The following and all of the other episodes to come are snapshots of what goes on in my head, now and in the past. There are times none of this will make sense. There will be times when I might get lucky and the blog I post will be well constructed and will flow like a mountain stream to an awaiting lake below. Other times it will seem like the ramblings of a madman and you’ll ask yourself, “What the……?”
You should probably get use to the latter.
EPISODE TEN: THE CONFLICT OF COMPLIMENTS
Taking compliments has never been easy for me. When I was younger and got a compliment for something I did right, I brushed it off with a shy look and a smile or joked it off.
Now that I’m older and if I’m lucky enough to earn a compliment, depending on who it came from, I’ll either brush it off with a shy look, joke it off or wonder what kind of angle they are trying to pull on me.
I must admit, those last two are my go-to reaction. If I know and trust you, joke it off it is the way to go. If I don’t know you, you’re trying to pull a fast one…..somehow….
I know I’m not the only one who has trouble with taking compliments but with me, quite often, I don’t feel worthy of one. That all stems from low self-esteem.
Not sure why I do this. Did I not receive enough positive reinforcement as a child? Did my parents or teachers not say Good Job enough? I honestly don’t remember.
I did get decent grades and occasionally did something well or above average in school and got that phrase on paperwork. Didn’t we all? Then I wonder if I really earned those things are was the teachers just being nice. Then, at home, I can’t remember doing something that went past the average and I got any compliments.
Like I said, I can’t remember.
But blaming that on parents and teachers is a bit like a statutes of limitations. It’s so far in the past it doesn’t matter. The teachers cared and my parents loved me, that’s what matters.
And I am old enough now to understand and change what needs to be changed.
So, that being said, why do I still have a hard time accepting praise?
I have on occasion, praised myself. It’s in a quiet voice and nobody is in earshot. Something has worked correctly and all the pieces have fell into place at the right time and whatever I was working on has come out right. I have muttered to myself out loud, a praise. And then, right after I do it, I feel bad.
I feel like I’m going to jinx it. Or I’m going to bring thunder, plagues, famine and pestilence down on my head and those that I love. I might as well bring out the cat of nine tails and go to work on my bare back.
Being humble has become a way of life. And a curse.
It comes down to this. Getting compliments are hard for me. I want them. Oh yes, I do. If I think I’ve done something cool from using what few talents I have, I want them.
But if I get them, I feel like I shouldn’t get them because I’ll develop a big head and bring the world down on me to even things out. Total catch-22.
When people do good, they deserve praise. They NEED praise. Honest from the heart praise. And that even includes me. I know this.
I’m sure as soon as I hit Publish on the WordPress program and let the world read this (World??? Get him!!!), the sky might rumble and the locust might come in clouds…
…but I have to try. Right?
I better get some Raid. And a big fly swatter.
May 8th 2016