YOU DO YOU
Stop being embarrassed by compliments
Everybody loves compliments, right?
Well, actually, a study by Christopher Littlefield suggests that as many as 70% of people experience embarrassment and discomfort in response to praise.
And it’s not only about self esteem. Littlefield relays a quote from psychologist and author Guy Winch:
“People with low self-esteem are often uncomfortable receiving compliments but not everyone who is uncomfortable receiving compliments necessarily has low self-esteem.”
Here are a few simple behavioral pivots to use if you want to start graciously accepting compliments.
If you often…look for a reason the compliment is erroneous or gratuitous.
Then…shift your perspective. Seek first to validate the compliment instead of negating it.
Littlefield explains that the surprise and intensity of receiving positive compliments makes people a little panicky. Negating the surprising compliment is a shortcut to returning to a calm cognitive state.
If you often…cringe, blush, divert, or deflect.
Then…compliment yourself more often.
“Each time you do something you’re proud of, take a moment and commend yourself on a job well-done,” psychotherapist and certified life coach Tess Brigham told The Zoe Report (TZR). “It’s really important to celebrate our wins for our sense of self and to help stay motivated and excited to take on new challenges.”
If you often…deflect or even disagree with the compliment.
Then…mind your manners. Just saying “thank you” is the kindest thing you can do for both yourself and the person who complimented you.
That’s all you need to say to ensure both you and your complimenter get a boost of serotonin and dopamine. Plus, this simple gratitude properly acknowledges the shared experience that inspired the compliment in the first place.
If you often…process compliments by thinking in terms of emotions and fears. (And you suspect that in your case, low self esteem is impacting your ability to accept compliments.)
Then…process compliments by thinking in terms of facts—the precise words you heard.
Studies have suggested that people with low self esteem are less likely to twist positive compliments to fit their negative self images when they use a concrete mindset instead of an abstract one.
- Concrete thinking focuses on perceptions governed by your sense of smell, sight, sound, taste, and touch.
- Abstract thinking focuses on ideas, feelings, and other intangibles.
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Sunday, January 22 is Lunar New Year
How to celebrate: Wear red or decorate your home with red. (One legend associated with Lunar New Year talks about Nian, a flesh-eating beast that happened to fear the color red.)
Tuesday, January 24 is Belly Laugh Day
How to celebrate: Enjoy (and pass on) one of the Belly Laugh Energy recipes here.
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How to Communicate Better in 2023
Having strong communication platforms doesn’t automatically mean you have strong communications. People can be communicating on these platforms all day every day and still feel completely confused.
Here are some internal communication ground rules to live by in 2023.
Evaluate Messages for Clarity
In this post, Psychology Today shares Soul Pancake’s The Science of Love clip, which focuses on relationships, but nevertheless points out a fundamental human tendency to focus on our needs and neglect considering others’ needs.
“We so often find ourselves on one side of the fence because we only know what we need out of a friendship. But we never even think about what the other person’s needs are,” the host points out.
Takeaway: Consider what your audience needs and wants along with what you need and want to communicate.
Focus on Reach and Relevance
Make sure your messages are actually reaching the relevant people at the right times by taking these basic steps.
- When you make communication decisions, consider:
- What medium will reach the most employees?
- What time would be best for most employees?
- Use an accessibility checker, such as Outlook’s, before sending messages.
- Consult with appropriate audiences before sending particularly sensitive messages.
Takeaway: People aren’t eagerly waiting for your messages. Put in a little work to reach them.
Consolidate and Streamline Your Messages
If you’re overwhelmed by trying to figure out which tools and channels to use for communication, then your audience is probably overwhelmed as well. Intranets, or tools that essentially achieve the same one-touch consolidation, will make everyone’s lives easier.
- Banana Tag / Staff Base, an internal communication hub
- Smarp, a platform that helps you deliver highly personalized communication
- Poppulo, a platform for delivering personalized, relevant information to distributed teams
- Vevox, a consolidated polling and Q&A platform to keep everyone in the loop
Takeaway: Keep people in the loop, not in an overwhelming loop.
Career Change: A Focusing Worksheet
Are you ready for a career change? Are you sure? Confident?
Just thinking about making a career change has been known to give people ulcers. It can be hard to sort out your thoughts, let alone map out your next steps. The prompts and questions below will help you gain the clarity you need to move onward and upward.
How does hearing these words make you feel: So what do you do?
Why it matters: If this question produces overwhelmingly negative thoughts, then it might be a sign to consider a change.
How does the idea of trying something else make you feel?
Why it matters: The authors of this study isolated a common sentiment in people motivated to change careers. The authors explained they all “experienced a sort of awareness, a realization of the existence of a vocation, hitherto hidden or not followed. This realization was related to their values or to their interests.”
How does stepping out of your comfort zone make you feel?
Why it matters: Openness to new experience has been linked to positive career change outcomes.
Would you be able to write an essay about why you want to do this?
Why it matters: As career strategist and recruiter Jenny Foss said in this Muse article:
“So many people know they hate or have outgrown their jobs, but they don’t have much awareness beyond that. You’ve got to get clear on the why before you just start steamrolling toward something new. Otherwise, you could end up in a different spot, but one that you still ultimately hate—and what’s the point of that effort?”
Do you find yourself yearning to develop skills that have nothing to do with your current career?
Why it matters: Another commonality across successful career changers: many of them (about one third) pursue special training to help make their transition smooth.
Are you pursuing something good or avoiding something bad?
Why it matters: Career pivot coach Julie Tobi says in this Today article: “If you’re running from conflict with colleagues or anxiety with work-related situations, you’re likely to bring those things with you to your next career. However, if you’re not fulfilled by the work itself and find it uninspiring, by all means pivot into a career that does fulfill and inspire.”
Plans are great, but do you have a prototype?
Why it matters: “Prototype your new career before you make the first move and be aware that a new life is part of the deal,” says Dirk Alberti, Director of “Time To Move On” Coaching, in this Moving Worlds post. You can read his guide to doing it on LinkedIn.
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