100 lb. Club - Why can't I just take the compliment?




Smiling_Sara
06-03-2009, 09:55 AM
I get so mad at myself after the fact. Sometimes I hear the following comments " You look great ~ You're so skinny ~ If you keep losing you're gonna dissapear " you get the idea, I will say something like oh thanks, but I still have a ways to go. After the fact I always feel like I"m belittling the compliment others went out of their way to give me. Why can't I just stop at thanks, or thanks, I feel so much better now that I've lost 80 pounds, or something like that....it's always thanks....BUT ...... I mean I do have more weight to lose, but why not just be grateful that ppl are saying how great I look in the now? Why trump that with a negative?

ugh, vent over.


luvja
06-03-2009, 10:06 AM
I'm the same way. In fact, compliments make me feel very very uncomfortable. I think the negative comments I say afterwards help the situation not be so awkward. That's just my 2 cents.

Rosinante
06-03-2009, 10:06 AM
I don't know the why but I do know that our response can be trained, in just the same way as 'no' to a plate of cookies becomes automatic.

Next time someone says something kind about your weightloss, take a breath and just say 'thanks'. Honestly, it's just a matter of training and we Successful Losers are good at that, aren't we?


synger
06-03-2009, 10:18 AM
When I was little, and just beginning to sing solos in church, I'd always get compliments... and I never knew how to handle them. I'd mumble something like "thanks... but it was just a song..."

My mom took me aside one day and read me the riot act. She explained that for the people who complimented me, they were celebrating with me. It was unutterably rude of me to be so disrespectful as to not only ignore the compliment, but to tell them they were wrong to boot.

She made me practice answering gracefully. I remember looking in the mirror in my room, imagining someone thanking me for a song, and then acting out my response. "Thank you. I'm so glad you enjoyed it." "Thank you so much. I really enjoyed singing for you." "Thank you. *smile* It's a great joy of mine to worship God through my music."

As time went on, it's become automatic. I still get compliments on my singing. And I still use the same phrases, and mean them, that I practiced so long ago. My husband has even remarked on it, and on how I try to make each person who compliments me feel like I appreciate the gift they've given me.

And the compliments ARE gifts. The person who compliments you doesn't know who else has said soemthing, or what they've said. They don't know how far you've come, nor do they care how far you've to go. They are sharing a celebration with you, now, at the moment you're at. That should be acknowledged and thanked. They don't want to know that you've got another 50 pounds to lose. They are focusing on now. I know you're focusing on the whole thing, but they are connecting at one point along your journey.

So you may want to try some role-playing. I know it worked really well for me. Imagine someone complimenting you, then look in the mirror and practice how you'd like to answer. Keep at it until you get the phrasing comfortable, and you learn to stop before you say more than you should.

Soon enough, it will be second nature.

beerab
06-03-2009, 10:18 AM
I think a lot of people are unhappy with their bodies so when they get a compliment they don't agree with it. It's like you've almost conditioned yourself to not receive compliments well. I used to be the same way- my husband would say you look great or you are beautiful and I'd be like ug no I'm fat. One day he was like dude just take the compliment! And I remember watching something about self esteem and how you should just take the compliment and pretty soon you'll start to be more happy to accept comments- it just takes time to break your previous conditioning.

Since you've lost 80 lbs I'm sure you are much happier with your body. Next time you receive a compliment do not say anything else but THANK YOU. Believe their compliment- tell yourself, yeah, they are right- I do look great. :D

Thighs Be Gone
06-03-2009, 10:29 AM
It took me several months before I truly meant, "thank you" when someone noticed my weight. Now, I really DO appreciate it when someone gives me a compliment. Before, I was not accustomed to receiving ANY attention and wasn't sure how to react--honestly, I questioned the sincerity sometimes of the person giving me the compliment. Now I usually say, "thank you, I really appreciate you saying that.." because I really do appreciate it. It has been a long road and not just physically--mentally too. I feel more deserving of the compliment more now I guess than I did several months ago.

L R K
06-03-2009, 10:31 AM
Wow 80lbs! That's amazing! It's tough to accept compliments when you still feel that you have a long way to go but you should really be happy and proud with the weight you have lost because it looks like a lot of people around you are :)

Julie131
06-03-2009, 10:32 AM
My mom took me aside one day and read me the riot act. She explained that for the people who complimented me, they were celebrating with me. It was unutterably rude of me to be so disrespectful as to not only ignore the compliment, but to tell them they were wrong to boot.

And the compliments ARE gifts. The person who compliments you doesn't know who else has said soemthing, or what they've said. They don't know how far you've come, nor do they care how far you've to go. They are sharing a celebration with you, now, at the moment you're at. That should be acknowledged and thanked. They don't want to know that you've got another 50 pounds to lose. They are focusing on now. I know you're focusing on the whole thing, but they are connecting at one point along your journey.


This is so true. I never looked at a compliment quite like that before. From now on I am going to try to be much more gracious to someone who gives me a compliment! Thanks Synger! Great post!

cfmama
06-03-2009, 10:46 AM
I don`t know but I have a really hard time with it too. I am learning to accept them graciously but wow... it`s hard!

Onmyway
06-03-2009, 10:47 AM
Synger, Your response was perfect and beautifully written.
Borntofly, congrats on your success!

Trazey34
06-03-2009, 11:14 AM
hmmm.. i don't really SEE that as a negative tho!!! When someone comments "wow you look so great, you've lost a lot of weight" I always say THANKS! I feel great...of course I still have a ways to go - but it's nice to know someone noticed! thanks! ... pretty much what you said, but i don't think that's belittling their comment -- i'm acknowledging it, but also letting them know YES I KNOW I'M STILL FAT lol which is TRUE! I think a HAPPY and ENTHUSIASTIC response is more important so they know they made your day :)

scarletmeshell
06-03-2009, 11:20 AM
When I was little, and just beginning to sing solos in church, I'd always get compliments... and I never knew how to handle them. I'd mumble something like "thanks... but it was just a song..."

My mom took me aside one day and read me the riot act. She explained that for the people who complimented me, they were celebrating with me. It was unutterably rude of me to be so disrespectful as to not only ignore the compliment, but to tell them they were wrong to boot.

She made me practice answering gracefully. I remember looking in the mirror in my room, imagining someone thanking me for a song, and then acting out my response. "Thank you. I'm so glad you enjoyed it." "Thank you so much. I really enjoyed singing for you." "Thank you. *smile* It's a great joy of mine to worship God through my music."

As time went on, it's become automatic. I still get compliments on my singing. And I still use the same phrases, and mean them, that I practiced so long ago. My husband has even remarked on it, and on how I try to make each person who compliments me feel like I appreciate the gift they've given me.

And the compliments ARE gifts. The person who compliments you doesn't know who else has said soemthing, or what they've said. They don't know how far you've come, nor do they care how far you've to go. They are sharing a celebration with you, now, at the moment you're at. That should be acknowledged and thanked. They don't want to know that you've got another 50 pounds to lose. They are focusing on now. I know you're focusing on the whole thing, but they are connecting at one point along your journey.

So you may want to try some role-playing. I know it worked really well for me. Imagine someone complimenting you, then look in the mirror and practice how you'd like to answer. Keep at it until you get the phrasing comfortable, and you learn to stop before you say more than you should.

Soon enough, it will be second nature.

Your post made tears come to my eyes, what wonderful insight, thank you.

scarletmeshell
06-03-2009, 11:26 AM
I am not sure why a compliment makes us uncomfortable, but congratulations on your weight loss!

Alana in Canada
06-03-2009, 12:16 PM
Synger--your Mom is a very wise woman! Good for her (and you).

In my world you must deflect a compliment otherwise you are "letting it go to your head" and indulging in the sin of pride. Nonsense--and as your Mom pointed out, deflecting can be rude to others who are being kind. So that's a much needed perspective shift for me, thanks!

Congrats Born to Fly! You are doing so well! Now, go practice in a mirror, lol!

matt_H
06-03-2009, 12:42 PM
I have so many issues with this and I'm trying to be better about it. :(

You are doing awesome work and you should be very proud of your accomplishments!

CollegeGirl
06-03-2009, 03:00 PM
Hmm this is tough, sometimes I feel very very uncomfortable when people compliment me on my weighloss or even discuss it. I think I am so ashamed that I was so overweight to begin with, I know that that is wrong and I have tons of body image issues, i just try to say thanks and change the subject. I think there is something to genuinely taking compliments as they are a gift. Just work on it I know how tough it is!!

JulieJ08
06-03-2009, 03:07 PM
I certainly believe in taking a compliment properly, and I think I usually do that. But sometimes I realize later that I've done exactly that "Thanks, but ..." thing. It's so frustrating to not even realize it until the next day.

DCHound
06-03-2009, 03:11 PM
It is really hard to accept compliments ~ I've never been good at it, particularly from men (I used to wonder what their angle was, what was wrong with them that they would want to waste a compliment on ME, etc.). I'm trying though.

kiramira
06-03-2009, 03:14 PM
Hi there!
I think Matt H had a great thread about this a few weeks ago and our WW group discussed this a few weeks ago.

I've been thinking about this alot and I believe that we don't accept compliments because we have been so full of self-loathing about our size for so long that we don't feel we DESERVE a compliment until we are "PERFECT". Which will never happen, as nobody is perfect.

So what I've been working on is this: when I get a compliment, I say "Thank you." And that is it. I shut the internal dialogue off right there (you know, the "but I still have x lbs to go and my thighs are HUGE and I hate my belly and I wish my arms were more toned...". Perhaps one day I'll actually MEAN "thank you!", but for now, to cut off the self-loathing at the start has been really helpful.

Kira

ali_cat
06-15-2009, 01:48 AM
I certainly hope I'm not interrupting or dredging up a dead thread or whatnot, but seeing as this is close to something I deal with when I try to lose weight (failing miserably and at my highest yet, but that's another story) and only under 2 weeks old, I thought I'd jump in.

I hope this isn't offensive to anyone either, this is just how my mind thinks. To me, the fact that I'm so overweight and am having to get it off isn't something I want to be proud of. I should have never gotten to this point in the first place and the fact that I did is shameful. So I don't want attention for it. I don't want people to notice that I've lost weight, say anything, point it out, compliment me...whatever. And in the past when someone has said something, its like I panic and fall off the deep end and gain anything I've lost back. I like being invisible, but clearly it doesn't work so well when you actually talk to other people on a daily basis.

So...what do I do about that one? I can't just hide in a cave until I've lost all this weight so that no one notices. I know I should be grateful and gracious when it comes to those compliments but I really would prefer if no one noticed.

Again, sorry if I'm intruding or something.

Stella
06-15-2009, 08:54 AM
A lot of women (not so much men!) feel uncomfortable when they are praised or complimented. Maybe they do not want to appear vain if they agree with the compliment. I think that`s sad because you worked hard at what you have achieved, so you deserve the credits.

I feel uncomfortable being praised for something I have not earned (e.g. beautiful eyes or being fluent in two languages, as an ex-pat). When however you have worked at something it`s different. You can be proud of it and have it acknowledged by other people.

Stella

Stella
06-15-2009, 08:59 AM
To me, the fact that I'm so overweight and am having to get it off isn't something I want to be proud of. I should have never gotten to this point in the first place and the fact that I did is shameful. So I don't want attention for it. I don't want people to notice that I've lost weight, say anything, point it out, compliment me...

Absolutely disagree!

It`s obbviusly a lot harder to get rid of it as it was to gain it in the first place! Many people keep gaining or stay where they are or try hard to lose it, but without success!

If you managed to lose loads of weight you have achieved something which those who never had a weight problem never had to do and many of those who do have a weight problem have failed to do.

So what`s there not to be proud of???

TJFitnessDiva
06-15-2009, 09:09 AM
It took me a while to stop the "thank you....but" reaction to someone giving me a compliment. I finally let up on myself and decided not to make the person giving me a compliment feel bad.

A very hard thing to do but we all need to give ourselves a break :)

Schmoodle
06-15-2009, 09:30 AM
synger, what a wonderful response! I too deflect compliments. As I feel better about myself, it is becoming easier to accept them. But your post gave me a whole new perspective on the issue. Thanks! And what a wonderful mother you have. I'm sure I will use this one on my girls too.

WhitePicketFences
06-15-2009, 10:45 AM
I hope this isn't offensive to anyone either, this is just how my mind thinks. To me, the fact that I'm so overweight and am having to get it off isn't something I want to be proud of. I should have never gotten to this point in the first place and the fact that I did is shameful. So I don't want attention for it. I don't want people to notice that I've lost weight, say anything, point it out, compliment me...whatever ...

... I like being invisible, but clearly it doesn't work so well when you actually talk to other people on a daily basis.

I felt the same way for the first several months. It sounds like you are a lot like me, actually, a very private person. I wanted to be invisible, I wanted to hide in a cave until it was done.

This feeling is mostly gone for me. Day after day, month after month, my life became about this and so I was proud. I still didn't want very specific attention. But general compliments, you know, and that's what it's been.

Many relatives and old friends I haven't seen in 4 years or so didn't even know I got as fat as I did, so to them I've just been "getting in shape" or losing weight like people do (not like obese people do -- not on that scale -- and I don't take it upon myself to let people know if they already don't).

So...what do I do about that one? I can't just hide in a cave until I've lost all this weight so that no one notices. I know I should be grateful and gracious when it comes to those compliments but I really would prefer if no one noticed.

Like you said, daily life, there isn't a lot of getting around it. It happens gradually though and it's awhile (~40 lbs for me) before people notice, and when they do they aren't thinking it's been that much. If you're not telling anyone -- and I haven't been, besides my husband and now my mom -- then people won't say anything until it's a big difference that they genuinely notice. So take heart that it probably won't be as awkward as you think, at least not for awhile, and by then you'll be feeling thin -- thinnish -- or at least more normal -- and so you won't mind as much as you would now. I don't want to be invisible so much anymore.

Hello Nurse
06-15-2009, 03:18 PM
I tend to put others before myself, which usually is a bad thing. With regard to compliments, it works in my favor. I think about how the person would feel if I did not graciously accept the compliment, and in order to not hurt any feelings, I say an enthusiastic "thank you!", even if I am not feeling particularly beautiful at that moment. Maybe not the best reasoning for accepting the compliment, but it works for me!