You accept more praises and less condemnation: part 2 of the 7th reason for your confusion about life.
Do you remember back in the days when you wanted to be in the spotlight as a child? New things almost meant a new you…
You know that feeling when we get a new wristwatch or cloth, and we become entirely dramatic, so people get to notice and praise us—we are all guilty of it.
I remember one time my mum got a new wristwatch for me; I was in elementary six. Oh, I didn’t sleep a wink; I guarded the wristwatch whilst tapping my foot on the floor, as I could not wait for the early morning sun to overshadow the night.
Something that had never happened before; I woke up before every other person had my bath and trekked to school alone. And throughout the class section, I couldn’t help but admire the people that admired my wristwatch.
At that moment, take away that wristwatch, and you’ve taken out a massive part of me. How long did this last again?
I don’t know, but I can beat my chest that it didn’t last for a week. Well, that’s what happens when we get excited about superficial things that add nothing or even complete our lives. It’s an assurance it will FADE away as though it was never there.
Little wonder, many people easily slip into depression after a BIG and long-awaited win.
Why do people want to be praised?
Well, do you remember Maslow’s hierarchy of needs? We have an illustration of it below…
We were taught about this in school, and while it may not make sense until now, it’s always been our reality.
A time will come in everybody’s life when we desire to make meaning out of life and get recognized for that.
It is not a play, and as much as we are all guilty, it is not entirely wrong. We were born with it, and it’s innate. Everybody wants to stand out. You shouldn’t ever feel guilty about wanting to be praised for your contribution or achievements. However, things can blow out of proportion when someone becomes overly attracted to praise.
Whether you are an introvert, an extrovert, or an ambivert, we all feel the need to be recognized. While many people would go through the challenging and gradual process, a considerable percentage would seek the easy way and shortcuts.
Here are reasons we all want praise;
- Praises have a way of building energy in us
- We want recognition because it increases happiness
- It increases stress resilience and physical health
- People want credit because it creates a ripple of positivity
In my course of research, somebody said, “It’s because we are all our worst critics. We humans love to know that we are on the right track at least every once in a while.”
So, don’t feel bad because we all seek acceptance in either; there is a response that struck me. Humans want praises “because praise is something that all human beings share with GOD”, and I agree with this response; if God has created us in his image and likeness, we do not differ from HIM.
But it can all get worse when we do not know our boundaries. How does accepting too much praise contribute to one’s confusion about life? Read on to find out!
You accept too many praises and less condemnation
What happens when a child seeks attention but cannot find it? The answer is obvious: the child begins to either do things to get that attention, most of which is to cry their way into getting that attention, or they start to mess with something in the house to get the attention they need. Are we any different? The same thing applies to us: most will get things done around the house to get attention.
However, most people are likely to do unimaginable things to get that attention. You know that feeling when everyone around you is becoming useFUL and VALUABLE, yet you are not anywhere close? That confusing state where you imagine things both right and wrong, that moment you exalt negative thoughts above the WORD of GOD.
You cannot help it; your contemporaries are now wealthy, others are getting married, many are getting a promotion, and others are making an impact here and globally, but all you feel is being stuck. Everybody says it would be fine, but you know you are far from getting it right.
It even gets worse when your family or friends compare you with them, and as much as we should agree that we are all on our path to growth, it hurts when you don’t even know when you are on the trail.
Many already SUCCESSFUL people want to continue to be in the spotlight. They will do anything to maintain that spotlight or skyrocket to another welcoming, deserving, or more recognizable position.
Is accepting praises wrong?
Of course, it is not; however, it becomes wrong when we are overly reliant on praise to be who we already are. (Notice who we already are)
How does accepting too much praise result in your CONFUSION about LIFE?
Accepting too much praise or being overly reliant on people’s praise can cause more harm than good because it affects how the person reacts when the praises and accolades seem far-fetched.
This attitude is more prevalent with already successful people; they don’t want anybody to beat them in their game.
So, it is not unusual to see politicians assume heights unimaginably, and they would do anything to protect that. That’s why many pastors will switch powers for higher calls or to be recognized globally. And young men are eager to submit to performing many ritual activities to be where they are. Young ladies are also okay subjecting themselves to torture just to be noticed or recognized, storm into any event and have everybody hail or make them the talk of the day.
Nowadays, it is more overwhelming, mind-boggling and inescapable. While all these seem like a distraction, and many people (I inclusive) would boast of the recurrent activities not having any effect on us, it is only time before we notice the dent it had already caused, especially when faced with these activities 24/7.
It is not the result of one activity that affects people’s choices; it is the repetition of that activity in many ways. WE ARE NOT SAFE OUT HERE.
So, suddenly; you feel heavily burdened that it seems your friend is now in the spotlight whilst you are left in the shadows. Many people are guilty of this, and it would take the GRACE OF GOD to honor the goodness of GOD in other people’s lives without rubbing the SUCCESS on our faces.
Is accepting praise a wrong thing? Again, receiving praise is not in any way terrible. However, there are dangers of excessive praise. So, it is not a good idea to want praise every time. As much as it registers boldness in us and makes us want to do it, it can still trap us from becoming better; we now focus too much on what we have achieved that we forget that the reward of hard work is more work. Many people are guilty of this; if you think you are like this, you are far from being alone.
Let’s infuse biblical examples. Are you ready to delve right in?
1 Samuel 12 (read the bible passage to understand better)
I won’t exactly put all the bible passages, but this is about Saul, he started on a good ground, but things changed when he leaned on his wisdom, and when things didn’t turn out the way they should be, he sought for other means to source for powers and wisdom.
Saul’s disobedience started when he paid more attention to the people than God’s instruction. He was more interested in pleasing the people than in pleasing God. Consequently, this affected his friendship and connection with God and even Samuel.
See 1 Samuel 15 as well,
Saul could not complete the task which GOD had instructed of him, and this opened up other things that Saul wasn’t prepared for, and because he didn’t receive from God again, Saul practiced necromancy. He forgot how he started.
This is the thing with most of us today. We all begin our quest into a new life patiently waiting on GOD, doing His will, trying to live right and by the time GOD blesses us, we now think that is the way it is always.
Sadly, this was just the story of Saul and has always been the story of every other person who trailed on another path outside GOD without remorse.
Do you know what happens when we accept too much praise than condemnation?
- Once you accept too many praises while sneering at condemnation, you are slowly shutting the door to growth; things would become so the same, the same action, the same compliment, the same result, NOTHING NEW TO SHOW FOR YOUR GROWTH.
- You will focus more on people than on your dreams.
- You will only seek people’s validation before you embrace your individuality.
- You become over-reliant on people’s praises for your growth.
- If you accept too many praises and become blind to condemnation, you will lose your sense of reasoning, as you will only see things from one perspective.
- Accepting more praises puts us in the “I have arrived motion” when we just began.
- Accepting more praises will draw us into the complacency of yesterday’s event, and we will lose light on what truly matters. And as Myles Munroe would say, the enemy of the better is good, and the enemy of best is better.
Have you seen yourself in this kind of scenario? Do you think you are guilty of this?
It is okay if you have felt like this in one way or another; however, you can learn from it and choose not to embark on the same journey that got you into a thought pattern.
Praise gives confidence, but praises foster or encourage pride; it nurtures it so well that when the recipient doesn’t manage their emotions and doesn’t get it any longer, it manifests CONFUSION, HATRED, ENVY and, at worst, the person involved will start to seek other means or alternatives to get the praises.
“Praise a good man, and he becomes better, but praise an evil man, and he becomes the worse of who he is.”
A recent study says over heaping of praises does more harm than good.
What can you do to strike a balance?
If you are sincerely looking for a way to improve, seek it diligently. It is important to note that a habit will take a while to change. Indeed, it is. It took some time to grow, so it would take time for you to get rid of it.
But you can always start from where you are and build your new home, brick by brick. “Many a little makes a mickle” again. “Rome is not built in a day.”
So, what can you do to strike a balance? As a Christian, there is always a posture that we should assume for good things to not blow out of proportion and become the very nightmare we have forbidden and dispelled.
- Take your time accepting praise; always seek a way to get negative feedback, like the thing you should enhance, do better at, not do at all or change.
- Many times, needing to improve at something comes with over-recognition; you would receive compliments and countless gifts. Please don’t take it as yours; get back to the posture that got the result; otherwise, like a sedative, the praises hypnotize you, and you become the very version of another being you had faith you get rid of
- One thing you must do is to mind who you take accolades from. Apostle Joshua Selman would say if kings are yet to celebrate, you keep going! But does it ever end even when you get there? No, it doesn’t. The reward of hard work is more work.
- Never boast of these things; share them to encourage the people growing in faith, but making a subject topic and sharing with anybody who cares to listen makes you act like a big shot.
We already know it is easy for people to slip into CONFUSION when they only are open to negative thoughts and talks from other people. However, many of us do not realize that we can also experience CONFUSION when we are longer what we used to be or when the praises we always enjoyed are no longer coming.
We hope you find this content helpful. Now that you have learnt about part 2 of the 7th reason for your confusion about life: you accept more praises and less condemnation; please always remember your dreams need no validation to be yours. However, it requires constant training for massive development.
We hope you stay safe and sane!