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What you need to stop saying when you get complimented

Why is it so hard to accept a compliment? Often we will rebut it or get shy about it. Here are a few common pitfalls and how to accept them graciously.

Your boss or colleague compliments you about your presentation. Stop replying: “Really? I felt like I stuttered throughout it.” As natural as it might feel to question someone’s sentiment, asking for additional reassurance sends the message that you’re not confident in your work, and it kinda seems like you’re fishing for even more compliments.

Someone compliments you and you reply: “Oh that’s not true!” Think about it: When someone reminds you how awesome you are, they went out of their way to give you a little gift. Would you reject a gift from a friend? That would be pretty rude. Negating the compliment is like basically saying “you’re wrong” instead of “thank you.”

You receive a compliment on your cooking and you reply: “All I did was fellow the recipe.” That gorgeous whole roast chicken did anything but cook itself. Take ownership of your masterpiece instead of downplaying your accomplishment.

You receive a compliment and you rebut it with a: “My kids are not nearly as well behaved as yours.” Or “No, you’re better at it than I am” or “You’re far prettier than me.” Resist the urge to turn the nice moment into a compliment showdown. It can come across as insincere and make you seem insecure.

You receive a compliment and you shy away from it by not really saying anything at all, or you babble. This can seem like a nervous tick, hinting at the fact that you think you don’t deserve it. Instead, try just saying a simple “thank you” and leave it at that.


Bailey Schneider – Smile Drive Anchor, Weekdays 3pm-6pm