The journey into Awareness progresses as you begin to unravel the contractive and outdated perceptions and interpretations that are unwittingly running rampant through your unconscious conditioning. Many channel an enormous, but necessary amount of attention and exploration into their personal journey re-learning how to love, honor, and respect themselves. And yet, when given the daily opportunity to realize this ideal, most seekers will willingly side-step some of the most obvious invitations from the Universe.
Recently, while I was coaching a client I was reminded of how many people forgo these seemingly insignificant, little offerings and invitations. Unknowingly they sabotage receiving, honoring, and most of all actualizing their own inherent worth through these simple but transformational practices of Awareness that can inspire tremendous momentum on the road to realization.
Carefully consider… how you receive a formal expression of esteem, affection, admiration or respectful recognition, otherwise known as a compliment. This can offer valuable insight into your personal relationship of Self-love. At first, these practices may feel uncomfortable, but remember they are designed to challenge your familiar and often unhealthy internal software in exchange for an expansive upgrade. Examine and practice the below suggestions regarding compliments:
Accept recognition without the need for justification.
Many feel the need to explain, justify and legitimize a received compliment with expressions like, “You would have done the same thing if you were in my shoes.” Or “I was just doing my job.” Some belief systems indoctrinate a subtle form of ‘false humility’ that believes that accepting recognition without some level of justification is somehow ill-mannered or self-important. But this accepted social behavior can often illustrate a deeper unconscious shame and lack of self-worth, expressing itself through a belief and practice where one needs to prove that they deserve to be recognized.
Do not minimize acknowledgement from another.
Expressions like “It was nothing, it’s not a big deal” or “anyone could have done this…” are examples of minimizing recognition because it is too uncomfortable to handle. Not only does this choice dishonor another’s experience but it also minimizes the act for which you are being appreciated. Diminishing a compliment into a lesser, more comfortable version that you are now willing to accept is simply diluting the gift and invitation, through this individual, to expand your sense of Self-love.
Accept a compliment without suspicion or disbelief.
Many choose to deflect recognition because they are suspicious of an ulterior motive on the part of the giver. Why are they being so nice? What is their intention? What is the hook? Do not be distracted by trying to figure it out. Remember that accepting recognition does not mean you ignore or condone a potentially inauthentic motive or agenda. In truth, any individual’s motive is none of your business and needing to know before you accept the compliment is an act of negation. Be personally responsible and graciously accept the compliment for you and choose to stay clear of another’s personal intrigue and karma by refusing to empower it with any of your attention.
Authentic self-acknowledgement is a healthy practice.
It is not arrogant, boastful or narcissistic to authentically acknowledge yourself. It takes courage, self-respect and honesty. On this journey, there can be much focus on what is potentially distorted or contractive within you, but it is also a necessary part of a balanced healing process to appreciate, honor and compliment what is expansive within you as an act of self-acceptance. How do you expect to create and/or accept the many invitations of love and admiration from the Universe that often come through others if you are unwilling to practice an authentic honoring of yourself?
Fully receiving a compliment is an act of vulnerability.
In order to consciously accept a compliment, you have to be open to receive, accept and feel an invitation of love from the Universe. This profound vulnerability is always uncomfortable but absolutely necessary for any true growth and expansion. Remember that expansion inspires and creates more expansion. Eventually, you will learn to relinquish your need for protection, surrender your fears and be open to experiencing more, other, and beyond your present experience of yourself. That process begins with being vulnerable.
Practice consciously recognizing, receiving and accepting a compliment:
Look into the eyes of the individual giving you the compliment.
Recognize that a fear of intimacy and issues of Self-worth prevents most people from directly looking at the individual who is recognizing them and they never truly accept what is offered. Allow yourself to be seen. Be present, engaged and conscious in the exchange of energy. It is a gift, an opportunity and a powerful invitation to actualize Self-love.
Express “Thank-you” without ANY embellishment or commentary.
Receive the compliment regardless of what potential agenda may exist without suspicion, justification, explanation, augmentation, minimizing, deflection or addition. This is can be challenging and you will see how tempting it is to diminish this powerful experience for yourself. Instead, fully receive it with self-respect.
Give yourself permission to FEEL the gesture of admiration.
Accept the benefits of this gift by fully feeling the experience of the compliment within you. Receiving at this depth will always expose and release many unconscious beliefs, conditioning and patterns as the process unravels you. Allow the compliment to deeply penetrate as you begin to actualize your inherent worth by consciously practicing this small but powerful act of Self-love.