In relationships of any kind, whether we’re talking about romantic partners, friends, or family, there’s a lot of give-and-take involved. Relationships can only be healthy if they are reciprocal, meaning you receive as much as you give. Additionally, it’s very important to express gratitude for one another.
Gratitude is a huge part of feeling appreciated and loved, so it sucks when we realize that someone close to our hearts is ungrateful. If you have a close relationship with someone ungrateful, it’s important to do something about it.
It’s not good for you to continue having a relationship with someone who doesn’t respect you or love you enough to show you how appreciative they are for the positive effect you have on their lives. To help with that, here’s how to deal with ungrateful people in 5 steps!
5 Steps to deal with ungrateful people:
1. Explain why gratitude is important to you:
Communication is always the first step! People can’t read our minds, so we have to come forward and say how we feel. Sit down with this person and talk about how you feel about their ingratitude and why gratitude is so important to you. Don’t come at them from a place of anger and avoid being accusatory.
Simply explain how hurt and unappreciated their attitude makes you feel. Chances are, they have no idea that they have been taking you for granted. Once you help them realize that, there could be a change. However, if the person knows exactly what they’re doing, they might not think it’s a big deal at all and be unwilling to make an effort to change.
2. Don’t make yourself so available:
If the person who’s being ungrateful to you has no intention of making an effort and they disregard your feelings, then you have to set solid boundaries. Stop making yourself so available to them. If they’re not going to appreciate or value what you do for them, maybe it’s time you stop doing anything at all for them.
This is not meant to be a punishment for them, though. This is about you! You need to take care of yourself and your feelings. Sometimes, you’ll find people who won’t care about hurting you. It’s a part of life, but you get to decide if you give them the chance of hurting you again or not. In such a scenario, we recommend you cut the cord; you deserve people who cherish you.
3. Start saying “no”:
This goes hand in hand with the point we just made above. If people remain ungrateful even after you’ve communicated with them, you have to start saying “no”. Even if you can do what they ask or need you to do easily, you still have to remember you’re not responsible for pleasing them and serving them.
You get to be healthily selfish and take care of yourself, so you don’t have to say “yes” as you did before. There comes a point where you can’t just keep giving without getting anything in return. If they take you for granted and make you feel awful, you shouldn’t continue being there for them.
4. Focus on what’s under your control:
No matter how much we try, we can’t make people change. You can only control the way you act and behave. If someone’s ungrateful, you won’t be able to make much of a difference if they don’t want to change. You can only say your piece and hope for the best. If they decide not to appreciate you, you can’t force them to and you don’t want to.
Don’t let their ingratitude break your heart or take away from your happiness. Other people’s negative behavior shouldn’t affect you. It’s perfectly normal if you feel angry or sad at first, but, at the same time, be grateful they’re showing you who they really are early on. Now you know where you stand with them so you can protect yourself better.
5. Cut them out:
Cutting out toxic people from your life is the healthiest thing you can do for yourself. However difficult it may be, you must take care of your feelings and protect the love and kindness you have to give from going to the wrong people. We understand sometimes it’s not plausible to cut certain people out completely, especially if they’re family.
In that case, severely limit the access they have to you and your feelings. Keep communication to a minimum and make it clear that things won’t be the same.
Actions have consequences and you’re not a punching bag, you’re a human being. There’s only so much you can take before you decide it’s time to let someone go.
Ungrateful people are not easy to deal with, but you must do something about them and not let them consume you to the core.
So learn to be a little selfish and don’t allow them to keep using you for their benefit. If they’re willing to improve, you can support them. But if they’re not, you have to set and enforce boundaries so they don’t affect your emotional and mental health.