I can remember when having a pair of shoes with velcro was considered cool; I can foresee another time in life when having shoes with velcro will be practical!
Velcro is used in a variety of products and settings because it’s an effective way of linking together two objects. It’s replaced zippers, shoe laces, and more. It has the familiar “ripping” sound when pulled apart.
When it comes to relationships, compliments and criticisms are like velcro strips … once we’ve said either one, we’re linked to the person on the receiving end.
- Compliments reinforce and rebuild. A well-placed compliment recognizes a strength and reinforces it. It takes latent potential and brings it closer to the surface. It also rebuilds, breathing new life into a damaged relationship or wounded dream.
- Criticisms live on in the heart well after they’ve left the mouth. Intentional or unintentional, they fasten themselves to previous hurts or attach themselves to doubts.
Not all compliments stick like velcro; to do so, they must be genuine. Insincere compliments may stick more like a wet bandaid than a strip of velcro. At some point, it becomes more of a nuisance than a blessing.
Not all criticisms are out-of-bounds. Accountability requires critical thinking and the ability to communicate necessary changes in a way that is clear and careful. Perhaps the difference lies in having critical thinking skills or simply having a critical spirit.
At home or at work, choose your words carefully because you may be applying velcro.