My coach Gopal Sarma, kept telling us that we are reluctant to accept our own potential. Louise Hay puts it a little differently she tells us when we accept compliments we are reminded that others see us through different eyes.
We are willing to accept criticism and react to it, but when it comes to compliments we look for motives. They could be acknowledging a wise choice or applauding us for letting our light shine, yet we are compelled to find reasons why they are untrue. We call it modesty and iconize it.
If we could only visualize the energy of a compliment we would see that it is beautiful, shining, positive energy being sent from the giver. That energy if accepted graciously could brighten our personal energy field. Our gratitude then returns to the giver as warm fuzzy glowing energy completing an even circuit of good feelings.
When we reject a compliment what could have been a lovely exchange becomes awkward and uncomfortable turning it into a negative experience. A misplaced modesty ruins the joy of this connection with another person. But as we accept a compliment and still be modest by saying a simple thank you, it could still work.
If you ever doubt this energy then try to genuinely compliment others, just see how you feel. When the person smiles.
The best way to be kind to ourselves could be accepting and thanking the person who has a kind word for us.