How to respond to compliments

How good are you at receiving compliments?

Creative people, including photographers, do not always find this easy, especially when it’s about their work.

If someone admires an image, movie, installation, or piece of art you’ve created, you might find yourself deflecting, mumbling something self-effacing, turning it into a joke…even blatant denial.

And even if you do muster up a polite ‘Thank you’, deep down you may not really believe it.

In New Zealand there is this idea that you have to be super humble. Humility is the key word. Mustn’t-rise-above-your-station and all that nonsense. They call it Tall Poppy syndrome.

But when it comes to creativity it’s not just New Zealanders who are guilty of this type of response.

Well humble-shmumble I say.

If you can’t receive compliments fully and graciously (and yes, shock horror, they may actually be telling the truth!), then what does that say about you and what you do?

How can you ask for money for something you apparently don’t value? How do you expect others to want to pay you, let alone respect you?

Worse still, have you considered how rude is it to ignore or resist the gift of a compliment? (That’s like giving chocolates back because they’re not real even when they are…and who would be mad enough to do that?)

Being good at gratefully receiving compliments, relishing them, and bathing in all those good vibes, will boost your confidence, and show the world you’re proud of the immense efforts you make.

This Thanksgiving I challenge you to practice really HEARING and remembering compliments.

Be grateful for the praise you get for your work, your work ethic, and any kind words bestowed upon you.

And if you’re not in USA, give it a go anyway.

Happy Thanksgiving, and thank you for being in my world!