Tuesday, March 1, 2011

RX: People Pleasing - A Disease Worth Getting Over

Can you say no without feeling guilty or "bad"? Do you cringe at the first sign of friction? Do you find it extremely hard to stick up for yourself? Are you willing to fail or forfeit in the name of pleasing another? If these answers hit too close to home, then you need to know that the “disease to please” isn’t really about pleasing others, but fending off the fear of rejection. As a people pleaser, you pay too high of a price – a price that isn’t worth it.

Diagnosis of a People-Pleaser
People-pleasing is an extremely unhealthy dependency on approval from others. Anyone suffering from this believes that their worth is based on how others view them to the detriment of ignoring their own needs. People-pleasing can occur at any age but is found more commonly in women.

Causes of People-Pleasing
Child of Alcoholism/Addiction
Child of Abuse
Middle Child
Overly rigid upbringing
Inconsistent/unpredictable family life

Symptoms of a People-Pleaser
Hurt by other’s criticism
Fear of rejection
Compare myself with others
Work hard at being “good”
Make decisions based on appeasing another person
Overly apologize
Try to impress people I see as important
Assume you know what others are thinking about you
Easy to lie, exaggerate, or leave information out if it makes you look better
Rehearse what you’re going to say and how you’re going to say it before going into situations
Find yourself stuck when you fear failing at something
Envy others’ success
Afraid others might know how much I need their approval
Your best isn’t good enough
You downplay or ignore your talents

Outcome of People-Pleasing
People-pleasing will lead to a life void of success, love, and purpose.

Treatment for People-Pleasing
1.    Discover what you are really afraid of and ask yourself if pleasing people is going to protect you from that.
2.    Determine to make the right decisions – decisions that are not based on the fear of other people’s reaction.
3.    Don’t set aside your own needs. Learn who you are and how to express what you need from your relationships.
4.    Practice saying “no” and when someone persists, simply ask “Why can’t you respect my ‘no’?” Don’t cave in.
5.    Cultivate your drive & passion to express yourself. Take a chance, explore,& allow yourself to make mistakes.
6.    Give your life direction by establishing priorities. Focus on efforts and activities that have meaning to you.
7.    Choose to love more rather than win love. Find ways to share your love for people and for this world.

“I cannot give you the formula for success, but I can 
give you the formula for failure, which is try to please everybody.” 
Herbert Bayard Swope

Christie Lee Rayburn, Mirror Mirror

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