- People pleasers are individuals who go out of their way to make others happy.
- Being a people please can be detrimental to your own health as well as impact your relationships with others.
- People pleasers can try to break the cycle by delaying their response to requests, getting rid of toxic people in their lives, setting boundaries tied to their goals, and apologizing only when they mean it.
Are you a people pleaser? Do you like to make other people happy, but often at your own expense? You probably think that it is a good thing that you are such an obliging person. It might be the case, but as we will discuss in this blog post, there can be some serious consequences if you don’t learn how to stop being such a people pleaser.
What is a people pleaser?
A people pleaser is a person who goes out of their way to make others happy. This may entail doing favours for others when it is inconvenient for them to or taking blame even when they are not wrong. People pleasers are uncomfortable when there are unhappy people around them. As a result, they will do whatever it takes to make someone happy and keep them that way.
One of the most damaging effects of being a people pleaser is it often forces us to deprioritize our own needs. This can be detrimental as we may be giving up on our own goals, aspirations, and even health in order to satisfy the needs of others. It can also impact our relationships with our friends and loved ones, causing strain. Recognize whether you are a people pleaser by seeing if you exhibit the below five behaviors.
1. You need others to like you
Being a people please means you need people to like you so you can feel good about yourself. People pleasers are deeply concerned with the well-being of other people. They will do just about anything to avoid conflict or hurting others’ feelings. This doesn’t mean that people pleasers have low self-esteem – it’s actually quite the opposite: People Pleasing is a survival tactic for those who think they’ll be hurt if they do not live up to people’s expectations.
2. You never say no
People pleasers feel like they always need to say yes. They will go out of their way to be obliging to others. This is not the same as being kind – it’s a compulsion that takes over your life and makes you do things for others at a great cost to yourself. Unfortunately, people pleasers are often taken advantage of by those who cannot resist.
3. You are always apologizing
People pleasers are quick to say they’re sorry for even the smallest infraction. People Pleasing makes you believe that your behaviour is responsible when something goes wrong, and thus you should be the one apologizing. In some cases, you over apologize to cover your basis. This may be done compulsively to ensure that others like you. Additionally, this makes a people pleaser often feel like a failure as they always feel they are doing something wrong.
4. You agree even when you don’t actually agree.
People pleasers will say yes even when they don’t really mean it. This is because for a people pleaser, agreeing is a survival tactic – so saying no feels like an act of violence to someone who has been conditioned since childhood to put other people’s concerns before their own.
If you find yourself being overly agreeable, it could be a sign that you have a highly supportive dimension to your personality. This is not necessarily a bad thing and can even be used to your advantage! Learn more about your personality by taking our DISC personality assessment.
5. You do not have any free time.
Finally, the last sign of a people pleaser is they often feel like they don’t have time to relax, and will push themselves until their body physically gives out. People pleasers become so used to doing things for others that they sometimes begin resenting those same people. However, the fact that people-pleasing is an addiction leads a people pleaser to continue this behaviour, regardless of how much time it takes up.
How to stop being a people pleaser
People Pleasing can be a hard habit to break, but ultimately it will benefit the people around you. Here are some ways you can stop being a people pleaser.
Tell people you will get back to them instead of saying yes
We recognize that it is difficult for a people pleaser to just straight out say no. So, in place of reacting with a yes, give yourself a break by letting someone know you will get back to them. Doing this will give you time to process and determine whether you really want to agree to what you’re being asked.
Another way to stop being a people pleaser is to stop apologizing. Take a pause and acknowledge whether or not an apology is even warranted. Many times people-pleasers apologize for things that do not warrant or need an apology. Additionally, you can try saying other these other things to curb your apologies.
Set goal and or purpose related boundaries
Setting boundaries that are tied to your personal goals will give you a reason for why those boundaries matter. This can be very helpful when saying no to activities that do not serve you. Having a goal and or purpose-tied boundary can bring focus to what you should and shouldn’t be doing, which can help you say no to things that you shouldn’t be doing.
Part ways with toxic friends
Toxic friends are your friends who push you into things. They pretend to have your best interests, but really they are serving themselves. Saying goodbye to your toxic friends will minimize the number of times you are asked to do something that you likely do not want to do. As a result, you will have one less person to need to please.