A Fresh SeasonBlog By Carrie Fediuk
You Can Call Me Nice

You Can Call Me Nice

Have you ever asked someone to describe you in one word? Often times, friends, family, and co-workers will use words that are flattering and are confidence boosters. There can be others, however, that just doesn’t resonate in a way that feels good.

For me, I have had people sum me up as “nice.” Yep, nice. What does that even mean? To me, it is a generic word, void of any personality or color. 

Case in point: I met with my boss the other day and he questioned me about my ability to have a difficult conversation with a co-worker. He questioned me because he said I am known to be this “nice person.” He said nice in a way that wasn’t very flattering. He said it where the N was over pronounced and the S sound at the end sounded like the hiss of a snake. It was drawn out to make a point. To make matters worse, he didn’t have a smile on his face when he said it. I was crushed. To be honest, I have been working to be more of a badass. Apparently, it’s not working so well. 

After the sting died down, I appreciated that he held me accountable. I am nice. It’s who I am and I’m self-aware enough that I know this can work against me. I don’t like having difficult conversations. Who does? But, when I have strong feelings about something – an idea, a direction I’m headed – I’ll fight to the ends of the earth to accomplish a goal and difficult conversations are easier. 

The truth of the matter is that I am nice. That’s who I am, but that word – that one simple word -- created a label that kept me playing small for a very long time. Don’t get me wrong -- nice isn’t the worst label in the world. There are a good number of words that I prefer not to be associated but I have fought to shed this label. It made me feel like I wasn’t good enough. Not good enough to ask for the promotion, not good enough to start this blog – the list can go on.

I decided to consult with Merriman-Webster to see what it had to say about the word. It’s associated with words like: 

  • Agreeable
  • Pleasant
  • Marvelous

Marvelous? I like that word! 

I am reading a book by Jen Sincero, titled You are a Badass: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living An Awesome LIfe. I think the author and I are cut from the same cloth. In it, she talks about some of the strengths that nice people have:

  • Collaborative
  • Team oriented
  • Compassionate

You know what? Those are strengths that have made me successful at work and in navigating the workings of our family and my marriage. I am choosing to see that label in a new light going forward. It’s a light that pulls me in the right direction toward my goals and dreams. 

Bottom line: Nice is nice. No, wait … nice is marvelous! The badass thing? I’m still going to work at it. I’m just going to shift my focus a bit and work at being a nice badass.

About the Author: Carrie Fediuk

Hello, everyone! I’m Carrie. I am a Mom to two great women who are grown, gone and living successful lives, each in their own way. I’m a wife and grandma-to-be (can’t wait!). My husband and I are condo dwellers living in Michigan. I’m a health and wellness enthusiast, late bloomer and storyteller. Here’s the rest of my story…