Have you ever had someone say something about you that was so great you remembered it for years? These lucky people sure did. We should all be so lucky to overheard that subtle compliment or the amazing story that makes you look like a hero. These Redditors came together to share the best thing they’ve overheard about themselves, and you can read about their awesome stories here.
I was home from college and my parents thought I was asleep. That’s when I heard them complimenting each other on how they “did a good job” raising me. It meant a lot.
I had a girl over. It was my first time dating in years. My roommate, who is a super close friend of mine who happens to be female, was there as well. I heard my roommate say to my date, “I know he’s shy and a little awkward at first but give it a shot. He’s super sweet and really funny once he’s comfortable. He’s worth the effort.” It gave me a huge, much-needed boost since I struggle with confidence and usually don’t like myself.
One of my coworkers was praising my work ethic to another co-worker and mentioned they’d be telling our supervisors how hard I was working. It made me feel good that someone noticed because I was covering for people that week and pulling a lot more than one person’s workload. I don’t mind because it makes me look better in comparison, but it’s nice that it’s not going unnoticed.
I was on a conference call with one of our clients and they didn’t know I was on it, or hadn’t heard I was there as I was just taking notes. They said, “It’s a shame so-and-so isn’t on this call, as I’d like him to know that he’s positively changed the working life of many people and his work was much appreciated.” I had to walk away and cry, as it was my last day.
I was joking around with some acquaintances at a party and somebody got me with a really funny joke. I started giggling like a madman and I heard a girl on the other end of the room turn to my sister and say, “I just love his laugh. It’s so happy!” and she responded, “I know!” That still makes me smile when I remember.
I was with two friends at a bar, one of whom I’ve known for half my life and one I met more recently. I was nervous about them meeting, but then something incredible happened. While I was at the bar ordering a drink, the newer friend said to the other, “You know, [my name] is such a great judge of character. I know that anyone who he calls a friend is someone I can always get along with.” That’s not even the best part!
They then spent, like, five minutes (there was a long line at the bar) discussing all the things they like about me. It’s just nice to know when you’re appreciated!
Once, at a drive-thru, I was given an extra $20 bill change by accident. I gave it back to the clerk, and as I drove away I heard her turn to her co-worker and say, “What an honest guy!” Then I heard her co-worker say, “Yeah, he was really hot, too!” I blushed so hard the whole way home with my greasy cheeseburger.
I’m a journalist. When I was working a news internship at a local TV station, I was asked to go do some quick “man on the street” interviews on the other side of town. After we got back to the newsroom, I heard the camera guy (a veteran of, like, 30 years who’s worked with some of the best reporters in my city) say to our executive producer, “You know, that kid’s a real journalist.”
It gave me the biggest confidence boost ever as an intern. I’m now employed full-time at that news outlet as of four days ago.
I am a guy and used to be a waiter while a student. It was a quiet shift and while I was busy cleaning up I overheard some of the waitresses say that I have a cute behind. Now at that time as a self-conscious and shy guy trying not to act it, it meant a lot to me!
My co-worker and I got our jobs at this company at the same time, went through training together, got qualified for certain tasks together, and eventually both got management positions at the same time. He and I are good friends I’d say, and we cooperate and work together seamlessly when needed. But, our leadership methods are vastly different.
After a lot of my own research, I found a foundation of positive reinforcement is equally if not more effective than an iron fist type leadership. So, that’s how I run my program for my crew. He’s the exact opposite and is very open about trying to make his crew fear him. Both our methods get the job done, surely. But I try my best to make sure my crew doesn’t dread coming to work.
These guys and girls are the backbone of our operation and deserve respect. They’re holding me up and making me look good with their accomplishments. So, I take care of them as best I can and always give words of encouragement. So much so that I have this little joke where I call out someone’s name across the hangar and just point at them like, “Good job, bro” and they get the message and laugh. Good vibes.
Anyway, our work schedules operate on a three-month bidding rotation; each mechanic will bid for which crew they want to be on which alternates weeks, and those with the higher seniority in the company get the more desirable shifts. It boils down to choosing to be on my crew or my co-worker’s. Basically, picking who your manager will be.
Long story short, I heard people were fighting to get on my crew and overheard numerous times that my crew was much more preferred to be on. Just made me feel good that my efforts aren’t in vain. I feel bad for my counterpart, but at the same time, a guilty part of me is like, “yes.”
I worked in a call center for a while, and we weren’t supposed to hang up first. The system saw calls where we hung up as fishy and would need to be reviewed, so they messed up our stats. One day after setting a lady up with a cheaper than usual subscription, she didn’t hang up properly. What I overheard warmed my heart. I could hear her say to another person in the room with her: “That lady was really lovely!”
I had to go away from the calls for a minute because it made me really emotional. That job was tough, so it was nice to see I wasn’t becoming a monster.
I was hospitalized for six months after a suicide attempt as a teenager. I had to go to school in the hospital. I love languages and every week a French teacher would come in and give me French lessons. She gave me an essay to write for homework and I wrote about my illness. It was a tough time, but what she said about me changed my entire life.
I overheard her telling my nurse that it was a joy to correct my work. It might not seem like much, but to a 17-year-old girl who felt totally worthless, it meant the whole world. I wish I could tell that teacher that I’m almost finished my degree in modern languages now.
When my mom defends me over things I didn’t think she cared about or notice. Like my weight training and powerlifting. All my siblings think it’s unproductive and a waste of time because it doesn’t fit into their small-minded world of what a stay-at-home mom should do. I’ve heard her tell them how important it is to me and how much I love it because it’s something I’m good at.
I’ve always felt like an idiot, a screw-up, and a loser who could never finish anything I started. This meant a lot to me. I’ve heard her say stuff along the lines of somehow finding time to train and time to be a great mom. That meant a lot because if you’re a mom, you’d understand when I say, I never feel like a good mom even though you know you’re doing great. mom guilt sucks.
I’ve lost 135 pounds and am on track for having a state record in all 3-squat, bench, and deadlift. That’s a personal accomplishment to me. Waste of time? I’d like to tell my brothers and sisters to go jump in a lake…
I went into the Dunkin Donuts where my girlfriend works to see her and get some coffee for the long drive I was about to go on for Christmas with my family. I overheard some of my girlfriend’s co-workers teasing her for spilling some things because she was looking at me instead of what she was doing. Then she told them, “I can’t help it, he’s just so darn cute.” I love this woman.
I was on a “kind of” date with my now-wife. We were out with a group of mutual friends, some of whom we didn’t even know we had in common, actually. I had gone to the bathroom to make room in my belly and bladder for more beer. As I came around the corner, I heard her tell a friend of hers—one I did not know very well—”He’s really sexy, and I could just talk to him forever. I’m pretty sure I love him.”
I assumed it was the booze talking, but here we are nine years and 51 weeks later still happily married. I don’t know if she knows that I heard her say that, but it really solidified in my brain that she was The One.
After the late Christmas Eve service, when coming down the staircase from the choir loft, I overheard a parishioner telling the pastor, “The music in this church is inspirational—uplifting and filled with joy.” Then she continued—and I nearly burst out crying. She added, “I hadn’t felt the Christmas spirit this season since my husband’s recent death, but now I do, thanks to your organist.”
Not only did I overhear this beautiful conversation, but when I saw the pastor later, he recounted it verbatim and thanked me for the special contribution music can make in people’s lives.
Not me, but my daughter. We used to live next door to a couple that was a “triage” foster family. When law enforcement had to remove kids from a home, theirs was on the shortlist of approved foster homes to place the kids in right away. My daughter was in elementary school at the time, and she would go out of her way to introduce herself to the kids and take time to play with them. Several groups of kids came and went before we moved to another state.
Several months after we moved, we were in town visiting, and bumped into the mom of one of my daughter’s classmates. What she said made me so proud. This mom is a child psychologist and she said, “I just wanted you to know, I work a lot with the kids in foster care. And I kept hearing different kids talk about their friend <daughter’s name>. I looked at these kids’ paperwork and saw they had been placed in a home next door to where you all lived. It dawned on me that they were talking about your daughter. Just so you know, she made a lot of difference in helping these kids recover from their trauma.”
I lost 80 lbs. last year while living abroad, and I was at a family gathering a few days ago. Most people haven’t seen me in person since I was bigger, and I ran out to get some more drinks since we were all out. When I got back everyone was chatting in the living room, about me, and didn’t hear me open the front door. I overheard them saying I looked really pretty, I’d done a really good job and how I’m much happier and more engaged with them now which made everyone happy since they’d missed my cheerful disposition.
I almost started bawling right there but managed to keep it together.
A few years ago, my sister came to me for advice on some family drama and told me her husband said to ask what I think. Surprised, I asked why he would send her to me. She told me that my opinion means the world to them and if I thought the other parties involved in the drama were in the wrong then it must be so. That, more than anything, has stuck with me.
I had a shindig at my place two years ago. I invited a new friend I had made. I had the Wii set up with Mario Kart and some tune bumpin’ off my Bluetooth. I heard one girl say, “[My Name] is such a good host. And her home is so … home-y.” But the best comment I hear was later in the night when a lot of people were drunk and a different girl, who I had only met once beforehand, turned to one of my close friends and said, “Wow I can’t believe me and [My Name] are the same. We get along so well”. Me and her are best friends now.
I do customer service work on the phone for health insurance. One time I got someone who had already been waiting 15 minutes before speaking to anyone (it was insanely busy) so obviously, he was a bit peeved at that. It turns out he was calling on behalf of his sister and brother-in-law and had some questions. I managed to do everything they needed done in a couple of minutes and gave good explanatory answers to their questions.
By the end of the conversation, after saying our goodbyes, he had not yet hung up, so I heard him talk to his family about how clear and helpful I was.
I spent Christmas with my girlfriend’s family last year. Her family speaks Spanish, I would say, 80% of the time while I barely speak a lick. Some of the food was more spicy than usual, but man was it good. My girlfriend told me after the fact they were all super impressed with how outgoing I was in a heavy Spanish speaking house and how much I liked the spicy food. Her aunt joked and said I was more Mexican than they were.
I suffer from pretty bad anxiety mixed in with a couple of other messy things, but I put in the effort to try to hide it from the real world. I participate in a number of extracurriculars in college and one weekend during a club retreat I had gone to bed early. My best friend told me the next day that a group of people I hardly knew were talking about me for half an hour after I went to bed about how I managed to balance being athletic, musical, and smart at the same time.
They mentioned that I could talk to guys so easily and was funny in conversation. As someone who (at the time) felt like I was cracking under the pressure and stress of school, it was nice to hear that I wasn’t really as bad off as I thought.
I had this really tempestuous relationship with a woman I used to work with. We fought about a lot of things and were just very different. She thought I was a religious whack job, I thought she was man-hating. We told each other as much. We were at opposite ends of the same friend group though, so we were always forced into hanging out.
After a couple of years (literally, years), and after she quit the store we worked at but was still in the friend group, we warmed up to each other. One day, about a week before Halloween, everyone was hanging out at the bar and just enjoying each other’s company. I went outside to smoke, and she was out there with a mix of friends and strangers, I talked with them for a couple of minutes and then ran back inside to grab something.
When I came back out, I heard her telling one of the other girls that had merged with our group, “Oh, that’s my friend. She’s really cool.” It was the only time, to my knowledge, that she called me her friend. Sadly, nothing could’ve prepared me for what happened next. She passed away later that night and nothing has ever really been the same since.
But I have that one last, endearing memory to keep of her, instead of any of the other ones. I wish I could have told her how much I loved her laugh.
I was a bridesmaid in my brother and sister-in-law’s wedding and we (the bridesmaids) were all getting our hair and makeup done before the wedding when I heard my sister-in-law talking to a friend of hers that I didn’t know. I wasn’t listening at first but then I heard her friend say, “She’s so beautiful!” and my sister-in-law responded, “She is beautiful and she doesn’t even act like it! She’s not stuck up or anything!”
I know they were talking about me because she told me later that her friend had complimented me, but it was still nice to hear in the moment. Six years later, me and this sister-in-law are extremely close so it’s an even nicer memory.
Back when I worked in a cubicle farm, I had this co-worker with whom I was friends. She was serving as an interim manager after our boss passed suddenly. Originally, I planned to be off-site so I wasn’t expected in that day. I got in early and discovered that my charger wasn’t working. The outlet it was plugged into, an outlet in the cubical wall, was dead.
So, I crawled behind my cube in a cramped quarter cube where we had a team printer and things to find the loose connection. She wasn’t expecting me in and my cube was still largely undisturbed. When someone came by and commented on how the office was quiet without me and how funny I am during the day, she, co-worker/temp boss, said, “Yeah, he’s one of the main reasons why it’s worth coming in here to put up with all of this for no extra money.”
I waited until they dispersed before I climbed out. I don’t think she knows I overheard that comment. She probably just thinks that it was a random act of fajitas when I took her out for Mexican at lunch.
One of my employees started crying because I gave her a bonus this year (she deserves it, she’s a champ) with one of her work friends in the kitchen. She said, “I’ve never had a boss that made me feel like they actually care until him,” and “Now I can give my son the Christmas he deserves.” I’ll be honest with you. I know she’s a single mom.
It’s her first year working for us, she’s been one of the best hires I’ve ever made. But there’s one thing she doesn’t know. I may or may not have added some of my own bonus to hers—I own the business, I can do what I want. I know how much her son means to her. So that one really hit me hard and put a spring in my step for the whole week.
My grandma is 86 but still manages to use an iPhone fairly well. About a year ago she phoned me from her iPhone and went to end the call after we chatted, but she didn’t realize she hadn’t hung up properly. I heard her saying to someone else in the room with her, “Oh my granddaughter is such a lovely girl. She’s so wonderful to speak to.”
I hung up then because I didn’t want to intrude but I thought it was so nice because my grandma is such a sweetheart.
When I was deployed I always tried to be upbeat and positive. I only yelled when necessary. Our shop was two metal-walled trailers with a smoke pit in between. I was sitting in the smoke pit and could hear the lower-ranking guys talking about their favorite sergeants. My name came up and one guy called me a name, but another spoke up and said, “That’s because you keep messing up. He’s the type of sergeant I want to be.”
Both of those statements made me feel great about myself. The “that guy sucks” kind of attitude can spread like cancer and one of my guys put a stop to it with a quickness.
I hired a new guy to work under me. He was experienced and sharp, but like most people in the field, was never actually taught the skill of troubleshooting issues properly. A big production issue popped up, and he was starting to work it. He did exactly what most did, randomly restarting a few things, changing a few settings that were somewhat related to the problem, hoping the shotgun approach would fix it.
A little while later, I came out of a meeting, saw he was working on an issue, and asked him about it. I had him tell me the symptoms, and from that, I told him the one thing that everything that wasn’t working had in common, and thus the only thing that could be responsible. It was also something his shotgun approach would never have hit. He restarted that one piece, and everything worked.
He was talking to a few coworkers about 10 minutes later, and I overheard him say that I had serious mad skills, and everyone agreed. That made feel pretty darn good…
In art college studying to become a videogame programmer, I had to take art classes. Like, actual art. But also painting, storytelling, intellectual property design, creative writing, script and storyboarding, 3D modeling, basically every facet of game creation I had to learn because programming is what brings it all together.
Anyways, in actual art class, one of the professors put up each of his four classes’ drawings on each wall. So, you had approximately 20 per wall, 80-ish in total. We critiqued our wall and I got some cool remarks. For some reason later that week I had to go back to talk to that professor, who coincidently was having that class do their critique.
Like our class, they got on a tangent and started observing the other walls. This really, really, REALLY hot girl said that mine was the best concept. The idea was to show transformation through color. I used a variation of the Portal game portals to have the bathroom sign man go through one portal area that had a specific color palette, and he became the woman bathroom sign, another color in another world with a different palette.
It’s worth noting that my actual ability to draw/paint is absolute garbage, but I can come up with ideas and designs like it’s my business. As you might’ve guessed, as a programmer nerd type person I don’t find myself receiving many compliments, ever. In my family there’s this saying that goes, “Well, good thing they’re pretty” to describe dumb people. For me the saying is, “Wellm good thing he’s smart.” This one was a highlight for sure.
Not about me, but me talking to someone about an employee of mine. I worked at a seasonal resort, open during the summer and closed during the winter. I was one of the chefs, and most of my cooks were pretty inexperienced. I had one guy with a pretty solid amount of experience, who was venting to me about another employee.
I told him to give the other guy a chance, that he was inexperienced but was a hard worker and very eager to learn. Apparently, he was in earshot and overheard the entire conversation. Just before we closed for the season there was a big employee party, I was sitting with some of my cooks and the one I was talking about came up to me and pulled me aside.
He told me he had overheard that conversation and that it really meant a lot to him, and that from there on he would always know that I had his back. He would end up being one of my best cooks and is returning to the job this summer to work with me again.
I was always the black sheep in the family, a bit of a social outcast. Everyone in our family prides themselves on being able to have an ego and a bit gregarious. I’m a bit introverted and quiet, but I managed to rack up some accomplishments like going to grad school, working abroad, etc. Anyway, my sister has always fit in my family better than I have.
I spoke to my cousin recently about how I got made fun of by others a lot growing up. She told me that was the case before but now I was the favorite in the family. Me: “What are you talking about? My sister has always been the one at the table.” Cousin: “No. You are the favorite. When you’re not around your dad is always talking about you. You don’t know it, but at family tables, they always talk about you.”
Maybe she was lying. But for someone who is a meek little introvert in a family of large personalities, this blew my mind.
The bartender/friend I have (I consider him something of a friend, sort of a Cheers type thing in my town), is a super great guy, and one of the more intelligent people I know. Just a smart dude who loves good conversation and reads and pays attention to events. He’s also a good judge of character (being the top bartender in town for many years will do that to you).
He likes me as a regular because I frequently take my laptop to work, or take books to read at the bar, alone. I make great conversation with him. He’s told me on different occasions that he thinks I’m a good guy for buying someone a meal if they were struggling, or for making good conversation, being a smart guy, etc. He just generally makes me feel decent about myself.
A tough task because my parents pretty consistently make me question my worth as well as my sanity (either I’m literally insane, which I feel would have been noticed in my years of independence, or they gaslight me.) But this bartender, he is always willing to talk about big stuff like ethics or whatever philosophy book I’m ready, current events, all kinds of stuff, and makes me feel like a good person.
I had an ex-boyfriend who worked at a restaurant in between both of our houses for one summer. He was very charming, handsome, and knew exactly how to dress in a way that accentuated his Greek god physique, so the ladies always tipped him well. He hadn’t been a server there long before he left to college across the state.
After he had left, I was having issues with my job and looking for a change, so he suggested I try to get a job at that same restaurant. He said that he left on good terms with the manager, so I could drop his name if I needed. Well, I got hired immediately and just never really mentioned that I knew him since I seemed to get the job on my own merit.
I had been working there a few months when some of my co-workers and chatting about ex-employees that have come and gone through the years. Some of the girls mention this one incredibly handsome and charismatic server that didn’t work here that long. They were sad he left after a few months and even more upset that he never gave into their advances (because they were gorgeous girls) because he had a girlfriend that he liked to talk about.
The conversation goes on for a little before I piece together (or maybe they mentioned his name) and I’m able to say, “Oh hey! That’s my boyfriend. I’m the sweet nerdy girl he liked to talk about apparently.”
The ladies that work in HR at my place of employment frequently request me by name when something needs to be fixed in their offices (I work maintenance). A few weeks ago, I got to talking with a few of them about my past. It’s something I normally don’t share with just anyone, but I’m three and a half years clean from a very serious addiction.
After I finished replacing their ceiling tiles, I overheard them saying how sweet, polite, and good-looking I am. They also said that just by looking at me, they never would have guessed that I ever struggled with such a thing. When I walked around the corner, I acted like I didn’t hear them and said goodbye. But it’s probably the best compliment I’ve ever received.
I used to absolutely despise myself. I used to think there was no way I could ever get clean. And now I’m hearing that there’s no way someone could imagine me NOT clean.
I got a callback for an in-person interview for a job I wanted BAD! I never prepared as much as I did for an interview and this was a job that would set me up for life basically. I went to the interview and felt like I nailed it although still a little weary as there were a lot of candidates. After the interview ended I was leaving the room walking to the elevators but still within earshot of the interview panel and I overheard one of the guys from the interview panel say, “I really like him, he’d be a great addition!”
That put the biggest smile on my face and at that point, even if I didn’t get the job, I was so incredibly proud of myself and how the interview went. A couple of weeks later I got the call for the job offer. You bet I accepted and have been living the dream since.
I played soccer in high school. I had recently moved and was insanely shy, didn’t have any friends in my new town, but one guy decided he was going to be my friend, and basically forced me out of my house and made me have fun. Well, he kind of drafted me onto the soccer team he played on, coached by his dad. They gave me a shot at playing, and while I had almost no ball control, they found I could run pretty fast and I really hated to give up.
I’m very short, so while I was easy to knock over, I could also bounce up and make it back to the ball pretty quickly. Fast forward about a year, and my coach sat us all down during practice to tell us individually what we were best at and what we could work at. He told me that my ball control was pretty bad, but it’s improving.
However, he said that he wishes I could hear what goes on during the bench whenever I’m on the field. He says that I am so much fun to watch, and that he just can’t get enough of how hard I work to get that ball back from the other team. That felt so good, and the remainder of my time on that team, people regularly told me how much fun I was to watch. And how they couldn’t understand how I was so fast.
I was VERY unconfident about if I really deserved a spot on that field, but the comments I got gave me a pretty amazing feeling. Also, a little bonus, my brother is a photographer and was shooting some pics for our team, and he was next to the other team’s bench when he heard an awesome conversation between the players:
Player 1: “Man, that #5 (that’s me) just WILL NOT stay down.” Player 2: “Well, he is quite a bit closer to the ground than most of us, so he just kind of bounces when we knock him over.” Player 1: “Yeah, well we need one of him on our team. He’s like a little freaking ninja!” To this day, people connected with the team call me the “freaking ninja.”
I run a fantasy-themed camp in the summer for kids for three weeks every year. Our world is set in a medieval story. The kids and the adults kind of write together by playing different characters. As one of the leaders, I play a character which is a lone warrior, who found its home in our country and started teaching others the way of the Bushido. His name is Ryu, and he has a very deep connection with his apprentices. And obviously, through this roleplay, I get to know the kids better.
When the camp ended, we had an insane amount of memories together, some bad, some good. One of the 11-year-old kids came to me, looked me deep into my eyes, and said, “You are like a father to me.” What he said next broke me. He told me that he would rather have me than his own father. I’m 26 and had just broken up with my wife-to-be that year, so that sentence cracked me hard.
I’m a high school teacher in a low-income district. I love what I do, but there are some days that are very challenging and draining. Sometimes I feel like I’m not reaching my kids or making any difference. I start to question myself as a teacher and think that I am not good enough/cut out for the job. I really fear being a bad teacher, like some I had growing up.
Well, I was having one of those days. In fact, I was having one of those weeks. I had been working with a student at his desk, helping him with something I can’t even remember now. But when he got it and I turned to walk away, I hear him whisper to his friend next to him, “See, now that’s a good teacher, right there.” I’m not embarrassed to say that I teared up in that moment. I needed to hear that reassurance from the people who matter most; my kids.
So I’m a visiting nurse and started seeing a patient three days/week for wound care. He was a paraplegic and didn’t get out much or have many visitors. He offered me a cup of coffee one morning, but I didn’t know him very well yet and was uneasy about drinking something out of unknown person’s kitchen. Plus, we are really not supposed to, but I could tell he just needed a little company.
I told him I drink it black to keep it simple, never planning to have another cup. Next day, I come in and notice a little sticky note on his counter that said “Remember to make fresh pot of coffee for Rachael.” It was so touching to me that I went early every single appointment from that day forward to have a cup of black coffee.
I hate black coffee but I felt it was too late to tell him I liked creamer after all. I drank black coffee with him for 3.5 years and he became a good friend until he passed away…
The world of celebrity is all about gossip, scandal, and larger-than-life personalities—and nobody knew that…