Well, one (not the only one) road to hell is paved with chronic people pleasing. I’ve written about compulsive yes – ing (here and here) in the past, but I always have more to say on this subject. It seems counter-intuitive, but an unrelenting need to make everyone around you happy (often at the sacrifice of your own happiness) can destroy relationships. This isn’t run of the mill do-gooding – this is drop everything no matter what every time, anytime. I’m talking the kind of people pleasing that leaves you with ulcers and debt.
Tony Robbins believes that we all have one question that governs most of our decisions. Two questions immediately popped into my head when I heard this and they go so hand in hand for me that I couldn’t separate them. “Will they love me? Will they stay?” My inner-critic revels in it. Neediness, over-compensating, needless competition or jealousy ensues. Romantic relationships, friendships, jobs. It was always the same story and there were always the same questions “Will they love me? Will they stay?”.
Trying to answer those questions literally drove me crazy and when I backslide (and of course I do sometimes) I feel the twinge of obsessive needing to be needed from years past start to surface. Back, back I say!
Are you a people pleaser? I can’t say for sure where you picked up the belief, but maybe your core question looks like mine – which is really just another way to ask “Am I enough?”.
You alone are enough. You have nothing to prove to anybody.
So where do we go from here? If there’s a people pleaser anonymous I haven’t found it yet.
There are so many pieces to consider. Whilst I was rooting through my shit bucket of limiting beliefs I began picking out the nuances trying to nail down the limiting beliefs I tied together to form this constant need to appease everyone. What is my relationship with giving? Validation? Self-worth? Receiving blessings?
Giving – obligation, necessity, loss
Validation – self-worth, craving, love
Self-worth – need, recognition, outsourced
Not exactly the well you’d want to draw your nurturing energy from – this is where the road to hell is paved with good intentions. If actions are driven by lower level desires, even the most well-intentioned act can blow up. That’s why it’s so important to know you’re giving from a place of love – give with love and be open to receive with love.