Everyone wants to be valued but a lot of people, men especially, bristle when they receive a compliment. And some get downright uncomfortable. According to psychologist and author Guy Winch, Ph.D., how receptive we are to compliments is sometimes a reflection of our self-esteem and deep feelings of self-worth. “Compliments can make people feel uncomfortable because they can contradict their own self-views,” says Winch. “Receiving praise from others when we feel negatively about ourselves elicits discomfort because it conflicts with our existing belief system.” Culturally, it’s a tricky situation. We’re eager to hear praise, of course, but simply accepting the appreciation seems conceited. Or might make you feel like you “owe” the person something now. But deflecting the compliment is ungracious and unnecessary. A compliment is essentially a gift—not a bomb to be defused or a ball to be returned—all you need to do is accept it.