It’s that time of the year again when it’s cold and harder to get outside for those short walks of sunshine. It’s easier and easier to get lost in your own thoughts, surrounded only by what your mind has to tell you. Sometimes those thoughts are good for you. You think about the people who make you smile everyday. You think about giving them a call and telling them that. However, sometimes all your thoughts aren’t so encouraging. You overthink the conversation with your far away friend — was there some reason why she rushed to get off the phone? It’s at these times that you know you have to do something to get out of your own head.
Make someone smile.
Pick someone. It can be a stranger you see on the train. Maybe you like their pink hair or their sparkly bracelet. Maybe you like their confidence or the way they smile. Pay them a truthful compliment and it might just make their day — and yours. It’ll help you keep your thoughts away from yourself. By focusing on someone else and how you have positively impacted their life, you’re reminded of how big the world is — there are so many wonderful people out there just waiting for you to meet them.
Find meaningful connection online
It’s not the easiest time to make new connections outside or online. Connecting to others and building meaningful relationships online is becoming easier as social media platforms allow for conversations and engagement and networking sites allow you to connect on zoom. If you have social media, you can comment on a stranger’s post. Oftentimes it can be easy to just comment on your friends’ posts. Of course, it’s wonderful to support your friends on social media, but it can also be nice to show your support for others. Comment something kind and supportive to show someone that their presence is appreciated. It might be a great opportunity to even make a new friend!
Why a stranger?
If you feel more comfortable complimenting people you know at first, definitely do so. However, as time progresses, you may find that it can be advantageous to compliment strangers. With family and friends, compliments may subconsciously come with expectations. Even without realizing it, you might expect a compliment back sometime in the future. If you’re constantly complimenting your friend, on her looks or her personality, eventually you might expect a compliment back. If, for months, she fails to give you even the slightest praise after you constantly support her, you might begin to feel insecure about yourself or your relationship with her. However, with a stranger, there are no expectations. You pay them a compliment and don’t ever expect to see them again. If you do see them again and some greater friendship results from that interaction, that’s a wonderful benefit, but it’s certainly not an expectation.
Have confidence in yourself.
Trying new things is always scary. If complimenting strangers isn’t something you might normally do but you need to get out of your own head, try stepping out of your comfort zone. Have confidence in yourself! You can do what you put your mind to.