People Pleasing Prison
When you people please, you become a shell of yourself. You internalize everything without ever letting any of it out. You find yourself in a bunch of one sided relationships where people vent to you or tell you everything while you say "everything is fine" even if your world is crumbling.
If this sounds like you….I know you think this is selfless, but it is not sis. You are shutting people out and they probably think you are cold and/or that you do not trust them and that's why you refuse to let them in. I learned this the hard way. I am a people pleaser by nature but I made the decision going in to 2019 that I was going to stop that. It was becoming destructive for me and my relationships. While having a difficult conversation with my friends the one thing that was consistent in their feedback for me was "We feel like you don't tell us anything. Like you won't talk to us for real." These were my friends of 15 years.
People pleasing leaves you in bondage and it encourages you to imprison other people as well as retaliation for your people pleasing behavior. Because you have decided to try to meet everyone else's expectations, you automatically decide that they must meet yours as well and when they don't, you are HOT AND HURT. How dare they fail you when you've sacrificed your freedom to please them?!? But….who decided to do that? You did. Make another choice right now. Free yourself from people pleasing prison.
How to Stop People Pleasing
1. Stop second guessing.
-What you post
-What you wear
-How you express yourself
-Who you befriend
-Who you date
I don't mean be careless in these things but if you feel good about it, don't second guess it based on what you think other people expect of you. Do what feels good to you.
2. Stop judging other people.
We are all guilty of it. Try to stop judging other people for living freely. The more you allow people to live their truth out loud the easier it will be for you to do the same. Subconsciously we censor ourselves because of our guilt from our judgement of other people. "I know what I would say if I seen somebody wearing, posting, or doing this." You don't know their story just like they don't know yours. Live and let live.
3. Be clear without being combative.
People are used to you people pleasing so this change will startle them. They will see it as a wildly combative act when you show that you no longer bound by their opinions. Be clear without being combative or rude.
"I was calling to talk to you about that pic you posted. Giiirrrrllll that was a little much wasn't it?????"
"I don't think so. I liked it a lot so I decided to post it."
"THAT'S what you’re wearing????"
"Yea! I love it!"
Notice that I didn't open it up for additional unwanted feedback. I didn't downplay my like or love for the choice that I made. I also didn't assume ill intentions. I confirmed that I did indeed make that decision and that I stand on it. It's not rude but it lets people know that you are comfortable with your decision. This doesn't mean that you don't welcome the thoughts of other people but you have every right to make your own decisions.
4. Do NOTHING out of obligation.
When we are people pleasing, we feel obligated to do things. When you stop, you can give genuine effort to the relationships and things that are truly important to you, including your relationship with yourself. This past weekend, I barely answered my phone and I barely left home. Why? I needed some time with myself in my own space. I really wanted to get together with some dear friends of mine but in the mental and emotional space that I was in, staying home and taking care of myself was a wiser option. If I had decided to go hang out instead, it would have been out of obligation and the desire to people please. Imagine finding out that someone is only talking to or spending time with you out of obligation. Doesn't sound like a good feeling huh? Don't do that to others then. When you spend time with someone out of desire to spend time with them, you open yourself up to have the best experiences and you can truly give them the best version of you. Next time I get together with these friends, I know it will be amazing because I will be in the appropriate space to do so. (Your real friends will understand this and give you space for it.)
To wrap this up, be free and free other people in the process.