Is anyone actually comfortable taking a compliment? You’re probably not. For this post, we decided to both weigh in. As you may be able to tell, Victoria is much better at it than Jaya. But let’s talk. How do you take a compliment?
Just say thanks, it’s that easy!
But seriously, it is. If you try to deny it or explain it too much, it’s just going to turn into this big awkward thing. Besides, own your awesomeness! You are great and deserve to be told so. I do think if you say “thanks, I got it at ___________” or “thanks, it was my grandmother’s” that’s totally fine and can sometimes be a nice conversation starter.
IT’S NOT THAT EASY OMG. It’s all fine and easy when someone compliments you on an article of clothing. Duh, you can’t take credit for soldering that bracelet or creating the pattern for those pants (but if you did you should totally take credit because clearly you’re the most talented person alive). But what happens when someone compliments you…on you? Most of the time when someone calls me pretty, or says I did a good job writing an article, or says I’m smart I curl up into a ball and start making strange grunting noises until they stop. I’m not kidding. Ask Victoria. I could even feel my face twisting up just writing that sentence, as if admitting that someone has complimented me on being pretty means I think I’m pretty and that means I’m really vain and oh god it’s happening again.
I think a lot of this anxiety comes from the fact that when most people learn “don’t brag,” it bleeds into “don’t admit any good qualities about yourself ever.” Which is a shame because it is so freeing to admit to yourself that you’re good at something. On my more enlightened days, I know I’m pretty and I’m strong and I’m a half-decent writer. This doesn’t mean I think being pretty is important, or that my writing will change the world, just that I like things about myself. And with lots of work, when someone has said “You look nice” or “I liked that article,” I’ve been able to say thanks without any apologies or conditions. Just remember, no one will think you’re a monster for saying “thank you.”