In a study of more than 400 people, nearly 70% felt embarrassment or discomfort with recognition or receiving a compliment.

I think you did a phenomenal job

Accepting compliments graciously is about recognizing the kindness and goodwill of the giver, not you (the receiver).

When someone compliments you, they tell you how your actions impacted them. Respect their feelings even when you don't completely agree or feel uncomfortable.

Don't contradict them. Instead...

Say thanks

Say "thank you" and accept the praise.

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Maintain eye contact and smile to better show your gratitude.

If you freeze and can't say more, know that a simple "thanks" is enough.

Remember, most people feel awkward when they receive praise. That means there's absolutely nothing "wrong" with you, AND you're awesome.

Reflect, don't deflect

You're awesome. Accept it!

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But what does that look like when accepting praise?

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  • Immediately shift the focus onto someone or something else

  • Make fun of yourself or your work

  • Minimize your achievement

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  • Reflect the compliment back to the person giving it

  • Be genuine with your words and body language

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Don't Say

  • "It was all thanks to Josh. He is the true MVP."

  • "Haha, sometimes I get it right."

  • "Don't mention it. Just doing my job."

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Do Say

  • "That means a lot coming from someone so talented."

  • "Your work on our last project inspired me. Thank you for your leadership."

Stay humble

Michael Scott from the Office, bragging:

If you love praise, don't be like Michael Scott from The Office. Accepting a compliment doesn't mean bragging.

Show appreciation without appearing arrogant.

Acknowledge your efforts or the work you put in, but share credit where it's due. For example:

I really appreciate your kind words, and I'm grateful for the support and collaboration from everyone involved.

Moira Rose from Schitt's Creek says,


Your coworker praises your contribution to a project during a team meeting. How should you respond?

Take Action

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Make every day Compliment Day!


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