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The Nice Girl Syndrome: Stop Being Manipulated and Abused -- and Start Standing Up for Yourself

ISBN: 978-0-470-17938-3
256 pages
July 2008
The Nice Girl Syndrome: Stop Being Manipulated and Abused -- and Start Standing Up for Yourself (0470179384) cover image
How women can overcome the pressure to please others and feel free to be their true selves

Are you too nice for your own good? Do family members manipulate you? Do coworkers take advantage of you? If this sounds familiar, read The Nice Girl Syndrome. In this breakthrough guide, renowned author and therapist Beverly Engel, who has helped thousands of women recognize and leave emotionally abusive relationships, can show you how to take control of your life and take care of yourself.

Engel explains that women today simply cannot afford to be Nice Girls, because women who are too nice send the message that they are easy targets and are much more likely to be victimized emotionally, physically, and sexually. She identifies the seven different types of Nice Girls and helps you understand which type or types might apply to you. Engel helps you determine whether the Nice Girl Syndrome is keeping you in an abusive relationship or in manipulative situations and helps you change Nice Girl beliefs and behaviors that are holding you back.

  • Shows you how to confront the beliefs and behaviors that keep you stuck in a Nice Girl act as you replace them with healthier, more empowering ones
  • Includes inspiring stories of women Engel has worked with who have found the courage and strength to stop taking abuse and start standing up for themselves
  • "This book will challenge, entertain, and empower its readers."--Publishers Weekly (starred review)
  • Written by renowned author and therapist Beverly Engel, who has helped thousands of women recognize and leave emotionally abusive relationships

Filled with wise advice, powerful exercises, and practical prescriptions, The Nice Girl Syndrome shows you step by step how to take control of your life and be your own strong woman.

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Acknowledgments.

Introduction.

Part One: Strong Women Aren't Nice.

1. The High Price of Being Too Nice.

2. How did We Get So Nice?

3. The Ten False Beliefs That Set Women Up to Be Used and Abused.

Part Two: From False Beliefs to Empowering Beliefs.

4. Stop Putting Other's Feelings and Needs ahead of Your Own.

5. Stop Believing That Being Nice Will Protect You.

6. Stop Worrying about What Other People Think of You.

7. Stop Trying to Be Perfect.

8. Stop Being Gullible and Naive.

9. Start Standing Up for Your Rights.

10. Start Expressing Your Anger.

11. Learn How to Handle Conflict.

12. Start Facing the Truth about People.

13. Start Supporting and Protecting Yourself.

Part Three: From Nice Girl to Strong Woman.

14. The Four C's: Developing Confidence, Competence, Conviction, and Courage.

References.

Index.

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Beverly Engel, an internationally recognized expert in emotional abuse and a licensed marriage and family therapist for thirty years, is the executive director of Domestic Violence Solutions for Santa Barbara County. She is the author of numerous successful books, including Healing Your Emotional Self, The Emotionally Abusive Relationship, and Loving Him without Losing You. Engel has appeared on many national television shows, including Oprah, Starting Over, Donahue, Ricki Lake, and Sally Jessy Raphael, and her work is frequently featured in national magazines and newspapers such as O: The Oprah Magazine, Cosmopolitan, Psychology Today, the Washington Post, and the Los Angeles Times.
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