Please settle a dispute...
I'm sure you've all heard of random acts of kindness. Well, I noticed a long time ago that when one compliments a stranger, it not only makes the stranger feel good, it makes the one doing the complimenting feel good too. In turn, each of these people is nicer to the next person they come in contact with. Have you ever complimented a cashier on their earrings, blouse, how quickly they rang up your stuff, how knowledgable they are about the products, etc? As you walk to the door, you can hear the pleasure in their voice as they wait on the next person.
Many times when I approach a sales counter, the cashier is harried, miserable, rushed, slow, tired, etc. I've noticed that a little compliment really perks up their spirits. It helps me too, to be nice and to release a lot of deep-seeded anger in me.
However, my husband is now accusing me of being insincere. Recently, at a register, I said to the frustrated looking cashier, "That's a very pretty blouse." She immediately perked up and smiled and said, "Oh thank you. I got this with my sister in Birmingham." I said, "Well it's very nice and a great color on you." I swear this woman was beaming.
Outside, my husband said, "Did you really like that blouse?" I said, "It wasn't really my style, but what difference does that make?" He accused me of being fake to the cashier. I said, "If I made her feel better and smile, who cares if I loved it or not? I did look nice on her, even if it's not something I'd pick out for myself." He said that being complimentary doesn't count if you really don't mean it. I claim that the thought behind the compliment is what is important. Kind of like when I tell the old man across the street, "Hey don't you look spiffy in your new shoes!" They are are horrible orthopedics, but are all white and shiny and he is proud of them.
So, my question is, is it wrong to tell someone you like their earrings just to see them smile? Or is it being insincere? My heart is in the right place, I do love to make people smile and laugh. When I'm with friends, I don't have to "make up" compliments-I know them well enough to compliment them on many things, but with strangers I have to go with what I see in front of me. Or should I just not bother at all?
Go for it. You're brightening up someone's day. Just be aware that many have a hard time receiving compliments. It's not personal so just go about being your loving self. You have a gift not many have or are willing to share.
I'm with you, Autumn. I think the heart has a lot to do with it and you're right, even if you wouldn't wear a particular piece of clothing, that doesn't mean it's not a pretty color or a pretty style or matching their eyes or even looking awesome on them. I see lots of awesome clothes that I would never consider wearing for a variety of reasons.
But you're not complimenting and then as soon as you're outside saying, "OMG, did you SEE that ugly thing, how could she have dared to wear that?" I think that's where the condidtion of your heart comes in. Are you really trying to brighten their day or are you making fun of them when you're out of earshot, you know?
That reminds me of an Art 100 teacher I had once. One guy in the class clearly did not need to be in there -- he was super talented (and didn't get an A, coincidentally enough, because he was too cocky about his talent and wouldn't follow the directions. But anyhow...) but the rest of us were clearly a good fit for a beginning art class. For every assignment, we shared with the class and she went around the room and critiqued every one of them. No matter how ugly some were -- and some were! -- she ALWAYS found at least one good thing about every piece we did. I don't know if she stretched her sincerity at times, but she would say of a flat 2-dimensional portrait, maybe something about the choice of color or the shape of the eyes -- something specific -- it wasn't just "oh, that's good, oh, that's good too".
So, even if I believed she was reaching for a compliment once in a while, it was motivational and I still remember that about her even now, some 15 years later.
She may not have liked our work, and wouldn't have displayed it in her house, but her compliments were coming from a good heart and have lasted all these years.
So I'm with Revvell... Go for it!
My wonderful aunt always finds one thing nice about anybody she comes in contact with. It wasn't until I took a class on how to actually take compliments that I understood her doing this. I use to have a horrible horrible time taking compliments.
I say Keep Up The Good Work!! :)
Giving someone Divine love, which is what you are doing, is a beautiful gift Autumn.
I think what you are doing is terrific.
I too compliment people, not because I want to be treated better, or because I want anything at all.
I simply think it is a kind and loving thing to do.
You told the cashier that her blouse was nice on her, I'm sure it was.
You told the old man across the street his new shoes looked spifey, I'm sure they did.
Everyone loves shiny new shoes, and pretty colorful new bouses, even if they aren't something we would personally wear, it is nice to say how clean, or neat, or tidy, something is.
I think one of the nicest most loving things anyone can do is to go out of their way to be kind to someone else, for no apparant reason,
and that, my friend is what you are doing.
And in my house the woman is ALWAYS RIGHT, no matter what!!!
hey, did I ever tell you what beautiful hair you have?
Keep sharing the love.!You didn't say it looked nice on you...you said it looked nice on her. To me that was sincere.
I think your husband's concern is that may question the sincerity or motive for any compliments that you were to pay him. Assure him that he knows you better than that... ;)
Present: (March 9, 2008) got cooked...so I'm starting over AGAIN @ 192 :eek: :eek:
2nd try: (October 18, 2007) Starting over @ 183 :eek:
1st Goal weight: 145
1st try: New to RAW... and loving it!
I'm with you Autumn,
I think you are being sincere; you don't have to want a blouse or personally
like something to give a nice compliment and mean it.
Your taking time out in a hurried world to acknowledge another soul.
That's a wonderful thing! Don't change...
My husband does this on occassion; at a restaurant our host looked
kinda blah when we arrived...my husband struke up a small conversation
with him and he perked right up and gave us a better table automatically...
not that it was our intention..but whenever we come in now he remembers
us and his attitude changes from indifferent to cheerful.
I think that my hubby noticed him *as a person*, instead of an employee
made a difference.
IMHO, best to give compliments that are true, so as not to put 'bad data' in a human mind.
When I get sweet-talked it sometimes makes me more resentful than appreciative or uplifted, because then I feel I really wasn't seen as a person. Of course i've been mis-seen Nicely, which is a plus, but not necessarily what we're all looking for.
Sometimes in the same situation (store checkout line) I can't find anything I like to compliment -- that makes me take a step backwards out of my head space, because it means I'm stuck in judgment-self. And if the moment isn't right for a short conversation, after a few minutes of getting out of my typical space, I can find something to appreciate. Then, it feels real all around.
Hope that makes sense. Your intention is beautiful!
What is good in humanity will have to fight for its life, if it is to have a future at all. Every form of creative will and intelligence must be called forth from the sleeping soul of humanity, because there
is no escape and no going back.- Diane Harvey
I agree with Space. People can sense when a compliment it insincere; when you're just doing it to get something from the person. I compliment people every day on how they look, how they handled a situation at work, anything that warrants mentioning. It makes me feel good to make others feel good.
"When you see the Golden Arches you're probably on the road to the pearly gates". ~Dr William Castelli
I think that's great Autumn! You really brightened someone's day.
But wouldn't it be scary if the next time you came to the store the cashier handed you a pretty wrapped up box, and when you got to your car and opened it, it was that exact same shirt in your size? Maybe you could wear it in front of your hubby! LOL.
As long as you are always sincere in your compliments, then I think you are sending love.
people can tell if you are sincere or if you are just flattering them to get something back. People are smart. As long as it's coming from your heart and you truly mean it to help another, that is just so beautiful. Your DH is probably trying to warn you against flattery, which is deadly. He was probably trying to help in case you were not aware of it, do you know what I mean? listen to your heart,let the compliment pass through your conscience before you actually say it. If you have a good feeling about it after it has passed through your hearts' filter, then say it! Just always be on the lookout for that demon called flattery.
You have a beautiful loving spirit. Listen to it.
Thank you everyone for your replies! I know I can always count on the people here! Hubby got his nose out of joint for being outvoted. What a baaaaaaby! Haha!
I think the fact that you were sincere and just wanted to make someone else feel good makes what you did really sweet!
A slight twist
I'll often say to an abrupt or harried-looking cashier something like You work so hard. I don't think I could do your job. or Looks like it's been quite a day. I bet you'll be glad when it's over.. They always look up, meet my eyes, and it opens up a mini-conversation. I'm truly sympathetic and I really do mean it, and I think they pick up on that. I'm smiling and they usually end up smiling, too, or at least they feel lighter. I talk to most everyone I encounter in public, anyway, so it's natural for me, and I really do think that making true contact with other human beings is one of our most basic needs and, also, a higher calling.
So ... I think that's what you're doing, too, Autumn, and it's sure needed in this world of casual strangers.