How to Ensure You Don’t Get Stabbed In The Back for Being Kind
Do you often feel that being a kind person might backfire?
Maybe you wonder if showing people kindness can lead to them taking advantage of you.
The saying ‘nice guys finish last’ definitely doesn’t help. Every day we’re faced with the choice to either be kind or be protective; to give people a hand and live with the regret of their betrayal or take a chance on them.
The world certainly needs more kindness because we would live life more calmly if we didn’t have to worry about watching our six o’clock.
Alain de Botton in his article Kindness isn’t weakness explains that ‘some of what holds people back from showing greater love is a sense that it would be dangerous and woolly-minded to do so.
Too much sensitivity and sweetness, too much tolerance and sympathy appear to be the enemies of an appropriately grown-up and hard-headed existence.’
Trust in the world is on a rapid decline and can make the principle of kindness difficult in practice largely because everyone is trying to protect themselves.
It makes one wonder if there are ways to still be kind while not being naïve to the reality of bad people.
1. Be kind to yourself
The best show of kindness is being kind to yourself. You not only fill up your cup which puts you in a better position to give, but you also teach other people how to treat you. Understanding and embodying self-compassion takes your kindness to others to amazing levels. You begin to treat people from a truly pure place.
2. Strong Boundaries
Self-compassion leads you to have strong boundaries. The only way to ensure that people don’t take advantage of you is to have strong principles and boundaries. When you have strong boundaries, you prevent leeches from endlessly taking from you and you also prevent your positive energy because when you let them, you might become hurt that you become bitter.
These questions by Brian Kang in his article This Is Why Your Kindness Is Being Mistaken As Weakness can help you ascertain if you are being self-compassionate so you can define your boundaries:
· Am I being kind to myself?
· Is what I’m about to do going to make me feel good about myself?
· Is this something I truly want to do?
3. Be kind just for the sake of it
Investigate why you want to be kind:
· Is it because you just feel like doing it?
· Is it because you believe that the person needs it more than you do?
Then their reaction or inaction afterward wouldn’t bother you.
Evidence suggests that ‘acts of kindness increase not only the receivers but also the giver’s sense of wellbeing, autonomy, and competence.’ Your reward is the feeling of making another person smile or happy or simply because you want to send positive energy into the world.
4. Get rid of your savior complex
There is a difference between being kind and doing things at great expense to you. You probably have a savior complex if you find yourself doing things for others at great cost to you. Devrupa Rashkit in The Swaddle further explains that “Constant helping and sacrificing for others can cause people with savior complex to feel they are taken for granted when those around them get used to their helpfulness. It can also cause them to experience burnout due to the amount of energy they expend in trying to help others. “
You can’t save everybody. Understand your limit.
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