Pronunciation: /kom-pluh-muh nt/
A compliment is an expression of praise towards someone, often because of something they did very well or because they look awesome. Also, a compliment, however small it sometimes may be, can make a person feel very, very awkward or uncomfortable. And I’m not talking about false compliments, they are in their own category. But a well-meant, honest compliment can cause sleepless nights.
Lord, I hate compliments. I’ve never been good at receiving them and even though my psychologist once taught me how to deal with them (!), I still fail miserably.
Here’s what happens when someone gives me a compliment: I get super duper shy and start apologizing myself for being smart/good at something/looking good. Every. Single. Time. It’s so annoying. And the worst part is (I swear I spent too much time with that psychologist – although in a way I still feel she’s worked miracles and saved my life) my reaction makes people think I am arrogant.
I’m not arrogant. I am so so scared of becoming arrogant, I never ever tell myself I did a good job. And when someone praises me I automatically switch to defence mode, because to me it means someone has noticed me and that was the one thing I didn’t want anyone to do when back in high school. I wanted nothing but to be invisible.
I swear my entire psyche was ruined during those years.
But, anyone, so far I’ve had a god awful week compliment-wise. And it’s only Tuesday!
It started yesterday, when I went to Body Pump. It turned out our regular teacher was ill and apparently she had called in sick a little late, leaving no time for a substitute to be called in (I can only assume this was the case, because there have been sick teachers before but they were always replaced by another qualified Body Pump instructor). So the class of Monday was taken over by a reception desk clerk/weight instructor from the fitness area, who had absolutely no clue about what he was supposed to be doing.
(On a side note: he was quite endearing flicking through the Body Pump Instructions booklet to see what movements were up next.)
Anyway, afterwards I ended up saying to a woman: “If they had put on the right CD, I think we would have actually been able to figure the lesson out by ourselves” (Body Pump uses the same movements on the same music tracks for three months and we are in month three. meaning I can practically dream the exercises by now). The lady then said: “Yes, I think we could. You should have taken over the class, your execution of the movements is perfect.”
If only I could have smiled a little shyly and have said: “Well, thank you.” But nooooooooo! Instead I blushed and told her about my Cesar therapy (why the heck… why would she care!?) and how I though she should do the class, because she’s been pumping since forever and she’s got a great, strong voice to shout at people.
SERIOUSLY, WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME?? O.o
Then today, my boss phoned me about rearranging the date to visit one of my semi-regular clients. She mentioned how she’s been hearing “nothing but good things” about me from several clients, and how she’s reluctant to hire a new help when she’s got good, trustworthy and hard working people already, “like you.”
I ended up having a total brain freeze and inserted my “giggle-all-the-compliments-away”-laughter.
My boss must now think I am a total geek.
Anyway, the worst was tonight during zumba class (maybe I just exercise too much). The teacher, who I’ve known for almost eight years now, makes me stand front row because I remember the steps fairly well. She gave me a compliment about my hip-shaking movements and alas! I blanked out and couldn’t remember a thing. And afterwards in the dressing room, a girl complimented me on my hair… after which I started a ten minute monologue on how to wash your hair, how mine were longer than hers and how I donated mine in April.
Needless to say she definitely thinks I’m arrogant now.
And I’m really not. I am just… allergic to compliments! I always feel as if I don’t deserve them, because in my head, my perfectionist reasoning head, I am never good enough. Let alone be good enough to receive praise for it.
I think it’s about time all this complimenting me dies out. Otherwise I’d feel forced to ruin someone’s day in the near future, only to get confirmation on how crap I am. Then I’d be able to smile a little shyly at that person and say: “Well, thank you.”