Are you a nice person? Do you value yourself based on how nice you are, and how nice other people think you are?
Needing to say nice things, have the most ‘appropriate’ response and being ‘helpful’, placating and people pleasing your way through life like your survival depends on it?
Because well..it does doesn’t it?
I know mine has, coming from a history of trauma..being nice saved my life..literally.
But I’m 35 years old now..does it still serve me in the same way? Am I under threat by not being “nice”?
Because being seen as mean, unspiritual, a bitch…it’s a hard pill to swallow. In fact, it feels nearly unbearable, doesn’t it?
Having people not like you would make you want to curl up in a ball and hide under a rock..it triggers abandonment fears, in some, and sometimes even worse in others. I’m sure you’d prefer a root canal rather than to feel like someone is angry at you, disagrees with you, thinks your wrong, judges you as unspiritual or inauthentic..or worse greedy and selfish (because your beliefs, emotions or responses ‘aren’t spiritual enough’)
Fears of being seen as petty, greedy, selfish, competitive, unfriendly, or just downright mean or ANGRY?
Niceness isn’t kindness or empathy, it is an entirely different animal. It has nothing to do with helping people or being considerate. It contains none of the warm fuzzy feelings we get from doing something for someone from love. Niceness, in fact, isn’t loving at all. It masquerades as such but is the furthest thing from it. It comes from lack, from fear, from pain, from resentment.
Niceness is actually self-inflicted harm. We believe that being nice, and doing the right thing (in the eyes of others) even if goes against ourselves, is better and safer than saying ‘no’, voicing our truth, sharing our true feelings (regardless of how low vibe, petty or messy they may be, or who they upset)
It also keeps us complacent and silent to acts of harm around us. Because..well-saying something ‘wouldn’t be nice!’
We sideline ourselves and cover up our anger, and push our boundaries (and REAL internal safety mechanisms) back to be liked, for false safety.
And it’s costing us dearly.
Niceness numbs us to our own emotions..which can be powerful signals to keep us safe and let us know when our values, boundaries, and autonomy are being compromised.
When you feel anger, or get triggered, there is always internal work to be done..but sometimes anger is a sign that your tail is being stepped on..even a cat hisses when they’ve been harmed. There is nothing unspiritual about that.
Saying no, stating our truth is as spiritual as we can get. Even if it doesn’t sound ‘nice’ even if people disagree..isn’t the point of spirituality to tune in and reflect with ourselves?? To grow personally? It’s not a fashion statement or an identity. It’s not another set of rules to follow, and it sure as hell isn’t a competition.
It is our own internal compass, guiding us to what is right, and what is wrong for us, what feels good, and what doesn’t, and when we shut that down because it doesn’t look pretty, or we worry what people will think…we cannot expect it to show up other times to guide us through…
Emotional and spiritual growth is messy, and truth be told..it’s not your friend…It’s not there to pat you on the back and accept anything less than your all, it’s not there to let you stay in your story or re-live-out victims. It’s not there to please you. It’s there to push you forward, it’s there to make you uncomfortable, it’s there to burn away the untruth. It’s vulnerable and sometimes scary.
The cost of our internalized repression is depression, rage, anxiety, feeling burnt out, drained, unfocused, it waters down our businesses, relationships, and heart.
And the worst of it..we forget or lose who we ACTUALLY are in the process.
We tweeze it, cover it, dance around it..try to make it fit in a box..act as though it isn’t there, but then secretly wonder why we feel unfulfilled, why we can’t have trusting relationships, why we go numb, or never seem to feel peace or happiness, or why we keep people, money, and success at a distance. Why we carry so much weight, pain, discomfort and self-hatred in our bodies. Why we have trouble looking at ourselves in the mirror, and loving and appreciating what we see.
It’s all because of niceness.
It disfigures who we are, how we know and recognize ourselves, it means putting others first, and ourselves last, it makes us distrustful and maintains the outer while the inner is on fire, and we don’t even notice it.
Because we’re too afraid to stop being nice. We believe that being nice keeps our inner monster at bay. That the emotions that would be unleashed would be so destructive and terrifying if it wasn’t gatekept by niceness.
But it never sleeps..instead, we then turn that monster on ourselves instead (after all, those emotions need to go somewhere – it’s just biology) and its destruction is unfathomable.
Cutting you down, never allowing you to feel good enough..to accept love, to share yourself the way you naturally share yourself (not through what is see as acceptable through the eyes of niceness), to receive acts of kindness and support, to trust, to feel your feelings, to live from the neck up, not sharing your realness, or embodying all that you are.
Keeping you wounded, a victim to life, circumstances, people (because when you’re nice, you’re not in control..and you’re powerless to change things). It keeps you feeling only partially satisfied, playing small, disregarding your own boundaries, your own intuition…
Not able to trust yourself..and in fact actually gaslighting your own truth.
Settling and never seeing your real self in all its raw, powerful beauty.
So let’s ditch the niceness and instead choose truth.
Truth is kind, even if it’s shocking, even if it disagrees, or pisses people off. Even if it creates endings, it also creates beginnings.
It heals everyone who’s ready to receive it.
And it doesn’t change itself just because someone doesn’t like it.