Why It's Important To Be Nice


Someone famous once said, "It's nice to be important, but it's more important to be nice."

That's easy to remember when life is good, but it's more important to remember when you're faced with a challenge, especially when that challenge is in your romantic relationship, when the tendency is to shut down or go on the attack. I've tried both of those tactics and I wouldn't recommend them if the relationship is important to you. I also want to go on record saying that nice guys don't have to finish last. Hmm, I think that'll be my next post. ;-) 5 Qualities That ALL Great Men Have (So Don't Shortchange Yourself!)

Common life events that can create trouble in relationships include things like moving, being unemployed, getting a new job, the death of a parent and having a baby. People tend to contract during those times naturally, and it's not necessarily unhealthy. You need to preserve your energy when going through major life changes. But contracting doesn't have to mean shutting down! It can mean that you are extra careful with what you choose to do and with whom you choose to spend your time. It can mean that you cultivate your love relationship because that is what helps you stay balanced.

Unfortunately, that's not what typically happens. More often, when faced with a major life change, even if it is one of our own choosing, once we launch the change, we panic. "OMG, what was I thinking?" we say to ourselves. We go into fear or descend deeper into it. We start imagining the worst case scenarios, and those imaginings have an impact on our reality. As we imagine our fears, we project them out into our reality, so they start showing up in our lives (Law of Attraction 101). New Year, New Possibilites, & Overcoming the Same Fears

I have a solution, and I call it "catching yourself in the act." I believe I read about it along time ago from Abraham-Hicks. (My apologies if it was from someone else). Here's how it works:

  1. Notice when you're engaged in negative self-talk. That can be self-directed, as in "I'm so fat, I'll never lose this weight!" or other-directed, as in "he's never going to get a good job again in this economy." That's the catching part. Do You Talk Down To Yourself?
  2. Celebrate the fact that you noticed it. This is magical. Instead of beating yourself up for having negative thoughts, celebrate the fact that they're not flying under the radar, wreaking even more havoc in your life.
  3. Re-direct your thoughts. What else is possible? Make a list of these possibilities. Writing them in a journal is especially powerful, but even if you just think about them, this will work. This is called doing a "what if...up". Typically, our "what if" thoughts drag us down a negative road. This re-direct brings you into a more positive place.
  4. Muster up the feelings of at least one of these better possibilities. Allow yourself to feel better for at least 17 seconds. The Law of Attraction acts on the level of our deepest, most prevalent feelings. That explains a lot, now, doesn't it?
  5. Before the feelings start to wane, if the negative thoughts were self-directed, run to a mirror and look into your eyes. Smile and say, "I believe in you, and I love you." If the negative thoughts were directed at your partner, say to him, "I believe in you, and I love you." Even if you're not totally feeling it, say it. Or, say something like it that feels genuine and relevant to you. The Power of Positive Relationships

I do have to warn you: when you first begin this process, you might be shocked at how often you notice negative self talk. You might be tempted to be mean to yourself, or to tell yourself you're a horrible person. Resist that temptation! Continue to celebrate every time you notice a negative thought, even if it seems like all your thoughts are negative. Celebrating the noticing helps to re-train your brain and knocks the negative spiral off track. Being nice, both to yourself and to your partner, when you're going through challenging times will make the road a lot smoother.