Wednesday, July 22, 2020

Compliments and Kid's Photoshopped Drawings

Do you compliment strangers?  I do.  Not often enough, but sometimes I'll blurt out a compliment to a complete stranger and the effect on them has an effect on me.  Back in the days before the pandemic, a young woman was leading us to our table at a restaurant, and I said, "You have the most beautiful smile!"  She glowed.  I glowed.  I complimented a young bagger at a grocery store on his braids.  Same thing.  His response and my response to his response was a pleasure.  

A great smile and interesting hair often elicit a comment, but I'm also often impressed with eyes, hands, rings, earrings, unusual clothing choices.  Yesterday, a young man whose hair was shaved on the sides with about 2 inches of pink hair standing at attention on top was working near by and when I said (from my social distance) "I like your hair," his grin was a little joy in my morning.  He leaned over and showed me his dark roots.  :)

So this morning, I read this article in The Guardian about Complimenting Strangers.   I knew exactly what she was talking about.

I like her style:  “I’m loving everything that’s happening here,” I said, walking past a fabulously non-binary person in a body-conscious gold jumpsuit and coordinated vest. I splayed my fingers and waved my arm like a grand old dame, from sky to sidewalk. “Everything!” I crowed over my shoulder, speed-walking on in my orthopedic Adidas high tops. Grand old dame likes everything that’s happening here, people! Everything! I barely looked back to see what the reaction was, but I’m pretty sure I at least got a smile.  (I'm not sure I could work up to that level, but I love it.)

There is a self-serving element in the compliments.  Making them feel good makes you feel good.     But complimenting others isn’t a completely selfish act. Dr Alex Lickerman, co-author of The Ten Worlds: The New Psychology of Happiness, tried smiling at and positively engaging with service workers he saw regularly, and discovered that their demeanor seemed to change overall. He observed that workers who’d been reserved or even sullen began to engage more positively and happily with other customers (although Lickerman noted that there was an initial period of feeling like he was weirding out service workers when he was friendly with them).


Outgoing Mail
After mailing Penne's letter the other day, 
I thought of something I forgot to tell her.
So I made a postcard to tell her about an author she'd like,
because I knew I'd forget before the next letter.


I'm off to work on a couple of more letters and postcards now.  Hester asked for some of the old envelopes, and I want to get them off to her this week.  Also need to order more stamps.  

Wow!  From funny to frightening! :)
Love the bird dog.

11 comments:

  1. That is a seriously disconcerting dog!

    We should all give - and receive - more compliments.

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    1. The kid's drawings are cute, but translated by Photoshop--they are weird! Some are downright scary!

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  2. Hahaha...the photoshop is just too funny!! Whenever I see something about someone else that makes me smile or feel happy, I tell them. Stranger, friend, family, no matter who it is. It’s like letting the joy inside come to the outside and make others feel it too. So I do know what you are saying. Love your mail. The postcard is AWESOME and I always love your collaged mail.

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    1. :) If we pay attention to others, we can see things that make us smile, but often we really are too busy to notice. I like your idea that smiling and compliments are a means of sharing joy!

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  3. I can't remember a time when I DIDN'T compliment strangers. I do it often but admit I should make an effort to do it even more. I have been seen many times going over to a family that is dining near me and compliment them on their well behaved children. I remember telling a silver gray haired woman how much I loved the color of her hair. I make a concentrated effort to say something kind to a service worker particularly if they have just dealt with a difficult customer. Yes, it does make ME feel good too.
    xx, Carol

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    1. It's an uplifting experience for both the giver and receiver. Takes no time or effort, yet can become a memory for both. Hope all is going well in your new home, Carol!

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  4. A good reminder for us to be more thoughtful to strangers. Your postcard is so charming. I saw the Kids to Photoshopped drawings the other day. Very imaginative. Take care and stay cool.

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    1. Yes, being thoughtful can be expressed in so many ways. A simple thank you or excuse me makes life easier for everyone. The Photoshopped drawings really stretched my imagination! :)

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  5. Don't know how I'm missing your posts-but this was amazing. I loved it.

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  6. One thing I really miss when wearing a mask is that people can't see me smiling. I am one of those people who loves to smile even to strangers and I realize I feel disconnected with my mask. Maybe I'll have to start saying more compliments. I like that! And, my goodness those photoshopped drawings are something else!

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Good to hear from you!