Thank you can work wonders on a back-handed compliment as well. I still can't figure out why someone would go out of their way to give a "compliment" like that, but that's another post all together! I've been on the receiving end more times than I can count. I admit, I do love to see their face when I reply with a "Thanks, that's so nice of you" and a smile. It can be very confusing for a mean spirited, small mind. Terrible of me, I know.
Imagine the times you've given an ill-received compliment. It can feel as minor as can be, or really feel insulting. And then imagine the times when you give a sincere compliment that truly hits the mark. You can see the joy radiating from the other person. Even if they try to brush it off. What a gift for both parties.
I remember being a counselor at summer camp in high school. One of my friends was with me. This girl is beautiful on the inside and out. In fact, she probably has the purest, most generous and kind spirit of anyone I have ever met...even to this day. Someone complimented her and she got embarrassed and shy. They called her out. They did it in the gentlest way possible, but I'll never forget the impact it had. She was devastated that the way she was behaving towards a compliment might actually hurt someone else. It's tough to see the internal struggle she was having. I know it has stuck with me and probably her all these years later.
I have to make sure to fight my natural urge to negate a compliment still. Sometimes are better than others. Some days are better than others. And some compliments are easier to accept than others. I can see the girls struggle with this too. We are all a work in progress. All day, every day. But, we need to appreciate the things about ourselves that others appreciate.
We need to remember that we are worthy of the compliment. Because we just are. Believe it.
Too often we underestimate the power of a touch,
a smile, a kind word, a listening ear,
an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring,
all which have the potential to turn a life around.