"Hey, I am doing a project in which I compliment a person a day. Today you are my candidate. I just saw you pass by and I could not take my eyes off of you. You are so insanely pretty!"
How did she react?
She nodded, and said, "Thank you!" For a moment she hesitated then she asked, "So in that project of yours- do I have to say something in return?"
I laughed, "You already have! And no, you don't have to say anything if you don't want to."
"Ah, alright. So is this serious? Like honest? Hearing that its part of a project makes me wonder..."
"Yeah, honesty is my only rule. Whatever I say I am not allowed to lie or consciously use the compliment as a means to an end other than expressing what I feel about someone else. So yes, it is totally honest, otherwise I would not have said it."
"I understand! That sounds really cool! Thanks then! I think it would have been easier for me to receive the compliment if I had not known about your project. For a second there knowing that raised doubts.
How did I feel?
I loved Amanjit's bluntness! The openness and clarity with which she gave me feedback for the project were stunning, especially since our conversation went down in front of a video camera.
Though I still enjoyed her lovely looks I was actually more impressed by her critical and smart mindset while we talked with one another. This is something I dig about complimenting strangers: You spot one thing you like about them. You approach them and tell them. As you chat you can almost be certain to discover treasures in them you were unable to detect from far away. Stories, attitude, feelings- whatever piece of inner beauty compliment cadidates share with me, it is always a surprise gift. I receive for praising another part of them. It's a win-win (win win win).
I have contemplated on the argument in Amanjit's critique of my compliment strategy before. Find my thoughts here.