The pain of compliments By Michelle Janssen

Getting a compliment is really hard.

You would think it would be really easy, lovely and a happy time but generally it is very uncomfortable.

I have no idea how to genuinely accept praise. I mean sure, I’ve got a pretty good idea of when I’ve done a decent job at something, but I’m more, “Please criticise me further".

Here's one way to handle a compliment:

Compliment Giver: Hey, here’s a compliment about you and your abilities.

Me: sigh I know.

Saying “I know” deflects away from the compliment and then forces people to ponder whether you’re serious or joking. This could also potentially lead to them thinking you’re a bitch, but it’s a risk I’m willing to take to avoid knowing how to deal with follow up praise. And this is why I have limited friends.

My go to moves/sayings when accepting a compliment, are usually accompanied by thoughts like these:

•Do you really mean it? •What are you really trying to say? •You probably say that to everyone •What do you want really?

I do realise though that people don’t HAVE to say nice things. Particularly people who are well respected in their field and if they wanted to, they could just not be bothered and say nothing. Also, if someone isn’t being genuine or they’re being fake, I think it’s usually quite easy to spot if their comments are just bitchy.

Having said that though, accepting a compliment is probably one of the bigger challenges you need to confront in life. #FirstWorldProblems


In her 20s, Michelle is a modern woman walking confidently about town, casually using her fly buys rewards card to feel like a true grown up. Her goal is to be a combination of Oprah &Tina Fey.

See Michelle's profile.

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