Are you starving for approval?

By David Joel Miller.

Are you desperate for likes?

Desperate for likes?

Desperate for likes?
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.com

There are some very mentally unhealthy consequences of using social media in an unhelpful way. Don’t become one of those people who spends their life frantically looking for likes. Remember the like button it someone’s opinion about what you said, not a judgment about who you are as a person or what you are doing with your life. If you find your self-esteem is becoming dependent on likes, you have set yourself up to the victimized by bullies and trolls. Here are some reasons why likes are playing too big a role in your life.

In childhood, approval was your pay.

When you were a small child, adults and caregivers in your life rewarded your behavior by giving approval and attention. As we grow in life, the locus of approval should shift from needing the attention of others to working for our own approval. If other people’s opinions matter more than your own is still have some growing up to do.

Learn to do things because you can be proud of them. Make it a point to notice your accomplishments. Don’t turn your self-esteem over to a button on a social media site.

Social approval looks deceptively like success.

Having lots of people like you is a success mirage. Successful people follow their own path. Sometimes doing good things means doing things that aren’t popular. Don’t mistake following the herd for doing something worthwhile. Highly successful people are not on social media, begging to be liked. Saying something for others approval is not an accomplished. Successful people are busy doing things not talking about them

Beware the effect trolls will have on your self-confidence.

People who don’t feel good about themselves delight in hurting others. There will always be someone out there to criticize you. Don’t set yourself up as a human sacrifice to the trolls. The more you do in life, the more people will criticize you. There will always be haters, the bullies of life, out to build themselves up by pulling others down.

Only your mother cared, don’t expect others to.

When you were small, someone, often your mother, fawned over everything you did. When you were very small, taking that first step may have been a big deal. Don’t forget that every other walking person had to take their first step. If something you do gets around applause, or a compliment, acknowledge the gift of appreciation by don’t start doing things expecting acknowledgments.

Don’t expect adults to care what clothing you bought, on what you ate for lunch. Real accomplishments take a lot of time and effort. Getting likes for spending money evaporates rapidly. What matters in your life is not the round of applause you get on social media but the difficult things you do when you are off-line.

Comparing up keeps you small.

When you start comparing yourself to others on social media, you are likely to develop a very biased view of the world. People very rarely compare themselves to others with fewer friends and fewer likes. If you constantly compare yourself to people with more friends and likes you will always feel small. The person with fifty friends always compares themselves to people with thousands of friends. Don’t forget there are other people will only have five friends. The more you compare, the more you judge and measure yourself, the more you harm your self-esteem and diminish yourself confidence.

Staying connected with David Joel Miller

David Joel Miller MS is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT) and a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor (LPCC.)  Mr. Miller provides supervision for beginning counselors and therapists and teaches at the local college in the Substance Abuse Counseling program.

Two David Joel Miller Books are available now!

Bumps on the Road of Life. Whether you struggle with anxiety, depression, low motivation, or addiction, you can recover. Bumps on the Road of Life is the story of how people get off track and how to get your life out of the ditch.

Casino Robbery is a novel about a man with PTSD who must cope with his symptoms to solve a mystery and create a new life.

For these and my upcoming books; please visit my Amazon Author Page – David Joel Miller

Want the latest blog posts as they publish? Subscribe to this blog.

Want the latest on news from recoveryland, the field of counseling, my writing projects, speaking and teaching? Please sign up for my newsletter at – Newsletter. I promise not to share your email or to send you spam, and you can unsubscribe at any time.

For more about David Joel Miller and my work in the areas of mental health, substance abuse, and Co-occurring disorders see my Facebook author’s page, davidjoelmillerwriter. If you are in the Fresno California area, information about my private practice is at counselorfresno.com.

Relationships suffer when you don’t like you.

By David Joel Miller.

Low self-esteem poisons your other relationships.

Low Self-esteem

Low Self-esteem.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.com

In the aftermath of a failed relationship, many people come to counseling. One common theme is that they have low self-esteem. It’s a human tendency to try to use our relationship to boost our self-esteem and self-confidence.

People with low self-esteem are often like a leaky bucket. No matter how much love and affection their family or partner pours into them, they still feel empty. If you feel that something is lacking in your relationships, start by looking at yourself. People who are emotionally unwell tend to attract sick people into their lives.

Recovering people often find that as they become healthier, they develop more self-esteem. When you feel better about yourself, an unhealthy, dysfunctional relationship, will no longer be acceptable. Healthy people tend to attract other healthy people into their lives. Here are some ways that your low self-esteem may be damaging your relationships.

Low self-esteem makes you needy and dependent.

People who don’t feel good about themselves, don’t like or love themselves, are constantly hungry for approval from others. They seek out strong partners or friends to bolster their egos. That strong in control person you were dating can become that insufferable, controlling person. Extremely needy people drive other people away.

You may become pathologically jealous.

If you don’t feel good about yourself, you may doubt why your partner is staying with you. People who believe their mate has lots of options, while if they lose this partner, they are doomed to be alone, can become pathologically jealous.

When you don’t feel good about your self-worth you may begin to spy on your partner, follow them around, and endlessly question their behavior. If you’re becoming jealous ask yourself is this because you see real signs your partner is cheating on you? Or is this fear because you don’t understand why your partner is staying with you?

You become irritable and fight more.

People who don’t feel well, either physically or emotionally, become irritable and try to push others away. If you don’t like yourself, you may begin to doubt your partner. If you think your partner is likely to cheat on you and then leave you there is a risk you will begin to provoke fights, trying to make, the inevitable happened.

You are lonely even when you’re around others.

Loneliness is a powerful emotional complex. It drives people to associate with other people. If when you are alone, you feel frantic to be around others the problem may be that you don’t like yourself. People with low self-esteem don’t lose that lonely feeling even when they are in a crowd. How can you feel happy and connected when you expect others to dislike you, in the same manner, you just like yourself?

You attract negative people.

People with low self-esteem are hard to be around. They tend to drive away emotionally healthy people. When you’re feeling down, depressed, anxious, and unworthy, you become a magnet for other people with low self-esteem. People who are short on self-love are easy prey for narcissists, psychopaths, and other needy people who are out to use them.

Want healthy relationships?

Begin by improving your relationship with you. You feel better about yourself you will begin to view your relationships with others in a more realistic way. If you like yourself, you will begin to demand that others treat you well. Emotionally healthy people cut the harmful, toxic people out of their lives. As you become mentally healthy, feel better about yourself, you will either find your relationships improving or find it easier to let go of the unhealthy relationships in your life.

Staying connected with David Joel Miller

David Joel Miller MS is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT) and a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor (LPCC.)  Mr. Miller provides supervision for beginning counselors and therapists and teaches at the local college in the Substance Abuse Counseling program.

Two David Joel Miller Books are available now!

Bumps on the Road of Life. Whether you struggle with anxiety, depression, low motivation, or addiction, you can recover. Bumps on the Road of Life is the story of how people get off track and how to get your life out of the ditch.

Casino Robbery is a novel about a man with PTSD who must cope with his symptoms to solve a mystery and create a new life.

For these and my upcoming books; please visit my Amazon Author Page – David Joel Miller

Want the latest blog posts as they publish? Subscribe to this blog.

Want the latest on news from recoveryland, the field of counseling, my writing projects, speaking and teaching? Please sign up for my newsletter at – Newsletter. I promise not to share your email or to send you spam, and you can unsubscribe at any time.

For more about David Joel Miller and my work in the areas of mental health, substance abuse, and Co-occurring disorders see my Facebook author’s page, davidjoelmillerwriter. If you are in the Fresno California area, information about my private practice is at counselorfresno.com.

Self-esteem boosters.

By David Joel Miller.

Does your self-esteem need a boost?

Proud

Self-esteem.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.com

Many people describe themselves as having low self-esteem, and yet the things they are doing and the way they are doing those things are reducing their self-esteem rather than improving it.

If you would like to grow your self-esteem here are some behaviors to improve your self-esteem, and some things to stop doing that may be damage your self-esteem.

Doing more worthwhile things builds self-esteem.

One cause of low self-esteem is inaction. Doing nothing is hard on your self-esteem. People who are active, living life, build up their self-esteem. Focus on doing things you can be proud of. Rather than aiming for huge world-changing actions, try to make each thing you do throughout the day something you feel good about.

Focus on the positive not the negative.

Only paying attention to your errors is a sure self-esteem deflator. If you only count the negative you build up a wall that prevents you from seeing your accomplishments. Pay particular attention to the positive things that happen each day of your life. When something good occurs, pause and take special note before that accomplishment disappears from sight.

Develop a positive support system.

Surround yourself with people who feel good about themselves and about you. Having negative people in your life is sure to lower your self-esteem. Positive people build you up; negative influences pull you down. Maximize your helpful support system.

Increase your self-esteem by learning to love yourself.

Learn to love yourself exactly the way you are. You are a worthwhile person because of who you are not because of the things you do. Learn to accept yourself, like yourself, and enjoy spending time with you. Everyone needs a best friend. Become your own best friend, and other friendships will follow.

Treat yourself the way you want others to treat you.

Be kind and gentle with yourself. Beating yourself up will not make you a better person. The way you treat yourself becomes the model for the way others will treat you. Include time for a healthy lifestyle in your schedule. Eat healthy food, drink plenty of water, and when you’re tired allow yourself to rest and recharge. Don’t engage in self-harming behaviors.

For more self-esteem stop the insults.

Don’t call yourself names. Calling yourself stupid or fat or any other insult will destroy your self-esteem. Learn to view your shortcomings as improvement opportunities. Rather than call yourself stupid, tell yourself that you, like all other humans, sometimes make mistakes. If there are things you don’t know, learn more about them, get more education. If you’re unhappy with your physical condition, see a medical doctor, work with a counselor, and begin the program of self-improvement.

Remember the compliments.

Never getting a compliment undermines self-esteem. Complements are gifts, learn to give them and to accept them graciously. Give honest compliments. See the good in yourself and others. Don’t lie to yourself or pretend you accomplish things you never did. Do learn to recognize the progress you make in your life.

Staying connected with David Joel Miller

Two David Joel Miller Books are available now!

Bumps on the Road of Life. Whether you struggle with anxiety, depression, low motivation, or addiction, you can recover. Bumps on the Road of Life is the story of how people get off track and how to get your life out of the ditch.

Casino Robbery is a novel about a man with PTSD who must cope with his symptoms to solve a mystery and create a new life.

For these and my upcoming books; please visit my Amazon Author Page – David Joel Miller

Want the latest blog posts as they publish? Subscribe to this blog.

Want the latest on news from recoveryland, the field of counseling, my writing projects, speaking and teaching? Please sign up for my newsletter at – Newsletter. I promise not to share your email or to send you spam, and you can unsubscribe at any time.

For more about David Joel Miller and my work in the areas of mental health, substance abuse, and Co-occurring disorders see my Facebook author’s page, davidjoelmillerwriter. A list of books I have read and can recommend is over at Recommended Books. If you are in the Fresno California area, information about my private practice is at counselorfresno.com.

Does your life need a hero?

By David Joel Miller.

What does it take to be a hero?

Hero?

What does it take to be a hero?
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.com

Now, more than ever, we need some heroes. Unfortunately, the greatest heroes often go unrecognized. Being rich, famous or popular doesn’t make you a hero. Sometimes well-known people are heroes, but it’s not their wealth, fame, or popularity that makes them a hero. The hero in your life could be someone no one else recognizes. The hero who transforms your life might be that elementary school teacher or the college professor who believes in you when others didn’t. The hero in your life might be the parent who works two jobs so that you can have a better life. The hero in your life story, the one who changes things in your family for the better might be you.

Storytellers throughout the ages have studied a phenomenon they call the hero’s journey. Sometimes it’s hard to identify a hero until you get to the end of the story. You may only recognize the heroes in your life by hindsight. Others may never see the heroism it takes for you to live your life. What makes someone a hero?

Heroes don’t have it easy.

It doesn’t take much courage or heroism to accomplish things when you live an easy life, and everything’s coming your way. Every genuine hero has had to face an incredible challenge. Heroes do the hard stuff; the things other people would rather avoid. They do the necessary tasks day in and day out whether anyone else recognizes their struggles. They often must do unpopular things because it’s the right thing to do. Great heroes are often ordinary people who do extraordinary things when the challenge comes.

Heroes don’t start out planning to slay dragons.

The greatest heroes, those in stories and legends, and those we will meet in our lives don’t go out looking for struggles. A hero doesn’t go up and down the street looking for someone to fight. The heroes we most admire are the ones who would’ve preferred to a live quiet, peaceful life, but when the challenge came, they didn’t run from it. Heroes don’t undertake their quest for the round of applause. Heroes do what they do because something inside of them will not let them turn away from the struggle.

Heroes face problems others run from.

What separates heroes from those who run from problems is the direction they face. Many people spend their whole life avoiding challenges. It’s easy to escape into hopelessness by telling yourself there’s nothing you can do about the problems you and your world are facing. Some people use drugs, or alcohol, to avoid dealing with the struggles of life.

It’s never too late to change your direction from avoiding problems to tackling them head-on. The most admired heroes are those who reluctantly tackled a challenge. If you’ve ever asked yourself “why me?” You may be a hero in waiting. The question heroes eventually asked themselves is often “why not me?” There’s something inside of them that drives them to face this challenge even though they wish they could avoid it.

The life of a hero is never easy.

The pathway to being a hero will be filled with obstacles. Reaching their goals will require overcoming many impediments. There will be times when the hero in training seriously considers giving up. Often the way forward will seem bleak, dark and impossible. The hero may find their path a lonely journey.

Many other people may have come this way, stood face to face with a great struggle. Less heroic people reach this point, and they give up, they turn back. Heroes come in all sizes, and shapes, and roles in life. Heroes don’t avoid the challenges; they just don’t give up no matter how dark today appears.

Heroes go on even when life seems hopeless.

Member that old saying “it’s always darkest before the dawn?” That’s an apt description of heroism. People endure struggles trying to make the world a better place even though they may not be able to see the fruits of that struggle. It’s tempting to give up doing the right thing when it’s hard.

It’s easy to find excuses for avoiding the hard things in life. You could tell yourself you don’t have the abilities, the position, where the money needed to accomplish great things. What you should be asking yourself is how can you use what you do have to make things better. Regardless of how many failures you’ve had in your life, you shouldn’t tell yourself that nothing better is possible. Every day new stories are being written about people who overcame life’s difficulties, who turned themselves around and got their life headed in the right direction. Heroes don’t let their past or their disabilities determine their future.

The journey of life changes heroes.

Many people start out life with everything going for them. They may come from wealth or privilege. Some have great talents. What separates these privileged people from the heroes of life, is that many don’t struggle. Many people who could accomplish great things in life take the easy path, turned back when the going got rough. The process, the journey of life, changes the people who do the hard work of facing life.

Can you identify the heroes in your life?

Are there people you admire? People who have struggled on, regardless of the challenge? People you’d like to be like, not because of their wealth, or status, or power, but because they never gave up and persevered in facing the trials of life. Will there be people in your life, your children, your friends, or society in general, who will recognize your heroism? It’s never too late to shift from avoiding the problems in life. Maybe today’s the day you will move from telling yourself all the things you can’t do and begin to take on the task of doing the things you should do.

Are you ready to start your hero’s journey of life?

Staying connected with David Joel Miller

Two David Joel Miller Books are available now!

Bumps on the Road of Life. Whether you struggle with anxiety, depression, low motivation, or addiction, you can recover. Bumps on the Road of Life is the story of how people get off track and how to get your life out of the ditch.

Casino Robbery is a novel about a man with PTSD who must cope with his symptoms to solve a mystery and create a new life.

For these and my upcoming books; please visit my Amazon Author Page – David Joel Miller

Want the latest blog posts as they publish? Subscribe to this blog.

Want the latest on news from recoveryland, the field of counseling, my writing projects, speaking and teaching? Please sign up for my newsletter at – Newsletter. I promise not to share your email or to send you spam, and you can unsubscribe at any time.

For more about David Joel Miller and my work in the areas of mental health, substance abuse, and Co-occurring disorders see my Facebook author’s page, davidjoelmillerwriter. If you are in the Fresno California area, information about my private practice is at counselorfresno.com.

Don’t return the compliments.

By David Joel Miller.

Is it hard for you to accept compliments?

Compliments are Gifts

Compliments are Gifts.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.com

Learn to accept compliments. Are you one of those people who are uncomfortable with compliments? If you turn every compliment away with an “it’s no big deal,” you’re harming your relationships. Learning proper compliments etiquette will improve your relationships.

Problems accepting complements may have begun in childhood. Many people received few compliments and childhood. Parents used to think that complimenting a child could lead to “a big head” and the lack of modesty. If you never received any recognition in childhood for what you did well, it may be uncomfortable to accept compliments.

Telling people how wonderful they are in the absence of any real accomplishment may result in distorted self-esteem. If you’ve done something worthwhile, being recognized and recognizing yourself for positive accomplishments, is an earned reward, and not likely to result in an overlarge ego. Below are some reasons that you need to become comfortable accepting compliments.

Compliments are gifts.

Think of compliments as gifts. Dismissing them does not make you more modest or humble. If you return every gift people give you, they will stop giving those gifts to you. If you return every compliment with a no thank you, people will get their feelings hurt. Learn to accept compliments with a simple “thank you.” Being gracious in giving and receiving compliments improves relationships.

Never receiving thankyou’s, makes you feel unappreciated.

If you keep doing for others, but they don’t appreciate what you do, you’re likely to become resentful. One way people show appreciation is by saying thank you. If you habitually reject compliments, you train others to take you for granted. Appreciation works in both directions, learn to thank and compliment others and learn to accept their appreciation.

One reason you can’t accept compliments is you never give yourself any.

Learn to recognize when you have done something positive. Do not dismiss your achievements. When you minimize what, you do you run the risk of minimizing what others do. Don’t become one of those people who is never satisfied. People who are stingy with self-recognition often find it hard to recognize what others do for them.

What you say to yourself, self-talk is powerful. Telling yourself what you did was no big deal makes you feel small and helpless. Telling yourself “you did that good,” improves your self-esteem and your ability to tackle additional challenges.

Positive compliments to give yourself:

Here are some compliments, sometimes called affirmations, you can practice. How many other positive self-statements can you create?

“I’m a worthwhile person.”

“I am grateful for what makes me unique.”

“I respect my individual talents and passions by using them to benefit others.”

“I’m doing the best I can, and I am enough just as I am.”

“I teach others to respect and believe in me by believing in myself.”

“Each day I am working towards becoming the best possible me.”

Practice the art of giving and receiving compliments and make the world a happier and more appreciative place.

Staying connected with David Joel Miller

Two David Joel Miller Books are available now!

Bumps on the Road of Life. Whether you struggle with anxiety, depression, low motivation, or addiction, you can recover. Bumps on the Road of Life is the story of how people get off track and how to get your life out of the ditch.

Casino Robbery is a novel about a man with PTSD who must cope with his symptoms to solve a mystery and create a new life.

For these and my upcoming books; please visit my Amazon Author Page – David Joel Miller

Want the latest blog posts as they publish? Subscribe to this blog.

Want the latest on news from recoveryland, the field of counseling, my writing projects, speaking and teaching? Please sign up for my newsletter at – Newsletter. I promise not to share your email or to send you spam, and you can unsubscribe at any time.

For more about David Joel Miller and my work in the areas of mental health, substance abuse, and Co-occurring disorders see my Facebook author’s page, davidjoelmillerwriter. A list of books I have read and can recommend is over at Recommended Books. If you are in the Fresno California area, information about my private practice is at counselorfresno.com.

Signs others opinions matter too much.

By David Joel Miller.

Are you paying too much attention to other people’s opinions?

Living your life based on other people’s opinions results in you living someone else’s

Self-confidence

Self-Confidence
Believe in yourself.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.com

life. Do you find yourself asking other people for their opinions on what you should do? If you find it hard to make decisions about your life without consulting others, the problem may be that you are paying too much attention to what others think and not enough attention to your own feelings. Here are some signs that what others think is running your life more than you are.

You measure yourself by other people’s opinions.

You are the expert on your life. No one else knows your particular struggles and challenges. Constantly seeking others approval results in a needy person. The person whose opinion most matters is yours. If your primary yardstick for measuring your self-worth is other people’s opinions, you are using the wrong ruler.

You ask what they mean by that a lot.

Do you find yourself questioning what others mean? If you’re asking “why did you say that” and “what did you mean by that?” a lot, it is very likely that you have become overreliance on other people’s opinions.

You let their opinion stop you.

If you find yourself not doing things that you enjoy or that might benefit you because of other people’s opinions, you’re losing control of your life. Other people’s opinions may be fine for them, but if you over-rely on their opinions, you are living their life and forgoing your own.

You worry about saying the right thing.

Healthy communication includes being able to tell others what you think and how you feel. You find yourself censoring what you want to say and searching for just the right words to say it you’re probably overly concerned about what other people think.

You try to please everyone.

If you try to please everyone, you’re likely to end up pleasing no one. In your effort to please everyone you will end up sacrificing your own opinions. No matter what view you take of things, some people will disagree, and some will not like what you say.

You put others needs before yours.

You must take care of yourself for you to be able to help others. It is not selfish to take care of yourself. Neglecting your own need in the process of caring for others robs you of the life you should have.

It is hard to say no.

Not being able to tell others no devalues you and your needs. You have the right to say no.

Taking credit embarrasses you.

Good self-esteem comes from recognizing the things you do well. When somebody gives you a compliment, accepted it.

You are ashamed of things you like to do.

Everyone has the right to have interests in life. Don’t be ashamed of your hobbies and interests.

You continue to do things that don’t make you happy.

If you find that you’re doing things that don’t bring you joy, weed them out of your life. Filling up your life with things that do not contribute to your happiness is sacrificing the life you should be leading to live

You let others set your goals.

Are you living your life pursuing someone else’s goals? That’s clear evidence their opinions are outweighing your own. You will only get this one life. Get clear on your goals. If our not clear on what you want out of life, you may be paying too much attention to other people’s opinions and not enough attention to your own.

Staying connected with David Joel Miller

Two David Joel Miller Books are available now!

Bumps on the Road of Life. Whether you struggle with anxiety, depression, low motivation, or addiction, you can recover. Bumps on the Road of Life is the story of how people get off track and how to get your life out of the ditch.

Casino Robbery is a novel about a man with PTSD who must cope with his symptoms to solve a mystery and create a new life.

For these and my upcoming books; please visit my Amazon Author Page – David Joel Miller

Want the latest blog posts as they publish? Subscribe to this blog.

Want the latest on news from recoveryland, the field of counseling, my writing projects, speaking and teaching? Please sign up for my newsletter at – Newsletter. I promise not to share your email or to send you spam, and you can unsubscribe at any time.

For more about David Joel Miller and my work in the areas of mental health, substance abuse, and Co-occurring disorders see my Facebook author’s page, davidjoelmillerwriter. A list of books I have read and can recommend is over at Recommended Books. If you are in the Fresno California area, information about my private practice is at counselorfresno.com.

Afraid of compliments?

By David Joel Miller.

Reasons you can’t accept a compliment.

Compliments.

Compliments.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.com

If you find it difficult to accept a compliment, you need to ask yourself, is it humility or low self-esteem? People with adequate self-esteem can accept compliments when they are offered. If you’re finding it difficult to accept compliments, the thoughts and beliefs below may be the cause of your inability to accept compliments.

People with adequate self-esteem can accept compliments when they are offered. If you’re finding it difficult to accept compliments, the thoughts and beliefs below may be the cause of your inability to accept compliments. If you’re finding it difficult to accept compliments, the thoughts and beliefs below may be the cause of your inability to accept compliments.

How many of these compliment interfering thoughts are you holding onto?

You are used to people giving insincere compliments.

If you grew up in a home where you never got complimented for what you did, and the compliments you did get were backhanded insults, you’ve been conditioned to not believe compliments when you receive them. Abusive relationships may have undermined your confidence. When there’s a scarcity of water, people get poisoned by drinking from contaminated wells. If the compliments you received in the past were insincere, you’ve come to avoid even the truthful compliments.

You think you are a fraud.

If you view your successes as accidents, undeserved achievements, you may have an underlying belief that you are a fraud. Even highly successful and creative people are prone to the belief that their past accomplishments have been accidents and that they, in fact, have no ability. Your self-doubts, allowed to grow in magnitude, can leave you doubting your abilities.

You think they want something.

Most people have experienced encounters with flatterers. These people spread insincere compliments around to manipulate others. There’s a part of us that’s always wondering what the person who complimented us wants. When you receive a compliment, think carefully about the person who is giving you that compliment. Are they trustworthy or are they the kind of person who might be seeking to take advantage of you? Genuine people give compliments as a way of acknowledging achievements. If there are people in your life whose compliments seem insincere, you need to re-examine your relationships with them. Surround yourself with people you can trust, and you should have no difficulty in accepting their compliments.

Do you think accepting compliments makes you egotistical?

The belief that too many compliments make someone egotistical is a common misconception. Some parents try to raise their children by just expecting them to always be perfect. The result of never being praised for good behavior, but being constantly reprimanded for errors is a condition called “learned helplessness.”

Think of compliments in the same manner you think of your paycheck. If you work hard, you expect to get paid. Most people expect that over time hard work will result in pay raises. If your boss never pays you, most people won’t stay on the job long. If the things you do for others are not appreciated, you may find it hard to keep doing for them. The compliments that result in egotism are the ones that are handed out even when the person has not accomplished anything.

You don’t feel good about yourself.

Low self-esteem is both a symptom of and a major cause of inability to accept compliments. Work on accepting yourself just as you are. Getting to know both the good and the bad of yourself. Get comfortable with acknowledging to yourself when you’ve done something worthwhile. People who have an accurate self-view can feel good about their accomplishments, compliment themselves, without the need for excessive praise.

You are uncomfortable with appreciation.

Work on appreciating yourself, and others around you. Strive to believe that you are a worthwhile person just like everyone else. When you are in healthy relationships with others, you will both appreciate them, and they will appreciate you. Compliments are one way of expressing your appreciation for both what others do and for their presence in your life.

Are you ready to change your relationship with compliments?

Mentally healthy people get comfortable with both giving and accepting compliments. They are neither desperately hungry for compliments nor do they unnecessarily reject them. When someone offers you a compliment, consider it a gift. Rejecting the compliment, diminishing it by saying it was no big thing, is like rejecting the person who offered you the compliment

Accept the gift of a compliment just as you would some other small token. If you don’t trust the person or their motives, be careful about accepting their compliments. The best thing you can do when offered a compliment is simply to accept it with a gracious thank you.

What will you do to get more comfortable with giving and receiving compliments?

Staying connected with David Joel Miller

Two David Joel Miller Books are available now!

Bumps on the Road of Life. Whether you struggle with anxiety, depression, low motivation, or addiction, you can recover. Bumps on the Road of Life is the story of how people get off track and how to get your life out of the ditch.

Casino Robbery is a novel about a man with PTSD who must cope with his symptoms to solve a mystery and create a new life.

For these and my upcoming books; please visit my Amazon Author Page – David Joel Miller

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For more about David Joel Miller and my work in the areas of mental health, substance abuse, and Co-occurring disorders see my Facebook author’s page, davidjoelmillerwriter. A list of books I have read and can recommend is over at Recommended Books. If you are in the Fresno California area, information about my private practice is at counselorfresno.com.