The Need To Be “Nice”

by Cynthia Bischoff on June 11, 2017

Certainly being nice can mean that we are sensitive and caring about the needs of others. We know that being considerate makes us happier than being selfish. So our nice behaviors may serve us well overall.

On the other hand, some people wear what might be called a “programmed sense of niceness.” Being “too nice” when it is not what we are feeling authentically can be a face that we have worn for years.

When we try to be perfect and take on too much we are often out of touch with what we actually need for ourselves. These behaviors can weigh us down. We may take on extra responsibilities and sometimes feel cheated or angry that we are doing something we don’t want to do.

Do you regularly say “yes” to people when you want to say “no”? Do you cut yourself off from others by not telling them what you want? Do you pretend to be calm when you are feeling angry because you don’t want to upset someone else?

People who are too nice sometimes undermine their own good intentions. Being too nice may stem from programmed messages that you received throughout your childhood:

Don’t be selfish.

Don’t say anything to hurt someone.

Be thoughtful of others.

Always be nice.

Issues of being too nice are often closely related to issues of boundaries. As you establish a better sense of who you are, especially in relation to other people, you will often help heal the “too nice” syndrome. This does not imply that you will be rude with others. It simply means that you will do what truly feels “right” to your authentic self and be sure you don’t leave yourself out of the equation of your life.

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