While it might seem like a good idea to be someone who always says yes and provides others with the support they need, being a people pleaser can be damaging to your life, and you health.
Added anxiety you don’t need because you take on too much to avoid hurting others can build up and leave you feeling overwhelmed and burnt out.
Meanwhile, the people you are working to help just go about life without a care because you have taken the burden for them.
If you suspect that you are carrying the load for others when you don’t have to, you might want to consider the possibility you could be a people pleaser.
Here are 10 signs to watch for to determine if you fall into this potentially damaging category of personality.
And what do you have to do to stop being a people pleaser? Say “no” more often, of course.
1) You Agree With People Even When You Don’t Really Agree With Them
You might not even realize you are doing this, but more often than not you will agree with someone else’s opinion just to avoid having to explain yourself or tell the other person you think they are wrong.
You don’t enjoy conflict and even a good debate might get you all riled up so you try really hard to just ensure everyone gets along, even if it means lying about how you feel.
2) You Take on the Responsibility of Ensuring Everyone is Happy Around You
When others are feeling down, you work way too hard to ensure they can perk up and feel better about themselves. You’ll avoid doing things you want to do just to ensure that others stay feeling good about themselves.
You’ve probably not given much thought to how you change your actions to avoid disappointing other people, but it could be a real problem.
3) You Say You Are Sorry Way Too Often
Even if something doesn’t appear to be your fault, you feel the urge to smooth things over as soon as possible. And while you might think of yourself as the peacekeeper, you are also selling yourself short by taking on the responsibilities of everyone around you.
If it’s someone’s fault, why does it have to be yours all the time. Let someone else take the blame for once.
If you look around at all the times you say you are sorry for things that actually have nothing or very little to do with you, you might be surprised to find you are wasting your breath most of the time.
4) You Feel Overwhelmed and Burdened the Moment You Agree to Something
You agree to do a task or lend something to someone just to move to the “feel good” part of the conversation, but lately you notice that as soon as you agree to that task you start to feel angry or overwhelmed by the request.
You might even find yourself feeling resentful toward this person or persons who continue to try to take advantage of you. They might not even realize they are doing it and that just means that both of you are clueless about what is actually going on and losing valuable opportunities to steer yourselves in the right direction.
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5) You Cannot Say No to People – Or at Least, You Think You Can’t
It doesn’t matter how hard you have tried, you struggle to say no to someone. And when you have successfully said no to another person who asked something of you, you could have written a novel with the excuses you gave for having to say no.
And let’s not mention the number of times you said you were sorry as a result.
Next time someone asks you for something, try this: just say no. Without an explanation. And if someone demands an explanation, simply response, “Because I don’t want to.” End of story.
6) You Don’t Like it When Someone is Mad at You
You’ll go out of your way to avoid having to disappoint someone and try to prevent someone from getting mad at you. The fews someone has been mad at you in your life didn’t sit well with you and now you spend your days trying to avoid recreating those feelings inside yourself.
Don’t get hung up on how other people react to you. You cannot control their reactions. If someone gets mad at you, it is about them and their thoughts about you, probably not about what you actually did or said to upset them.
7) You Change Your Tone Depending on Who is Around You
If you’ve ever felt like you are a bit of a chameleon when you are with different people, you could be a people pleaser.
For example, if you talk differently with different groups of people, say co-workers, groups of friends, in-laws, or neighbours, you might be trying to get them to like you.
But how can they like you if you aren’t showing them who you really are? Try being you for a while, even if it feels uncomfortable, and see how you fit in. You might find that you don’t and that’s okay too.
8) You Need Others to Acknowledge You
If someone isn’t observing your good deeds and giving you props for them, it feels like it never even happened. This is something that happens to people at work quite frequently.
They’ll only “work” when someone is around to see them working.
9) You Put Yourself Out So That You Don’t Have to Deal With Conflict
You’ll agree to anything just to avoid someone getting angry or calling you out.
This is common amongst family members and unfortunately, it is hard to break away from the pattern of taking on all the family crap just to keep the peace.
10) You Don’t Tell Others When They Have Hurt Your Feelings
Despite all you do for others, the people in your life might leave you feeling less than stellar about something and you don’t speak up enough about when someone has wronged you.
Being a people pleaser is one thing, but don’t be a pushover too. Speak up and say no more often. Just imagine all the things you can do with all of your free time now that you aren’t serving everyone else in your life!