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The 2 Kinds Of People Who Scare Me.

I don’t consider myself to be a guy who scares very easily, but there are two kinds of people who scare me – not because I consider them to be dangerous to me but rather to themselves.

The first type are the ones who don’t know how to say “No” whenever they are asked to do something – whether they want to or not, whether they feel competent to do so or not, and whether the task is meaningful to them or not. As a result they subject themselves to overload, burnout, and eventually low self-esteem because they wind up being unable to accomplish all that they set out to do.

The second type is the polar opposite, although the result often turns out to be the same in terms of low self-esteem, even if overload is avoided. I’m speaking of the people who can’t bring themselves to say “Yes” – even though they may feel competent to fulfill a request, and even though they may be interested in the activity, and even though their involvement in it may bring some additional rewards such as increasing their circle of friendships and recognition of their talents. The unwillingness to say “Yes” is a particularly bad habit because it robs the world of the person’s awesomeness and also changes the mindset. At some point, such people begin to turn down opportunities because they believe that they are not good enough. Instead of regarding it as a bad habit, they begin to believe it is a fact. Their logic leads them to believe that those who have volunteered and taken risks and accomplished more are actually better than them.

I get scared when I see people take themselves to a dark place in terms of self-esteem because too often they don’t emerge from there. Self-esteem remains low because of continuance of negative behaviors and attitudes that are totally preventable.

When somebody else gives you an opportunity to provide your talents and efforts on their behalf, don’t default to automatically answering “Yes” or “No”. Evaluate the situation and objectively evaluate the time, energy, and interest that you have in the project before you decide. Your self-esteem depends upon your decision.

Ron Kaiser, Ph.D. Psychologist, Educator, Author, Podcaster

Ron Kaiser, Ph.D., is a positive health psychologist, coach, author, podcaster, educator, consultant, and speaker. He has been in practice for more than five decades, including 25 years as Director of Psychology at the world-famous Jefferson Headache Center at Thomas Jefferson University. As an innovative thought leader in the field, he has developed the concepts of THE MENTAL HEALTH GYM, GOAL-ACHIEVING PSYCHOTHERAPY (GAP), THE TYPE P PERSONALITY, and REJUVENAGING®.

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