or over-critical. As positive reinforcement, they can be a turning point in someone’s life. I remember a conversation with one of my teachers in college, when she said, “You have the ability to succeed in everything you attempt” and that stayed with me in my heart.
What is it about compliments that fills us with that warm glow inside?
- Are feel-good
- Lift our spirits
- Help connect with others positively
- Strengthen relationships
- Make you feel less lonely
- Take the focus away from you
- Trigger creativity
- Build trust
- Are like positive boomerangs
- Make people smile, and smiling burns calories. Really!
- Compliments encourage those who are struggling. Positive feedback is a great motivator and propels people towards achieving their goals.
- A compliment can make the difference between success and failure, bridging that gap between going on enthusiastically and giving up.
- Compliments help children learn quicker.
- Compliments convey respect.
- Compliments can help break the ice.
- Compliments win over people, increasing our circle of influence.
- Compliments make you less cynical.
And the no.1 reason?
Compliments are free.
They cost nothing, while their impact is huge.
Sadly, even though compliments are known to have a positive impact for the giver and the receiver, most people tend to be stingy with them. No one can deny that compliments make our day, regardless of whether we know the giver or not. Why not make a difference and make the effort to lift each other up, encourage each other?
It is possible to build a wave of positivity simply by appreciating someone; all it takes is a few heartfelt words. Everyone has something praise-worthy – one just has to look.
Here are some tips to be a great compliment giver:
- Pay attention and be fully present, as you look for opportunities to compliment.
- Notice the small stuff and compliment, no matter how trivial the accomplishment is. Their smile? Their outfit? Their handwriting?
- Be generous, be sincere.
- Be specific.
- Be straightforward.
- Each time you get a compliment, give one in return whenever you can.
- Be vocal. Don’t assume the other person knows.
- Try and compliment someone in front of others. Adds to the joy.
- If you hear praise for someone who is not around, let them know.
- Avoid giving backhanded compliments. You know, the ones that go, “Considering your age, you look good” Ugh.
- Avoid saying things you don’t mean.
- Don’t fake a compliment.
- Don’t overdo it.
- Don’t delay, or you’ll forget.
- Cultivate the habit of complimenting.
Of course, it goes without saying that receiving compliments graciously also matters a great deal!
- Resolve to compliment five people every day. These can be family or friend, co-worker, some place you go to regularly (supermarket, restaurant, laundry), someone younger than you, a stranger etc.
- Each day, take five minutes to reflect on someone you know, who does things well and let her know you appreciate her. Do it with words.
Your compliments will make the world a happier place!
Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible! – The Dalai Lama