We are taught from a young age to be nice to people, to treat others as you want to be treated yourself. But there is a downside to being too nice.
Can someone be too nice? In a world where all we seem to hear is bad news, it may seem that there is no negative side to being too nice. Well, apparently, being nice all the time can not only harm you mentally but also physically.
Here are ten ways:
1. People will take advantage
If you are nice all the time, it will only be a matter of time before someone comes along and takes advantage. This might be financially, mentally or physically. You will be seen as an easy mark or con because a nice person cannot imagine anyone taking advantage of them.
2. You are seen as weak
Nice people rarely say no to requests from others, and this might make them appear weak. It does take quite a strong person to turn down a request for help, and if you, as a nice person, cannot manage it, then it could be seen as a sign of weakness.
3. You have unrealistic expectations
Being a lovely person yourself means that you probably think everyone else is just as lovely. This, of course, is not true. Just because you bend over backwards for others, it doesn’t mean that they have to do the same. Time to adjust your expectations.
4. People don’t believe you are this nice
If you are a really nice person, you might find that some people simply cannot believe that you are this nice. Sure, they might be some of the more cynical people on the planet, but in a world where it pays to look out for yourself, it can be hard to believe that someone doesn’t want to follow this agenda. People might think you have an ulterior motive for being too nice.
5. People will only come to you when they want something
Relationships should be based on an equal footing, with both parties putting in the same amount of effort. If you are too nice, you can get into a situation where your friends only contact you when they want something.
6. You attract needy people
Being too nice means that typically you are nice to everyone you meet. This means you don’t really have boundaries when it comes to shutting people out that don’t meet your friendship demands. This leaves the door wide open for anyone to step in and your nice nature will attract needy types who need constant validation.
7. You can become depressed
People who are typically nice all the time tend to put others’ needs before their own, this can be described as being ‘people pleasing behaviour’. When your main objectives become helping others and not taking care of your own requirements you can start to believe that you have little self-worth.
8. You could become involved in addictive behaviours
When you start to think that you have no self-worth, you can sometimes fall into the trap of needing something else to fill the void. This is where addiction to drugs, alcohol and other behaviours might come into play. When you no longer value yourself, you have to find some way to make yourself feel better.
9. You stop being nice to yourself
It is easy to forget to be kind to yourself when you are being too nice to so many other people. If this carries on unchecked, then you can burn out and fall into a deep depression. When you are the one doing all the giving, validating others all the time, it can be distracting from your own needs. This can affect people in different ways, from not bothering to eat properly to over-eating.
10. Others get to define your life
If you continually do things to please other people but do not take into account your own feelings, then it is possible you could end up living someone else’s life entirely. By not acknowledging your feelings, hopes, choices, and desires, you are allowing others to define how you live your life.
Of course, it is a wonderful thing to be able to be nice to people, but not at the expense of yourself.
As writer G.L Lambert states:
“Be nice to people, be kind, and be considerate all you want, but at the end of the day, never put someone else before you.”