Being kindhearted is both a blessing and a curse.
It's a character trait admired by many and possessed by few, but quite often, the ever-so peppy smile plastered across your face can make you or break you.
Growing up, I've experienced this bizarre catch-22 firsthand. The happy demeanor and selfless ideals I've been taught from day one have worked in my favor multiple times, but they've also been the root of various downfalls.
When you are "too nice," you give people the benefit of the doubt. You automatically assume everyone is looking out for your best interest because you are looking out for their best interest.
You find yourself going out of your way for your peers on a regular basis, constantly wondering if they would do the same for you -- and, in most cases, they won't.
At the end of the day, you weigh all of your decisions on karma. You have faith that for every deed you do for someone else, something good will happen for you in return.
In a perfect world, this would happen. Maybe, then, kindness wouldn't be mistaken for weakness.
But, in the meantime, we need to steer clear of the fine line that lies between being a nice person and being a doormat.
Throughout various sleepless nights of overthinking my naïve thoughts and actions, I've finally realized how to conquer the "nice girl" façade without becoming a total bitch. And I've become a lot stronger because of it.
Don't get me wrong; being a kindhearted person is the best kind of person to be because, hey, you won’t get far in life with a sh*tty attitude.
Yet, you need to know how to balance your thoughtfulness and forgiving demeanor with your rightful need as a human being to be taken seriously and to be respected.
But, before I go further, I want to make it clear that I am not trying to blow sunshine up my own ass in persuasion I'm some sort of Godsend. I am by no means an angel; I've just witnessed the bullsh*t that stems from bad people using those with good intentions to their own advantage, and quite frankly, I think it's lame. I think it's super lame.
So take it from me, the "nice girl," don't be afraid to add a little salt to your sweet tendencies because the following struggles you face as an overly-nice person can be fixed if you just grow a backbone:
1. You are a universal doormat.
I can't even count the amount of times in my life when there may have well been footprints plastered across my face.
Why? Because there are people out there who will take advantage of everything you selflessly offer, whether or not they are friends, a boyfriend, an acquaintance, or even a complete stranger.
Yet, there's a simple solution to this downward spiral of oblivion, which we "nice folk" succumb to: Speak your damn mind! Just because you're a people pleaser by nature doesn't mean you don't have a say in what's wrong and what's right.
Stand up for yourself; those who respect you will admire the fact you can say what you need to say in a peaceful manner.
2. You are mistaken for being naïve.
Sometimes, when you're an optimistic person who sees the glass as "half full," you are mistaken for being oblivious to the negativity that exists in the world around you.
Not only is this sentiment belittling, but it is also complete and utter bullsh*t.
Just because you chose not to dwell on the toxic nonsense of everyday life doesn't mean you are unaware of it; it just means you would rather think about the things that make you happy, instead.
Most of the time, this creates an aura that people often diminish, but, in the end, the joke is on them. Why? Because we are capable of taking a negative situation and finding the silver lining in it, while those who call us "naïve" aren't even able to see past the problem.
Keep up the optimism, and believe in your intelligence. An educated, yet positive attitude is admirable.
3. You are rarely taken seriously.
I’ll admit it: I have an extremely bubbly personality. I smile like it's nobody's business and laugh to lighten any and every awkward situation I come across. Therefore, I am rarely taken seriously when need be.
When you're as carefree and happy-go-lucky as f*cking Buddy The Elf, people will think of your optimism as oblivion and disregard any valid point you try to make.
To prevent this, you need to understand that having a resting nice face does not take away your intelligence, so own it.
4. You forgive and forget far too easily.
One major downfall of being too nice is giving people the benefit of the doubt when they definitely don't deserve it.
Trust me, I'm not one to hold grudges, but I have fallen victim to forgiving people too quickly and being f*cked over by them directly after. It's not fun. In fact, it leaves you feeling pretty darn stupid.
To resolve this minor issue without becoming spiteful and full of resentment, you need to be more careful with who you trust.
Always keep in mind those who are looking out for your best interest and those who are looking out for their own.
5. You love fast and fall hard.
Now, for the kicker: Being too nice and being in love with the wrong person might as well be a recipe for disaster.
When you start caring about someone, you do everything in your power to make that person smile. Why? Because when the person you care for is happy, you're happy. You're just wired that way.
If I can pin you correctly, you probably have a heart of gold and willingly change your priorities to fit your significant other's schedule -- not because you need to, but because you want to.
You fall in love easily, and you tend to look at the good qualities of your love interest and ignore the bad. Of course, this fairytale comes crashing down pretty quickly when you stop receiving equal effort in the relationship.
Maybe your boyfriend or girlfriend got comfortable with your generosity, or maybe he or she hasn't fallen as hard as you have.
To a kind soul like yourself, this could be devastating.
Yet, there is a simple solution that will prevent a heartbreak without being completely jaded: knowing your self-worth. By understanding the kindness you undoubtedly embody, you will soon understand you mustn't settle for anything less than what you deserve.
Wait for the "nice" guy or girl. Stop searching for jerks, and seek someone who will appreciate your selfless efforts.
Once you find that special person who worships your sweet disposition, your overly-nice personality will never be an issue again.