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How do you handle compliments?

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Old 04-29-2002, 07:15 PM   #1
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Default How do you handle compliments?

This may be a strange topic. But I was wondering how all of you handle compliments.

I usually respond positively to compliments about my work or something I've done. I base my self-esteem on my achievements and accomplishments. That wasn't a problem in high school or college. But it isn't always realistic in the real world where you often hear more criticism than compliments.

I also don't have problems with people complimenting my present appearance. If someone says "you look very nice today" or the person likes something I'm wearing, then I'm able to accept that. Yet I have a difficult time accepting compliments based on my overall appearance.

I was consistently working hard to improve my body and health. I was drinking plenty of water, exercising regularly, and eating healthier than I usually would. Then I received two compliments. My mom and supervisor both mentioned that they could see a real difference in me. They wanted to encourage me and let me know they noticed the positive change in my appearance.

I felt happy and proud of myself at the time. Then I slowly realized that my sabotaging efforts began soon after I heard those compliments. My actions were subtle, but persistent. I would forget to drink my water one day. Then I'd forget to bring my tennis shoes with me to the gym. It all of those little actions that led to me gaining back every ounce of weight I had lost.

I don't understand why I'm doing this to myself. Maybe I honestly don't know how to react to these compliments because they're so foreign to me. Maybe I feel more vulnerable because people are beginning to see me, and I've been ignored for so long. Does this make sense to anyone else? How can I permanently lose weight if I'm frightened of the results? This doesn't make *any* sense.

I'll gladly take any suggestions you have to offer. If someone else has had this problem, then please let me know how you dealt with it. (Yes, I know I'm neurotic. ) Thanks!
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Old 04-30-2002, 01:46 PM   #2
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I know you were hoping for a post full of answers here...
but I can't offer you that.
I can tell you however.. I TOTALLY understand and have been there. You don't even have to be at goal.
I tend to do best when no one knows what I am doing.
I am not one to do this to "impress" people.
In fact... once it gets noticed I am improving... I too tend to sabatoge myself too. Why?? Hmmm. Today I have no answers for you. I am not to the point yet that anyone is noticing yet.
But... you will discover the whys if you keep writing about it.
I have heard.. and it is only a theory... that if you hand write it instead of typing... you use a different part of your brain... and maybe something new will be exposed to you.
Good luck... wish I could help... but could only let you know... you are NOT alone in this neurosis.
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Old 04-30-2002, 03:50 PM   #3
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I'm not sure I really have an answer, but I thought I'd share some of the feelings I've been having lately....

First of all, the compliments towards my weightloss have been flying lately. Today, in fact, I've gotten 3 compliments. As I lose more and more weight I get more and more compliments from more and more people. I also have noticed that I sabatoge myself, although I'm not sure if it's directly related to the compliments or not. I mean in a way the compliments keep me motivated.

I've had a good month of weightloss, but as I was approaching the 200# mark (a weight I have not seen in YEARS) I noticed myself hindering my efforts. Why? I'm not sure. I think it is partly because I feel like I'm entering a totally different world which scares the **** out of me. I think that stems from the compliments. I'm a different person now, and even though I still have quite a bit of weight to lose I KNOW I look so much better than I did. People noticing that is just an affirmation of what I already see. When guys start noticing, though, and I happen to work with more guys than females, it's sort of scary.

Maybe it's just a matter of admitting what the real deal is. Are you afraid of losing weight and if you are, why?
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Old 05-02-2002, 04:57 PM   #4
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I have to get my few cents worth in here, too. I have lost 60 pounds over the past 10 months and the difference is especially noticeable. I work on a campus, but in a trades building where I am the only female. You can just imagine the comments.

I get comments from, have you lost weight, to you're so hot. Really now! ...I'm 50. Anyway, I just smile and say thank you and feed off of that for encouragement. I also have many friends who told me to stop losing weight 20 pounds ago because I look just fine to them now. However, I still have a goal in mind to be at 120 pounds (that's another 6 pounds) and I plan to do that for me, whether the other people think I have lost enough, or not.

If I find that I am starting to sabatoge my efforts, I come to this list. Nobody here can see me, so they have no idea if I look nice today, or not. They just have to believe what I am telling them. So for that, I get the actual encouragement to stay on program and not worry about how I look today.

Beware, though, of people who try to sabotage your efforts. Sometimes people don't realize that they are doing it, but tend to tempt you for some hidden reason...mostly jealousy. Acknowledge those situations and have a plan, in advance, of how you will handle those times. You won't always be able to resist the temptations, but I find that if I have a plan, I don't do as much damage to my weight loss as when I don't have a plan.

I wish you the best of luck in your efforts. But most of all, lose the weight to be a healthier you. It's about you and for you.

Take care,
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WW 186/125.75/120 May 2002
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May Goal: 10 pounds
Start Weight: 188
Present Weight: 179
Lost: 9 pounds
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Old 05-03-2002, 01:50 AM   #5
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Peggy... thank you for your words of wisdom and congratulations on your accomplishments !!!! You go for YOUR gold !!!!!
CONGRATULATIONS !!!!
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