there’s nothing better than lying down in clean sheets, wearing fresh pajamas after a shower.
Do you always give in, or let other people choose, or hide what you think, or never ask to have your way? Perhaps you fear disapproval or disappointing others, and the last thing you want is to make somebody mad. If this profile describes you then you may be a people pleaser … and maybe it is time to stand up for yourself. Below are some tips that can help you with this:
1. Think of five occasions when you’ve said or done something that didn’t really match up with your own wants and needs – but you ignored those in order to please somebody else. Now, take the time to think through what else you could have done to get what you wanted, instead of caving in. Ask yourself “What is the worst thing that could possibly have happened? What were my worst fears, and were they realistic fears?”
2. Examine your fears in a balanced way. Would it really be so awful if a friend got annoyed? Do you need that type of person? What if they walk away? There are lots of other people who won’t demand compliance but will accept and respect you for who, and what, you are.
3. Look at your ability to set boundaries. Ask yourself, “What requests and behaviours are unacceptable to me?” Can you separate what’s normal from what’s unreasonable? Do you know what it feels like to be treated with respect? Are you able to say “no” and enforce good boundaries?
4. Look at your background and your family life. A lot of people pleasers were raised in families that expected full compliance – so their needs were not considered. Instead, they were expected to join in, to keep their feelings to themselves, to do what others wanted, and not ask for anything.
5. Don’t look to others for your self-esteem. It is good to be kind and to think of other people – but you must do that out of choice not a need for approval. And if you let other people determine your self-worth then you’ll never be free to a unique individual.
6. Learn to say “no” without explaining yourself. Don’t think of explanations, or justify yourself, or explain your different reasons, or ask to be excused. You’ll be surprised to discover people rarely take offense - and the people who do are not the ones you want to please!
7. Start to ask for what you want. Start to share your opinions, desires and ideas. Begin to make some requests, and to disagree with others. We’re all individuals with different preferences and healthy relationships are based on give and take.