I was talking to one of my friends about compliments today. She said she has a hard time accepting praise from others. She's not the only one- I know plenty of people who have difficulty with accolades, myself included. For some reason, we can take constructive criticism more easily than adulation. Why is that?
My son has a positive outlook on who he is. He tells me how strong he is and how he is growing bigger and bigger. When I was a small child, I remember telling others that I was a literary genius. (I had high hopes.) When you talk to most children, they will share their positive attributes or their biggest goals. Somehow, along the way to adulthood, we lose this positive outlook and tend to criticize ourselves more than focusing on our positive qualities. Perhaps it's out of fear of sounding braggadocious or becoming insufferable to others. Perhaps by the time we reach adulthood, we've heard so much criticism about who we are that we start reciting it ourselves.
I've been told I have a hard time celebrating wins. Once I achieve something, I automatically move on to the next thing on my list. One of the downsides of not celebrating achievements is that you can feel like you've never done anything at all. In addition, sometimes it's hard to get motivated to tackle the next task because everything feels a bit...monotonous.
Today (and tomorrow and the next day and the next and so on) I want to take time to celebrate wins. I want all of us to celebrate who we are, whatever it is that we do, and the fact that we've come this far. When someone says "you did a great job on such and such" or "you're so good at blank and blank" or hell, "I really like how you can burp the alphabet" I want us to say thank you. And believe in ourselves. And accept the love. Because we deserve it.
Great job on getting to this moment. You're awesome.