If you see something beautiful in someone, speak it.

January 24 is National Compliment Day

Who doesn’t love getting a heartfelt compliment? Tomorrow is National Compliment Day. We’ve been hearing an awful lot of complaints, criticisms, and all out nasty comments in the past few days (weeks, months…). How about we set all that aside and pay some compliments instead?

You never know how much a few kind words can help another person. Can you think of a time when someone paid you a compliment and it made your day? Kind words cost nothing. If you notice something positive about someone else, why not share it with them? People need to feel valued, appreciated, or sometimes even just noticed. Your kind, honest compliment can literally change a life.


The Whys and Hows of Paying a Compliment


Generous Thoughts


Why Should We Give Compliments

I’m sure someone taught you if you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all. The giving of compliments is, at its heart, good manners. It is also a sign of kindness and generosity. These are all things our world needs more of these days.

Negative words lead to negative reactions and feelings. Vice versa, positive words create positive reaction, feelings, and even actions. There is scientific evidence that compliments (as well as positive work reviews and good grades) can stimulate people to work perform better. Compliments motivate people to be better. In fact, research has found that compliments stimulate the the brain in the same way as receiving money does. Pretty powerful stuff!

Receiving a heartfelt compliment makes us happy. Scientific data also strongly correlates feeling happy with a stronger immune system, lower stress levels, and better overall health. It can also make the brain work better.  So giving an honest compliment can not only make someone feel better emotionally, but physically as well. This is true of not only the receiver, but also the giver. Praising someone makes you feel good too. Doing good feels good.


How to Give a Compliment

  • Be Genuine – Insincere praise rings hollow and does not benefit anyone in the long run. Only give praise when you really mean it.
  • Be Specific – Don’t just say “great job.” Say “I really liked the way you completed that on time and your work shows a focus on details that is really impressive.” Instead of “I like your tie (dress, shoes, outfit)” mention how the color looks good on them or the style is flattering.
  • Be Generous – Don’t limit yourself to a few compliments if you see more you can give. When you see something you can praise, do it.
  • Slow Down – Watch the reactions you get from the compliments you give. You will see the happiness it gives others and, in turn, make yourself happier too.
  • Don’t Wait – When a word of praise pops into your mind, say it. Don’t hold onto it for another time. You never know how much time we have. No regrets. Live in the moment.
  • Take Time to Reflect – Look back at your day and the compliments you’ve given. If you keep a journal, write down your experiences. Note how they made you feel as well as how they affected others.
  • Give Yourself a Compliment – We are often hardest on ourselves. Be sure to tell yourself good things too.



speak it


One last thing to remember on National Compliment Day and every day. Learn how to take a compliment. Too many of us put ourselves down or sell ourselves short. Graciously accept the compliments that come your way. Take the credit when it is your due. Learn to see yourself in a more positive light and then shine in that light as you move forward.

Thanks for reading. Please leave your comments (or compliments) below.


If you see something beautiful in someone, speak it.

How I Named My Cup of Cocoa

When I started this blog last year, I wanted a name for it that would speak about happiness, favorite things, and comfort. I wrote down lots of ideas and started searching for a blog name that was available. In case you didn’t know, you have to purchase a domain name when you set up a blog like this one. I looked around for advice and did some research and I’m happy with how it’s all worked out.

What’s in a Name?

I started with the song “My Favorite Things” from The Sound of Music in mind. Raindrops on Roses and Whiskers on Kittens were already taken. So were Bright Copper Kettles and Warm Woolen Mittens. Brown Paper Packages was also a no go. So much for naming the blog after my favorite things.

Then I went in another direction. I thought, well, you’re going to be talking about things that you like. How about “My Cup of Tea” a saying which means something one likes or excels at according to Merriam-Webster.  But of course, someone else had beat me to it. Then I thought, you don’t really drink tea anyway. You love hot chocolate (okay, okay any chocolate). No one had taken the name “My Cup of Cocoa” and the rest is history.


cup of cocoa
My cup of cocoa from a favorite bakery – b.patisserie in San Francisco.


My Cup of Cocoa made sense on a variety of levels for me. I love chocolate and I love trying different kinds of hot chocolate (here’s some recipes for you). I love all things warm and cozy. This blog is about what creates happiness and sharing good thoughts. I also write about books and reading (look here and here for some of my latest book posts). A cup of cocoa and a good book go together like peanut butter and chocolate or bacon and eggs. (Can you tell I’m a little hungry?) I also love collecting and sharing quotes and looking for reasons to celebrate (National Bubble Bath Day was January 8th and I missed it!). My Cup of Cocoa just seemed to fit. There have been quite a few comments on how cozy, warm, and satisfying this blog is and that matches the name too.


Advice on Naming a Blog

When I was trying to name my blog, I read lots of advice. Here are the best pieces I can share with you.

  1. Use a “,com”  domain ending if at all possible. This is important because most people still enter .com when searching for websites. Originally, the  .com ending stood for commercial and .org stood for organization. So if you want to sell things, .com is better for you. If you are starting a non-profit or charity .org is better. Both .com and .org are popular and more common (75% of all U.S. domain names end with .com) which translates to better trusted. Less common domain endings are sometimes treated as suspicious.
  2. Consider the tone and character of your blog. My blog is about warm, happy, cozy, and kind things. My Cup of Cocoa fits that well. If you were going to blog about fashion, you’d need something else. My Cramped Closet comes to mind I checked, it’s not taken!).
  3. Do you have an unusual name? If you feel comfortable doing so, include it in you blog’s name. If your name is Jennifer Smith (I actually know two of them), it might not work. But if you’re Annabelle LaTouche think of the possibilities! (Annabelle LaTouche is a completely fictional name as far as I know).
  4. Make it memorable. A good domain name should stand out from the crowd. Don’t just make a variation on the spelling of something that is already taken. Like the phrase goes: Why fit in when you were born to stand out.
  5. Consider your target audience. If your audience is food fanatics, use that as your starting point. If your focusing on travel, focus of words that relate to that.  You want to reach out and grab your audience’s attention right at the get go.
  6. Use a domain name generator. I tried this and it helped. But eventually the name came to me on its own. What the generator did for me was showed me what was already taken and suggested other ideas. I like Nameboy and Cool Name Ideas.
  7. Consider your brand. If you are planning on selling something through your blog, you’ll want a name that relates to your brand. Do you have a logo? How about a color scheme? Does the name, logo, and color scheme all work together?

I haven’t developed a brand yet, but I think my color scheme, logo and blog name all work together. I love my blog’s name. It makes me happy. Which means it’s just right for me.

I hope these ideas will help you find one that’s just right for you. If you have other ideas or tips on this subject, please comment below. If you have a blog, share how you named it.

Thanks for reading and please share.