Let’s talk about body positive compliments.
In my view, the best way to give someone a compliment – body positive or otherwise – is to make no reference to their appearance at all.
I’ll explain why and then give some examples.
Compliments About Appearance
Before we go further, let me point out that any compliment is a kind gesture with a good intention.
The issue is that when complimenting someone on their appearance, you’re basing it on a snapshot of them. You have no idea what has been going on behind the scenes.
When I was first trying to lose weight, and people were complimenting me for it, it made me feel like I was somehow a better person because I was thinner.
This probably contributed to the troubles I have had throughout my life with eating disorders.
When complimenting someone on weight loss, you might be complimenting them the symptoms of an illness or an eating disorder.
You might be complimenting them on something that is negatively impacting their health.
You might be complimenting them on the symptoms of stress or anxiety, or another mental health issue which is wrecking their appetite.
Similarly, when you compliment someone on the way they look after they have spent a long time getting “ready”, or doing their hair and/or make up, and those compliments don’t happen when someone isn’t as “glammed up”, it is easy for them to start to feel embarrassed about their natural appearance.
Like I already said, you don’t compliment someone out of malice or to make them feel bad. Saying something nice to someone is a good thing with well-meaning intentions.
But I think we can do better than focusing on vanity.
Compliments Not About Appearance
When you compliment someone about their personality, or how they made you feel, it shows that you are present and you are connected with them.
It shows you pay attention to them and not just their appearance.
And a lot of those times, those compliments will land and stick a lot more with the person receiving them.
I won’t remember what my weight was or what I was wearing when someone said I look great. But I will remember what I said when they said it made their day better.
10 Body Positive Compliments You Can Give Someone
These are all examples of ways you can make someone’s day brighter and give them a compliment without making any reference to their appearance.
- I’m lucky to know you.
- Thank you for being a great friend.
- I love being around you.
- You’re a great listener.
- I love your creativity.
- You made my day better.
- I love your energy.
- You make me smile.
- You’re very talented.
- You make me happy.
Make Body Positive Compliments Your Own
If you’re not sure or still looking for ideas then as a general guide I would suggest look at their personality traits, their hobbies or interests, and any other skills they may have.
Or… if it is someone you enjoy spending time with, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with just telling them that.
It has to come from you, it has to be genuine and it has to be personal.
Like I already said, and am emphasising again, there is nothing inherently wrong with complimenting someone on their appearance.
I just think body positive compliments are a better way of brightening someone’s day!