July 5


Today's quotation:

The other day I was in the grocery store and witnessed an incredible display of patience.  The checkout clerk had just been chewed out by an angry customer, clearly without good cause.  Rather than being reactive, the clerk defused the anger by remaining calm.  When it was my turn to pay for my groceries I said to her, “I’m so impressed at the way you handled that customer.”  She looked me right in the eye and said, “Thank you, sir.  Do you know you are the first person ever to give me a compliment in this store?”  It took less than two seconds to let her know, yet it was a highlight of her day, and of mine.

Richard Carlson

Today's Meditation:

Compliments have one of the greatest returns on investment of anything in life, much like encouragement.  The actual investment is zero-- a compliment costs us nothing at all.  The potential return, though, is not measurable.  The effect that our compliments can have on other people is simply beyond measure, and the cumulative effect of many compliments, of course, can be even more astounding.

Most of us don't tend to do a lot of complimenting, though.  For various reasons we get so caught up in our own lives, so focused on our own needs, that we don't even realize just how much of a contribution we can make to the lives of others if we were to share just a few positive words about another person, if we were to tell another person how much we appreciate the contributions he or she has made to the world.

I remember having dinner in a small restaurant once, and the waitress "especially" recommended the mashed potatoes.  Whenever I hear something like that, I order the special recommendation, and after we ate, I made a point of complimenting the potatoes, which really were quite good.  "Thank you," she said.  "I made them myself."  She was very proud of her potatoes, and very glad to hear the compliment.  I had made a small contribution towards brightening her day, and it hadn't cost me a cent-- just a few words.

We can add to the positive energy of this world very simply.  Life is about energy, and the more positive energy there is in the world, the better things are for all of us.  All it takes to add to it is a compliment here, and a compliment there, sincere words that recognize another person's contributions and lift that person up, even in the smallest of ways.

Questions to consider:

How many people have you complimented today?  How many will you compliment?

How do you feel when someone compliments you in a very sincere manner?

Do our positive contributions to the world have to be on a very large scale if they're going to be effective?

For further thought:

Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.

Leo Buscaglia

more thoughts and ideas on compliments



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