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One of the most prevalent childhood wounds or traumas that Nice Guys have is this great fear of getting in “trouble”.
We often walk around our daily lives with a sense of something hanging over our heads; a hypersensitivity to threats, and a vigilance for any potential chance that we might cause a problem to someone.
Now being in trouble when you’re a kid is just the most terrifying thing, especially if you had the common kind of upbringing that a nice guy had: angry teachers, strict parents, unpredictable siblings, harsh consequences.
We often had rules that we only found out about by being punished for breaking them, so we had to guess what was right and wrong (and it constantly changed). Our punishments were often more severe than other kids, or at least we were more sensitive to the emotional pain.
Eventually, we learned to lie and over-achieve and hide and avoid opportunities, merely to reduce the likelihood of being in trouble.
It blows my mind how many “ambitious” and “successful” people are just trying to stay out of trouble.
We grew up not realizing that we never fully got over this strategy of avoiding being in trouble. This is where a lot of our current-day dishonesty comes from; we’re trying to prevent anybody getting upset because we interpret someone being upset as us actually being in trouble, as if someone having a tantrum is a physical threat.
I encourage you to just have another look the next time you’re worried about someone’s reaction as a threat, and ask yourself,
“Will I actually get in real trouble? Will something bad happened to me? Or will they just get upset, which is totally manageable and not really my problem!”
And always remember, someone else being upset is only evidence that they can’t handle the present situation. It is NOT evidence that you’ve done something wrong.
If you’d like to walk around WITHOUT worrying about upsetting people and getting in trouble, then check out my Nice Guy Syndrome Recovery and Confidence Building course ← this link gets you a big discount for the next 2 days only
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