I would consider myself a nice person. I say hello and good morning to people who pass me on the street (like all good southern girls), I pride myself on how well I care for the people I love, and I’m always down to help a friend in need. But since when did “being nice” involve sacrificing your own happiness? Nobody’s going to give you an award for eating and paying for food you hate so you don’t upset the server, or for bottling up your feelings so as not to hurt your boyfriend’s feelings. There are some incidences in which being too “nice” can be bad for your own well-being and lead to you being extremely unhappy.
- Your relationships are always one-sided. While there are plenty of reasons women stay in bad relationships, being someone’s doormat shouldn’t be on the list. If you’re taking on the brunt of the responsibilities in the relationship, reevaluate what it means to really have a partnership or even a friendship with someone. If you’re not both putting in equal work, it’s not much of a relationship.
- People view your niceness as a weakness and take advantage of it. When you start being overly nice to people, they’ll sometimes use that to their own advantage (never underestimate people’s ability to be crappy). For example, if you start taking on someone else’s assignments at work on the regular, they’ll get all the credit and won’t stop you from taking on that task. You won’t receive anything but maybe a half-hearted thanks. Your bosses won’t know you did any extra work and your own work might even start to fall behind. Don’t let other people take advantage of your need to please everyone.
- You’re emotionally repressed. Being non-confrontational and trying to avoid petty drama is one thing; never speaking up when something bothers you in a completely different one. You shouldn’t bottle all of your emotions up just to spare someone else’s feelings, no matter how much you love them.
- You never stand up for yourself. Your voice is getting lost amidst the crowd and you’re not being heard. You’re too “nice” to demand the respect of others, so people are stepping all over you. In your quest to be a nice person, you shouldn’t have to compromise the respect you receive or the happiness you’re trying to obtain.
- You’re overworked and overwhelmed. Don’t let other people pull the wool over your eyes; constantly taking on other people’s problems as your own isn’t making you a better person. It’s nice to help people out so that they get a break, but you need downtime, too.
- Your expectations of others are completely skewed. If you’re so nice that you’re constantly doing things for other people, you’ll start to expect the same from other people. You’ll start to be resentful and disappointed when everyone doesn’t go completely out of their way to help you all the time, when in reality, you shouldn’t have been placing that kind of weight on them in the first place.
- You’re forgetting to set aside time for self-love. Self-love is the most important love of all. It’s like when a flight attendant is explaining how the very first thing you should do if the plane starts to crash is put on your own oxygen mask; not your kid’s mask, not your boyfriend’s mask, not your grandma’s mask — YOUR mask. That’s because if you’re not well enough to help yourself, you’re not going to be well enough to help anyone else around you. The same thing goes for relationships; don’t forget that while compromise is always important, your needs, feelings, and dreams shouldn’t be getting lost in the mix.