The night I woke up in a cold sweat…

You know that thing where you wake up in the middle of the night in a cold anxious sweat with a sudden horrible realization about how you fucked up your life?

That’s only happened to me once, but it was a doozy.

It was sometime in my mid 20s. I’d been people pleasing and being a nice guy my whole life for as long as I could remember, and I realized I didn’t know who I was.

I woke up one night and I suddenly observed I don’t know really what I stand for and against, what my preferences are, what I want to do with my life. It was a kind of “Who the fuck am I?!” moment.

This has been my main motivation to do the work that I do, because that moment was one of the most horrible existential experiences of my life. To realize I didn’t know who I was or where I was going because I’d spent so long pretending and being agreeable. I’d lost track of my original self.

Most of my Nice Guy clients have had this experience. You have been method-acting so long you’ve become the character and lost track of what you were before you started pretending. You’ve numbed your emotions and rewritten your beliefs to be more socially acceptable, and lost sight of your true feelings about things.

If that’s the way you feel you need to start getting more honest. MUCH more honest.

The truth about who you are is still in there somewhere, but it’s buried under years of lies and pretense and secrets.

Uncomfortable honesty is the way out.

For more on this topic, check out my video “The Cure to Nice Guy Syndrome”

One Response

  1. Starting small – being more honest about your little preferences, like music taste or favourite shows – is a great way to get moving on this

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