Mary Jo Brown: Believing compliments
Have you ever noticed how many times a compliment is shrugged off with a remark like, “this old thing,” “do you really think so?” or some other trite remark that depletes the meaning? If you keep sending the compliments away or make light of them, after a while you may stop getting any because it will appear you are ungrateful. It seems that we are afraid to admit that we are worth a compliment, we discount the marvelousness about ourselves. Is it because we don’t believe in ourselves or perhaps think we don’t deserve to be complimented? We need to start believing in ourselves, believe that you are a beautiful, worthwhile person — even dazzling. Accept a compliment graciously with a simple “thank you” or “how nice of you to notice.” Think of compliments as a kiss from an angel, a spoken smile or something that lightened up your day.
I used to be depressed. No one has “pity parties” like I used to, but one day I told myself to wake up and die right. My depression was a combination of health changes from aging and radical family events, and I found myself giving up. I realized that no one could fix me but me, because no one knew my innermost feelings and thoughts. I decided that what was done was done and that I needed to turn all my worries over to the Lord. The change in my life was terrific. The lack of stress improved my health and I felt more able to do things. Every day I ask the Lord to help me to make it through, and I pay myself a compliment by saying “you can do this.” Believe in yourself and see the wonderful differences you can make in your attitude toward life. Wake up each day and tell yourself you are beautiful and then go out and have a wonderful day.
Compliments to others will not only make them feel good, but it will make a difference in your life. People put on a brave face sometimes; the most troubled person might smile a lot, but they might also be someone who needs to be uplifted by a heartfelt compliment. Try giving at least one compliment a day to another person as well as to yourself. You’ll feel good when you do, and it will soon become one of your habits. Take the time to reinforce the fact that you are worthwhile. You will build your self-esteem, making yourself feel better. When you are comfortable with yourself it will be easier to spread kindness.
Happy birthday greetings go out to Amanda Foote and Alma Sadvar.