My hubby asked me what was the best advice/tip/motivation that I had to keep it up. To keep on my journey and not quit even when I felt like I was going nowhere, I wasn’t seeing the changes I wanted. I have thought long and hard about it and there were lots of things that helped me keep it up. There is one big one though I wanted to share that really helped to motivate me and that was compliments.
And no I am not fishing for compliments by talking about this!
I don’t know about the rest of you but I have a really hard time accepting compliments. From my experience in giving compliments to others I think a lot of you probably are the same way. I know for me I have a hard time when someone compliments me because it means they have noticed something about me, something I did or said, and that means I haven’t been blending into the background as well as I would like! I am a shy person and don’t like to be the center of attention, I hate talking in front of groups…all of that just makes me want to die! I will do just about anything to avoid it. I especially felt this way 95 pounds ago. I hated the way I looked. Even on days where I thought maybe I actually looked nice I would later see a picture and just want to cry, was that really what I looked like?!? I was really good at sticking to the sidelines, blending in and making sure no one noticed me. Hahaha that makes me laugh to think about it because I am almost 6 feet tall and was pretty big, I kind of stood out!
So as I started making changes in my life and those changes started to be noticeable it was exciting. But then I would plateau for awhile, I would feel that I was working so hard and my clothes weren’t feeling any more loose, I didn’t feel like I was looking any different. But then I would get a compliment. The two people that stick out in my mind are my Uncle Ed and Aunt Kristie. Every time I saw them they would say “wow! you look so good”. Ed would always say “hey skinny” even when I wasn’t. And I would always brush it aside and babble on about how I didn’t look good, changes weren’t happening like I wanted. But then one day I had a talk with myself. I do this A LOT. Like daily. I tried to figure out why it was so hard to take a compliment. Why did I always so quickly have to negate something nice that someone said to me? I decided I was going to try to change that, change my thinking and my reaction. Even if I didn’t agree with what the person said I was simply going to say thank you.
I started noticing it made a difference for me. Now don’t start thinking that people were just pouring out compliments to me, that wasn’t the case, but they always seemed to come just at the right time. On a day when I hadn’t worked out as hard as I “thought” I should, or I had splurged a lot, or was just having a crummy day. Those compliments are what motivated me. The comments of you look good, what have you been doing, your pants are so baggy, all of those made me keep trying. I couldn’t always see the progress but others could and it helped me push on.
Since others compliments have helped me so much I decided I was going to pay it forward and compliment people. I know many people worry that when someone has lost weight and they tell them “hey, you look good” that the person will feel like “oh well I look good now so that means I looked horrible before”. BUT THEY WON’T!! Ok, maybe some random weirdo will think that but it’s worth taking the chance. I never once was offended when someone told me I was looking good. To me they were saying I can see your efforts are paying off, keep up the good work! So people, give compliments. Please. You never know the effect it will have on someone whether it’s complimenting them or their awesome new shoes or a new hair do or something they made. Stop thinking the compliments in your head and start saying them out loud! You never know when you might just turn someone’s entire day around or give them the motivation to keep trying.
And if someone is brave enough to give you a compliment take a lesson from me and just say thanks. It will make you both feel awesome.