My Belief in Compliments

Ashley - West Deptford, New Jersey
Entered on April 22, 2008

I believe in compliments, both giving and receiving them. Words can hurt or help a person, but a compliment is almost sure to change someone’s whole day in a positive way with just one sentence. Even though starting a sentence with words such as “I like…” can seem simple, it’s amazing how it can make a person feel so much better, and I’m not just talking about the person who is being complimented, either.

Compliments are extraordinary things because they build people up. As a girl who was teased most of her life for having bright red hair, I know the value of compliments. I remember one day in elementary school a boy made such a nasty comment about my hair, it made my day go by so slow I never thought I would get home from school. He really made me feel low because his words were all I thought about. But then, before the bell rang at the end of the school day, a girl walked up to me and simply said, “You know, I heard what that boy said about your red hair, and I don’t agree with him. I love your bright red hair. I wish I had that color!” Even though I had never really even talked to that girl before, my day became so much brighter.

Well, needless to say, that girl and I are now inseparable best friends. And every time I think about changing my hair color, my mind goes back to that day when a compliment changed a bad day to a good day. People’s tongues can be as sharp as two edged swords if not used it in the right way. Everyone can benefit from a compliment, though, and nothing is ever lost from giving or receiving one. I do believe that what goes around comes around and the way you treat others just may be the way they will treat you. So I challenge everyone – before saying something negative about a person, try to think of something likeable about them first. And when you’ve done that, actually say it to them. It is surprising how much better both of you will feel, and how fast kindness will spread around just from changing somebody else’s day change for the better.

I believe in compliments, and I believe that the whole world would be better off if we gave them more often.