The consequences of being too good
Not everyone deserves the amicable polite version of yourself.
Many a time, we are confronted by the consequences of our actions. Be they negative or positive, and depending on the kind of person you are, they have a personality altering effect on us. And later, while filling up a bottle at the office cooler, sitting in a traffic jam, or while waiting for food at a restaurant, we dwell upon these moments; how we could have responded, what we could have spoken instead, and how we could have tackled the situation differently in order to avoid such frustration and disappointment in the future.
However, most of us happen to be on the receiving end of such antagonistic behaviour for no fault of ours, doing absolutely nothing to be deserving of such treatment. And sometimes for being too good!
This kind of behaviour, where being too good provokes a kind of hostile reaction from the other person usually occurs when life circumstances are vastly different for both the people involved. Their perception of the world might be greatly altered by their daily interactions, many of which they might just be forced to “grin and bear”, for the sake of their jobs, relationships and businesses.
Be that as it may, that’s absolutely no excuse for them to bleed on you!
I’ve often been the sole receiver of scathing or nasty comments, regarding how I have it so much better, just because I don’t have to work as hard as the other person. Most of you must be familiar with this personality type. If you’ve hung out in the corporate world long enough, you’ve bound to have run into them by now. They can be easily identified by their typical statements like: “you have no idea what I’m going through right now”, or “you have no idea how easy you have it”, or anything else along these lines. I’ve already spoken about this personality type - the externalizers- in brief in another blog post. You can read it here.
Sometimes, there’s certain situations or people with whom being nice only comes at the cost of your own mental health and emotional well-being. So, its best you go out only with people you’ve been in touch with for an extended period of time, getting to know their whole personalities in the process, before embarking on long journeys or taking up any long-term projects with them.
You don’t want to engage in deeper pursuits with someone assuming you know them fully, only to ruthlessly get burnt later on.
Here are the 5 consequences of being overly nice and friendly in a world that runs on antagonism, ego and cut-throat competition:
They treat you like a doormat: A not so extreme but unintended effect to what they might be perceive as a negative response from you. Most often, this can be attributable to a sour relationship, or a bad working environment which they’re in. But most of them are just plain assholes. Many people seldom know the difference in the office avatar versus the personality they’re supposed to show to their friends. They basically don’t know how to make the mindset shift at the end of the day.
They perceive harmless jokes as assaults on their character or at least questioning of their character. They take things personally, and get triggered instantly. This person will act like you exist, but you’ll treated like a doormat at very best. I know this type all too well by now. They’ll make jokes in the crowd, but will meet eyes with everyone except you. They’re the same ones who’ll later feign ignorance about your name, your job, or even how you’re related to the host. Unlike the ones who ignore you, they’ll acknowledge your existence, but only as long as it’s related to an administrative task.
If you notice very carefully, this personality will never interact with you on purpose.
“Don’t bleed on those who didn’t cut you” is a common graphic floating around social media these days.
They run you over: This is the worst of the lot from my list of Trigglypuffs. They bring the strict official version of themselves to the party — the version who’s used to getting run over all day long — take things too seriously, and then spoil the fun for everyone. They fail to notice the vibe change from professional to casual, and because they’ve been getting cut all day, bleed over people who haven’t even touched them.
This extreme person will out rightly bully you, call you names, and might even go as far as to physically assault you. And then tell you the alcohol did it!
For these people, the only way to tell them stuff is matter-of-factly. There’s no other way to do it. Sugar coating things and trying to make it palatable to them only makes you look weak and timid. They’re so used to hearing it from the horses mouth all day long, that that’s the only method that works for them.
Last night I was casually scrolling Medium on my phone, trying to get some sleep, when I came across an article where the writer talks about another variation of this personality type, the ‘Gaslighters’, as she calls them.
The following line from the article summarizes this entire point:
“You’ll meet people who could come across as somebody kind and polite until you get close to them. They won’t be happy at your success, will manipulate you if you tell them you’re hurt and play the victim game by explaining how they’re falsely accused and only have your best intentions.”
The gas-lighters reel you in like fish with bait on a fishing line, and when you bite, they’ll pull you out of the water and strangle you to death.
They act like you don’t exist: For all intents and purposes, this is the best version you can ever ask of a Trigglypuff. And hence, I’ve saved it for last. They’re definitely a million times better than the two other characters above for sure. If avoidance is going to be your response to my harmless jokes and comments, then please go right ahead and ignore me. I would love to ignore you as well. Your child-like immaturity at finding even the most harmless jokes mean and hurtful doesn’t bode well with my personality anyway. You’re wayyyy too serious for me. Maybe go on a hike sometime. It’ll do you wonders.
Do let me know in the comments if you’ve encountered any of the personality types mentioned above, or a variation of them in people you know. Also tell me how you managed to deflect the situation and transfer the burden of blame on to the offended person right where it belongs, maintaining your peace and sanity in the process.