Stop Being So Nice!

Well, it really happened...Last week, I got exposed!

Now, before you make any quick judgments, please give me a chance to explain!

It took place at a conference where I was presenting as the keynote speaker. An old friend, whom I have not seen in more than ten years, was in the audience.

After my remarks, he stood in line patiently waiting to speak with me. When it was his turn, he greeted me by saying, "Glenn, you have come a long way in life, you're just not a nice guy anymore!"

As I heard those words, I wasn't sure what he meant or how to respond, but then he continued. "You have become a positive influencer of others, including me." I then understood what he was getting at, so I graciously responded with, "Thank you, so much."

This unofficial assessment that he made of me really got me thinking about what he said and about the personal transitions he had seen in me.

You see, years ago, I was a nice and pleasant person, yet was often overlooked and unheard. Nevertheless, I knew my thoughts needed to be communicated and that those thoughts would likely bring about positive change in both individuals and organizations. So, I intentionally set out to shake off the nice guy image. Nice, was just too plain, too ordinary, and too worrisome to make allowance for me to stand up, stand out, and stand above the crowd. I hope you can relate to what I am saying!

Being called nice is one of the most common compliments that we pay people but for the life of me I cannot figure out why being super nice is even seen as a virtue. I don't want to be a nice guy nor do I care to have people around me who are nice. Do I want to be helpful? Yes. Considerate? Yes. Conscientious? Yes. Hard-working? Yes. Thoughtful? Yes. Caring? Yes. Giving? Yes. Loving? Yes. Truthful? Yes. But not nice!

Do you think I'm talking crazy here?

Please take a moment to answer this question for me: What makes a nice person?

As you answer that, forget about those previous attributes that I just listed, because none of them make you nice. Here's a list of characteristics that I came up with in my answer to that question:

  • A nice person never has a harsh word for anyone.

  • A nice person never knowingly upsets the people around them.

  • A nice person never hurts anyone's feelings.

  • A nice person always thinks of other people before themselves.

  • A nice person never gets into arguments or acts rude.

  • A nice person never truly lets you know their strong thoughts and feelings.

In other words, a nice person is someone who seemingly has no moral convictions, no honest opinions, and no courage! They just go with the flow. Whatever the group wants to do, they do it. Whatever the group thinks, that's okay with them.

I've got news for you: You cannot be a nice person and find extraordinary success in life! (By the way, "extraordinary" means "beyond ordinary success".) You cannot be a nice person and be of any significant value to yourself or others. Sometimes, people are wrong and need to be coached to realize it. Sometimes, people are doing wrong and need to be challenged on their behavior. Sometimes, even friends have misinformed ideas and need to be enlightened or corrected before they do or say something ill-advised.

I'm not a nice guy and I couldn't do my job if I were. If I was nice, I would just come out and say everyone is wonderful just the way they are. No way! Here are the things that I will tell you though:

  • You need to get off your backside and get to work!

  • What you're doing isn't enough to get you where you want to take your life!

  • You need to think at a higher level!

  • You need to do more!

  • You, and only you, are responsible for your life and your future, no matter what may have happened in your life!

  • Take charge!

Those may not be nice things to say, but they are what you need to know.

So, do you want to move up? Do you want better? Do you want more? Maybe you need to stop being so nice!

My challenge for you this week:

Quit trying to be nice. Opt to be courageous instead and do what is necessary to reach your goals and to be of value in this world.

  1. Do you ever feel yourself suppressing your real thoughts, ambitions, or desires?

  2. How does this make you feel?

  3. Write down two things you would do if you stop over-consuming yourself with being nice or going with the flow?

  4. Start working on crafting a new image of yourself as a focused, intentional, and high-impact person.

  5. Write down some self-messages or affirmations that you can tell yourself to continuously upgrade your confidence level?

  6. Give yourself permission to start your transformation process, today!

Choose to be courageous...because why shouldn't your thoughts be shared with the world?

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