The Blackmailed Compliment

Do you have someone in your life or are you the guilty party who constantly laments the same things to your friends, family, and co-workers expecting them to soothe your ego? For example, do you always say, “I’m so fat; I can’t believe how fat I am” and expect friends to say, “No you are not.” Maybe you are one of the friends on the receiving end of the dance who feels obligated to make the other person feel better. At either end of it, this scenario is exhausting and inauthentic.

I want to challenge you to dial into your language this week. If you are the one complaining, what are you saying and what do you expect from other people? What void in you needs to be filled? If you are the one trying to fix the situation, what is your tone, why do you feel compelled to continue the dance? Is it because the other person’s self-criticism makes you uncomfortable, or you don’t know how else to respond?

Try changing your language. When a friend says, “I’m so fat” rather than the typical, “you’re crazy, you’re so thin” ask them if they would like feedback and then say something real, “I’m sorry you feel that way; have you thought about starting an exercise program? I am so much happier since I did.”

I heard a quote about inaction that applies, “complaining without offering a solution is whining”. No one wants their behavior perceived as whining, but that is exactly what it is if you constantly point out your insecurities or perceived short-comings but don’t take action to change them.

Use this trusted community to get honest about your complaints – are you just whining and need an ego boost or are you genuinely seeking advice and help from your friends on how to improve your situation. Do you in-authentically stroke your friend’s ego just to get them to stop complaining? Share your experiences here and don’t be afraid to ask advice.

Love Love Love


Cooking Is a Revolutionary Act *
Flourish by Martin Seligman