Have you ever given a compliment only to have the person immediately not accept it? As the compliment giver, it kind of stinks. When the compliment was genuine, having someone turn it around and say that you’re wrong makes you less likely to compliment that person in the future.
Somewhere in our collective upbringing, we all learned the same weird lesson that we shouldn’t boast about ourselves. This lesson leaked over into being able to take a compliment because accepting praise sometimes feels like boasting.
Not being able to take a compliment is a sign of low self-confidence. It means that you can’t see in yourself what the other person sees. Being aware of this is the first step in learning to turn that attitude around.
Try this: The next time someone gives you a compliment, say “thank you.” It’s as easy as that. You don’t have to elaborate. You don’t have to give a compliment in return. Simply take the praise as it is given. In time you’ll start feeling better about hearing nice things about yourself and this can help boost your self-confidence. Win.
Storytime: For me, compliments always fell in that weird grey area of making conversation. I would always feel embarrassed about receiving the praise and then get flustered. Being flustered is super uncomfortable and I would say random silly things to diffuse the situation, often rejecting the compliment in the process. I came from the school of thought that said you had to be gracious about the compliment and still reject it all while having to compliment the person back. Attempting to do all that at the same time led to anxiety and stress. This indirectly led to not being comfortable in public because these types of situations might pop up at any moment.
By giving myself permission to simply say “thank you” and accept the compliment without the pressure of anything else, it allowed me to be more myself and in turn, be more genuine. I gotta say, it’s a lot better that way.