If I had a nickel for every time I’ve been told, “But you’re just so nice, Frannie!” I’d have a shoe/book collection like no other.
But being nice has cost me; it’s cost me my integrity, my opinion and my courage. You see, when one is nice one struggles with being honest. When you’re softhearted and a people-pleaser it’s hard to say no, share your opinion honestly and be brave enough to speak up. I know, because I’ve lived my whole life with the struggle. #thestruggleisreal
My dear husband has encouraged me to be real with him — even when it means hurting his feelings. When we first married, I’d keep all my opinions to myself.
Him: “Do want to watch this movie?”
Me: “Uh, yeah, sure. That looks good.” (Not really).
Him: “Care to eat at the buffet tonight?”
Me: “Ooo! that sounds good.” (But I’d like to try something new).
After so many weeks of me keeping my feelings to myself I’d explode on the poor, blonde-headed man, typically the scene would take place somewhere in the movie store’s drama aisle. (Go figure 😉 )
Me: “You never let me pick the movie!”
Him: “Well, I always ask. Why didn’t you tell me you wanted to watch something different? I need you to tell me what you think — I can’t read your mind!”
Oh, yeah. I guess you haven’t received your Excellence in Mind Reading certification yet, have you?
About three emotional explosions later we decided to dive deeper into why I kept my thoughts to myself. Why couldn’t I be candid with the one who truly wanted to know my thoughts?
Because love — to me — meant putting aside my wishes for the other person. Love meant blindly ignoring my thoughts so I could make someone else happy. But to my husband love meant me trusting him enough to be open, real and honest even when the discussion is petty and relatively meaningless. I needed to be trusting enough to realize that he really did want to know my opinion and that even if we disagreed we would be okay.
So, if you are a nice person who struggles with being honest I want to encourage you to remember three small things:
- The person asking for your opinion really wants to know; they aren’t faking it to be nice (like you probably do, tisk, tisk. 😉 )
- If the answer is no, it is not the end of the world.
- Honesty is worth far more then fake niceness.
Next time you are tempted to be “nice” and tuck your thoughts away from the world, don’t. Practice being honest (in your awesome, sweet way). Practice trusting the other person enough to be real about your thoughts. Practice being nice and honest. You’ll be a lot happier.
With love and authenticity!