Tag Archive | people pleasing

Deactivate People Pleasing Buttons

We’ve all heard the refrain, “Just say No!” or “Speak Your Truth” in response to undesirable requests or unpleasant behaviors from other people.

Clearly easier said than done!

For instance, many of us can relate to saying ‘Yes’ when we wanted to say ‘No’ because we didn’t want to hurt someone’s feelings or appear unkind in our honesty.  So, we agreed to the request with our words, which didn’t align with what we really wanted to say.

In these cases, it’s easy to blame the other person for our dishonest answer, but often it is our own people pleasing habits, or fear of confrontation that made us go against our true preferences, desires, wants and needs.

That said, it isn’t about blaming ourselves either! Rather, it’s about more quickly recognizing that our pleasing button has been pushed, and use awareness to more quickly deactivate it.

Certainly, nothing wrong with helping others feel good, but that’s different than going against ourselves or reacting out of obligation.

Surely, none of us want to hide who we are in order to gain approval from others, but we can fall into that trap sometimes to keep the peace. Unfortunately, this always backfires on us!

Though we might make someone else happy by our compliance, we are left feeling miserable in our abandonment of self. Obviously, with easygoing people, it is easier to have reasonable conversations where you communicate and listen to each other’s point of view and make decisions accordingly.

Unfortunately, this is not always the case, as not everyone welcomes our truth, and their displeasure can be transmitted with hostility, criticism and the like.

Ultimately, we have to get rid of the notion that it is selfish to say ‘no’ or to have conflicting preferences or points of view from those around us.

Only by living in alignment can we experience authentic relationships where each person follows their own internal guidance system and responds accordingly, rather than allowing others to monopolize the relationship by only taking their desires into account.

Whom or what triggers you into people pleasing behavior?

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Look at Your Internal Reactions

Often negative words or behaviors are demonstrated in reaction to disturbing events, people or situations. Though we can certainly learn to outwardly respond more positively to our circumstances, it doesn’t necessarily alleviate the stresses within.

Therefore, instead of focusing on the external events, and giving away our power to the actions of others, it is more beneficial to put our focus on how we are internalizing what is occurring.

  • For instance, are we personalizing the behaviors of others, and feeling hurt as a result?
  • Are we making ourselves wrong if someone disagrees with us?

Personalizing and making ourselves wrong are types of internal reactions which definitely influences how we feel on any given day. Not surprising, many of us react pretty similarly to the same stimuli on a regular basis, which provides valuable insight into how we process life.

It can feel as though someone or something is inserting negativity or stress within us or making us feel a certain way. However, usually what is happening is we are being triggered by something in the environment, which activates long standing thinking or emotional patterns.

For example, we may struggle with people pleasing, or have trouble setting personal boundaries which creates unpleasant feelings within us.

These unpleasant feelings can alert us to take better care of ourselves and see if an old fear, worry, or insecurity has been activated as well, thereby helping us reclaim our power, instead of believing it is being taken from us.

What internal reactions have improved for you and what made the difference?