Like most women I know, I’m terrible at taking a compliment. This is how the conversation usually goes:
“I love your hair.”
Me: “Oh, it’s so thick and long. I can’t wait to cut it off.”
“You’re really killing it lately with all of your writing and media work.”
Me: “Thanks. (turns attention away from myself) I’m barely doing anything, compared to everything you’ve got going on.”
Why do I do this? Why does anyone do this? It’s almost like I feel bad for my success or my nice hair. And of course those are only two examples. But I’ve discussed this with friends. When someone compliments me on how well I’m doing, I almost feel guilty about my success. But here’s the thing, I shouldn’t.
I’m 33 years old, and I spent 5 (broke) years in grad school changing careers (read about that journey here). I volunteered and worked for very little pay to get ahead in this industry. I wrote for free and I blogged for free. And then when it was time to start making something of myself, I hit the ground running. Rather than being embarrassed of that fact, I think it’s time that I start embracing it.
Recently, I was at a blogging conference, and Bjork from Pinch of Yum was there discussing how they turned Pinch of Yum into a widely successful business. He said that you don’t see all the failures and missteps along the way. The same is true for my journey. You don’t always see all the things that went wrong along the way, like my first ever recipe post with absolutely terrible pictures, the time my boss was talking badly about me to my employees and I went home crying or the time I couldn’t go on a friends bachelorette trip because I was in grad school and absolutely broke.
I tell you all of this because I’m making an effort to embrace compliments. Yes, I am doing well and I work hard to make that happen. Yup, I have nice hair and that’s mostly genetics and the fact that I don’t dye it or treat it badly. I also have super thin legs, which is also genes and my dedication to running. I’m proud of all of those things, and I don’t care who knows it! I encourage you to embrace your qualities that should receive compliments. And next time someone compliments you, just say “thank you” and enjoy the moment. Because you may not always have a thriving career or pretty long hair, so you might as well take pleasure in those moments while they are here.
Something that I’ve been very harsh on myself about is my food photography skills. In reality, I’ve actually gotten pretty good at food styling and photography and I’m going to embrace that. So, for National Pasta Month, I’m sharing this one-pot pasta recipe that I created for Women’s Running.
Because I’m a badass lady, who writes for national publications, runs marathons, has nice hair and takes awesome food photos. And I’m okay with that.