He’s just too into you… Really???

when hes too in to you

by Kenneth Justice

~ A few months ago a coffee house acquaintance of mine mentioned to me that she was thinking about breaking up with her boyfriend. They are both in their late twenties and have been dating for the past year,

He’s just too into me” she said, “It didn’t feel this way when we first met, but lately I’m thinking he’s simply too nice and, uh, boring

I hadn’t really thought about the conversation I had with the young woman until yesterday when a friend called and told me they quit their job. “Kenneth, I quit my job yesterday, I treated my boss like s**t and can you believe it;  the boss called me up last night telling me I could still come back to work if I wanted!”

Do you notice the thread that binds both of those people together?

—) The guy who is getting dumped is ‘guilty’ of being too nice

—) The friend who quit their job, treated their boss like crap and yet the boss kept the job offer on the table

Ever hear the colloquialism “nice guys finish last”? Is it really true? Without going into all the details about my friend who quit their job, suffice to say, my friend told me the moral of the story is, “when you treat people like s**t you are more likely to get your way in life, but when you are too nice, or too compliant….people are more likely to walk all over you

The coffee house acquaintance who was dumping her ‘too nice’ boyfriend wasn’t the first person I had seen do this, actually, I’ve seen this type of thing take place more often than you might realize.

If you ask me, there are a lot of examples of injustice in the world and this is definitely one of them. Why in the world does human nature lead us to acting in this manner? Is it really fair that if you’re nice you get penalized and if you’re an ass you get your way?

In another life, when I used to work in politics I saw this type of thing play out more often than I care to admit. Politicians who were greedy, nasty, and didn’t give a damn about their constituents seemed to rise to greatness, but the politicians who seemed to actually care about people often finished last in the elections.

Isn’t this what we also see in the business world as well? On a fellow writers blog yesterday we discussed the weird phenomena of ‘mean managers’. More often than not it seems as though people who should not become managers…..end up becoming managers. Men and women who have poor interpersonal skills and are poor communicators often rise in the business world to become managers.

A friend mentioned to me yesterday that if its slow at work he believes employees should be able to go home 10 minutes early…..but too often I have observed managers who treated the employees as though they were slaves and leaving ten minutes before closing time; they would never allow it.

I have the crazy belief that people in leadership should be held to a higher standard. If you’re a manager, a boss, a business owner, a politician, a priest, or fill-in-the-blank…..then I believe you have a greater responsibility in life to treat people with respect, justice, kindness, and grace.

Thus, when I see the ‘nice guys’ sink to the bottom and ‘mean guys’ rise to the top; to positions of leadership…..it annoys me quite a bit.

When it comes to relationships it gets a little bit more sticky. Obviously, a young woman who is complaining about her boyfriend being “too nice” might want to reevaluate her standards in life. Why does ‘niceness’ seem boring to her? Obviously, the young woman doesn’t want to date a dude that’s going to abuse her…….so what is it that she is really looking for in a guy?

One of my good friends has complained about this too me a lot over the years, “Kenneth, lets face it, I’m a nice guy and that is why I’ve always struggled in the dating world with women” he’s told me on more than one occasion.

There is definitely a balance in life we have to find in relation to this subject because its important that we each learn how to stick up for ourselves. When people treat us poorly we need to learn when its appropriate to stand up to them….But, that doesn’t mean we can’t be a nice person, it merely means we shouldn’t let people bully or intimidate us.

for now I think its time for my morning coffee,

Kenneth



Categories: relationships

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

57 replies

  1. Ha, hubby has this problem at work. Half the manages are total douche monkeys. (That’s a phrase from my teens, but I quite like it) why do nice guys finish last??
    AndI like your new gravitar pic, very cool. 🙂

  2. I really hadn’t given much thought to this except to note that it existed and be searching for that balance. Great post Kenneth. I’m going to look a little behind the curtain and ponder where I’ve seen this play out and see if I can spot the pattern. enjoy the day!

  3. Another great post, Kenneth. Speaking for myself, I am very nice and I still get a lot of what I want. I guess I’ve found the balance (although I have to keep re-finding it!).

  4. There you go again you loon. People in leadership positions usually get there by bullying nicer people because they are slower to get things done. Slow and steady doesn’t always win the race. Cut throats have ways of getting on top first. I watched a bully treat a very respected and articulate woman with complete disrespect using her power at the helm.Then I watched her days after kissing up to the other “powerful” types to make sure that she explained her twisted logic for acting in such an unfair way. I was there so I “explained” the justice of hearing the woman and allowing her rights. Guess what? The evil bully has tried a backlash tactic to teach me a lesson for speaking up about others rights. I am one David that shakes a bit in my sandals but I am not thwarted. I grew up in a dysfunctional family. One great thing that worked in therapy is I always yell out “Look there is an Elephant in the room!”.
    The friend zone guys I have met had one thing in common. They “idealized” the women and we hate that. A really nice guy sees all your warts and treats you in a realistic way. It feel delusional and false to be put on a pedestal. That nice guy needs to learn how to stop the cow towing and be a mensch.

  5. It is an unfortunate truth that nice guys finish last. Even I had a big mouth to a new manager Who thought he was all high and mighty. My boss called me to say i was still able to keep my job since I went home after the fight. I thanked him for it and told him I was never able to work for someone who treated the workers like shit. I worked for that boss 10 years that ass only 3 weeks.
    Boring in relationship usually is the lack of sex or innovation of. Girls like the bad boys but when a bad boy is wiling to commit and settle it turns boring. Yeah life lesson learned here.
    Great post.

  6. Sad, but seemingly true. Turning the other cheek doesn’t always earn rsspect here on earth – but who knows what treasures in heaven? 😀

    • Recently I was reading British Cosmopolitan, which got left by someone at work and felt a bit stupid afterwards. Ended it up thinking about quite a few times in the past and now I suddenly stumble over this post! Ha what a karma! Well there was an interview with Radio Dj Fearne Cotton, who I think is really cool. She was talking about always going for the bad guys and having her heart broken. Her engagement failed around the Royal wedding, which I think it must have been absolutely awful especially since she was presenting some parts of the day on tv. Now she is with a great nice guy and has a baby and she is very happy. It thought that is so lovely and I am really happy for her. Then I thought of my life. I always go for the bad, mad, treating me mean guys. I recently broke up with a guy, who was fairly extreme, but I still love his eccentricity and can’t help myself. I thought to myself I need to change this. And then I thought of all the nice guys I didn’t want in thepast- I think it was because they were too predictable or did not have that other intelectual level, talking about Dostojevki or wanting to know what your food is made of. I did meet some really nice guys, however we never made it to dates, as they were too shy. You may be sweet, but I just want to make sure you are exciting enough to talk to and won’t just say: ” I will do anything, what you want to do”. I guess the right balance you can call it. Kat xx

    • Unfortunately theres a trend in western culture where a lot of guys now-a-days would rather spend all their free time watching sports rather than read Dostojevski……

  7. Insightful. Honest. True. Now I can have my cup of coffee with you! Btw—I’m married to one of those “nice” guys. He’s the best husband and friend I could ever hope for–had to go through the crud to get to him though 🙂 I have Reformed!

  8. I like to think that those ‘nasty’ people who use the ‘nice people get trampled over, so be horrible’ card will at some point be victims of karma. Always remember to treat others how you would like to be treated yourself, manners cost nothing. I’m sure the guy who got dumped for being nice would just as quickly get given the boot for being horrible to his girlfriend as well.

  9. It happened to me at work as well. When you do your job very well other people wait for that one little mistake they can lash out on you. It is like their way of lifting themselves up and making them feel superior over you.

  10. I think it’s true to some degree. People have lost anything remotely resembling honor, personal character, respect for the higher qualities that humans are capable of. Instead, we’ve lowered our standards to the point that we only “respect” people we fear and only want what we can’t have. When we’re jerks, we are intimidating because we care for no one but ourselves and in order to appease us, people foolishly give us what we want even though nothing ever satisfies us.

    People are spoiled brats. They wouldn’t know honor if it hit them in the face and they have mistaken respect for coveting the position/power/wealth/fame/influence of others. Treating someone like they’re special because you wish you were them is pure foolishness but welcome to the 21’st century.

    Do nice guys finish last? No.. and yes, but in the whiny, wimpy, “woe is me” kind of way. They finish last because they do know honor, respect, and personal character. They finish last because they’re not willing to use their fellow man as a ladder to get to the top. They give when it isn’t convenient. They esteem others more than they do themselves. They love when it hurts. They forgive. They turn the other cheek. They finish last in the eyes of people who are too selfish to see true value when it they encounter it.

    And yet.. just like cream, they always rise to the top. They don’t do it by stepping on others or by striving to “get their’s” but because they are naturally made of better stuff than those who are content to settle for a few minutes of fame to call their lives meaningful. The real “nice guys” have marked this world in ways that make it livable for the rest of us.. and if that’s “finishing last”, then sign me up.

    But having said all of that..

    If we’re talking about the “nice guys” who are just too insecure, too fearful, too sorry for themselves to actually BE themselves and then rather than changing that, they have a pity party and invite us all to join them in their woeful lament of how bad they have it for being OH-SO wonderful? Nah.. those aren’t really nice guys. They’re exactly like the jerks I mentioned above.. they just hide it better.

  11. I happen to like nice guys… however, when a guy seems to be “overeager” I immediately think that he probably has poor judgment to want me that much…
    Yea, I know, I have issues…

  12. couldn’t agree more. Nice post 🙂

  13. There are two kinds of nice guys. The first kind comes off as nice because he has no spine, no boundaries, and no mind of his own. He’s totally co-dependent and lets other people walk all over him. Of course he’s boring, because he’s a constant drain on one’s emotions. He never encourages his partner to grow, because growth is a threat to him.

    The second kind of guy knows who he is. He takes responsibility for his own happiness and doesn’t let others manipulate him. Yet, he’s no backstabber. He’s secure enough in himself to help others when they need it and not engage in meaningless pissing contests. I dated number one. I married number two. The only time he finishes last is in bed, because he makes sure I get off first. 😀

  14. I think with everything there is a balance. A person can be nice, but should be able to hold their ground when needed. Why a person would ever want to date someone who is *not* nice, is beyond me. Granted, I wouldn’t want to date a pushover or someone who is more feminine than myself, but to date a genuinely nice guy, yes definitely. Thankfully, I’m on a permanent date now, so this isn’t an issue for me anymore.

  15. I dated a guy once who texted me every morning, told me he loved me constantly, was always “available” to talk to, sent me a “build a bear” in the mail Real sweetheart ya think?

    And I dumped him because he was becoming too clingy. If I went out, he wanted to know where and with who and if I was too late, he would have a fit.

    Later I found out he was a married, unemployed liar. I am still not sure to this day how he afforded the bear.

    So nice is sometimes a disguise?

    :::shrugs:::

  16. Great points. The converse also interests me… how do double standards with regard to virtue affect life goals?

    Many people aim at being better, and for them this consists of things like being nicer, even-keeled and constant. Yet people who enshrine these virtues are considered boring. The interesting people are those who have “personality”, who have flaws, act unethically at times, vary in their behavior.

    Yet how can we aim at a perfection of our character when on some level we despise the very virtues we are supposedly cultivating?

  17. You are on target. Countless examples in my family of the bad guy being the one who is appreciated, while the nice guys are treated with wariness and suspicion. How to deal with that? Be strong within yourself and ignore the naysayers.

  18. “Nice guys finish last” is generally attributed to Brooklyn Dodger manager Leo Durocher, back in the 1940s or 1950s. It was clearly a comment on competitioin, “last” meant the last team in the league standings at the end of the season. Durocher was not known as a nice guy. The comment was taklen to mean that if you want to win the game you shoudn’t worry about being nice.

  19. I whole heartedly agree. People are just dumb when it comes to accepting people for being nice and yet we complain about the jerks. It’s just dumb. The one thing is in dating – it’s usually not because someone is too nice per se, it’s probably about not being the right kind of nice if you will. It’s probably more of a personality clash because I bet that same girl will want that same or certainly very similar treatment but from someone else – she just wants it packaged differently. You almost always see it happen. She’s blaming it on being too nice but my guess is there’s some other part that’s not jiving. Just a thought. There is something to be said about not being attracted to someone who’s a pushover though. Men and women are much more drawn to confidence. Nice is good but confidence and backbone need to be there also because people like it when their significant other stands up to them. It’s about respect. There’s the notion that if someone doesn’t respect themselves, they’re a pushover and people don’t want that. It’s hard to feel secure in a relationship when one half can be pushed around and it also doesn’t feel much like a relationship then. Just some thoughts.

  20. I think Yiddish culture has it right: there are putzes, and there are schmucks. They both roughly correspond to “dick” (yes, literally), but the first is a cowardly jerk, and the latter is an arrogant jerk. The schmucks are the “mean people” you spoke of, and the putzes are the not-really-nice guys the previous commenters referred to.

    Here’s another way to look at it: in Verbal Judo, the late George “Doc” Thompson described people in 3 categories: nice people, difficult people, and wimps. The nice people say “oh yes, oh yes” and are usually accomodating. The difficult people (Doc identified as one himself) say, “What for?” “How come?” and put up resistance. The wimps try to get you when your back is turned, even though they might try to appear like “nice” people. Now obviously, he concentrated on Difficult People the most: to respect them and to meet their needs while getting them to do what you need. Wimps, he said, basically you just call their bluff: respectfully, but you level with them quick that you will not put up with their coward moves.

    • It seems as though with those three categories that they all have flaws

    • They do, or at least Doc (and I’ve seen video of him explaining this) seems to imply that they do. The aim of his book is to meet those flaws, and attain what he calls “voluntary compliance”. You preserve the person’s respect and dignity… well, harder to do with wimps, but it still seemed to be the goal.

      Again, the context started out in law enforcement, because it can be a matter of life and death, but it seemed to be his vision to extend this to all service professionals (who can encounter various dangers, too).

    • It’s definitely an interesting concept to say the lest

  21. I wish I could like this x a million. I call myself “Walking Murphy’s Law” because I was raised to be kind, gracious, giving, and to not create problems without good reason. Yet somehow, I end up shafted a lot by life despite being a very positive person. It’s not being a push over as stormy1812 labels it, it’s just common decency and manners but it is disregarded by the “mean girls” and bullies of life. People get bored and want to make waves – I chalk it up to immaturity. It’s first world problems really – we only have so much to truly worry us, so we subconsciously (or sometimes consciously) create our own drama.

  22. Great post – I think for me it’s important to separate out what we mean by nice. Does nice mean weak or does it mean good? In the relationships I’ve found that women don’t necessarily want the “bad” guy but they want someone that can stand up to them. Otherwise they think that he won’t stand up for them. But a lot of that get’s lost in transition and how people are perceived rather than how they would really be when it counted.

  23. I just wanted to stop by and thank you for liking my post in my “Chapter 41” blog. Enjoyed reading your blog a lot too. Cheers, Rose

  24. Kenneth, thank you for liking my artwork 😀

  25. Being too nice? what is that girl thinking, oh wait a minute she’s not. I can give you a 100 girls (I’m included) who would love to have a “nice guy”! Crazy if you ask me.

  26. Yeah, I get the whole, “He’s to nice thing.” It stems from THE CHASE! How fun is it to chase someone? Especially with the subtle tactics of a woman? It’s way fun. It’s also amazing to get someone who never even noticed you to look up and smile and then come after you. It’s the thrill of the chase. Making him think he’s chasing you when you were after him all along. It’s way addicting. However, it comes with all kinds of consequences. After a year or three months or three weeks or so and you are all settled into a nice relationship with no worries and he’s perfect, you get bored. And the only thing you can think of is that he’s boring (which is a total lie) and that you need to break up with him and do the whole thing over again. It’s the “crack” of relationships and it’s just as damaging as any other drug. I know. I was in rehab for 4 years over it. Only the love of God and some serious counseling got me back to somewhat normal. However, I smell Pumpkin spice roast. I’m off! – the wifey

  27. That’s my dilemma. How to prevent myself for being taken advantage?

    >

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