Do you find that you are constantly exhausting yourself trying to please other people? Are you wondering what I mean by this? Here's the break down...
-Are you putting others (grown adults that is) needs before your own?
-Are you neglecting your own feelings and/or well being?
-Are you regularly placing others happiness over your own?
-Do you incessantly worry about disappointing others?
-Do you find that you look for validation from others instead of providing it for yourself?
-Are you co-dependent? (this can be a discussion for it's own blog, it's that big of a topic) ?
-Do you find it hard to say "no" to people?
-Do you ever question whether or not you are being authentic?
If you answer yes, to any of these, you may be someone who focuses on, yep, pleasing the peeps, or people pleasing. I am going to be honest...this can be a never ending cycle: pleasing people, feeling exhausted, and then feeling resentful. It is important to realize, as soon as possible, that people pleasing is not a sustainable path and can actually lead to poor health, YOUR poor health. (And, might I add, it is completely impossible to please everyone!) But how do you break free from this pattern?
Well, first, you that notice that you are doing it. You will spend some time having ah ha moments...realizing......ahhh yes I am doing it again, but congratulations, that is the first step. It takes some time to actually retrain yourself to not people please.
Here are some tips:
1) People usually suggest practicing saying "no," but I find that this task is usually too terrifying for the avid people pleaser. Start small, for example, when people ask you if you are free, start with the response, "let me check my calendar and get back to you." This will give you some time to consider if you really do want to participate, or you are just people pleasing again.
2) Practice feeling uncomfortable. There is nothing more uncomfortable than a people pleaser having to face possibly disappointing people. The famous Wim Hoff suggests that we do something EVERY day to feel uncomfortable in order to stay young. You are going to feel ill-ease; notice it, feel it, lean into it.
3) Start spending some time alone. Contemplate what YOU like to do. Listen to how you feel. Learn what feels good and what doesn't.
4) When you do start exercising your right to say "no," know that some people will challenge you on it. People who have always gotten their way with you will most likely feel uncomfortable themselves when you introduce a new phenomena in your already existing relationship. It's ok. They will stay or go. Remind yourself that you deserve to be living in balanced relationships that nourish you and don't just deplete you.
5) There will always be those relationships that are hard to let go of. It's ok. Let it happen. Keep in mind not to push or force. People who love and support you will want to be by your side, even if it means an adjustment period of getting to know this new side of you.
YOUR FEELINGS, NEEDS, AND DESIRES ARE VALID AND IMPORTANT. YOUA ARE WORHTY. YOU ARE LOVE, LOVING AND LOVABLE. It is perfectly reasonable to say "no," at times, and to conserve your energy for YOU. You have the right to protect your time, energy, vital force, and emotions. This is YOUR life, after all.
Its a journey of self discovery and personal growth. Sometimes it's fun and exciting, other times, it's a suffering. Remind yourself you are on the ride of life. Embrace your authenticity. WIth each new step forward it will become easier...and I promise...you will become happier and healthier.