Well Being | Stop being a people pleaser

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Do you say ‘yes’ to everything to keep the peace and please everyone at your own expense? Now is the time to put yourself first and stop being a people pleaser. 

Saying ‘yes’ and doing everything you are asked can become a habit without even realising. It’s natural to want to please everyone and avoid any upheaval or upset along the way. On the flip side, you may be doing it to feel needed and to justify your own role in society.

While helping others may be giving you confidence in life, people pleasing can be a sign that you lack confidence. Your personal feelings of security and self-confidence could be based on the approval of others. You fear the word ‘no,’ not wanting to be seen as lazy, uncaring, selfish and egocentric. The biggest fear is being disliked.

All of this people pleasing can put a lot of pressure and stress on you. As you overstretch yourself physically and mentally, you become anxious, stress and tired.

Remember that you always have a choice to say no when someone asks for help. If you are already over-committed and lacking time, politely say you do not have the time or capacity for extra work.

Make you a Priority

One way to do this is to outline your priorities daily and weekly. Value your priorities above other people’s work. When someone asks you for help, it is okay to say you will think about it. This gives you the opportunity to consider if you can commit to helping them and assess how stressful the task will be. It is often the case that we only realize the work involved after we say yes and commit to it.

If you do agree, set a time frame. For example, say you are only free from 10am to 12pm. This shows that your time is as valuable as theirs.

Sometimes, people are only too keen to take advantage of another’s good nature. They will try to pawn off the work they simply do not want to do to you.

Don’t apologise when saying no but do not be assertive. Offer to help out on another occasion when you are less tied up with your own tasks.