Let it Land: Compliments are often more for others than you

I was reminded of a communication phenomena this weekend that I have realized for a few years but need work on applying.

I attended the Prince George component of the Great Canadian Ultimate Game,

I got some praise for organizing the PG portion of the GCUG

I got some praise for organizing the PG portion of the GCUG

a Ultimate Frisbee game that in 2015 was played in 31 Canadian communities and 3 international communities over 34 consecutive hours.  I was the organizer for my community.  Not surprisingly,  after the match, folks thanked me for organizing the activity because it is a interesting event to be a part of and because they recognized that they would’t have been able to participate that evening unless someone stepped up and did the work to make it so.

As I have been organizing this same event for the last 5 years, I have got it down pat and don’t consider it a tremendous amount of work or significantly difficult to put together.  Therefore, when folks started to give me kudos, I  responded with “I didn’t do much.” or “It’s hardly anything.”  This might seem perfectly reasonable and authentic; however, I’ve discovered it’s not what people want to hear.

Let praise land for the benefit of others

Let praise land for the benefit of others

When people offer praise, they don’t want to be told that there is nothing really to be complemented about.  They are giving you a gift and they are expecting you to receive that gift and when you do, they get a psychological boost.  It feels good to give a complement well received.

Therefore, my challenge will be to do a better job of letting appreciation land when I am fortunate enough to generate it.  It’s not always about me.

Have you ever experience this dynamic before?  What do you think about it and do you have any thoughts on how to best receive a complement gifted your way?



Comment below, tweet me @gsjonuk, or email me at thejonuks@shaw.ca

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2 Responses to Let it Land: Compliments are often more for others than you

  1. Jenn says:

    Good reminder!

    I’m constantly spreading this message to others. We have been schooled in humility regarding our efforts to the point of missing that it deflates the person gifting you with recognition and thanks. People need to learn to accept such gifts gracefully – of course, adding an inclusion of nay others who helped is good as well.

  2. gsjonuk says:

    Absolutely Jenn. I didn’t mention that in the post because I was hoping someone raised it in the comments, like you awesomely did. If you have others to share credit with then do so. Perhaps something like, “Thanks for noticing, make sure you recognize John also, he helped tremendously to bring this all together.”

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