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What defines someone as “nice”?

This week I forgot to bring my USB drive with my training material to work.
This could have been an extremely shitty situation if I wasn’t so wise to copy paste the PowerPoint slides on one of the computers.
However, that particular computer was taken by another colleague.
I hate asking someone for a favor. But I had no choice other than switch laptops.

He agreed and I couldn’t be more relieved.
“Thank you so much!”, I said, “and I am sorry for the inconvenience”.
“Me too”,
he said with an annoyed look.

This made me remember why I avoid people.
Being nice seems like a huge effort for most.

Being cool, funny, smart, good looking are all kind of characteristics most people would like to be mentioned by.
But you hardly hear someone striving to be called nice.

But then again, what defines someone as “nice”?

Empathy is the first thing that comes to mind.
However, whenever I have tried to talk about a personal issue, people either took it as complaining or couldn’t relate.

Some found my lack of socialising rude.
But then when they would talk to me one on one, I’d hear that I am actually “quite nice”.

If I look at the reviews that I get on trainings, people can’t really seem to agree about me either.

I have been getting over the top comments like “Not the most exciting topic, but the relaxed approach of the teacher made it fun!” And “Best teacher ever!!”.
One even baked me a cake to thank me for the good days.
I also got a box of chocolates once.
Though, none of those have ever took the effort of keeping in touch with me, other than the occasional facebook add.

And like you might have read in my previous post, some people can’t stand me.
Some have litteraly told me that I am an extremely annoying person.

For me it’s hard to determine what people actually consider the contributing factors of me being nice or not.
Nobody has ever been specific about it. I have never asked either.
Except for to Jasper.
He gave me a long list of my obvious awesomeness, but one thing stood out:
“I like how kind you are to animals”.

I think it’s true.
Animals have effect on me that humans don’t.
When I see a happy dog or even the more passive but cute neighbor’s bunny, my heart turns soft.
I can’t help but smile of genuine joy.
The amount of time that I have cried over human interaction is way larger than the smiles.

Finally, do I consider myself to be nice?
I really don’t think I ever had bad intentions.
In fact I’d say I put others conviences over mine.
Until, someone decide to falsely acccuse me or can’t stop pushing me into something that clearly isn’t comfortable for me.
Those things I will never be able forgive.
And that’s when I will become impossible to deal with.

Do you do try to be nice?

Is there anyone you would describe as really nice? And what makes them that?


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Me & my Skeptical Heart

12 replies

      1. What a great attitude. And considering how cyclical these things are, as long as you let that nastiness die with you and don’t continue the cycle of crap- you have ultimately made the world a better place. High five you!


  1. I think it takes a lot to be described as nice, or at least that’s how I explain it away in that I don’t think I’ve ever heard it applied to me, which is fine. In my old life I probably saw it as a sense of weakness and in my new life, I’ve kind of reprogrammed myself to accept and appreciate compliments, but not take them too literally. I think “nice” checks off a lot of boxes for most people, so you should be glad when people call you it, like you passed some kind of test. Do I try to be nice? No. But I do try to create no harm and help others.

    My wife is nice because she’s a great mother, loves animals and is very compassionate toward who I am. A parent of one of my daughter’s friends posted some scary self-harm talk on Facebook last week and despite my wife never having actually met this mother, she wrote to her to check-in and found out nobody else had. I think that’s nice. But I also know there are people who think she’s loud or pushy or finds herself funnier than she is. My wife has a big personality. It would be weird if some people didn’t dislike her.


    1. You have a good point there. I think a lot more people see it as a weakness.
      And honestly, society is giving out a constant push to be “strong”.
      Too many people life by it.

      It’s true, some people can’t people outspoken people. But they do make life interesting.
      Someone not being mean is nice is my eyes too 😉

      Liked by 2 people

      1. (I just wrote a comment that didn’t post. It might have gone to Spam)
        I think you can be strong AND nice. That’s what makes for a great person.
        Being nice does not overshadow your other good traits. That’s just BS. Be nice, you will be labeled weak and taken advantage of. Don’t be nice, be labeled a jerk and a trouble-maker. You lose either way.


        1. Hmm, what about this:
          You can only grow strong if you have always been nice.
          You’d never say anything nasty back if someone offended you.

          Those that are not nice, are actually weak. Because they never took the insults but always fired back immediately.

          Then again, being nice hasn’t made me strong. Just bitter and sad without medication. And indifferent with medication.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. It’s definitely something I think about. The Church teaches me to turn the other cheek like Jesus did, so sometimes I tell myself to do that, but I don’t think that is the root of my nature. I think my first response is to protect myself. I think it comes from the times when we had to kill or be killed when hunting for animals.


  2. He said: “Me, too?” I tell myself that I am not the crazy one. That THEY are. But if you live in a world in which everyone acts the same but you, you start to wonder. It’s like a bad joke everyone is on but you. Why was it an inconvenience for him? After reading the title and the beginning of this exchange, I thought he would have said: “No problem/ no worries/ no need to thank me.”

    How is it that people can complain about you all they want but you cannot say a bad word about them?

    Animals are pure. They are driven by primal instincts. Depending on which animal you are talking about, you know that they can cause you harm if they are hungry or feel threatened. Otherwise, chances are they will not backstab you. Like humans do.

    I’m the same as you in terms of niceness. People who are nice can be counted on. They listen. They understand. They strive for the best.


    1. I sometimes think it’s a cultural thing. Since I have never really felt home in the countries I lived at.

      Same here.
      And this is what someone told me as well about my work situation. He said: “I do understand how you feel, but with so many people accussing you, do you still think it’s them?”

      I’m starting to think that it might be me. But I just wish that someone pointed out WHAT exactly I could change. I’d work towards it.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I don’t think so. I feel at home here and things are the same in some aspects. Or maybe I just haven’t found the real home country… You got me thinking. Maybe that’s whay I like traveling – to figure out which place is my place.

        Yes, I still think it’s them. Take any majority/ minority type of situation. There’s power and strength in numbers. That’s all there is to it. I think that many people pretend to be a certain way because they don’t want to be the minority, which in turn inflates the majority, causing the minority to be even smaller.

        Hmmm… I see what you are saying, but I don’t fully agree. I was told I was too quiet. Am I going towards being a party animal at work? Absolutely not.


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