I have a friend who connects with me through commenting on my physical appearance every time we meet. She’s not even aware she does it. Many of us do this!
I’ve noticed lately many kids receive compliments based on how they look or what they wear as opposed to WHO THEY ARE. Little boys being told ‘Aren’t you handsome, big muscles, strong, tall etc.. Little girls being told aren’t you pretty/cute/gorgeous/pretty dress.. etc etc.
Now I’m all for compliments and positivity but it has to go deeper than appearance and it has to be honest. It got me thinking how important it is to connect with others and particularly kids with positive statements that don’t always involve their physical appearance.
We are not just our bodies. We are who we are in our minds and our hearts. Of course it’s important to build healthy self esteem with positive body statements also – but it has to be about other stuff too!
Here are 20 ways to compliment that aren’t about physical appearance:
1) You’re empowering
2) I like your voice and what you have to say
3) You are a strong and resilient person
4) I’m so happy you exist
5) I think you have interesting ideas
6) Our conversations always make me think
7) You matter a lot to me
8) You’re intelligent
9) You’re passion is contagious
10) Your confidence is refreshing
11) You’re a warm hearted person
12) It’s great to see someone care so much
13) You’re really important to me
14) I love how creative you are
15) You have a real talent with…..
16) You have great taste in…
17) Your laugh is contagious! It makes me feel like laughing too!
18) I love how kind and caring you are to other people..
19) It’s always so good to see you and being with you makes me really happy!
20) You’ve really inspired me…
How we talk to our kids becomes their inner voice… and how we talk to ourselves is directly correlated to our sense of happiness. (You can say these things to yourself too!)
Has anybody else noticed how frequently people try to connect through compliments on the physical? The conversation can change. Language matters. Words matter.