In business and in life people will tend to take advantage of the kindness of others. Most of the time it’s done without the knowledge of the victim too. Be prepared and on guard of the intentions of others because in the end you could be screwing yourself.
I was driving my normal route home from work the other day and frequently there is a traffic jam at the same cross street stoplight every day. I have adopted the practice of taking a back road only to come back to the main street that I was traveling further down. This back road comes to a parking lot that is just short of the main light that holds up the traffic. I simply drive through the parking lot and I know some nice soul that has no clue what I just did lets me in and now I just cut about 15 minutes off my commute home. Meanwhile this person thinks they just did a very admirable action. But in the end they screwed themselves because unfortunately the next light change, I was able to squeeze by the green light while this unsuspecting saint got caught adding 5 minutes to their commute.
Do you think that person would have let me in if he/she knew what I just did? Probably not. I thought to myself, if I can easily do this to someone right now, imagine what people would be doing to me in my business and life. I usually have the general idea that people are good and would never purposely take advantage of me. Unfortunately that is not reality. Well, what should you do?
Don’t do anything you don’t really want to do.
Some people will just do it out of fear of saying no. The whole time your doing the request you will be sour, bitter and unhappy. Meanwhile the requester is smiling and sitting back. So don’t put yourself through it. You have control over your own feelings and actions. Take charge!
Be Cautious Of Everyone
Your best of friends could even be the culprits. People prey on kindness, it’s like a shark sniffing out blood. They can smell the wreaking odor of kindness, they see it in your eyes and can taste it. Licking their chops and attacking is what they do. Keep an eye out and be conscious of the fact the people are self-fish at heart. In the end most people only care about themselves. The easy line to cross in this mindset of “trust no one” is you can be sitting there guarded and defensive all the time. No one likes this attitude and can be utterly turned off by it.
Don’t Feel Guilty
One of the main reasons that we give in is because we don’t have a good excuse not to. At least we think it might may not be a good enough one in the eyes of the predator. My answer; SO WHAT! 1.) You don’t have to justify to them why you are saying no, don’t even give them a reason. 2.) Don’t worry about them. It’s you and your thoughts, you have the right to say NO!
Stand Your Ground
The people around you have grown accustomed to taking advantage of you. They will not go down without a fight and they will pull out every guilt trip card in the book. They will clamp down their teeth and attempt the alligator death roll. This will be your toughest part to conquer. You have a need to feel accepted and belong and saying “no” has a chance of you making enemies. In the end you will feel good about it and you are staying on track, your ultimate goal of success.
So whats the point?
Whats wrong with helping people? Nothing is wrong with helping people that truly need help. But in the end how are you going to succeed in your business and life if you spend all your time helping others that could be just helping themselves. All your time will be focused and used up already. You think Bill Gates spent most of his time helping others that just want to prey on his kindness(if he has any kindness)? No, you have to be somewhat of a hard nose business man/woman to get ahead and saying “no” is just a part of that.
The time for generosity and kindness is when you are sitting at the top, otherwise its just a race to get there and the first one wins. Don’t get knocked down.