I feel like there comes a time in everyone's life when they feel they've been taken advantage of. I think of myself as a pretty good-natured soul. I'm willing to do anything for people most of the time because it makes me feel good and because it's the right thing. However, quite often I feel people take advantage of that good nature and either become aggressive, or they think I owe them something. It's at this point in time I shut down. I become completely different than people "thought" and the end result usually ends up with me feeling like the bad guy. That's just because the good side is still there, but I'm putting up a fight. Sometimes you have to fight to be treated fairly. But that's the name of the game if you don't want to feel "stepped on". Here are my number one moments that make me feel taken advantage of and where I will absolutely either shut down, or fight to be treated with the same respect that I give to others.
Lordy. So my maid of honor at my wedding started her speech out by saying I am the most reliable person she has ever met. That's a good truth about me. If I say I'm going to do something, I do it. I have obligatory phone etiquette. If you call and leave a message, I return your call as soon as I can. If you text me, same thing. It's usually a quicker turn around because I can snap a text up pretty much anytime unless I'm sleeping or in church. If you email me, I get back within a day. I'm just good with correspondence because that's how I was raised. Anything else is just rude in my opinion. I spend most of my life on a plane or on television and I still find time to get back to people. So when I extend these courteousies to people, I only expect the same. If you want respect give it. Some people don't get that. They expect you to jump when they say jump but they give nothing in return. Those people don't get quick responses from me. Not for awhile at least. You've gotta earn me back. I will sometimes see a text and say "I'm not a priority to them, so they can wait." I feel like after awhile people get the message and they start responding better if they care. If they don't, we have an awkward phone relationship for life, ha!
Don't make promises that you cannot keep. It's that simple. I don't make promises often, because I travel for work and I don't want to look like a liar. It's quite simple though. If you promise to do something and then you don't come through, you're just not my speed. I make very few promises like I said, and you best believe I make those promises happen! And in the cases where "I can't make any promises," I still try my hardest because...it's the right thing to do.
Don't Guilt People
Don't guilt people into doing things for you. It's a free country for a reason. No one is obligated to do anything for any of us. But, isn't it So nice when someone goes out of their way to do something nice for you, just because they wanted to? Yeah, it's great! I do nice things when I want to for my friends and family. It's genuine in that case. But man, do I hate feeling forced to do a good deed. Hate it. I hate being expected to do things like pick up the check. Chances are, I'm going to offer. But don't expect me to. That's just rude. I don't work for any of my friends last time I checked. So no one should be expecting anything. I don't expect this from anyone either. But if I've ever had to pick up a check because when the waiter came up you just stared off in the distance? We probably won't go to lunch again. Or don't go to lunch with someone and then complain about how tight money is the whole time. If it's that tight, stay in! (Not that anyone's done this to me, just and example).
Never expect things from others that you wouldn't ask of yourself. That's my bottom line. Don't take advantage of someone who has a kind heart. In the end, they will see it for what it is and you could ultimately lose that person altogether, and all of those great qualities you enjoyed about them can go right out the window! Do unto others as you would want done unto you. Love your neighbor as yourself. All of that good stuff. We should always remember we aren't the center of the universe and be grateful there are other people to share this big fat life with! Cherish that!