We’ve all been there. We worry about disappointing others, especially our family and closest friends. We fear the sting of rejection when we don’t give in to their wishes. We are constantly anxious about our relationships because we want to please others.
This is not a healthy pattern. In fact, the constant worry of letting people down is a hindrance to true and lasting happiness. You may be pleasing them but forgetting about your needs in the process. This is not good for your wellbeing.
If you find yourself always tiptoeing like you’re walking on eggshells every single day of your life, stop and think! What could be causing this? How is this affecting your daily life and inner peace? Why do you feel the need to please others?
Honestly, it’s impossible to please everybody. Trying to make the people in your life happy is difficult because each one of them will have various expectations from you. You need to set boundaries to protect yourself.
This constant need to please people may have started while you were growing up. It did not occur overnight. You may have acquired this habit as you watched your parents do the same. You might have been bullied as a child and thought early on that you will avoid conflict by pleasing everyone. Whatever the reason, this need to please others has to stop, now!
Yes, you can change, it’s a choice and willingness! The emotion behind people-pleasing is fear. When you feel the fear, sit with it to dissolve it, transmute it, or take hold of your fear and toss it out the window.
Answer these simple questions and you will be on your way to overcoming the need to please others. List down your answers so you’ll be guided.
- Who are you afraid of disappointing?
- What do you think will happen if you let them down?
- Do you think they love you enough to accept you as you are?
- What actions or words do you think will disappoint them?
- What’s the best way to handle the situation?
You can’t please everyone so don’t even try. Just live your life and do what makes you happy. The golden rule might help too. After all, if you do unto others what you want others to do unto you, you’re taking responsibility for your actions without the need to people-please.
The most common problem for people-pleasers is they find it almost impossible to say “no” out of fear of disappointing others. You might have that same problem. So what do you do?
Check your values. Set your emotional boundaries. Know what you want and don’t want. Start small by saying no to simple things and work your way up. As you start saying “no,” which is saying “yes” to yourself, acknowledge your emotions as your brain learns the lesson that you’re allowed to disappoint others.
Experience the positive and negative emotions and focus on the effects of being firm with others. You’ll be surprised to discover that minor disappointments will not adversely affect your relationships. In fact, you may discern that some relationships are causing you emotional pain. In this case, you might consider spending less time with those persons.
We all experience the pain of letting others down. By identifying your fear of disappointing others and facing it, you’re able to change the way you handle things. Knowing what you want out of life and discerning your core values, you’ll be able to go through life enjoying every moment and experiencing true joy.
I can help you overcome the fear of disappointing others, check out my Services. Visit my Facebook page for events on meditations and healing.