Why Are Compliments So Hard To Accept?

So, the other day someone paid me a compliment…don’t ask me what it was, I don’t remember. But the moment it came out of their mouth, I started the backtrack. You know what I mean…I laughed and said something stupid like oh no, not me. It was like I refused to believe that about myself. And I know I am not the only one to do this. It got me thinking, why do we do this? Why do we refuse to believe someone can think something positive about us?

I decided to take a poll to see what people do when paid a compliment. A lot of people react like I do, shocking, I know, LOL. Someone says, “I love your outfit” and you immediately respond with “This old thing? It was like 10 bucks at Walmart.” Someone says “You’re so funny.” And you respond with, “Yeah, I guess I can be sometimes.” What in the world is our problem?

This person is saying they like something about us and we shoot them down like they don’t know what they’re talking about. How hard is it to just say a simple thank you? Do we have such low self esteem that we don’t believe anything good about ourselves? Do we think if we don’t play it down we will come off as arrogant and douchey? I really don’t know the answer, but I do know that we have to change the way we think about ourselves and the way we answer when given a compliment.

Think about when you give someone a compliment and the person responds to you like this…how to you feel? I usually comeback with a “yeah you are” or “yes it is” depending on what I’m talking about. And if they keep going on with the no’s and not me talk, then I actually get a little bit agitated and wish I had kept my mouth shut.

But, I don’t want to keep my mouth shut. I gave a compliment, because I truly believe the statement I just said and I want the other person to know it. Just like people do to me. So, I have to rethink how I respond to the compliments people give me.

The next time you pay me a compliment, I will respond with a simple “thank you.” Or, if I don’t believe it about myself….”Thank you for seeing that in me.” And if I start the backtrack nonsense…you can totally call me out on it.

***Question for the comments…How do you respond to compliments? And how to you feel when you give someone a compliment and they refuse to see it in themselves?

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Hi, I'm Tracie. I am a writer, reader, life coach, lover of the city and the beach. I am a big fan of all things caffeinated. I dig things from many different decades, but am a definite child of the 80's. My blog is about everything and anything my mind conjures up. Enjoy the ride.

10 thoughts on “Why Are Compliments So Hard To Accept?

  1. I think that some of it goes back to being taught that we aren’t more important or more special than the next person. To be humble, to not take ourselves too seriously. So somewhere along the way, we internalize that message to one of “I’m not worthy”. Those that have a difficult time with compliments also tend to have a hard time accepting gifts.
    I’m not good with either, although I have tried in later years to be gracious even if I really don’t believe that I’m worthy. It’s so hard to break bad patterns.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s true, it is taught ( poorly taught) I hope somewhere down the line new patterns can be taught and this idea of not accepting the fact that we can receive compliments goes away…BTW…you’re fabulous 🙂


  2. Awhile back, ok 2016, I received a specific word from God about my individual value, the word was “worthy”. I used to downplay and discount compliments before then. But since then, I usually just receive it and say thank you. You are right Tracie, when you give compliments, you want the other person to realize that you truly mean it so we should accept them when they are given to us.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Yeah I’m the same way…I down play the compliment….if I don’t know you from Adam I’ll better receive it yet I’ll still down play it…don’t know why…if I know you I try to figure out if it’s genuine…the first thing I look for if someone’s trying to be sarcastic among us…especially with our hui we do it naturally …dogging each other that is…I should just accept the compliment and say thank you….

    Liked by 1 person

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