I think I’m addicted to giving compliments.

I really think that this is true. I love saying something nice to somebody. On top of that, if there is an extra challenge factor and the person is grumpy that day, I try even harder! Compliments are great to give and receive. They let us show our appreciation for each other and how much we think things are worth. They help us work together and face challenges productively. One would think you couldn’t go wrong with them. However, there are some fine points to consider.

What does it take to give a good compliment? Well, first of all, you have to actually mean it. Otherwise your facial expression, body language, and tone will give you away. If someone has a shirt on that you think is hideous and you try to say how much you like it, you are gonna flinch somehow. Most people are able to tell when a compliment isn’t sincere. You can avoid this scenario easily. Everyone has some quality to be noticed and complimented on. Just pay a little more attention and pick something else. The genuine compliment will go much farther.

Another key component of a good compliment is paying attention. Give your focus to the details of your surroundings and the people around you. It will allow you to say something nice that is specific enough to really mean something to the other person.

Let’s talk about specificity for a minute. Truly, the best compliments are specific. They zero in on specific characteristics or traits that are individual to that person. When you mention something specific, it shows that you are really paying attention. For example, you could tell anyone that they are pretty. That could apply to a lot of people. However, if you told someone that their gorgeous brunette hair was really flattering, that would probably mean a lot more.

Let the compliments flow when you are making them. You don’t have to stick to just one, unless the other person is visibly uncomfortable.

Last but not least is the thing that I suck at the most. Learn how to receive compliments well! I really stink at this. Somebody says something nice to me and ten reasons why it’s not true come word vomiting out of my mouth. Why God why do I do that? It’s like don’t want anything to interfere with my preconceived negative self-image! No good can come of this! I will simplify it for you. Here is the one time I am going to go against the former “be genuine” advice. Even if you are cringing inside thinking of how it is not true, just smile and say THANKYOU!

Have a great day guys!

Dr. Katz

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