Despite how nice they are to receive, many people have trouble taking a compliment (or a token of thanks for a job well done.)
We often say:
“Really? I didn’t think it was all that great.”
“Oh, I got this for $1 at the thrift shop.”
“You shouldn’t have.”
May I suggest we stop taking compliments in such a way and instead enjoy them, and graciously respond? Here are some examples.
You are complimented for your contribution to a project.
Instead of “Really? I don’t think I did that much.”
Say, “Thank you. I really appreciate you noticing. I enjoyed being part of it!”
A co-worker compliments your outfit, which you know is a thrift store find.
Instead of, “Oh this thing? Thanks. I found it for $1 at the thrift store.”
Say, “Thank you! I’m really enjoying this outfit and it’s nice to hear it flatters me.”
You receive an appreciation gift card for helping with an event.
Instead of “You shouldn’t have.” or “You didn’t need to do that.”
Say, “Thank you! I’ll really enjoy this treat and when I use it it will remind me of the fun it was to work on that event.”
Or, a client tells you, “You are a rock star.”
Instead of, “Oh, it wasn’t much.”
Say, “Yes, I am. #confidenthumility.”
(That really happened. And the client agreed with it.)
Receiving a compliment or “thank-you” well reflects that you are at home with the contribution you make. Better yet, it shows that you respect the opinion of the other person. Enjoy the compliments you get from now on–you probably earned them!