“That was a great speech”.

“I wasn’t happy with the ending” 

When someone gives you a compliment, do you receive it properly? Do you let compliments land or do you bat them away?

I was made aware I batted them away a few years ago. For me, I believe it stems from my culture where we are taught to be humble and not draw attention for fear of being seen as big headed.

One of the best ways I have learned to see this differently is imagined someone giving you a beautiful gift. You wouldn’t dream of batting it away with your hand with you and dismissing it. Instead, you would graciously take it with two hands and say “Thank you”. 

I was reading about this topic in the book “The Big Leap” by Gay Hendricks (1). An example he gives is on the golf course, where he is complimenting a couple of the players. Both of them are telling him what went wrong. He recommends when someone gives you a compliment to pause for a moment to register the beam of positive energy being aimed at you. Then thank the person. He talks about creating space within us to feel and appreciate natural good feelings.

So let’s try this again: “That was a great speech”.  Pause, feel-good energy and say “Thank you.” 

So next time, someone gives you a compliment, smile and happily accept this wonderful gift.


1) The Big Leap