When Nice Meets Her Dark Side

I’m such a doormat.

But one day I just had it.  No­ more Ms. Agreeable. Someone had flipped the lid and I was tired. There were at least 10 things to do that day and there was only 1 thing for me.  Everything else was a favor, pure benevolence, a good deed, just so everybody (else) is happy.   I was over-extending myself and I was exhausted. And, I was resenting the very people I was supposedly making happy.

I don’t want to go there, do this, and yet and always, had already said yes, or maybe.  And I could never tell you “you just ruined my day,” or “my life.”  And especially: there were these never-ending requests for a letter, an affidavit, a legal opinion, anything that needed to be written, the ghostwriter was me.  And do I even get enough dinero to buy me coffee while I write?  Of course not. I’m doing everybody else’s work on just warmth and a smile. The Jesuits might have excessively hammered their mantra on me, as I was overtaxed being a woman for others.

So here I am today, exasperated, and writing with madness. Am I too damn nice? (Yahoo a cuss word!)  I’m saying No. No. No. And writing it a 100 times lest I forget.

  • To the relatives and friends that keep asking me to write or do things for them, I’m politely saying No next time.  I’m not a practicing lawyer. There’s “cut and paste” for your written work just don’t forget to quote. And those small favors are so small you can do them yourself, really. Or, will you please remunerate me enough for coffee and the loss of precious time while I’m at it? I’m not trying to ruin relationships or be rude; I’m just giving value to time. And, as much value to me as I give you myself.

 

  • If I don’t want to be there, I won’t be there. There will be no backing down.  I will not owe you my time when it’s for things I am not interested in. I’m not being harsh, I’m just standing up for me. Taking control of my time.

 

  • I won’t take on projects I don’t want to. I can’t be doing everyone else’s work anymore.  Those are your dreams, and I should start working on mine.

 

  • When you’re nasty, insensitive, or unkind, I won’t let it slide. Not anymore.  There should be no excuses for behavior that hurts. So I will (if I’m not holding back tears) tell you so. (You’re probably saying, “Yea right, you are.” But I’m writing this a 100 times lest I forget!)

 

  • Finally, I will stop feeling guilty, worried and anxious, for these scary No’s.  The chronic pleasing has to stop. And I’m drawing up boundaries for agreeable and nice.  (I should start a Niceaholics Anonymous.  That would be a project that’s all mine.)

 

And so here we go again. Take 2. I’m such a doormat…

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