I’ve encountered lots of doormats in my lifetime. Most said “Welcome” as I scraped my dirty shoes before entering. Doormats have served for millennia as the means to keep the outside grime where it belongs. They serve a great purpose as long as they’re in front of doors.
Problems arise, however, when we become the doormat.
You know to whom I am referring:
* You’re the “such a nice guy” or that “really sweet girl”. You lap up the praise like a hungry dog;
* You readily allow everyone’s energy into your life with a cheery “Welcome” tattooed on your forehead;
* You can’t say “No” whenever someone asks for a favor;
* You rationalize why your being abused by others, and likely blame yourself;
* You believe you’re working harder than everyone else;
* You suck up to management in the hope of being appreciated;
* You rarely bend company rules;
* You dutifully perform the household chores no one else will take care of and feel like a martyr;
* Your so-called friends love to occupy your ear. They scrape the detritus of their lives at your door, and you willingly sweep it under the rug for them;
* You can’t help but listen to others even though they never take your advice;
* You feel out of place unless you’re caring inordinately about everyone else;
* You’re likely highly empathic, feeling everyone else’s feelings before you feel your own.
And no one seems to care about you. In fact, the truth is you are afraid to care about yourself, to have firmer boundaries, to put yourself first. You play the victim-role to its apex because you can’t imagine not feeling absolutely crappy about yourself…unless you’re helping someone else. And you resent “them”, the one’s through whom you feel forced to live your life.
The truth is, you’re afraid. You serve others out of the fear that you’ll cease to exist without the evidence that you’ve made someone’s life a little bit better. You’re so focused on defining yourself by what you do…that you don’t know who you are. This is the ultimate selfishness, because you are depriving yourself and the world of the miracle of your soul.
Oh, and I know what I’m talking about. I am Michael. I am a recovering doormat.
About the Author: Michael Parise was a Roman Catholic priest for 32 years. He is now a life & spirit coach and speaker, with over 35 years experience in helping hundreds find their true calling in life. Michael has helped many professionals and executives save themselves from drowning in responsibilities at home and at work by finding balance and peace.
Book Michael to speak for your group or event.
[contact-form-7 id=”18″ title=”Contact form 1″]
Text and artwork copyrighted by Michael Parise