How To Stop People Taking Advantage Of You

Lesson 3 – Givers and Takers

One of the things that ‘nice’ people (Settlers) find most challenging is saying ‘no’ without feeling guilty or bad about it. In fact, this is often creates such anxiety that you say ‘yes’ instead and then you kick yourself and worry about it creating even more anxiety.

These feelings of guilt can be instilled in us during early years and growing up; girls in particular learn from the example of women around them that to be a ‘good person’ you must put others first.

Where there is obviously no harm in being considerate, generous and helpful, if fact, can you even imagine a world where everyone only just looks out for themselves; we all need these ‘good’ people who do care deeply for others and demonstrate a level of compassion that goes beyond what most of us could achieve, for all concerned there must be a balance.

Putting yourself out for others all the time is hard work and not only nearest and dearest, friends, relatives and work colleagues, but your employer and even the neighbours can become a source of stress and anxiety when putting others first becomes overwhelming

But, could you unconsciously be the instigator of that stress and anxiety?  I don’t want you to think in the terms of ‘blame’ as that is negative unhealthy concept, but could you perhaps be acting or reacting in a way that creating an imbalance of giving and taking in your life?

The truth is, if you are saying ‘yes’ every time someone asks you to help, you are sending the message that you are happy do to it and they will most likely ask you again and again and again. Before long you feel taken advantage of or you are running yourself ragged trying to please everyone and end up compromising your own emotional, physical and mental health.

Setting or resurrecting your boundaries with people will reduce YOUR stress and anxiety and put back a balance whereby you can still be a giving person; you can enjoy helping others and at the same time, be able to say ‘no’ when you need to without feeling bad or guilty.

This is where you start taking responsibility for making changes that are going to lead to more balanced and healthier relationships with the ‘takers’.

Tomorrow in you will look at a case study of a typical ‘giver’ and a typical ‘taker’ and understand the bit in the middle that both parties can’t see.


Make a list of how in particular you feel taken advantage of. Who is taking advantage and why. What are you doing for other people that you perhaps resent or wish you hadn’t agreed to?

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