Everyone’s so timid and afraid to insult anybody, but in the end, it’s like we’re all trying to please everyone. In the end, we please no one.-Olivia Munn
I know some of you read that headline and thought, “Well that’s selfish.” What do you mean stop trying to please everyone? Work on making yourself happy? That’s ridiculous! I also can bet that you are one of the people pleasers. You see, we’ve all been brainwashed to think we have to make everyone else happy first, and then we can think about our own happiness.
When someone feels they are only doing things to please someone else, it never works. Think about it. How did you feel the last time you did something you really didn’t want to do? Did you feel resentment? Did you feel pissed off? I’m telling you the other person could also feel that, and no one won in the end. I’m telling you, all the people who get pissed off at you for not meeting their demands, the one’s calling you selfish. They are the ones who will lead a penguin into the desert because they know what’s best for the penguin, like in the photo above. Meanwhile, the penguin is melting. What do you think Eskimo pops are made from anyway?
No one knows you like yourself. Your intuition is there to guide you. You don’t need a guru, a crystal, healing, a partner, a pumpkin spice latte, or an infomercial to give you the answers. You have them already. And the key to knowing when you are on the right path is when you work on making yourself happy. Think about the times you have been the happiest. You are happy when your soul is giving you the message that everything is in alignment and you are doing the thing you are meant to do. Listen to that.
How To Stop Trying To Please Everyone
Get Approval From Yourself
We started out trying to please everyone because we all crave approval. Approval makes us feel loved. When we don’t have self-approval, we tend to seek it from others. But, if we get approval from others at the expense of ourselves, we will approve of ourselves even less because we are going against who we are. So, we wind up feeling even more horrible inside. So, then we start caring even more about what others think of us because we have even less approval for ourselves.
Start talking nicer to yourself. Would you tell your friends the things you let your mind tell you about yourself?Would you tell your friend, “You would look so much better if you lost ten pounds. You talk way too much. You say stupid things.” No, you wouldn’t say these things to your friends. You would be such an asshole. Then, why do you talk this way to yourself?
Figure Out Who You Are And What You Want
If you’re trying to please everyone, then you’re not going to make anything that is honestly yours, I don’t think, in the long run.-Viggo Mortensen
Another reason we often try to please others is we’ve never really taken the time to figure out who we are deep inside. We really don’t know what we want, so it becomes easy to let others tell us what to do. We became a lawyer because our dad expected that of us. We got married and had kids because everyone else was doing it. Think about how when you were a kid. You just got lost in the things you were doing, and you didn’t care what anyone else thought. You knew when you grew up, you were going to be a Godzilla ballerina. Nothing could stop you. But, when we grow up, we let what others may think stop us from the things we really want to do. When you take the time to know yourself and what you really want, that passion will envelop you, and you won’t be so easily persuaded to let others dictate your life for you.
Don’t Take Things Personally
We also tend to take things personally. If someone says something rude to us or looks at us the wrong way, we automatically think it’s all about us. I’m here to tell you it’s not. Most of the time, people are stuck in their own heads. They are thinking about the bad day they are having or other issues in their life. They make take it out on you because you happened to be there. Now, it’s true some people may just genuinely not like you, but I’m sure you have people who you don’t really like either. Hey, it happens. Not everyone has to like you. Wouldn’t you rather be surrounded by those who you can talk to for hours, laugh with, who you don’t have to put on a performance for?
Then, why are you putting so much energy out there trying to win favor from those who will never really understand you anyway? I am sure you have people in your life who have a great opinion of you. Others have a bad opinion of you. How can you be both? They are just bringing their shit and their expectations into their interactions with you. I had a situation just this week where I ran into someone who said an acquaintance of mine had raved about me and told her how much she loved me. Yet, I ran into another person who said this same acquaintance had told her what a terrible person was! How can they both be true?
Here’s a thought for you: Maybe what you are isn’t what people think of you! Just be who you are, work on making yourself happy, and then watch in amazement at what will happen. You will start attracting like-minded people into your life, and the feeling of being surrounded by a tribe gives more fulfillment than knowing you are pleasing everyone in your life ever will.
Know That Most People Don’t Have It In Them To Easily Approve Of Other People
Most people struggle to love themselves for who they are. They focus on their faults and never feel good enough. So, if they find things in you they don’t like, they can feel a little bit better about themselves. It’s sad, but we’ve all done it. I believe this is a pattern that we can all change. What if the next time you find yourself judging or criticizing someone, you switch to thinking of all the things you love about them? Let’s change the energy. Let’s stop gossiping about other people and all their faults. When was the last time you heard a group of people talking about all the positive qualities of someone? Crickets….
…You be the one. The next time a group of people are badmouthing someone else, why don’t you interrupt and start talking about all their positive qualities? Let’s build each other up and stop tearing one another down.
Realize You’re Going To Have Haters (Especially If You Follow My Advice)
It’s very likely once you start working on making yourself happy, that this is when everything is going to go tits up. Yep, it’s very easy to stay in the status quo and do what everyone else is doing. Look at all the people trying to please everyone! You say, “fuck that shit!”, and you are going to have haters. People are going to be envious. People want to be as happy as you are. But are they going to come kneel at your feet and ask you how you got to be that happy? Are they going to ask you for your sweet secrets to wisdom? No, they’d rather freeze their ass off, climb a mountain, and ask an emaciated man in the sky for that wisdom. (By the way, can you tell me with all the millions of people who study enlightenment why no one’s every got there yet?)
No, these people aren’t going to ask you your secret. They will tell you that you are horrible. That you don’t know anything. What gives you the right to go around all happy-like and smiling all the time anyway. They will criticize you, your mother, and your dog just to feel better about themselves. Why? You’ve just reminded them that they aren’t living in an authentic way. They are trapped in the world’s cage, and they don’t know how to get out.. It takes a very humble person that will come to you for advice. And, I’m telling you the best advice you can give them is to follow their own path because absolutely no one knows what is best for another.
Learn How To Say No And Realize That No Is A Complete Sentence
When you stop trying to please everyone, you are going to be saying the word no a lot more often. This is when things really go tits up. People won’t be used to this. They are used to you doing things even when you don’t want to. You will be tempted to give explanations. Realize that no is a complete sentence, and you don’t owe anyone an explanation. You will notice that you often have to say no to the people you felt the most approval from. Approval is addicting, and we will find ourselves doing endless favors for those who give it to us. But, you can’t eat approval for dinner. Approval doesn’t pay the bills.
Flatterers tend to be very good at making us feel good about ourselves and asking us for “favors” in the same sentence. “You are such a good cook. Will you give a dinner party for me and my nine friends?” Yes, some “friends” will fall away, but did you really need that kind of friend? No. (No explanation needed.) This will free up your time to help the people in your life that you really want to help instead of those who are constantly filling your time with their endless requests. Honor yourself and your desires, and everyone will be happier in the end.
When you stop trying to please others, you share more of yourself with others. You won’t care what they think, and you never know when sharing something about yourself will help someone else and what they are going through. Yes, you are allowing yourself to be vulnerable, but this vulnerability greats more authentic connection with others instead of superficial interactions.
Do you want more help learning how not to be a people pleaser?
Do you want help learning about what can help you to be happy in life?
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Great advice. Figuring out who you are and what you want is important for happiness and can often be achieved by stepping out of your comfort zone, and maybe traveling to experience new worlds and ideas. And yes, being open does allow us to make more meaningful connections!