"All the cool kids do it!"

Does this sound familiar? 

"I love your haircut!" says one woman to her friend.

"I love your dress!" says the friend right back.

It can feel completely natural to compliment someone after they give you a compliment. Share the love, take care of everyone else and all that, right? In fact, in my experience, it often feels uncomfortable not to compliment the giver. Someone says that they love your new glasses and how are you supposed to reply, if not with a compliment to them?!

How about accepting compliments like kids do, with a "thank you!" and a big smile. It's more than the good manners your parents taught you; it's a simple, small confidence-building opportunity. Here's why:

Confidence can come with big wins (an unexpected promotion, new client, accepted proposal) but that kind of confidence is not only unpredictable but relies on someone else to take action. That's chance, not a reliable way to build confidence. Instead, confidence comes from the small moments: putting your cell phone in the glovebox, ditching bad habits, taking quiet breaks, using your gut instinct. Accepting compliments is another small, confidence-building opportunity.

We could stand to live our lives a little more like kids do: open, honest and with genuine authenticity. This is one way to bring a little of that kid stuff into your life. Thanks for reading.

PS. This great piece via Upworthy talks about complements that aren't appearance-inspired. Very cool.