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Everything communicates – everything you are, do and say, to what you pay attention, and the way you react to others. Receive compliments in a way that impacts how others perceive themselves – essentially by saying, “Thank you” with your words and actions. React to bad news about yourself or others by appreciating it in a way that encourages those messengers to give you more of it in the prompt, straightforward and unvarnished way you want it delivered.

Long ago in a galaxy far away someone suggested the best way to respond to a compliment was by saying “Thank you.” He urged us to accept compliments as the fully formed gifts they are meant to be. There is no need to build on them, defer them, or deny them.

Last year someone complimented me on something I wrote. I replied, “I’m not sure it was that good.” She jumped all over me, saying “Don’t ever say that again. It makes aspiring writers lose faith in themselves.”

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