The 8 Best Quotes From No More Mr. Nice Guy

This article is an excerpt from the Shortform book guide to "No More Mr. Nice Guy" by Robert Glover. Shortform has the world's best summaries and analyses of books you should be reading.

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What are the best quotes from No More Mr. Nice Guy by Dr. Robert Glover? How can these quotes help you to increase your confidence?

In No More Mr. Nice Guy, Robert Glover shares his opinions about how men can become more confident, secure, and integrated. Understanding key quotes from the book is important if you want to apply these principles to your own life.

Here are the eight best quotes from No More Mr. Nice Guy, with explanations.

No More Mr. Nice Guy: Quotes and Explanations

If you want to fully understand the lessons from No More Mr. Nice Guy, quotes from the book are a great way to start:

“Humans connect with humans. Hiding one’s humanity and trying to project an image of perfection makes a person vague, slippery, lifeless, and uninteresting.”

To avoid disapproval, Glover explains that Nice Guys go out of their way to hide their true selves, including their perceived flaws. He says to avoid acknowledging their “bad” true selves, Nice Guys will try to fix the reactions to their mistakes rather than accept responsibility for their actions. When “found out,” Nice Guys may become defensive, make excuses, or rationalize.

“Just about everything a Nice Guy does is consciously or unconsciously calculated to gain someone’s approval or to avoid disapproval.”

Glover says budding Nice Guys center their coping mechanisms around gaining approval. Before you can accept yourself, you must look inward and recognize your approval-seeking habits. In order to ID them, ask yourself what you want and what you need, and which habits do and don’t serve your wishes.

“Self-respect, courage, and integrity look good ona man.”

So, how can Nice Guys improve their lives? According to Glover, the key is to become an Ideal Man. The Ideal Man is—above all—self-accepting. Unlike the Nice Guy, he’s secure in his self-image, masculinity, and sexuality. This allows him to live the life he wants.

“By trying to please everyone, Nice Guys often end up pleasing no one — including themselves.”

While the Nice Guy traits may be interpreted as passive or even annoying, they’re far from mean. But Nice Guys’ suppression of the self—to avoid disapproval, conflict, or strong emotions—leads them to frequent disappointment. Glover stresses that in their frustration with life, Nice Guys are often far from nice. In fact, their indirect and avoidant nature results in an angry cycle of self-victimization: 

“I define personal power as a state of mind in which a person is confident he can handle whatever may come. This kind of power not only successfully deals with problems, challenges and adversity, it actually welcomes them, meets them head on, and is thankful for them. Personal power isn’t the absence of fear. Even the most powerful people have fear. Personal power is the result of feeling fear, but not giving in to the fear.”

To break the cycle of self-victimization, Glover says a Nice Guy must change his relationship with fear, uncertainty, and the general “un-smoothness” of life. In the face of unpredictability, he must cultivate his personal power. Glover defines personal power as the ability to handle life’s challenges with confidence. It’s not defined by a lack of fear, but a capacity to manage and grow from it.

“Toxic shame is the belief that one is inherently bad, defective, different, or unlovable. Toxic shame is not just a belief that one does bad things, it is a deeply held core belief that one is bad.”

Glover notes that if a boy feels he’s at fault for his abandonment, he’ll eventually believe there’s something wrong with him. From there, he’ll try to change himself to gain his parents’ attention. These self-loathing beliefs are called toxic shame

“Being integrated means being able to accept all aspects of one’s self. An integrated man is able to embrace everything that makes him unique: his power, his assertiveness, his courage, and his passion, as well as his imperfections, his mistakes, and his dark side.”

Overall, the main distinction between the Nice Guy and the Ideal Man is self-acceptance. Glover notes that while the Ideal Man is secure in his self-image, masculinity, and sexuality, the Nice Guy represses his true self (including his masculinity and sexuality).

“Developing integrity is an essential part of recovery from the Nice Guy Syndrome. My definition of integrity is “deciding what feels right and doing it.”

Instead of defaulting to deceit out of fear, Glover says Nice Guys must develop integrity. This can be difficult, as their tenuous grasp on the truth is related to their flimsy grasp on reality. Nice Guys can’t behave truthfully when their actions are based on projection or delusions (like their self-limiting beliefs).

According to Glover, the best way to live with integrity is to ask yourself, “What do I think is right?” Then do it. Integrity gives you the power to approach reality—be it your relationship or job—with clarity, direction, and sincerity.

Use the above quotes from No More Mr. Nice Guy to fully understand Robert Glover’s lessons about increasing confidence and developing integrity.

The 8 Best Quotes From No More Mr. Nice Guy

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Like what you just read? Read the rest of the world's best book summary and analysis of Robert Glover's "No More Mr. Nice Guy" at Shortform.

Here's what you'll find in our full No More Mr. Nice Guy summary:

  • Why being a "Nice Guy" isn't actually a good thing
  • Why Nice Guys miss out on a life of self-acceptance, empowerment, and satisfaction
  • How to know if you are a Nice Guy and how to become an "Ideal Man" instead

Elizabeth Shaw

Elizabeth graduated from Newcastle University with a degree in English Literature. Growing up, she enjoyed reading fairy tales, Beatrix Potter stories, and The Wind in the Willows. As of today, her all-time favorite book is Wuthering Heights, with Jane Eyre as a close second. Elizabeth has branched out to non-fiction since graduating and particularly enjoys books relating to mindfulness, self-improvement, history, and philosophy.

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