Reforming People Pleasing

Pleasing someone usually feels so good.

“Thank you for doing that, you’re a godsend!”
“We couldn’t have done it without you, you worked tirelessly”
“You are the ONLY one I can count on in scenarios like this”

First, I want to say that being of service and having a generosity of spirit is not a bad thing by any means! If that is your gift and you are giving out of an overflow of your own heart and desire then by all means keep on keeping on!

Yet, there are some of us who may struggle with pleasing people at the cost of ourselves - and that is who I’d like to talk to at this moment.

If you are a chronic people pleaser, the intention is not always altruistic. Sometimes, our desire to please others is the tip of the iceberg and below the surface is a fear that says “if I don’t please you, you may leave me” or possibly “if I show you my real self, there is a chance you won’t like me and I’ll be alone.” Our brains were wired for connection and survival, so anything that would possibly threaten that existence will cause you to overcompensate in order to not be alone.

At a point though you may lose yourself in helping others. It is like the saying “you cannot pour from an empty cup” there needs to be a divide where you are taking care of your needs and prioritizing those over others at times.

If you are saying “yes” to everything, ultimately the person who will pay the price for that is you. You might wake up one day and go “Who am I? What do I want? What do I even like? I always go with the group majority, or I’m always the go-to person, where do my needs fit into all of this?”

There is a way out of that pattern. It will take work and probably an outside voice like a trusted friend or a therapist championing you onward, but it is possible. You can regain your identity. Then, on the other side of flexing that muscle when you give to others it will be out of an overflowing cup versus one that is on its last few drops.