Who is a nice guy? – A volcano waiting to erupt!
Symptoms of a “Nice Guy”
- Nice guy take a passive approach to life and relationships.
- Instead of standing up for themselves, they let others walk all over them.
- They’re perennial “People Pleasers”.
- Nice Guy have a hard time saying no to requests — even unreasonable ones.
- When they want or need something, they’re afraid to ask for it because they don’t want to inconvenience others.
- They’d rather get alongthan get ahead.
- They appear generous, flexible, and extremely polite. But if you scratch beneath the surface, you’ll often find a helpless, anxious, and resentful core.
- Nice Guy are often filled with anxiety because their self-worth depends on the approval of others and getting everyone to like them.
- They don’t feel they can go after their true desires, because they’re locked into doing what others say they shoulddo because “go with the flow” is their default approach to life.
- Nice Guy have little control over their lives and consequently feel helpless, shiftless, and stuck.
- They’re also typically resentful and vindictive because their unspoken needs aren’t being met and they feel like others are always taking advantage of them – even though they’re the ones who allow it to happen.
- Nice Guy will feel guilty even when expressing dissatisfaction with something they’re paying for!
In worst-case scenarios, the Nice Guy’s pent-up resentment from being pushed around will result in unexpected outbursts of anger and violence.
In order to regain some control over his life and quit being such a pushover? Nice Guys think the solution is to swing to the other extreme and go from being passive to aggressive. Instead of meekly submitting, they feel like they have to dominate in every situation and they seek to get their way in everything, no matter what. However aggressiveness isn’t a very productive communication or behaviour style. In fact, using a persistent, aggressive communication style can often backfire by creating resentment and passive-aggressive behaviour in the very people you’re trying to control. So, instead of passivity and aggressiveness, the best approach lies somewhere between the two. The sweet spot for communication and behaviour is called assertiveness.
Assertiveness is an interpersonal skill in which you demonstrate healthy confidence and able to stand up for yourself and your rights, while respecting the rights of others.
When you’re assertive you are direct and honest with people and not expecting people to read your mind about what you want and if something is bothering you, you speak up and if you want or need something, you ask. You do all this while maintaining a calm and civil demeanour because you understand that while you can make a request or state an opinion, others are well within their right to say no or disagree. You don’t get upset or angry when that happens. You understand that you might not get what you want but you will learn that it not only doesn’t hurt to ask, but actually helps to ask as well.
How to Be More Assertive
- Set boundaries.
The first step in becoming less of a pushover is establishing boundaries. Boundaries are rules and limits that a man creates for himself that guide and direct others as to what is permissible behaviour around him. Passive men typically have no boundaries and allow others to walk all over them.
- Take responsibility for your own problems
Nice Guys wait around for someone else to fix their problems. An assertive man understands that his problems are his responsibility. If you see something that needs changing in your life, take action. If you’re not happy with something in your life, start taking steps — however small — to change things.
- Don’t expect people to read your mind
Nice Guys expect others to recognise what they need and want without having to say a word. If you want something, say it; If something bothers you, speak up. Never assume that people know your every need or want.
- Understand you’re not in charge of how others feel or behave.
Both passive and aggressive men share a similar problem: they both think they’re in charge of how others feel or behave — they just go about it differently.
An aggressive man assumes responsibility of others’ behaviour and emotions by exerting his will through physical, mental, and emotional force. On the other hand, passive man assumes responsibility of others’ behaviour by constantly submitting his will to the will of others. Passive men feel it’s their job to make sure everyone is happy, even if that means they themselves are miserable. But an assertive man recognises that it’s not his job to control or worry about others’ behaviour and that he’s only responsible for how he behaves and feels.
You won’t believe how much less stress and anxiety you’ll feel once you understand this. You’ll no longer spend wasted hours wringing your hands worrying about whether someone will be happy with your choice or opinion.
This isn’t to say that you should be an inconsiderate jerk and shouldn’t take into account the feelings/situations of others. It just means you don’t need to go overboard and be so overly considerate that you don’t make any requests or stand up for your values lest you upset or offend someone.
The Benefits of Assertiveness
- Your relationships will improve.
In a marriage and other relationships, assertiveness is one of the key attributes that both partners need in order for a relationship to be strong and healthy. If one person feels they aren’t getting their needs met, resentment for their partner ensues even if it’s the person’s fault for not letting their needs to be known.
- When you are assertive, you’ll feel less stressed.
You say no to requests that would otherwise spread you too thin and lose the anxiety and worry that comes with being overly pre-occupied with what others will think of your choices, preferences, requests or opinions.
- When you’re assertive, you’ll gain confidence because
Your attitude and behaviour are governed by your own actions or decisions, not the actions and decisions of others and knowing that you can make changes to improve your own situation is a big-time confidence booster.
- You’ll become less resentful.
As you become more assertive, your relationships will become more enjoyable because you’ll no longer have to swallow the bitter pill of resentment when you say yes to a request or decide to do a favour for someone. When you do something, you do it because you actually want to do it, or you’re okay with doing it as part of the natural give and take of relationships.