Some people might feel lost when trying to form the right words or maybe complimenting doesn't come naturally to them. Either way, these are things that I learned in class this semester that made sense to me and that I hope will help you.
// Be sincere. (This seems like a no-brainer, but how many times have you told someone that you liked their shirt, hat, coat, etc. when really you were just looking for something to say?)
// Many small compliments are better than one big one.
// Be specific. This can be hard to do, but the deep thought that may be required is part of what makes a compliment meaningful. It's the thought that counts. (If you're picking out a character trait, describe a time that person showed that trait. If you're saying you like something they're wearing or made, tell what you like about it. Etc.)
// Avoid intensifiers like really. Surprisingly, taking out that one word often brings more power to the words that you do use.
// Don't compliment when you're asking for something (manipulation) or when you're criticizing.
And if you're receiving a compliment, all you need to say is thank you. Compliments are like gifts. All you need to do is accept them. No disagreeing, downgrading, or rejecting allowed. Saying thank you accepts the gift.
Complimenting someone takes thought, humility, and courage. Not easy. But so worth it.
May we all be on the lookout for times to warm the hearts of our loved ones with words. And may we have the courage to speak those words- even the imperfect ones.