I grew up as an introvert. I didn’t even speak until I was 4-5 years old.
“Specialists” thought I was some weird, deranged freak who’s “a little slow” in the head.
Around 6-7+ years old, a kid in particular bullied and took advantage of me.
I became his doormat. When his shoes needed cleaning, I was the doormat he used.
And what did I do? Nothing. I accepted it and got on with my day as a kid under the age of 10.
The “bully” pretended to be my friend, but really it was for his own convenience.
I taught myself to be a doormat by doing nothing about it, but that changed once high school started.
“New” bullies would pop up like disgusting cockroaches, but this time around – I refused to back down.
I stood up for myself, with the “little” spark of confidence I had in me. And managed to survive school, alone, without anyone’s help. Including so-called “friends”.
Being a doormat is a “choice”
The harsh truth is: being a human-doormat is a choice based on FEAR.
You decided to be a doormat, nobody forced it on you. No matter how unfair the situation is.
So what do you do? Decide NOT to be a doormat, ever again.
Here’s how you can do that…
How To Stop Being A Doormat:
1. False Evidence Appearing Real (F.E.A.R)
In Primary school – I had irrational fears that weren’t even legit.
In hindsight: I was being a doormat because of “fears” I’d made up in my mind.
When I stood up for myself in high school, I learned fast that fear is an illusion.
One guy tried bullying me, using me, and taking advantage of me, but the moment I stood my ground… my fears vanished, and so did my problems.
My problem with that “one” person, of course.
When I was in college, the same thing played out. That “one” person tried scaring me into being his submissive little bitch.
Expecting me to cower in fear, and allow him to control me to satisfy his insecurities.
But once I shown him (and others) I’m not bowing down to anyone, or being anyone’s personal doormat to wipe their shoes on, they left me alone.
What are you so afraid of?
Being a doormat is rooted in fear. You’re afraid of the so-called “consequences” of fighting back, standing your ground or voicing your opinion.
So ask yourself:
- What’s the worst that can happen If I stand up for myself? (Be 100% honest).
- And what’s the BEST that can happen If I stand up for myself?
You know the answer.
All you need is a little push to do it. And your happiness will thank you for it when you do.
2. Understand that it’s a game of psychology
“Playing mind games and trying to trick people won’t give you everlasting happiness.” – Shruti Jain
You have to understand one thing about people: If they can take advantage of you, THEY WILL.
And one way this happens is through psychology.
When I was 18-20 years old, me and some friends were in Manchester. Headed to an educational institution (or something like that).
On the way there was a tall guy. Mixed race maybe, who asked us for directions.
The thing is – we weren’t sure where it was, so I said “no idea”.
An hour later we’d made it, and on our way out that same guy shows up. Screaming at me, shouting abuse and making threats.
But I wasn’t phased by his bullshit.
Eventually he mumbled some nonsense to himself, and walked off. That was the end of it.
People use “mind games” to control and take advantage of you
And you have to realize – it’s all a lie. People do that to see who they can f*** with, and who they can’t.
No different to how a Lion chooses its prey based on how weak they are, and how much “headache” it’ll be to kill it.
Wanna stop being a doormat? Then don’t be fooled by what you see. There’s more to it than that.
Take action and refuse to back down as if your life depends on it. And you’ll be surprised by how easy it is to take back control of your self-esteem and independence.
3. Study confident people, and “mirror” their behaviour
People are like mirrors. If you treat someone like shit, they’ll either return the favor… Or they’ll behave in a way that validates HOW you treat them.
Only exceptional people who are confident will react in a way that’s different from the norm.
The same is true for self-confidence
Being a doormat is slang for not having the balls (or confidence) to stand up for yourself.
I know how that feels.
The most reliable way to change that is to study confident people.
- How do they deal with negativity?
- How “firm” are they with others?
- Are they straightforward and honest?
- Do they set “boundaries” that others shouldn’t cross?
- Is their self-confidence inspiring?
These are the types of people you want to study, learn from, and “mirror” in terms of self-confidence.
What you focus on becomes your life. So focus on what it means to have confidence, and soon enough you’ll start behaving like a confident person.
Or you’ll be inspired to make a change and STOP being a doormat for people who don’t care about you.
4. Surround yourself with people who care about your well-being
I cut off so many people over the years. My life has NEVER been happier than it is today.
Back in High School, I had “friends” who in reality, didn’t give a shit about my well-being.
I could drop-dead, and they wouldn’t show up to my funeral.
Now – I know that sounds dark, but this is how far you MUST go to surround yourself with the right people.
Being a doormat just means you’ve let the wrong people into your social circle.
No self-respecting, compassionate human being will use you as a doormat. Or take advantage of your own insecurities and fears.
Only cowards do that.
So that by itself is a wake-up call of what you need to do, and WHO you need to “snip” out of your life with a pair of scissors.
I don’t allow ANYONE into my social circle who’s:
- Bullies people.
- Takes advantage of people’s weaknesses.
- Belittles others for their own sick pleasure.
They’re the types of people who LOVE when you’re a “doormat”. So that by itself is a warning sign, and you shouldn’t ignore it.
Being alone is better than being with the wrong person, even if it’s temporary.
How to surround yourself with the right people:
- Start with the internet. Whatever you want, you can find it online.
- Absorb information from positive, respectable people on platforms like YouTube.
- Join a club or a group with the types of people you’d like to associate with.
5. Learn how to deal with people who “try” taking advantage
I worked in a warehouse. Smelling chocolate all day long.
When you smell chocolate for long enough, you start to get sick of the sweet smell of it. Even if you’ve got a sweet tooth like me.
There was one guy who couldn’t stand me. I kept to myself and avoided all the bullshit gossip and blatant negative energy.
He’d go out of his way to “shake” me up in the hopes I’d cower in fear, making me the “perfect” candidate for a personal doormat.
How did I handle it?
I laid out the boundaries like carpet, and let him know what I’m not willing to tolerate… without causing a scene or being dramatic.
Sometimes you’ll end up in a position in life where “dealing with” these types of people, without letting loose is the smartest thing to do.
Violence, getting emotional, making threats… all that comes from a place of insecurity.
There’s no need to do any of that nonsense when dealing with assholes or anyone insistent on using you as a doormat.
Learn how to do deal with it, without losing your cool, while being upfront. And you’ll be surprised by how people will start treating you differently.
Even if they don’t like you because of it.
It takes practice to get it right and build the confidence. But the more you “do it” without over thinking it, the better, stronger you’ll become as a person.
6. Make a decision
“It’s not hard to make decisions when you know what your values are.” – Roy E. Disney
At the end of the day – it all comes to making a decision.
I decided to stand up for myself, even with the scape of self-confidence I had.
I didn’t always win. Sometimes I was outnumbered. But that’s irrelevant.
Deciding to take that ONE action helped build my self-confidence overtime. The same self-confidence you need to STOP being a doormat for others.
And it all starts with deciding whether you’re worth it or not.
You are worth it. Now you need to prove it and get over your irrational fears of “making a decision”.
The fear will run away once it sees your serious. And you’ll feel better about yourself, like never before.