How to Make Super Nice – Sharing Secondhand Praise

Face to  face compliments are easily discounted, particularly those from parents or to bosses. Passing on another’s  praise is not so easily brushed aside.



All parents should read this post. Why? Well, I knew my youngest was entering the teen years although he was only eleven. How?  I praised him and he groaned.

Then he said: “You’re just my Mom.”

Ouch, but some  good side, for it hinted that he might believed I loved him despite any bad behavior. Down side, he was now discounting compliments. Not good for self-esteem and meant he might be missing out on lots of other compliments.

So parents, look for the nice things others say about your child and pass them on.

Bosses and all others in authority also discount compliments and because many people make nice to “suck” up. The boss above may  have missed or discouned sincere compliments. Again, passing along second-hand praise works best as a compliment.

Emotional fitness training Tip

Emotional fitness tip one: Always, and I mean always, pass on second-hand compliments or praise.  (Well, maybe not about”How much stronger the local bully is than you are” when he is trying to pick a fight.)

Otherwise, pass on every nice thing you hear another person saying about someone you know. The old chewing gum motto “Doubles the flavor, doubles the fun,”   triples the value of praise.  Three people profit:  you, the person you share the praise with, and the original complimentor.

Emotional fitness tip two:  Be sure to remark on how you agree with the original compliment.

Emotional fitness tip three:  Whether sharing a first or second-hand compliment if brushed off, I always, say something like “I mean what I say, take it in.”  That is not so necessary when you can find some secondhand praise to pass on but if the compliment gets shrugged off, a good strategy.


Sincere compliments are a way to practice deliberate kindness.  Second-hand compliments extend the kindness.  Kindness is one of the Daily Twelve Easy Emotional Fitness Exercises and compliments are one way to go down the kindness path.

When I walked the mean streets of the Bronx and Manhatten, I got great pleasure from complimenting strangers and from their response I felt praised and grateful for the  smile and thank you I got in return.

Here is one of my EFTI Free Poster Coaches about practicing kindness.

Practice Kindness Emotional Fitness Poster Coach

Thank you for all you do including liking, commenting, or sharing. Kindness is blesses the giver and the receiver.




As noted above, this inspired me to write about second-hand compliments. However, I also recall overhearing two friends saying,”Her face lights up when she smile.”  I don’t know if they were talking about me, but some part of my heart thought they were and that off-hand over heard comment, erased the shyness created by an over bite.  I smiled more and as smiles make you happy as well as who you smile at happy, I was not the only one benefitting..

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