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Students, Find The Balance In Pleasing Others And Yourself

Pleasing others can make us feel good but in the long-term we have to find the balance in pleasing others especially when it is in constant conflict with pleasing ourselves.

Regarding pleasing others, Ms Andrea Matthews LPC, Ph.D enlightens at Psychology Today, “People pleasing is not just a habit; it is an identity.  We define ourselves by how well we are pleasing others.  This means that if we manage to perceive that they are happy with what we have done or said, for just a minute, we can feel good about ourselves.  And if we manage to get into a groove of pleasing others, well then, we can be happy for a longer period of time.  But, of course, this is much harder to do, because we never really know what other people want.”

She then concludes, “More than anything else, people pleasing is an anxiety provoking way to live”

Yes that can become a problem. article, wikimedia photo credit

What some of us also learn is that people respect you more in relationships or in business when you feel strongly about your position, especially if it can improve the situation, and you diplomatically state your case.

The following article by a female writer will help us find the balance.

By Lisa R. Birnesser

People Pleasing: When Does Helping Others Turn Into a Problem? article, photo credit

Pleasing people through real generosity is a beautiful gift. Showing compassion to others and helping out people in need are part of being human. When does lending a hand to others become an issue? Pleasing others becomes a problem when your choices, thoughts and actions are based on what other people will think of you. It’s when you wait for others to make a decision for you for acceptance. Saying yes and always being helpful is the norm.

People pleasing can become just plain stressful and exhausting.

“I just want to be loved,” Michelle said. “I know if I could do everything for my boyfriend he would stay with me.” Michelle was a patient of mine when I worked as an occupational therapist years ago. This example of pleasing others is an extreme situation but Michelle played a victim role in her life. She truly believed that people would love her more if she did everything for them. Michelle rarely said no to others and she became everything to everybody. She taught me that worrying about what other people think can be harmful physically, mentally and spiritually.

Many people struggle with chronically pleasing others. For some people, pleasing others becomes a pattern where you say to somebody exactly what they want to hear. This problem is above and beyond doing something kind for the next person. This form of self-sacrifice has a payoff. It might be thinking that you are loved, accepted and needed. The message that you may be sending out might be different.

In that process, you sacrifice who you are as a human being. The bottom line is that it’s none of your business what other people think of you. No amount of approval-seeking from others can fill you up and make you whole. You are a complete person just as you are right now.

Recognize the people pleasing pattern by checking out the intent of your actions. Check and see that always being readily available comes from your heart. Sometimes it’s the niggling tension in your gut that tells you something isn’t right. Listen to your intuition and be clear about your actions.

People pleasing can become an issue in how you relate to others and yourself. Saying no at the risk of being rejected can be scary. But that kind of self-love is fills your heart. Be comfortable in your skin. Your opinion of yourself is what matters most.

Lisa is the owner and stress management coach at Stress Relief Solutions. This business, formed in 2010 was born out of Lisa’s passion for teaching and inspiring people to prioritize life tasks and reconnect with their inner peace. Lisa possesses an innate skill to motivate and empower people to live their passions fully. Lisa received a bachelor of science in occupational therapy from the University of Kansas in 1985. She currently lives in Knoxville, Tennessee.


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Opening photo article,  Leah Kelly photo credit 

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