A few weeks ago I found myself telling some friends that I was done with being “nice”. You know, nice as in people-pleasing; nice as in “What will they she/he/they think of me if _______?”; nice as in not saying what really needs to be said because I’m afraid someone might not like it (or me), or might take offense (as if I could control what people are going to think about me, anyway).
Hearing me share this, one wise friend asked if she might share something with me. Without trying to be too nice, I said, “Yeah, sure.”
She said, “I’m not a nice person. Really, I’m not. I never have been nice. But I am kind. And I want to offer that distinction to you.”
I sat there and took it in. Nice versus Kind…. Huh. I’d never really thought about it that way, and to be honest, it made SO much sense. While Nice carries the energy of being worried about how others are perceiving us, Kind carries the energy of Love no matter who’s thinking what about us. Whereas Nice can be doormat-ish, her cousin Kind can be a fierce bitch, but because you know where she’s coming from (Love), you get it.
So, I’m officially adopting Kind now. She’s moving in and unpacking her things as we speak.
Don’t get me wrong; Nice still has a place in the house – like when the Girl Scouts come selling cookies or when my beloved needs his shoulders rubbed after a long day. But Nice gets to take a much needed rest now, while Kind takes her place at the helm.