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Thursday, August 11, 2011

Don't Ever Call Yourself a Nice Guy

Would you say you're a "nice guy"?

Do you ever wonder why "nice guys finish last"?

Does it feel like people just take advantage of you because you're "too nice"?

Do you ponder if women really are attracted only to jerks?

"Nice Guys" are a total turn off. It's not because women are attracted only to jerks. It's not because every woman sets out to crush a guy's spirit with reckless abandon. It's because "nice guys" aren't really nice at all.

I'd like to think that the term "nice guy" is so overused that it's been forgotten about completely. Sadly, I know that's not the truth. There are still plenty of guys who want to call themselves "nice" and want to think the stereotypical thoughts.

A guy can think he is nice, that's fine. It's OK when it's part of a whole picture. If a guy takes the next step and calls himself a "nice guy", trouble's a-brewin'! Why? Because it says something about how the guy sees himself.

If he just thinks he's "nice", and happens to be "a guy", it's just like any other personality description. He could say he's kind, caring, funny, whatever. No big deal.

When a guy says, "I'm a nice guy," it usually seems to be followed with, "but for some reason..."

"But for some reason..."
  • "...Girls don't like me."
  • "...I can't seem to find anyone good."
  • "...Everyone just wants to use me."
  • "...No one is interested in me."
  • "...Girls only seem to be interested in jerks." 

But why should a guy never call himself a "nice guy" again?

1. Genuinely nice guys don't go around calling themselves that.

If a guy is genuinely nice, he need not mention it. Does a jerk have to tell people that he's a jerk? People figure it out on their own, and usually pretty quickly.

By telling someone, the "nice guy" instantly gives off an air of desperation. When someone tells me they are a "nice guy", a bunch of different thoughts run through my head and instantly, my guard goes up.

If a guy has to tell me he's nice, then he's already thought about it. If he's already thought about it, chances are he's already thought about why he can't seem to get anywhere with the women.

It implies that he's already got a misogynistic viewpoint layered deep under the "nice" outer shell.

2. What does "nice" even mean, anyway?

"Nice" is almost a stupid word to begin with. Think about it. What does it even mean? What does "nice" have over "pleasant" or "kind" or "caring" or "thoughtful" or any other variety of words?

Look at all the different definitions available for "nice" on Dictionary.com:

adjective, nic·er, nic·est.
1. pleasing; agreeable; delightful: a nice visit.

2. amiably pleasant; kind: They are always nice to strangers.
3. characterized by, showing, or requiring great accuracy, precision, skill, tact, care, or delicacy: nice workmanship; a nice shot; a nice handling of a crisis.
4. showing or indicating very small differences; minutely accurate, as instruments: a job that requires nice measurements.
5. minute, fine, or subtle: a nice distinction.
Why couldn't a guy just say he is kind? Better yet, why not just be kind and not have to say anything about it?

"Nice" as an adjective to describe a person has so many implied meanings (kindness, thoughtfulness, pleasantries, mild-mannered, calm, patient, considerate, gentlemanly, nice to look at, etc.) that it's sort of too all-encompassing to have any relevance.

3. "Nice" sets the bar too high.

Think about all the different meanings of nice, mentioned above. If a guy wants to call himself a "nice guy", that's going to be what's expected.

A "nice guy" will have to be gentle, romantic, patient, sweet, thoughtful, understanding, so on and so forth - all hours of the day. All days of the week. If a guy basically can't live up to the title he's giving himself. Why bother giving it?

In the impressionable girl's mind, she'll be thinking of a "nice guy" that she can take home to her parents that will get along great with her dad and help her mom clean up the dishes after dinner. Her parents will love him, her friends will be envious, he's just so nice.

The "nice guy" is going to eventually snag a girl that doesn't know to avoid so-called "nice guys". She's already gotten the talk, now she'll be eager for the show. It's an unrealistically ideal impression to pursue.

4. "Nice Guy" translates to "Desperate Guy"

If someone has to spell out what they are, they probably really aren't

Broadcasting that a title of "nice guy" hints at something. It hints that the person proclaiming the title probably has trouble convincing people of it. After all, genuinely nice guys would be fairly warm, approachable, friendly. People would likely want to be around them.

If a self-proclaimed "nice guy" is using the title, he probably isn't receiving this sort of attention. He's feeling lonely, somewhat outcast. He wonders why people don't accept him more warmly, since he is a nice guy. He's feeling somewhat desperate.

Only those that are desperate themselves are attracted by desperate individuals. Otherwise, desperation is a complete turn off. And, in a normal person, it's detected rather quickly. 

What About Real Nice Guys?

Obviously there are real nice guys out there, some may even mistakenly refer to their self as such. If a guy is really a "nice" guy... That's fine. But the phrase should be avoided at all costs.

Someone who is genuinely worth their weight won't need a phrase or title to define him. Others will provide the flattering adjectives, he will have no need to assign them to himself.

But one should not aim for niceness.

Someone who is kind, compassionate, understanding, responsible, mature, fun, and good-natured would be a far more valuable person over someone who is merely... nice.

If a guy drops the "nice guy" attitude, and pursues kindness, compassion, maturity, and understanding instead, they wouldn't have that problem of finishing last.


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