Do you find it difficult or uncomfortable to accept praise or compliments? If so, you’re not alone. According to Tess Brigham, psychotherapist and certified life coach, low self-worth is a big reason why receiving a compliment can be challenging to accept and believe.
If you suffer from impostor syndrome, you may internally think that you do not deserve the compliment or any praise. However, it’s important to accept the compliment and remind yourself that you are deserving of it. You may have to give yourself permission to accept the kind words and own them.
Tips for Accepting Compliments
Some of the helpful advice that Karen Donaldson, certified confidence coach and body language expert, offers includes the following:
- Don’t interrupt or brush off the compliment because it is a big deal. It is important to acknowledge it.
- Know and own your value without feeling you don’t deserve it.
- Accept the compliment with a ‘thank you’.
- Challenge your negative thoughts by accepting the praise.
There may also be some underlying issues that are keeping you from being able to accept compliments. Below are some examples that you may relate to seeing in your own life.
Five Reasons Why You May Struggle with Compliments
Not everyone can receive a compliment. The reasons may vary per person and could be based on personal experiences. Other times it may be due to overthinking or having impostor syndrome. Below are some reasons and the solution to overcoming this phenomenon.
- Social anxiety – This may be due to you feeling some sort of resentment towards the person that gave you the compliment. You can combat this by reminding yourself that you are worthy of the compliment.
- Your upbringing – You may be born or raised to look for the negatives in life. To combat this, begin by looking for the positive in what the compliment was about.
- Feelings of vanity – Sometimes people feel that accepting a compliment would mean you are vain. This is not true. Begin to realize that you do deserve to be in the spotlight for your hard work or accomplishments.
- Being thankful – Instead of seeing things as negative, begin by being grateful for who you are and what you’ve accomplished.
- Looking forward – If you are living your life with past regrets, then accepting a compliment can be especially difficult. Begin to keep a gratitude journal to help you see how far you’ve come.
Take time to give yourself a compliment by celebrating the small wins in life. Even taking time each day to write down or acknowledge what you are grateful for can move you towards being comfortable with compliments.
Perhaps you struggle with knowing what to say once someone gives you a compliment. If this is the case, a simple thank you can be enough. Keep in mind that people don’t give compliments or praise if it is not deserving. By reminding yourself that you do deserve the praise, you are more likely to become comfortable and willing to return it to someone who is also deserving.