Don’t make yourself smaller than you are – and accept an honest Compliment! – 26 Nov 15

I have been in Germany for nearly two weeks now, we have met a whole lot of friends already and are going to meet several more until we go back. With one friend whom we met these days, I noticed something which I believe a lot of my readers might have a problem with as well: low self-confidence until the point that you don’t even believe a compliment when you get one.

I met this friend again after about two years that we had not seen each other. After the initial greetings, hugs and asking how the other one was, we started talking about what we had done in the past years. Already in that description I noticed that she played down her achievements in this time a lot. After a while, Ramona entered, who knew my friend as well. They greeted each other and then Ramona commented that she looked great, healthy and happy.

The answer was what made me write this blog post today: ‘Oh, thank you, nice that you say this!’

The moment I heard this line, I realized that these words were meant to express thankfulness – but that the one saying them did not actually believe they were true! It literally just meant that it was nice by Ramona to say such a thing – even if it was obviously NOT true in her mind!

Such a simple sentence can show you deeply what kind of opinion a person has of himself or herself. Our friend could have said ‘Thank you, I have had a great time!’, told of her change in nutrition and her holidays. Instead, she quickly made up her mind that Ramona was just saying it to be nice. That’s what she clearly appreciated with her answer. The kindness of saying a lie to make her feel good.

She would never think of this compliment as the truth! She didn’t realize that Ramona could see how much more relaxed she seemed and that there was a certain glow to her which had not been there the last time we had met her!

In this, there is a small lesson for all of us, male and female: if you get a compliment, don’t dismiss it as false. There may be those as well but it is very well possible that a person actually finds you beautiful, attractive, looking good or happy, intelligent, welcoming and friendly or helpful!

Don’t put yourself down, don’t underestimate yourself. Realize your full potential and value – and accept that other people do, too!

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