I used to want everyone to like me. And I wanted everyone around me to be happy.
More to the point, I was driven to be accepted, to be approved of, to be liked. To be considered a nice person.
It wasn’t a pretty picture.
Addicted to approval
- I said yes to client requests that were unreasonable.
- I treated deadlines as late and killed myself to get things done early.
- I kept my mouth shut when I really wanted to say, Are you kidding me?!
- I apologized for things that weren’t my fault.
- I smiled when I didn’t feel like it.
- I took responsibility for the happiness of everyone in the room.
- I agreed because it was easier than speaking my mind.
- I would find out what you like and think and then try to like it and think it too.
- I said I was fine when I wasn’t.
- I said, Sure, I can do it! even when I was already overbooked.
This was all quite exhausting.
All the watering down and approval seeking. Anticipating and maneuvering. Acting like a chameleon to blend in. Overcommitting and overpromising.
When you can’t just show up and be yourself, it takes an enormous amount of energy.
And it’s self-sabotage, plain and simple.
Recovering people pleaser
After awhile I grew tired of all the accommodation at the cost of self. I was fed up with needing that jolt of external validation.
Which means today I’m a recovering people pleaser.
Ending this insidious form of self-sabotage requires skill building. Particularly around better boundaries and learning to say no.
It means embracing the full-strength version of yourself, standing in your worth, and caring less what others think. It means you stop approval-seeking and start getting your own needs met.
It’s time to stop people pleasing and seeking approval. Are you ready to fully show up and own what you truly think, feel, need, and want?