I did a bad thing. I slacked off on writing this week. Then again maybe I am being a little to harsh on myself because I’m actually an Analyst. So writing is my hobby and my passion. If I could make a living off it… I totally would. However, that’s not the point of this post at all. I actually have a topic I wanted to bring up and it is a little different.
I wanted to talk about attraction today. For some odd reason, it crossed my mind. And you know often times we do not give any thought to the things we take for granted. Remember I like to sweat the small things? But I was reading a reddit post not too long a go and asking What Was The Most Memorable Compliment You’ve Ever Received? reading the comments and the feelings of the users it got me thinking about something.
Why don’t we talk more about complimenting people? Specifically about the importance of it. I mean let’s think about this for a minute. Why wouldn’t you want to compliment someone? In a research study in the Inquiries Journal Olga Yatsenko dives into this topic. To explore what happens to both genders when they’re complimented on their beauty. What Yatsenko finds out and to me it is no surprise, is that “[…] compliments raise self-perceived attractiveness in all individuals, they do so uniformly across gender lines, and that there is no difference between the self-perceived attractiveness scores between males and females.” In essence we all love compliments about how we look, and it makes us feel good.
And if you think I’m cherry picking and you want something more hardcore look at the research study titled Social Rewards Enhance Offline Improvements in Motor Skill. It is a mouthful but important to what I am getting at. On the other side of receiving praise and compliments what the researchers of the study discovered is that as the study participants received praise or compliments their performance improved. So you see compliments do wonderful things for the human brain. They help us with image and can even help us do better work. And to be honest it is something we need…but there’s more to it.
Yes, as always there’s a but. A huge one. But it isn’t simply complimenting…You see people have a hard time going about accepting compliments. And science and research has proven this quite clearly. Often times you’ll see studies and articles about women being unable to accept compliments. But it is men too! It’s not just one gender. It is all of us. One of my favourite videos to watch explains it better than I could. So take a quick break and head over to the Science of Love “The Power of Compliments”. Alright you’re back? GOOD.
So now you see. We all love compliments but we’re not always good at receiving them. Or maybe it is the person we are in love with that we’re trying to compliment. Maybe a romantic interest, a family member, or a friend. The importance of saying something nice and saying a compliment is that you fill it with such meaning the person who is receiving it can pick something out and un-box it. So when you say “I like you.” Mean it and fill it with such emotion and love that it transforms itself. If it were me I’d say,”I like the time we spend together, you make me laugh and help remind me of the small things in life.” When you say something like that. You are hiding a deep message. Saying, “I want you know that you help me.”
Think about the best compliments you’ve ever received and how they made you feel. And I know I focus a lot on romance and dating. But this goes bigger than that. It is something we need more of in our interpersonal relationships. When we take the time to recognise someone we’re altering the state of the world. For just a moment you’re telling someone that there is something amazing about them.
Oh, and before I forget. If you receive compliment. Take some time to dwell on it. Seriously. Just listen to the words the person is saying. Maybe they’re shy maybe they’re not. Maybe they want to tell you how much you mean to them. Maybe they want a relationship with you. Maybe it is your sister trying communicate when they don’t do it the best. I can list thousands or even millions of scenarios. But listen. Just as I am saying to speak with meaning. Listen intently.
Honestly, I think when you like someone or when you care about them just say it. Compliment them. Life is too short. Why spend everyday wishing you said something nice. When all it takes is a little effort with the risk of a high reward? You can improve relationships and your own life by taking time out of your day just to say why you like someone. And don’t forget to also…like you know…accept anything that may come your way too. What have you got to lose? And that is my challenge for this week to those of you who made it this far. Go out and tell the people you like. How you feel. Make them feel good. And if you get one, why surprise them and them why you liked what they said. We’ve got one life. Make the most of it.