Community & Current Events

The best compliment you've ever received

By: Corinna vanGerwen

Author: Canadian Living

Community & Current Events

The best compliment you've ever received

By: Corinna vanGerwen
A few kind words can brighten your day, but when the compliment is unexpected, unusual or about something you’re particularly proud of, the memory of the comment can bring a smile to your face for months, even years. We asked Canadians to share the best compliments that have stuck with them, and hope that it inspires you to be thoughtful and liberal with the compliments you dole out.

Mom's the best

"My son brought a girlfriend home when he was in university. I was making dinner for them in the kitchen and he said to her, 'When I was in high school, Mom made me a home cooked meal, as good as this or better, every night.' I had no idea that my labours had made such an impression on him." -- Daphne, Toronto

Teaching values
"I'm an academic advisor at a university, and have had several years of teaching experience, so am comfortable in front of a group. Recently, I was talking to a group about first year electives, and after the presentation, one of the students said that he was impressed I was able to list the subjects and their faculty association (humanities, social sciences, sciences). He said he could hear the pages of the Rolodex in my memory turning as I was talking and writing on the board." -- Anthea, Thunder Bay, Ont.

Wellness inspiration
"After a few months of trying to get fit, I was feeling frustrated that I wasn't achieving the results I wanted. A woman at the gym came over to me one day and told me how fabulous and fit I was beginning to look. She said my success was inspiring to her. Little did she know that by telling me, in turn she was inspiring me!" -- Kim, Sarnia, Ont.

"I'm often told that I have great posture. In fact, two elderly ladies were so impressed with my stance, I had a real laugh trying to convince them that I had never undergone surgery to place a steel rod in my back!" -- Ann, Toronto

"One time, after a long and nonsensical e-mail exchange where my friend Josh and I tried to out-fun one another, he wrote, 'I love your brain.'" -- Jowita, Toronto

Page 1 of 2 -- Discover more heartwarming compliments to make you smile on page 2
"Many years ago, I walked into the theatre office in Bristol where I worked. Several actors were sitting around, between rehearsals, and one of them said, quite out of the blue, 'Doesn't she have a glow about her?' I didn't know him very well, but we had both studied at the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School the year before. It seemed so poetic and made me feel wonderful. Who was the young actor? Daniel Day Lewis." -- Ali, Toronto

"As a nursing professor, I take groups of students into the clinical setting. Between the supervision of meds, narcotics, basic care and post-operative assessments, I try to instill the art of nursing by demonstrating caring through smiling and interacting with patients. At the end of one rotation, a student wrote that she would always remember me for my hands and the way I used them to greet, provide care and reassure clients. She said the impact and power of touch was something she will never forget. I was flattered that she noticed my efforts." -- Terri, Oshawa, Ont.

"I work as a nanny, and one time I was walking down the street with one of my three-year-old charges being a bit silly – laughing and walking like penguins. A stranger stopped and said, 'I can see you really enjoy your child.' It was a bit embarrassing to be caught in a silly moment, but it was nice that someone noticed and had something kind to say about it." -- Mac, Toronto

"A couple of weeks ago, I was all done up for a photograph – dress, makeup, pearl earrings – but I wanted to smile with my mouth shut because I don't like my teeth. Trying to talk me into smiling more broadly, a friend insisted, 'You have great teeth; they're as white your pearls!' Of course I grinned at that!" -- Rebecca, Toronto

"Recently, when I was visiting with my two-year-old granddaughter, I told my son and daughter-in-law what truly great parents they are. My son said to me, 'Mom, where do you think I learned to be a good parent from? From you.' My eyes filled with tears." -- Mai, Toronto

"I had finished some illustrations for a television documentary and was at a copy shop getting copies of them made. The clerk asked how long I had worked on the pieces, which were simple-looking line drawings. I replied that it had taken a few days; he laughed and said probably more like 15 years. 'You cannot draw like that overnight,' he said. 'You've been training your hand for a long time.' He was right, and I smiled with the pleasure of having my efforts appreciated." -- Agnes, Port Burwell, Ont.

"Just after the film E.T. was released, my six-year-old nephew told me – with a big grin on his face – that my hands looked like E.T.'s, long and skinny. I thought it was a nice compliment until I saw the movie!" -- Aino, Toronto

Read more:
Living to make people laugh
What is happiness?
Get healthy and happy now!

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The best compliment you've ever received