Between Mother’s Day, a recent event for my son, and my birthday (yesterday) I have been around a lot of family and close friends to celebrate. While enjoying myself, I noticed that when someone would pay me a compliment, I would become very uncomfortable. Internally, I would feel the energy in my body shift, and externally I would squirm in my seat a bit. My response would always be an awkward thank you or a “this ole’ thing” type of deflection and go on to make a sarcastic remark about myself. I wondered why I cannot simply say “thank you” and genuinely appreciate the compliment.
When I unpacked this question a bit, I came to realize that although I am very grateful and I certainly have no problem expressing the gratitude I have for my life and the people in it, I struggle a bit with receiving gratitude from others. Being gentle with myself I realized this is an area I want to work on and in case any of you in the ClearMind community are struggling as well, I thought I would share what Psychology Today describes as the 3-step model for healthily receiving gratitude:
Simply accept, rather than deflect, by saying a genuine thank you while looking directly into the other person’s eyes.
Savor the praise, take it in and let it permeate throughout your body.
Engage by asking questions and using the opportunity to connect.
Next time someone pays me a compliment, big or small, I am going to commit to receiving the complaint the other individual has so generously given to me. Let’s try it together.