How is being overly nice a bad thing?
Being nice is a good thing. It actually is a desirable human trait.
However, some people (for various reasons) are overly nice; they will be at the beck and call of everyone, put up with abuse and disrespect, and always put their well-being aside for others.
Being overly nice has tremendous and long-lasting negative effects.
Negative Effects of Being Overly Nice
- People take you for granted – they abuse your generosity and niceness.
- You feel guilty about telling people that they hurt/ wronged you, and as such, you keep it bottled inside. Bottled feelings can build up to the detrimental of your health.
- Since you do not want to bother others, you rarely ask for help and when you try, people come up with excuses because after all, you will understand them and make excuses for them.
- Your being overly nice robs you off time, energy or other resources to attend to your welfare as you are always making yourself available for others.
- You are highly likely to lag behind in most areas of your life since you are too busy focusing on boosting others.
- Years and decades of being at everyone’s beck and call, whereas no one is really there for you, can drill your self worth and esteem into the ground.
- Chances of growing resentful and or burning out (to a point of no return) are extremely high since you rarely have an outlet for your emotions or time to rejuvenate your body and mind.
How to Fix the Negative Effects of Being Overly Nice
I have heard people so often say “stop being too nice”, and they think that it will work instantly.
Well, it does not work. Nice people have it extremely hard to ‘stop being nice’ or to cut people off. The guilt of the mere thought of letting other people down weighs heavily on overly nice people.
However, I (a recovering nice person) are discovering a few things that boost my worth and, whereas I cannot turn mean suddenly, I am learning to put myself first; and it is okay to put myself first.
A Working Strategy for Mitigating the Negative Effects of Being Overly Nice
If you are an extremely nice person who feels like things are getting our hand, here are a few things that you might want to try:
- Sit down (alone or with a therapist) and write down your feelings, your dreams, your contributions to other people (and their reciprocity in your life), and your desired progress. I call this process “calling myself a meeting and talking with the voices in my head”
- Acknowledge that you are an entity, a valuable human being who also deserves the best in life (including your attention and self care)
- Set a percentage of time to invest in you just as much (if not more) as you invest in everyone else
- Do the little/ big things that make you happy. YES. Ignore that voice in your head that may want to convince you that you are wasting time, energy or resources while you could be ‘giving back to the society’. You are part of the society and you deserve everything good too.
Your Healing Journey: Moving Past Being Overly Nice
Being overly nice is not something someone chooses. You just find yourself overly nice and it has its negative effects on your mental well being.
If you have been pushed over the edge or you have depleted your mental will, physical energy or other resources/ capacities, do not be afraid to cut people off. I know it sounds harsh and feels almost impossible, but for your own sanity, you might need to love some people from a distance.
Will Everyone Accept My Decision to Quit Being Overly Nice?
I can tell you for a fact that not everyone is going to be pleased with your need to take care of yourself.
In fact, chances are that some people will try to manipulate you into feeling like a very selfish person.
Do not fall those guilt-trips; you know you need to be nice to you too and your being overly nice is getting in the way of your sanity and overall well-being. Do not let anyone guilt-trip you into sacrificing more or enduring abuse. Give yourself time to re-learn yourself, process your own needs, and work towards your healing.
I am not a therapist; I have been through a lot and have learnt much. Thankfully, I am recovering just fine and doing amazingly well after I reduced my over-niceness and started investing some time and care on me.
I have also met strong men and women who have had their fair share of being overly nice, and almost lost themselves in the process, but are changing their lives one day at a time.
I have shared my story on Thrive Global – Post Mothers Day Celebration: Celebrating the Mothers Who Never Were. I am glad that through my writing, I have encouraged some people and helped more acknowledge how precious they are too despite the abuse and or hardships that may have been meted out to them.
I dream of a world where everyone’s worth will matter. The world is big enough for all of us.
Originally published at un-tell.com