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Feed Yourself a Compliment Vitamin

Updated: Feb 1

There is often a guest book at my concerts that people can leave messages in. I started this tradition about six years ago, realizing that I could never have enough time to connect with people after a concert. I wish I could have hours to interact and listen to their experiences as an audience. The reality is that I could have a minute or two per person to connect. At least this way I can take time to savor their notes individually when the crowds disappear.

  • Not only are you a superb pianist, you are the most sensitive person with the rare gift of unifying the correspondence of art, poetry, and classical music into an inspiring message of love and hope. Pamela and Jean-Pierre Amor

  • I think everyone in the audience was touched by your vulnerability and openness. You made all of us in the audience feel that we were participants rather than just spectators. Shaun Tomson

  • I never experienced anything like your concert last night. It was like the music flowed through me and I could be detached from the world, yet completely attached to the music. Ben Christner

  • Mesmerizing! I can't actually think of words to describe how unique and exceptional you really are. Thank you. Review from the OMTA conference

Over the years these guest books with positive notes have become a lifesaver whenever I feel discouraged and need a pickup. On those gloomy days when I wake up lacking the enthusiasm to dive into the day I read these notes to remind myself that what I do makes a difference to the world.

Studies have shown that a person needs to hear at least 5.6 positive statements to counteract one negative statement. How often do we face doubt, uncertainty, criticism, and judgement, even from ourselves? Since we are prone to remembering and generating negative voices, we must create a system of collecting positive words on those rainy days. I am not saying that we need validation to lift ourselves or a self-worth boost from others. Yet we can use every ounce of positive fuel, clinging to the light for use on our darkest days.

We receive positive and meaningful comments throughout our lives. The problem is that those messages, like other things in life, become forgotten after a momentary energy boost. The author of "Someday is Today," Matthew Dicks, recommends that we try to preserve the contents of compliments (verbally or via email, text message, or comment on social media) and schedule their return. Firstly create a folder or document to save your compliments in one place. Secondly, if you do it via email, use the snooze function in the email application and schedule to forward a message to the future. Like Matthew, I collect positive notes in one file, but I've never tried to schedule an email for its return in future. What a brilliant idea! I am already excited to see it come back to me. As Matthew says, "Positivity on the way, someday, hopefully just when I need it."

I have another suggestion - that you become someone who gives compliments to other people in the first place. When you feel something genuinely positive, don't be stingy by holding it back. Splurge, express, and give that energy back to the universe. In our interaction of flowing positive energy we lift each other and ourselves in the process.


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