I confess, I did not make our Kindess cookies from scratch. Another confession; instead of giving cookies to random people, having scrapped that plan for a new crafty direction, we took them to Boy Scouts to fulfill our snack duty. When closing, one parent said “Those cookies were really tasty!” I responded with, “Oh, those?! I just cut and baked them, no biggie.” They very kindly replied, “You didn’t have to tell me that, I wouldn’t have known. They were still good.”
Instantly, in my head, I repeatedly smacked my forehead saying “Stupid, stupid!” although smiling outwardly. One last confession; I’m horrible at accepting compliments. Previous friends also mentioned this to me, too, so I need to force a change.
1) My initial thought reminded me of a Scout who earlier whined, “These cookies are hard!” I knew some darker cookies got in the midst, so perhaps feeling that I’d failed them – I didn’t believe the compliment.
2) My next thought went deeper recalling how I’m always the one whose son catches up on requirements as the Cub Master reminds me to, so I’m not deserving of the compliment when my home schedule feels behind. I know, stop the madness!
3) Sometimes I don’t trust the compliment asking, what does this person really want?
4) Sometimes I don’t trust my motives. Although buried in a thick blanket of genuine generosity, I’ll admit my competitiveness gets hungry, so when I bake, or do philanthropic marathons, part of it is sincere kindness; part lets me stand out from the crowd. I think it’s an eldest child trait.
5) Perhaps I’m trying to deflect responsibility for my successes so I can do the same for my failures. I’m hoping that if it’s a group effort that ended well, perhaps the spotlight does not shine as hot, if it ever ends badly.
Does it matter why or only how I’ll change this? This week, if I’m paid a compliment, I will instantly, in my head, give myself a “Way to go!” punch on my arm while smiling outwardly, thank them and simmer on the sentiment. Who knows, maybe I’ll even punch my arm for real – since I deserve it.