I’ve read a few studies on affirmation, and its power as a love language. I’ve heard the results of kindness being contagious.
Have you ever stopped to wonder if that compliment you gave to the lady at the grocery store had any kind of influence?
One of my favorite things about my daughter is her effortlessness in giving compliments.
Since she was able to talk, she has been dropping compliment bombs around town for even the simplest of things.
A cashier’s diamond studs.
An elderly man’s glasses.
A homeless person’s cute dog.
The lady at the library who wears the pretty rings.
Her compliments flow ever so naturally, and always come as a surprise to me. You would think I would expect them after repeatedly hearing her little voice chime in, delivering these unwarranted niceties.
Yet still, she finds a way to surprise me by noticing something unique.
Not only is it an act of compassion, but a testament to how she notices everything. Her young and spongelike mind is constantly absorbing what is happening. Remaining in a steady state of wonder and mastering the craft of living presently.
Is anyone taking notes yet? I have a feeling that we, the adults, are missing out on this commodity.
One thing I’ve continued to remind her as she grows is that there is value and importance in how we use our words.
Simply put, we speak life or death in the way we position what we say.
Of course, there are factors to consider like tone, inflection, or sequencing of our words. Yet we can always boil it down to “Did those words make me feel good? Or did they hurt?”
In Proverbs 12:25, the writer Solomon tells us, “Anxiety weighs down the heart, but a kind word cheers it up.”
At this rate, our world feels like it’s in a constant state of anxiety, and we all could use some cheering up. You either will agree or feel in denial about this fact. Let’s at least all be on the same page with accepting the compliments we do get.
Truly accepting the compliment looks like saying “Thank you, I’ll accept that.” Instead of our knee-jerk reaction to respond or assume, “Oh stop, you don’t mean it.”
Take time to consider the last time you gave a heartfelt compliment to someone, or maybe received a compliment yourself. How did you feel? Did it make your day better or worse? Did it make you feel encouraged or did it have an adverse effect?
We often find ourselves living deeply in our minds. Negative self-talk or replaying the same scenarios that only steal our time.
I’ll challenge you with this, and hope it serves you well. Try saying something kind to someone today. Make an effort to observe, recognize, and speak life with the words you say.
Local Pulse Staff Writer & Holy Moments Columnist, Makenna Curtis