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Can you overdo the compliments?

Couple on CouchHi this is Otto writing today’s post and…

Sometimes I wonder if I overdo compliments with my wife and partner Susie.

I mean… how much is too much?

Right?

Because Susie and I are relationship coaches and because I want to know all the latest things that other “experts” are writing about online…

And because I always want to know all the best ideas on how to make my relationship great…

I subscribe to and read A LOT of relationship info both online and offline and I gotta’ tell you…

Some of the advice I read online just plain scares me.

It scares me to know that millions of men and women are reading some of the things I read and…

It scares me even more to know that tens of thousands (maybe millions) of men and women actually believe some of the things I see posted online every day.

Take the question of overdoing compliments when it comes to a man complimenting his wife or girlfriend…

In my email box earlier today, another so-called relationship guru for men sent an email out to his subscribers where he said that “a man shouldn’t compliment a woman…”

He went on to say that “a man should compliment her friends instead because that way, it would activate her competitive streak.”

This is totally crazy and…

What I can tell you is this…

As I look back on my 15 year marriage to my first wife…

I sure didn’t compliment her very much. If I did, I don’t remember it.

I can also tell you that as I look back on my relationship with her, there were a LOT of things I didn’t do that kind, loving, caring husbands and boyfriends do.

Coaching clients I’ve worked with to help them heal their relationship issues have often asked me if I thought there was anything I could have done to save my first marriage.

My answer is always the same–I tell them that sometimes there is quite a bit you can do to save a relationship and sometimes there’s not.

In my case, there was simply…

Too much pain.

Too much sadness.

Too much negativity.

Too much blame and finger-pointing.

Not enough love, kindness and compassion for what the other was going through.

Not enough talking, communication or openness…

And not enough love skills.

That’s why I made the commitment to myself after I left that marriage to do whatever it took to figure out how to have a great relationship with lots of passion that could actually stand a chance of lasting.

And I didn’t have to look too far to find an idea that has served me pretty well in my relationship and marriage to my beloved Susie…

And that’s do the opposite of what I did before.

Huh?

That’s right.

I figured, if I get up every morning and take a “smart pill” (as I like to say), then I’d recognize that one of the secrets to this amazing love I have with Susie is to run the opposite way as fast as I can away from all the things I did and didn’t do in the last years of my first marriage.

Was I the only one to blame for my first marriage ending?

No way.

But all the things I did and didn’t do, certainly didn’t help.

So, how about the question of how much and how often should a man compliment a woman? (especially when it’s the woman he claims to love like his wife or girlfriend)

My answer is that it’s probably different for every woman and every relationship but as I see it…

It’s a MUCH bigger problem in relationships today that women aren’t getting the appreciation they deserve.

The opposite could also be said as well.

Women who want love, kindness, affection, intimacy and appreciation from their man aren’t usually spending a whole lot of time complimenting him either.

I’m almost to the end of my rant but what I’ve always found to be true in the last 18 years with Susie and in my work with countless coaching clients is this…

It’s always better to err on the side of love, kindness and understanding instead of apathy, blame, withdrawing or finger-pointing.

And…if you have the awareness that something isn’t working– try something different instead of the same thing that will only make you (and them) miserable.

I think it’s time to go find something to appreciate about Susie and pay her a sincere compliment.

What I’ve found is that too many compliments are much better than not enough.

Besides, Susie seems to like it when I compliment her.

Isn’t that interesting?

Talk to you again soon.

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