All social media posts can be viewed as a gambit for attention and validation, but some are more explicit than others. Sometimes, when people are feeling low they ask their social media friends or followers for some kind words to get them through.
I think this can be a very nice thing, but I don’t think I’ve ever made an explicit compliment request on social media. This is primarily because I’m worried about the quality of the compliments I’d receive. If I posted, ‘I’ve had a hard day, could you tell me something you like about me,’ and a Facebook friend replied, ‘Your hair’ I would not feel flattered. I would consider the remark at best frivolous and at worst sarcastic.
To avoid this scenario I’ve realised it’s best to be specific with compliment requests. People aren’t mind readers! They need to be told what you need to hear. With that in mind, I’ve created a list of detailed compliment requests to deploy on social media on an as needs basis.
- Recall a time when I was the best at something. Tell me how many people noticed and how it shaped your life.
- Meet up with a mutual friend and spend some time chatting positively about me. Separately recount your recollections of the conversation to me. These retellings should take at least as long as the original conversation.
- Name three people who have had a crush on me in the past. Ideally, this should be new information to me. Please only include people I respect and provide evidence of their strong (but not weird) feelings.
- Create a prize for me to win. If I suspect it’s not a merit-based peer-reviewed prize it will be meaningless to me. So please ensure I have genuinely won the prize through a competitive process and that there is a small awards ceremony with champagne and canapes.
- Find someone who was rude to me once and ask them what they were thinking. Record them explaining that they were just jealous and they wish we could be friends. Tell them that probably won’t happen because I’m very busy and important, but you can check with me.
- Think of famous people who I admire and get them to engage with my work. Tell me about their positive reactions and requests to meet.
Next time I am feeling low, I will choose one of these, post it on social media and wait (hopefully not more than 90 seconds or I will delete and cry) for powerful warm fuzzies to arrive.
You are welcome to borrow them too. Take care.