Self Development

Niceness: It Shouldn't Always Pay?


Editor’s Note: I was deeply hurt by a friend recently, I thought I was strong enough to shake it off and move on, but every time I remember what happened I will break down and cry my eyes red. In addition to the emotional pain, I also became very withdrawn from other friends; I thought if that friend could hurt me that bad, then anyone else can. That paranoia didn’t help, it made things worse. Here is the truth I learnt; just because a friend hurt you doesn’t  mean every friend will, and because a friend hurt you shouldn’t make you stop being a friend to others. It sounds simple but it isn’t always that simple. I know.

Here is a lovely piece by Julia Chidolue that says something similar;

Laura boss dismissed her for putting in a word for her fellow worker who she thought could be trusted. That same week another friend that she has been financially responsible for also got out of the country without telling her. She cried on her Mum’s shoulder as she narrated her one week of misery. Niceness just never pays, she concluded! Many of us would have been in the position of Laura at one point or the other and we would have said the same.

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Today, most seem to show acts of niceness if only it benefits them in some way, few would just be nice if you have some relationship with them or belong to their close knit of friends and a little portion of the rest remain nice because it’s a virtue embedded in them! Little acts of kindness passed on to others moulds and strengthen the human race, and make the world a better place. Niceness shouldn’t always pay because it’s not a commodity. It should be a selfless act that comes straight from the soul, so you should not stop being nice to others because one person wasn’t nice to you in return for your kindness.

Writer – Julia Chidolue is a writer, a poet and a lover of art. She blogs at  

photocredit: gettyimages


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    Vigillant citizen

    June 21, 2012 at 9:03 am

    Nice work.



    June 21, 2012 at 10:39 am

    Niceness indeed isn’t a commodity, but in today’s world; anyone that is nice to another person earnestly expects something back! Luvly piece Julz. xoxo


    'gbenga Odugbemi

    June 22, 2012 at 1:56 am

    The idea was superb, incapabilities of other folks in rewarding niceness, kindness and sorts fails the test of generality, so that others would reward the niceness even when others won’t…
    but there’s a confusion…’niceness shouldn’t always pay because its not a commodity’ seems incorrect to me, the simile doesn’t follow…’Commodities’ don’t pay ordinarily, they are bought
    …the correct position should be ‘niceness shouldn’t be paid for as its not a commodity’…this aligns with the writers view that being nice should not envisage reward from the subjects, it should be a selfless act not expecting returns…

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