Thursday, June 19, 2014

The Danger of Living for Compliments



Sounds like somewhat of a contradiction when you think of my last post, The Beauty of Your Compliments

I assure you it’s not. I still believe compliments are magical. I still believe compliments have the power to change your thoughts, mood, and actions. I still believe compliments are valuable. I also believe there is a fine line between appreciating/enjoying compliments and living in expectation/requirement of compliments.

If you base your success on the level of compliments you get, you’re bound to be disappointed.

The problem comes in when you base your success on the number of “likes” you get on a Facebook photo or the number of followers you have on Twitter or the number of people believe & praise your vision or the number of people who think you’re funny or smart. The problem comes in when you crave compliments so much that you live your life as a people-pleaser to get them.

Do you know how stressful that is?

I’m guessing you might. Waking up each day just to make decisions based on the expectations and desires of others. Working extra hard at work to get noticed/praised by your boss more than your co-workers. Worrying whether people will think more or less of you if you choose to wear that sweater or if you choose to fix your hair a certain way or if you choose to take that unconventional job or if you choose to live by certain moral/spiritual standards or whatever else. It is exhausting.

The funny part?

There’s a great chance that the same people who you’ve pleased for so long and lived for their compliments will change their minds about you and find things to criticize anyways. Take a look at Jesus Christ. The same people who complimented and praised him one day are the ones who criticized and crucified him the next! My goodness. If that doesn’t prove to you how fickle people’s compliments can be, I don’t know what will.

So, what are you supposed to do?

Stop people-pleasing. Live your life. Live in your God-given purpose and make the habit of developing yourself as a spiritual and loving being. Make the choices you believe in. Use your opportunities to bring your goals and visions to life. Use your opportunities to serve others – yes that includes giving compliments. Use your opportunities to practice gratitude, contentment, empathy, and forgiveness of others. Stop weighing your success by the number of compliments you receive. If and when they come, be thankful and enjoy them. If they don’t, keep enjoying your life.

If you base your success on the level of compliments you get, you’re bound to be disappointed.

Compliments are nice but they aren’t required for you to laugh well, eat well, dance well, create well, serve well, or enjoy life well. Don’t let a lack of compliments stop you from living greatly. Now I know your ego might have a desire for them and feel bruised when compliments don’t flood in (trust me, I get it). But, the truth is: Your ego doesn’t get to run the show unless you let it. People don’t hold the key to your success/happiness unless you give it to them. It’s all up to what you choose. You don’t have to be a slave to the opinion of others. You don’t have to be a slave to your ego.

I suggest you choose to enjoy your life – with or without compliments - and start putting your ego in “daily check”.

What are your thoughts on this, lovelies? Do you believe living for compliments is dangerous? Do you feel upset when you don't get compliments? Do you think receiving compliments are necessary to be successful in life? Leave a comment below:)

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