Time was when a compliment would embarrass me. I felt uncomfortable and didn’t really know how to respond, so I mumbled and blushed and stuttered something…anything. It wasn’t in me to be able to say a simple thank you and move on. Actually, it was worse than that. A compliment on my outfit, or hair would lead to mutterings about this old thing, or my hair just turned out this way by accident.
A compliment on a kind act would be met with a shrug of the shoulders and it was nothing. Anything but a genuine acknowledgement of thanks. What’s with that? Every compliment had to be deflected in some way…the attention moved somewhere else. I didn’t, couldn’t, allow myself to be nourished by a kind word.
I was not a good receiver.
Now if the shoe was on the other foot…well I was pretty good at that. I could compliment with the best of them, genuine compliments that came from the heart. How pretty you are…yes usually to women…you look wonderful today…what a great smile you have…your eyes are beautiful…I’m so grateful.
How good a receiver are you? Are you a better giver than a receiver? They’re really important questions, because they have a huge impact on living life at ever higher levels of consciousness.
How can we expect to get all the good we desire if we have challenges in receiving small compliments? I can tell you when I first looked at myself in terms of ability to receive I almost wept. I was pretty much a hopeless case. But hope always beats eternal.
Wanting to experience a radical shift in any limiting beliefs I had, meant I really, really needed to be able to accept that anything was possible and without an ability to receive, it wasn’t going to happen.
So I began in the easiest way I knew how, with baby steps. I trained myself simply to say thank you. Not too difficult you might say…but for me it was moving way beyond my normal comfort zone. I’d accepted the belief that giving was better than receiving, only to discover that’s only half right. They’re the other side of the same coin…the coin of heaven. I discovered receiving to be an art that needed practice. That it was about allowing people into my life and allowing them the pleasure of giving. I was honouring their gift and by doing so, they too received.
By receiving the love, the respect and compliments so freely provided, we are acknowledging one another every time giving occurs.
Receiving is a good thing, so why it should be harder to receive than to give is beyond me. But I suspect I’m not the only one with challenges in this area. As I’ve become a better receiver life continues to give more abundantly and I am nourished and blessed by it.
What’s perhaps the coolest thing of all is that in receiving, I have more to give. And that suits me just fine.
Encourage one another.
I’m taking these words to heart and will be practicing them – to receive without deflecting away or minimizing. You really hit the nail on the head here. It is so easy and I enjoy giving out praise and compliments. It comes so naturally to me as well. But the other side, it is more uncomfortable. Very interesting.
For starters, today when I give my two presentations (one in the afternoon and one tonite) I will be cognizant of simply saying thank you and taking in any compliments (hopefully) I get on the talk.
Thank you for this insightful piece today (as always).
I will be imagining happy outcomes all around Harriet. 🙂
Thank you. I take that in!!
be good to yourself
Spot on, Elle! If we don’t receive graciously, no one can really give, can they?
So true Dore.