We’re all taught to be nice, especially to those we love. But when we are ‘too nice’ in a relationship, it can cause problems. Though it may be difficult, take it from me: when you stop being too nice, you’ll start building trust.
To stop being too nice in your relationship, be willing to face conflict. Take an assertive role and stand up for yourself. Stop people-pleasing and share your thoughts, opinions, and feelings freely. Answer honestly, even when you are afraid you might hurt your partner’s feelings.
Though we’ll be talking about romantic relationships, these basic tenets can apply to all of your relationships. We’ll take a look at what it means to be ‘too nice’ and how to start standing up for yourself.
- Stop Being ‘Too Nice’
- Face Conflict
- Stop Being a ‘People-Pleaser’
- Be Honest
- How to Move Forward
- Negative Effects of Being ‘Too Nice’
- Related Guides
- Final Verdict
Stop Being ‘Too Nice’
Being nice in your relationship may seem like second nature. After all, aren’t we supposed to be kind to the people we love? While it’s true that we must treat the people we love kindly, being ‘too nice’ takes niceness to a toxic and dishonest level.
You may not even realize you’re doing it, and that’s okay. If you often find yourself saying you’re fine when something is bothering you, you might be ‘too nice’. If you keep your opinion to yourself because you’re afraid it might hurt their feelings, you’re being ‘too nice’.
Ultimately, not being honest about your feelings is dishonesty. Lying to protect someone is still lying, and your partner is a grown person. You can’t always be responsible for how someone feels about what you say – you can only look after yourself and how you feel.
Being ‘too nice’ can be negative, especially if you never disagree with your partner. If you’ve stopped putting your needs first, you need to stop being ‘too nice’. But how? How can you revise your actions and start taking charge?
Conflict doesn’t have to be scary. While we often take ‘conflict’ to mean fighting or yelling at each other, that really isn’t the case. Being comfortable with conflict just means accepting that your partner might disagree.
A conflict occurs when there is a difference between you and your partner. This is a good thing. If you always agree and have all the same views and opinions, your relationship could become stale.
You are not the same person, no matter how long you’ve been in a relationship. You should have your own opinions and feel safe to express them.
The first thing you can do to stop being ‘too nice’ is to realize that conflict is not always bad. Stop being afraid of every disagreement sparking a huge fight. You are allowed to have thoughts, opinions, and ideas. You should be in a relationship where you can express those without fear.
Face conflict and realize it’s not always a bad thing. Sometimes conflict is necessary.
Be Comfortable with Being Assertive
There is a common misconception that being assertive means being aggressive. That isn’t the case at all. Confusing these two concepts can lead to feeling like being assertive is a negative thing.
It isn’t negative to put yourself first and to understand your limits. When you say ‘yes’ all the time, you’re creating an environment where people don’t expect you to say ‘no’. However much you think you’re keeping the peace, you’re creating a hostile environment.
If you never say ‘no’, you’ve unwittingly created a situation where you feel like you can’t. You give so much of yourself, and you can’t stop because you’re no longer allowed to.
To stop this cycle, try to be more assertive. Stand up for yourself. You can say ‘no’ without being rude or dismissive. You are allowed to take a break or deal with a little less.
Try making ‘I’ statements to express how you feel. Be direct without being unkind.
Stop Being a ‘People-Pleaser’
When you start catering to other people at the expense of your own needs, you start ‘people-pleasing. You might ask why this is bad. There are so many reasons that ignoring your own needs and wants is detrimental to the well-being of yourself and your relationships.
The main problem with people-pleasing is the expectation it creates. If you never say no, your partner will come to resent the times when you have to. If you always clean the house, they will expect you to keep cleaning the house.
So when you can’t, or you are busy with work or family, they might come to resent you for it. That isn’t to say that your partner is a bad person for this. By going out of your way to please them, you’ve placed the expectation on yourself.
Sometimes, you need to take a step back and make things about yourself. Making things about you is the exact opposite of people-pleasing. Still, sometimes this is necessary.
So learn to say no sometimes, and be comfortable with the fact that you might disappoint someone. At the end of the day, you have to take care of your own needs before dealing with others’.
I understand the need to withhold your thoughts or opinions for fear of hurting your partner’s feelings. You never want to make the person you’re with feel bad. It’s a terrible feeling to hurt someone you love.
But when you lie to protect their feelings, you’re still lying. Your partner genuinely trusts you to be honest and forthcoming with them. Don’t withhold things just to make them feel better.
Worse, this type of dishonesty, though well-intentioned, can lead to a lack of trust. If you always dissemble to save their feelings, they may stop trusting what you have to say.
So you can stop being too nice by being honest. Tell your partner what you want without trying to spare their feelings. It may take some practice, but overall it will be well worth it.
How to Move Forward
Moving forward from being ‘too nice’ may not be comfortable, but you have to work at it. There are ways to be kind without being ‘too nice’. Learn where the line is and make sure you assess yourself. Work towards mindfulness and stop reacting thoughtlessly.
You may have a good reason to believe that you need to handle your relationships like this. Breaking out of these harmful patterns can be tough. With practice and understanding from your partner, you can make it work.
Discussing these issues with your partner is the first step towards solving them. Sit down and discuss with them. They may have helpful input!
Negative Effects of Being ‘Too Nice’
We’ve gone over some of the negative effects of not changing your ‘too nice’ behavior. Here are some additional effects of being ‘too nice’, and why it’s important to change.
The stress of always saying ‘yes’, of taking on too much, can take its toll. You might find other ways to escape when your efforts are not acknowledged. This can include indulging in addictive behaviors like overspending, indulging in unhealthy food, or turning to substances to help you cope.
2.Becoming Needy and Attracting Needy People
If you ignore your own needs, you’ll be driven to find other ways to have those needs met. You may become needy, clinging, or seek validation from others.
On the other hand, you also attract needy people. If you don’t set boundaries, you’re allowing people to take advantage of you. Manipulative people may be attracted to you, knowing they can get what they want.
3.Lack of Trust
If you regularly say ‘yes’ when you mean ‘no’, people may stop trusting you. Do this long enough and people may believe you have an ulterior motive. Saying ‘no’ to people is hard, but it’s genuine. Your partner may begin to lose trust in you.
If you don’t value yourself, no one else will. When you take on too much and then crumble under the pressure, people may perceive you as weak. While it isn’t the truth, it’s still a perception that you’ll have to deal with if you don’t set boundaries.
5.Lack of Self-Care
If you’re constantly doing things for others, you aren’t taking care of yourself. It isn’t long before you’ll start to feel worn down, tired, and neglected. Take the time to take care of yourself, even if that means putting the needs of others aside.
When you spend all your time catering to others, you’ll have nothing left to give. Self-care is important, and it can help you build yourself back up. Be assertive and make time for yourself, even at the expense of others’ needs or wants.
We’ve talked about how being ‘too nice’ will lead to your partner having unrealistic expectations. Unfortunately, you’ll also start to develop expectations for others. You may wonder why no one goes out of their way for you.
If you’ve given everything to someone, you’ll expect them to match the commitment. This is unrealistic and unhealthy. Resentment and anger can flourish when you believe that other people owe you just as much as you give them.
If you are being ‘too nice’ in your relationships, you might be feeling stressed or overwhelmed. Your relationships might be suffering. With these tips, you may be able to overcome being ‘too nice.’ It might not be comfortable at first, but it is worth the effort.
My name is Keren Tayler. I am a work-at-home mama to three lovely girls, Sarah + Rachel + Hannah. I have been blogging for the last 5 years. I worked for other mom blogs, did hundreds of product reviews and buyers’ guides. Prior to that, I was a staff accountant at a big accounting firm. Needless to say, researching and numbers are my passion. My goal is to be an informative source for any topic that relates to mom’s life and homemaking.