Why not say “thank you”?

One of my new years’ resolutions was to finally kick the negative self-talk habit for good. It was my new years’ resolution two years ago as well and while I made good progress that year, it definitely wasn’t a habit I’d successfully broken.

And since then, I’ve made a concerted effort to bash the negative self-talk as often as possible. Nobody needs such negativity in their lives, least of all negativity that comes right from within you and is aimed at you. Duh, how much sense does that make, right??

What’s equal parts interesting and exciting?

ExcitingI think I’ve finally broken the habit.
InterestingI have a hard time outright saying “you know what? I look good.”

The thing is – I feel confident today. I feel so comfortable in my own skin. I feel like the me I’ve always wanted to be – on the outside, but more so on the inside. This is who I’m supposed to be. This is me.

So why is this newly “refined” me having a hard time openly accepting compliments – from others, or even from myself, in my own head where nobody can hear it but me?

I think what it comes down to is this: it’s actually more acceptable in our society to talk ourselves down in front of others versus lifting ourselves up.

But why? Is it arrogant and cocky to look in the mirror and actually like what you see? Is it obnoxious to say “thank you” when someone says they like your haircut, or how your top accentuates your shoulders? Why brush off a compliment that was offered up out of an honest appreciation for something someone else views as beautiful?

Of course, there is a fine line between confidence and arrogant, but I think that line needs to be toed more often. I think we, as a community of beautiful, healthy, strong bloggers need to more openly share the things that we love about ourselves, about eachother.

Because guess what? We work hard to be the healthy and fit people that we ALL are so why not celebrate that hard work we put in to how we look and how we feel (more importantly)?

So this is me – accepting that I am beautiful. That I like what I see in that mirror. And I’m not afraid to admit it.

There. I said it.  

And here’s a picture to prove it…me at my most confident, with my gorgeous husband by my side…

So next time you hesitate when someone tells you how great you look, or how confidently you hold yourself, why not say “thank you?”


31 thoughts on “Why not say “thank you”?

  1. I think you’re right, that it’s somehow unacceptable in our society to talk ourselves up. It’s weird. I was raised to put myself down; I didn’t learn how to graciously accept a compliment until just a few years ago.

    The thing is, life, society, other people – beat us down so much that we SHOULD be the ones that we can count on to give ourselves a boost of confidence, to admit we look good when we do, and to bask in our own self-love. Especially when we put forth the effort into ourselves. If we can’t be our own best friends, then who can???

    Great post!

    • Isn’t it crazy how much more acceptable it’s become to put yourself down in front of others versus simply accepting a compliment when it’s offered up? Something so very wrong and counterintuitive about that. It’s so interesting that we just can’t seem to bask in that self-love without feeling guilty, or that we’re being too confident or worse…cocky. And that’s the LAST thing I ever want to portray which is why I fear showcasing confidence sometimes.

      You know what? You’re so right – if we can’t be our own best friends, then nobody can. And that’s the truth of it all. Amen sista!!

  2. I love this post, Jess. (And side note, before I go on, is that last night before my laptop died, I saw these pics on FB. My immediate thought was, “Wow. They have amazing shoulders!” No lie.)

    So. About this post of yours. It’s beautiful. As I rea9+d it, I realized that you’re very very right…most of us find it the hardest thing to do to say “thank you” when someone compliments us. You hit it right on the head, Jess…I immediately feel conceited when I say “thank you” and not something like “ohhh, nah…I just know how to do my makeup”. (Which I do…I’ve mastered it. ;))

    I’m not sure why this is, though…what happened to make people feel this way?? Is it that we’re so used to judging people that we feel like that’s the way life goes? Is it that we’re so used to the Hollywood scene being full of confident people that we don’t feel like we’re at that level? (Or are they OVER confident and we’re scared that we look that way, too?) Having the attention on us makes us feel like we’re in a spotlight…and spotlights pick up on flaws…which is a breading ground for judgmental people. We’ve all been there. (Especially in the blogging community. Did you see Tina’s post about baby B?) The second we let our guard down, there’s always someone…

    Maybe we need to, on top of saying thank you, start going out of our ways to compliment others, too?

    Okay, rant over. LOL Loved it, Jess. And love you!

    • Oh man do I love your novel length comments, you are awesome!!!

      It IS so odd that we all find ourselves nixing the compliment as soon as it’s uttered by a friend or family member. Why brush it aside? The person offering the compliment wouldn’t be saying it if they didn’t believe it, so why can’t WE believe it sometimes?? (side note, can you teach me how to master the art of makeup artistry please??)

      I think you’re right, we are far too used to judging, and judging has such a negative connotation. Why can’t we judge but in a positive light instead? I totally think we all should make more of an effort to compliment one another – both IRL and with your friends, families and hell – complete strangers! Sometimes those compliments from someone you don’t even know mean even MORE than when it comes from a close friend, oddly enough.

      Compliment ‘o the day for you Ms Melissa? well, I gave you one on twitter, but I’ll give you another – you write with heart, and I dig it…because it means that you have a HUGE heart and I dig that even more. xo

  3. I do think society prefers the negative – which is sad. However, going against the grain on that (not so) ideal? Powerful.

    Lovely picture! You look gorgeous! And the husband cleans up well, too! 🙂

    • It’s such a powerful thing to go against the grain to begin with, but to go against the grain when it comes to something so emotional? Even more powerful – and harder to do. Hence why this post made me nervous to hit “publish.” But publish I did, and I’m glad that I did. And THANK YOU for the compliment, I’ll take it…especially about the hubs, he’s a cutie, isn’t he? 😉

  4. Great post. You’re absolutely right. I have a hard time accepting a compliment too, I often compliment the person right back, rather than just accepting the compliment for myself.

    It’s a very fine line, I often find myself embarrassed or feeling too arrogant to even tell people I ran a marathon. How bad is that? A HUGE accomplishment in a person’s life and I don’t want to talk about it. It’s definitely something to think about.

    • Well – at least you compliment them back, that’s better than simply brushing it off…but NOT brushing it off to begin with would be even better. But it takes practice and a concerted effort to accept the compliment and to believe that the compliment is genuine.

      How utterly SAD that you sometimes have a hard time telling people that you are a marathoner! I think that is such a fault of society – now you can’t even celebrate openly such a gigantic accomplishment like running a freakin’ 26.2 mile race?? Unreal. I’m amazed, personally, by anyone that can run a full marathon, so I think you are an AWESOMELY STRONG person for accomplishing something I’m not sure i ever could. GO YOU. How’s that for a compliment ‘o the day 🙂

  5. This is a fantastic post JEss! I LOVE It! I used to never be able to accept compliments but now I ALWAYS just say thank you! No excuses, just thank you. I also NEVER talk bad about myself in front of anyone (except my husband). I think it helps other people stay confident and if I hear others talk poorly about themselves I ALWAYS interject! If I give a compliment and get an excuse from that person I just say, “JUST SAY THANK YOU” and smile! 🙂 Happy Friday!

    • I like that you openly tell your friends and family and whoever you are granting a compliment to that they should say “thank you and smile” – that is an awesome way to get one another into the habit of not only accepting a compliment, but loving yourself a little bit more for it.

  6. Well said:

    “I think what it comes down to is this: it’s actually more acceptable in our society to talk ourselves down in front of others versus lifting ourselves up.”

    It really makes me sad that this is so true. Whenever I feel really good and say so, I feel like I get a lot of awkward comments back like “someone’s cocky today” – etc. Except from my husband. He really does make it easy for me to feel good about myself.

    And I am learning to say thank you

    • Right?? Cockiness is something I would NEVER EVER want someone to accuse me of, it’s such an ugly trait to me. I don’t appreciate it in others. But what I DO appreciate is a quiet confidence and a sense of ownership over one’s accomplishments – which I think is very different than cockiness, HUGELY different in fact.

      I’m so glad you’re learning to say thank-you, I know it’s not easy, lord do I know that!

    • Exactly – half of that beauty we all feel is because of confidence, and that’s when inner beauty truly translates to outer beauty. So own it, my friend. You are beautiful. 🙂

  7. Wow Jess you look stunning, I love your top, so beautiful. Sometimes I wonder is it women who are worse than men than accepting compliments and being critical of ourselves. It’s so good and important to say thank you rather than make excuses which is what I do quite a lot.

  8. It really is so true – when you say “yep, I look good and I’m proud” people often take that as arrogance. But then when you deny a compliment, that’s somehow ok? You work soooo hard on yourself and you should be allowed to be proud and to hold your head high with self-confidence. I love this!

    • That’s the thing – why do we all automatically jump to “arrogance” vs. confidence – confidence is such a great thing to finally have, why should we feel guilty for having it??

    • Thank you!! I haven’t worn the shirt in at least two years (wore it on a trip to Punta Cana with my husband but ever since, it never fit quite right…) so it was awesome to pull it out and have it fit perfectly again. YAY!!

  9. I think a lot of it comes down to ego and taking things personally. If you feel great about yourself, but are with someone else who feels threatened by your confidence, their ego feels challenged or they can feel personally attacked. It’s a very interesting dynamic.

    • That’s a really good point – and I find myself pulling way back when I’m in a crowd like that which isn’t fair necessarily either. A tough dynamic to navigate in those cases, for sure.

  10. Pingback: Guilt – good/bad? | EatDrinkBreatheSweat

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