Friday, January 30, 2009

How Many Soaps Actually Fit In A Box?

Good news--I am no longer feeling blah. Yesterday I felt "eh" and today... well today I'm just plain optimistic. My guess is 95% of my optimism is due to it being Friday. Last night Michael and I had a great workout and then went to my favorite bbq joint where I ate my weight in brisket and fried okra. Ok, scratch that, my optimistic attitude is purely due to the fried okra. As it should be.

So if I might dust off the ol' soap box and hop on it for a minute. Something has been bothering me this week and I'd like to share it with you.

When you are young (<18), you are praised for doing what's right, encouraged to succeed, and embraced when you've had a bad day, a bad week, or simply a cut on your finger. Then you become an adult and everything stops. You're sick? You get bombarded with stories of how so-and-so is just as sick (if not MORE sick), you get rolls of eyes from those that don't believe you, and you get one day recovery time. When you succeed, you are LUCKY if you get a pat on the back, but usually, it's just expected. And compliments? Oh no.... you're not getting those anymore, you should have enough confidence in yourself that compliments are no longer necessary.

So I think that attitude is crap. I'm not saying you should be treated like a child your whole life, but some aspects of your childhood follow into adulthood and it seems so odd that so much should stop. It's a giant (and unwelcomed) wake up call the first time something neat happens and you realize you're celebrating alone.

Am I the only one that gets a huge surge of happiness when someone compliments me? I don't think I am. We're so afraid people will get a big head or we're so consumed with our own insecurities that we keep it to ourselves. "They're an adult, they should already know their presentation was great, don't need to hear anything from me." Yes they DO! Probably more than you'll ever know. I look at myself as a fairly confident person, but when someone takes the time out of their busy day to say something nice, it means... so much.

My mom has said I was blessed with the gift of being empathetic. I am pretty good at putting myself in their shoes and thinking, "If I were them right now, what would I want me to say?" The problem with this so-called "gift" is I expect the same in return. I will share something with someone and get my feelings hurt when their response isn't what I expected. I realize I am super sensitive and it's not something I particularly love about myself. I wish I could have it both ways--be empathetic towards others yet not have my feelings hurt when it's not reciprocated.

So my challenge to you, dear blogger friends, is to remember there is still a pig-tailed (or spiky-haired) child in all of us. Hearing words of love, support, and reassurance from you can make someone's day so much brighter. It's one of the best gifts you can give and it never, ever grows old. Not to mention it's FREE and last I heard we're in a recession. So spread the wealth!

I have now stepped off my soap box and will get back to work.

Editor's note: This post is not about any particular person or situation. It's just a general thought process and I figured If I posted it on here I might make room in my head for other important thoughts. I need all the help I can get. Thanks.

5 comments:

Emily said...

I am the same kind of person too... since I work for my dad.. I feel like I never hear enough positives... I mean i dont hear negatives alot but not nearly enough praises and I am the type of person... who like positive encouragement and feedback. The world could use a lot more merediths in it:)

kaitlin said...

:)

Susie said...

I have always felt that it is the people with the most insecurities that are the least likely to offer praise and compliments to others. The thing is, so many of us can't get into the heads of others and we don't realize how many insecure people there are out there. I still say that a compliment from a complete stranger is a very nice gift. The stranger has nothing to gain by sharing their kind words and thoughts, but they make one feel very very good about themselves. :) :)
Mom

Haley Nicodemus said...

You nailed the tail on the donkey! I am the exact same way. When someone compliments me, I feel like I've won the lottery. When I do nice things for people, I sometimes expect them to do the same and when they don't, my panties get all in a wad.

Glad you're feeling better!

Haley Nicodemus said...

I am dying right now. Rat tail?? RAT TAIL??? I haven't gotten past #2 yet. I am now going to continue reading...

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