No matter the award show or ceremony, most acceptance speeches have a few things in common. There’s usually some type of shoutout to “Mama,” thanks to a higher power, and acknowledgment of a long list of names that helped make it all possible. Even if we’re not accepting an award for a script or a song, there are a few lessons we can learn from the big stage and put into practice.
When you dress well, smell good, reach a milestone, or win your rec league volleyball game, compliments may follow. How you handle this praise can say a lot about your character. It defines the boundaries between being confident and humble to being arrogant, cocky and unappreciative. This piece will give you some guidance and food for thought on staying grounded while standing out.
Saying “thank you” is the most direct way to express your appreciation. You should never take a kind word for granted. Recognize that if someone went out of their way to congratulate or commend you, they deserve the magic words in return. This is the most elementary tip that most of us learned by kindergarten, but sometimes fail to remember.
Humility will keep praise from becoming poison. Without it, compliments can be addictive and even venomous, inflating the ego, filling the head, and propping the pedestal before a fall. Stay grounded by keeping people around you that will occasionally challenge and correct you.. Wise kings want more than yes men in their council.
Stay accessible and down to Earth. Remind yourself that even though people might promote or elevate you, you should never think of yourself as bigger, better or higher than anyone. If a compliment comes your way from someone that aspires to do what you’ve done, take the time to share some wisdom with them. It’s well and good to achieve success, but your legacy lies in who you help along the way.
If you get a compliment for something you were helped with, share the wealth! If anyone else contributed to the project, say so. If someone taught you how to do that, give credit where credit is due. The amazing thing about credit is that no matter how much you split it or spread it, it doesn’t go away.