Lessons from a Recovering Doormat

Lessons from a Recovering Doormat

Assessing Your Friends

During DoorMat days, I pleased and pleased to have as many friends as possible. I was under the misguided belief that everyone had to like me. People Pleasers befriend everyone. Now I’m very selective about who I call a friend and understand the people who said it’s better to have a few good friends that you can count on than to have a boatload who you don’t feel are there for you. Some friends are toxic; others just do what they can get away with if you haven’t set boundaries.


Setting boundaries can make a difference for having a friend who is worth having and having one who isn’t.

When a friend does things that annoys you or makes you unhappy, you need to do something. No one is exempt from good behavior! Take a stand—softly—on what you don’t like. This doesn’t mean you have to get into an argument or end your friendship. Often people aren’t aware of how their behavior upsets you. Sometimes gentle enlightenment is all it takes to help them learn how to treat you. We enable people to do unacceptable things by not expressing how we feel.

If you speak up and the person gets angry, you’ll have to just accept that. Some people want what they want and the heck with you. I try to limit interaction with those types. They don’t make good friends! When you speak up nicely but firmly, you might get your point across and the person will stop doing what you don’t like. Years ago I had a friend who I’ll call Laura. She was a decent person, except for occasional biting comments. What she perceived as teasing often hurt. It didn’t happen often and I did like spending time with her.


When I complained to a mutual friend who’d known Laura for much longer than I did, she said, “that’s just her way.” Everyone disregarded her occasional caustic comments. Other friends tolerated it. I thought about what she said and decided that just because it was Laura’s way, it wasn’t right. After saying some things that hurt me, I refused to make plans the next time she called because of her barbs. Laura didn’t take it seriously at first. But I explained while others accepted it—I didn’t. Period! And guess what? Laura apologized and promised to never do it again to me, and didn’t.

Letting her know how much it bothered me got through to her. I wasn’t tough in my approach but did spell out why I felt her comments were hurtful, even if she thought she was just teasing. When she saw how I felt, she didn’t want to lose my friendship and made a successful effort to control her sarcasm with me. Just because someone means well, it’s not right if she or he hurts or disappoints you regularly.


As your self-respect increases, so will standards for friends. I value friendship a lot but there has to be trust and mutual respect. I give energy to people who respond well. Friendship is like a seed—it needs care and time to grow.  It can’t be one-sided, with you doing all the giving. DoorMats feel short-changed when they give good friendship and it’s not reciprocated, but keep the friendship anyway. Self-empowered people know they need to be more selective about who they call a friend and how much they give.

Even if you’ve known someone for ages, set boundaries with or lose friends who don’t bring you joy and are always negative. As I cut down on time spent with people who had a negative impact on me, or let go completely, I say “Close one door and another opens.” Then new and more positive people enter my life. Letting go hurts initially but is rewarding when you don’t have to deal with their issues. Positive friends enrich your life. That’s why I encourage you to love yourself enough to only let people who treat you well into your life. In my next post I’ll discuss how to know who to cut loose.


Take the 31 Days of Self-Love Challenge and get my book, How Do I Love Me? Let Me Count the Ways for free at And you can post your loving acts HERE to reinforce your intention to love yourself. Read my 31 Days of Self-Love Posts HERE.

Please leave comments under my posts so we can stay connected.

Previous Posts

Ditch the Victim Mentality
A common thread among clients who come to me for self-empowerment counseling is “Why do people use me?” And they groan, “Why me?” And they whine, “I’ll never get what I want because of _____.”  I tell them to fill in that blank ...

posted 10:41:37pm Jul. 21, 2014 | read full post »

Standing Up for Yourself
You may be angry at many people and want to tell them all of. But you need to –prepare to take a stand first. Before taking a stand, ask, “Am I WILLING to be serious?” You may want to stop unacceptable behavior, but are you willing to ...

posted 12:01:04pm Jul. 18, 2014 | read full post »

Law of Attraction in Action: What You Think Of Yourself
This is post 290 in my series on the Law of Attraction in Action. You CAN use your power to manifest your desires. I do it every day! Read all the posts in my Law of Attraction in Action Series to see how. Very often, your biggest roadblocks ...

posted 8:44:56pm Jul. 16, 2014 | read full post »

Why People Become DoorMats/People Pleasers
George Bernard Shaw said, “The reasonable man adapts himself to the world: the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to ...

posted 2:09:35pm Jul. 14, 2014 | read full post »

Law of Attraction in Action: “It’s for the best”
This is post 289 in my series on the Law of Attraction in Action. You CAN use your power to attract all that you need. I do it every day! Read all the posts in my Law of Attraction in Action Series  to see how. People get confused when ...

posted 12:01:14pm Jul. 08, 2014 | read full post »


Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.