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The Power of a Compliment

Posted by Alexandra Van Rijn on

Written by Mariana Paz-Solden 


Hey you, your smile is beautiful. ☺ 

Today, I want to talk to you about the power of compliments. 


Compliment | noun [definition]:

 a polite expression of praise or admiration. 

Compliments can give you warm, fuzzy feelings. The kind that melt your insides to goo, and make you feel like nothing on that day will be terrible. Compliments from others can give you validation on days where you can’t give yourself the same kindness. For example, my anxiety sometimes fools me into thinking something about myself that is rationally untrue. Thoughts about how unattractive or untalented or {insert self-deprecation here} I am in relation to others. 

It is on these days where I feel the worst about myself. However, this blog isn’t about my experiences with my anxiety, it is about the power that EVERYONE has to make someone’s day better. How, you may ask? You guessed it, through something as simple as a compliment. 

Compliments are so important to give and usually take only about 30 seconds of your day. You never know what kind of day a person is having, but you possess the ability to make someone’s day a whole lot better (even sometimes unintentionally). 

Sometimes compliments can have a huge impact on how a person views themselves, sometimes compliments can pull on the heart strings or inspire someone to do something that they may have never considered before. Compliments ARE power. 

Here are some helpful tricks of how to compliment someone  (Thanks to Huffington Post for some great ideas)

  1. Say the person’s name before you compliment them.
    It makes the compliment a lot more personal and authentic
  2. Be sincere.
    And mean what you say 
  3. Be specific
    Example: Rather than congratulate a friend for getting a good grade in school, compliment for all the time and effort/work they put in to getting that result
  4. Compliment the unusual
    Example: If you know your friend is great at sports and that is well known, compliment them for something else, such as their kindness to others.
  5. Be generous in your praise 
    And don't be afraid to go into detail! 
  6. Don’t miss an opportunity to make someone/yourself feel good
    If you stumble upon the opportunity to give someone a compliment, give it a go! I promise you wont regret it! 


And for those of you who get nervous when you are complimented, here are some tips on how to accept compliments  (I got you, introvert fam) 


  1. Breathe
    It’s okay to be noticed—you are beautiful, smart, talented and MORE! People want to recognize you for it!
  2. Say Thank You
    Acknowledge the compliment in some way that is authentic to you
  3. If it hard to receive a compliment (for whatever reason), try to see yourself through the eyes of the person who complimented you. 
    Sometimes we view ourselves harshly, and this change of perspective can be helpful. If they say you are a kind person, reflect on that! (What about you is kind? Is that a word that you feel positively about or not?…YAY SELF-REFLECTION) 
  4. Write down the compliments you received. I use this technique for several reasons.
    a) On a bad/sad/angry/whatever day, I can look at the compliments and remember that warm and fuzzy feeling that I got.  
    b) I use it as a form of personal self-reflection. I sometimes choose to write about the compliments I receive. Does it align and encourage me to continue working towards the person I want to be? How did it make me feel? Can I deliver the same kindness to myself as well?

So after reading those tricks, you are probably asking, "So why are compliments so powerful?" Well, according to the literature, they encourage others in the pursuit of their own goals and dreams. It allows them to realize the potential that they have, and that they have the ability to be whatever they want to be. It encourages growth in others, and allows them to understand that change is a good thing (something that is otherwise hard to accept). 

For some reason, I find that receiving compliments is hard, but perhaps the thing that I know I am especially bad at, is giving myself self-compliments. Remember, it is AMAZING to make others feel good through complimenting (and ultimately this can contribute to feeling good about ourselves), but it is also nice to return the same kindness to ourselves. 

Take some time at least once a week to notice something positive about yourself. It isn’t always easy, but you deserve to feel good about yourself. You do some amazing things everyday, and make so many people happy.

Today is January 24th, otherwise known as National Compliment Day. So take 30 seconds, give yourself a compliment and give someone else a compliment. 

A single compliment is all it takes and it doesn’t have to be long to be impactful. You have the power to change someone’s day for the better, and isn’t that just the best gift in the world?


1 comment

  • Marianita, I liked all what you wrote. You’re a wonderful person and you have many many reasons to give compliments to yourself. Hugs and have a wonderful day.

    Julita. on

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