People-Pleasing: And How to Stop it?

People-Pleasing: And How to Stop it?


You often see most people adoring you because they take you for granted and think that you’d do anything to make them happy. People adoring you is good, but at some point, it suffocates you because you have taken all the requests you were asked, even when you have no mood to do it. It’s because you feel guilty every time you feel like saying no. Irrespective of the cases, being a people pleaser is very harmful because it can make you emotionally drained, fill you with stress and anxiety, and burn you out.

Personalities of People Pleasers

There are many personalities associated with the behaviour of pleasing people. The most common ones are listed below:-

  • Agreeing to everything very easily.
  • Having a conflict-free nature.
  • Finding situations difficult to say no
  • Getting stressed and overwhelmed at the same time.
  • Having a passive-aggressive nature.
  • Being very prone to hatred.
  • Taking hasty decisions while taking the blame
  • Falling into trouble for being true to others’ beliefs.

People-pleasing coping mechanism

The people-pleasing coping mechanism is called “fawning .”It is the way people-pleasing can diffuse conflicts, feel more secure and healthy in relationships, and earn the approval of others.

It is a maladaptive method of creating safety in our connections with other people by necessarily reflecting other people’s imagined expectations and wishes.

A few methods of the people-pleasing coping mechanisms are:-

  • Be more conscious of your behaviour. This is the first and foremost step of people-pleasing coping mechanisms. 
  • Stop blaming or judging yourself. People-pleasing coping mechanisms make you feel grateful for all those who have helped you.
  • Hear your internal guidance. Your inner guidance will guide and let you know what’s right or wrong. Spend time with yourself daily and prioritize your inner world of thoughts, emotions and feelings.

How to stop yourself from pleasing people?

Here we have noted down some steps you can follow to prevent yourself from being a people pleaser. Learn how to maintain an equal balance in keeping others happy without sacrificing your personal choices.

Establish Boundaries

It is essential to know your limits and communicate within your limits to form clear boundaries. You have to be clear and very particular about what you want to take on. If you feel someone is asking too much from you, you should make them understand that it has crossed the limits of your choices. Also, tell them you won’t be available to help them.

You have to explain to others that you are only free for a particular period. This is very effective because it will give you control over what you wish to do and when you want to do it.

Start Small

It can be tough to change yourself suddenly for everyone, so it is easier to start asserting yourself in small ways. It is quite challenging to change behavioural patterns. In most cases, despite retraining yourself, you also have to find ways to realise your boundaries with the people around you.

Due to this, it will be easy to take small steps that will help you to avoid being a people-pleaser. Start saying no to small requests, try to express your views about something nominal, or ask readily for something you require.

Set Goals and Priorities

Make a survey on where you wish to spend your time, whom you want to help, and the goals you want to accomplish. Once you know your priorities, it will help determine whether you have the time and energy to do them.

If something is wearing away your energy or consuming a lot of your time, take steps to address the problem carefully. The more you practice setting those limits and denying things you do not wish to do. This way you’ll find that there are more important works and you should devote your time to them. 

Stall for Time

When someone asks for a favour, tell them you need to think about it. Agreeing to it right away will leave you feeling obligated and overcommitted. Taking time to respond will give you the evaluation and decide if it’s something you want to do. Before making a decision, ask yourself questions like how much time it can take, if this is something you wish to do, do you have time for it and if it’d cause you any stress.

Moreover, scientifically even pausing for a short period before making a choice increases the accuracy of making the right decision. Giving yourself this moment will make you decide accurately if it is something you wish and have the time to continue.

Assess the Request

Look for signs that people are taking advantage of your generosity. Do you have certain people around you who always ask for something but suddenly disappear if you need them for any favour? Or some people who know how generous you are to deny their needs? 

If you’re being manipulated into doing favours, take some time to understand the situation and decide how you want to handle it. For repetitive offenders or people who insist that you should help, stay firm and clearly say no. 

Avoid Making Excuses

It’s important to directly say “no” and stop blaming other obligations or excuses for your inability to participate. Once you start explaining to others why you failed to reach out, you are giving them away to poke and taunt you. It may also give them the chance to modify their request so that you do what they want.

In this situation, try a decisive tone when you deny something and resist adding unnecessary details about your reasoning. You should remember that “no” is a complete sentence.


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