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Why you shouldn’t fall for the tragedy of “people pleasing”

Are you a people-pleaser?

Do you often do things to seek other people’s approval? Are you quick to apologize, even when it goes against your beliefs?

I’ve got bad news for you: people-pleasing is actually an extremely unhealthy pattern of behavior.

One that affects your mental health in ways you wouldn’t think.

If you’ve fallen into this toxic behavior, it’s time to make a change. Here are 5 reasons why people-pleasing is bad for your well-being.

1. People are more likely to “step on you.”

When you put other people’s needs above your own, you create an inner pattern of self-neglect.

You allow your boundaries to be stretched. And the thing about boundaries is this: when you allow people to push it, it makes them think they can push it some more.

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It’s like saying – “oh it’s okay, I don’t mind” over and over again until you lose your voice and your conviction.

And you’re standing there, in a place you didn’t want to be in, wondering why you let this happen to you.

2. It makes you passive-aggressive.

Over time, your kindness will bring the worst out of you. When you’re a people-pleaser, you tend to keep things to yourself just to make everyone else happy.

Your need to “keep the peace” inhibits you from communicating how you truly feel about a situation. Overtime, you bottle up your feelings until you’re brewing with resentment.

You find yourself saying self-deprecating jokes and negative comments. Just to make yourself feel better. You say one thing and do another. And you willingly let people walk over you and secretly resent them for it.

Sometimes you even find yourself overreacting over the smallest thing.

If you’re not careful, your resentment and passive-aggressiveness will ruin your most important relationships.

3. You put yourself in constant inner turmoil.

Do you find yourself up late at night, replaying a scenario in your head, berating yourself about how you could have handled it better?

People-pleasing creates havoc in your mind. You’re plagued by regret. You often think of how you could have stood up for yourself better, or how it could have gone the way you wanted.


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This does not bring you inner peace. Instead, you start resenting yourself for your inability to stand up for you – along with many sleepless nights.

4. You dim your light to make others shine.

This is the saddest part of being a people-pleaser.

At work or in your relationships, you find yourself stepping back in the shadows to make other people shine.

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What’s sadder, is that it becomes a habit over time. It destroys your confidence and self-worth. You start believing that other people are just smarter and more talented than you.

Remember, that assertiveness is an act of kindness to yourself. It’s one thing to be humble and another to be too giving.

5. It stops you from enjoying the moment.

You stress and stress about other people’s needs.

From keeping your clients or boss happy, to the parties you host, you spend most of the time trying to make sure everyone’s needs are met. In the end, you barely had any time to enjoy yourself.

But what if it also stops you from creating memories with your loved ones? What if, by trying to please everyone else, you let time pass? And you end up not living your life?

You better sort out your priorities before it’s too late.

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Time is ticking.

It’s okay to put yourself first.

Sure, not everyone is going to like it – but you will. 

You are the only one who can decide your own happiness and where it comes from – no amount of approval will change that fact.

Life is passing you by. At the end of the day, it’s not how people think of you that determines your worth. It’s living your life according to what makes you feel good.

So start living your life for you. Now.

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Written by Genefe Navilon

Genefe Navilon is a writer, poet, and blogger. She graduated with a degree in Mass Communications at the University of San Jose Recoletos. Her poetry blog, Letters To The Sea, currently has 18,000 followers. Her work has been published in different websites and poetry book anthologies. She divides her time between traveling, writing, and working on her debut poetry book.

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