The majority of us highly value our connections with the people around us, such as family, friends, colleagues, superiors and even new acquaintances. In order to maintain those connections, we often feel the need to please them, as if their happiness depended on us and our actions.
There is nothing wrong with the idea of making everyone we know happy, aside from the fact it’s impossible and unrealistic! Unfortunately some people take this too far and develop people pleasing habits which can become a gripping disease that begins to take over lives.
What is the Disease to Please?
Simply put, the disease to please makes us want to please all the people around us. It is driven by a need of approval – mistakenly thinking that the only way we can make others happy is by giving into their whims, requests and demands. It starts off with a sincere wish to be nice and helpful to others, developing into a habit of saying ‘yes’ even though we want to say ‘no’.
It may seem like a simple enough problem to deal with but that is not always the case. In our quest to give joy to others, we end up neglecting ourselves holding onto approvals and validation. However what happens when the string of approvals we value, disappear?
The Dangers of Being a People-Pleaser
The disease to please is one that affects us an entire person – from our emotional, mental, and even physical well-being.
When we aim to please someone we are willing to sacrifice all we have in exchange for a nod and a smile of approval. We put others first before ourselves which is not healthy long term behaviour.
How many times have we cried over being rejected? How many cups of coffee do we drink to stay awake and finish our boss’ request? How many hours of sleep do we lose? How much money have we spent needlessly to give in to our significant others’ requests? How much physical and mental stress have we burdened ourselves with? How often have we put ourselves out to work on things which are not really problems in the first place? If too often is the answer, then you could be suffering from being a people pleaser.
Being a people pleaser effects you emotionally and physically. The longer this disease consumes, the more we forget who we truly are and what we want ourselves to be.
We begin thinking of ourselves as an instrument for other people’s happiness and lose track of our dreams, aspirations and needs.
Ending the Addiction of Approvals
Although it is difficult and uncomfortable to begin with, this issue can be overcome with support.
The first step is realising there are limitations to what we can and cannot do, and make the people around us see that too. We need to learn how to say ‘no’ with conviction, and understand we all have a choice to live our lives the way we want to with balance.
If you feel you are suffering with disease to please, then please contact one of our team to find out how we can support you in overcoming this.