It's an innate desire to be kind and helpful to others. We want to be seen as nice and reliable team players, someone who can be counted on to deliver results. However, sometimes this desire to be nice can be taken too far, and we end up becoming pushovers. A pushover is someone who allows other people to unload their responsibilities onto them without standing up for themselves. Let's dive into the differences between being nice and being a pushover, and give some tips on how to avoid falling into the trap of being a pushover.
How about we define what we mean by being nice. Being nice means being kind, compassionate and considerate towards others. It involves listening to others and helping them when they need it. Being nice is an essential part of being a good team player. On the other hand, being a pushover means giving in too easily to the demands of others. It means allowing others to take advantage of you and not standing up for yourself when you need to.
So, how do you know if you are a nice teammate or just a pushover? One way to tell is by looking at the way others treat you. If people are constantly asking you to do things for them and not reciprocating, then you may be a pushover. If you find it difficult to say no to others, then you may be a pushover. On the other hand, if you are respected and valued by your team members and they listen to your opinions, then you are most likely a nice teammate.
Here are some symptoms of being too nice:
You Might Be Taken for Granted: When you're always accommodating and never speak up for your own needs, people might start to take advantage of you. You might end up doing more work than you should, or you might get passed over for opportunities because others assume you're too nice to say no.
You Might Be Overlooked: Similarly, if you're always quiet and agreeable, others might not take you seriously or consider you for leadership roles. Being too nice can make you seem weak or unassertive, even if that's not the case.
You Might Not Get What You Want: Finally, if you never assert your own needs, you might not get what you want out of your career. You might end up in a job that's not fulfilling, or you might miss out on opportunities that could have led to growth and advancement.
Research has shown that being a pushover can have negative consequences for your mental health. A study published in the Journal of Occupational Health Psychology found that individuals who were more likely to be a pushover experienced higher levels of emotional exhaustion and job burnout. This is because constantly giving in to the demands of others can lead to a sense of powerlessness and a lack of control over your own life.
So, how can you avoid being a pushover and still be a nice teammate? Here are some tips to restore your power:
Learn to say no - Saying no can be difficult, but it is an essential part of setting boundaries and taking care of yourself. Practice saying no in a kind and respectful way, and remember that it is okay to put your own needs first.
Communicate your needs - Don't be afraid to communicate your needs to your team members. This doesn't mean you should use your teammates as therapist (again, BOUNDARIES) however if you are feeling overwhelmed or need help with a task, let your team members know. They will appreciate your honesty and may be able to offer support.
Stand up for yourself - If someone is treating you unfairly or asking too much of you, don't be afraid to speak up. Stand up for yourself in a respectful and assertive way.
Being a nice teammate is important, but it is equally important to avoid becoming a pushover. By setting boundaries, communicating your needs and standing up for yourself, you can strike a balance between being kind and being assertive. Remember that you have the power to control your own life, and don't be afraid to use it.