Your service providers are NOT your friends.

June 15th, 2024

Because people pleasers are overly trusting, open, warm, caring, and sincere we assume everyone we encounter is like us. This assumption can cause disappointment and provide false expectations. Many of us befriend our dentist, doctor, psychiatrist, realtor, therapist, manicurist, teacher, shopkeepers, etc.

We tend to forget that the above mentioned service providers are not our friends. They seem interested in our lives, especially when it is a long-term relationship. They’ve earned our trust because they are familiar with us and we are familiar with them. They make us feel special when they remember to ask about our Aunt Ethel’s car accident or seem concerned when we tell them about our cat who ran away and hasn’t been seen for a week. It seems as if they have befriended us and, as a result, we consider them a buddy.

We forget that we are in a business relationship. Being overly friendly is simply good for business. Their business. We are the source of their income and they know that you would rather do business with a “nice” person. And that’s OK. We want to do business with nice people. But that does not mean that they are our friend – even after years of having a business relationship. From a doormat perspective always remember, if you aren’t going out to dinner, car pooling or driving each other’s children to soccer practice, it’s simply a business relationship. You pay them to provide a service not to be your friend.

It’s easy to sign a business document without reading it because we’ve been trusting our friend the dentist, doctor, optometrist etc. for years. But this is business. Don’t assume the documents are a recap of what they already explained. Read before you sign – it’s better to use self preservation and safeguard our trust and emotions before they “cash the check.” That way no one is disappointed later.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on this. Please feel free to comment below.