“Love yourself first and everything else falls into line” – Lucille Ball
“Okay…..So it’s enough, don’t you think?” I said to myself one fine day. “All the people pleasing, seeking people’s approval, living up to the expectations of others…….it’s enough. I mean, let’s get real here. How has all or any of this helped you?” I continued to gently chide myself
Trust me, it did me no good. I am my own person and the boss of me. I love me for me and I am absolutely beautiful, amazing and adorable. I look into the mirror and I see me…I see myself for who I really am and I am filled with gratitude to God for the gift of who I am. All of this I came to realize one beautiful day when I suddenly felt tired of everything.
“Enough!” I said to me, “It ends now”. So I took to my BBM and updated my status, “There are some ties that just need to be severed. #selflovemodeactivated”.Doing that made it seem more real because that was no longer me trying to convince myself but acting on it. That update made me feel I no longer give a hoot about what others thought of me and truthfully, I didn’t and don’t.
No more kissing up to people’s behind or doting unnecessarily on them or waiting for their approval to live my life. Uh Uh! I have had enough of that. Yes, I am child-like. Yes, I love cartoons. Yes, I am reserved. Yes, I could be sometimes weird but all of this put together makes me a super fun and awesome me. There is no one like me on this earth and there will never be.
I need to be me and leave my marks on the sands of time. I need to rise up to my own expectations and live up to my potentials. I am gifted and talented in more ways than one.
I have so much to offer and it’s high time I started living this happy life. Now, you may think me conceited, right? Not at all, dearie. I am just done with all of it and you should be too.
Why waste precious time been a people pleaser? Someone once said, “There comes a point when you have to realize you’ll never be good enough for some people. The question is, is that your problem or theirs?” It never ends…the people pleasing I mean.
No matter how much you try to be the best of you for someone else, they are just never satisfied. So why bother? Sometimes, people are just “unpleasable”, if I may coin out such a word.
Life is way too short to waste on frivolities. Let people like and love you for you and that is it. You don’t have to pretend to be what you are not just because you want to blend in and fit in with the crowd. No! Be you.
Anne Hathaway said, “There is something very addictive about people pleasing. It is a thought pattern and a habit that feels really, really good until it becomes desperate”. At some point, you just lose the originality of you; you lose a sense of who you are all because you have tried so hard to be who you are not with the aim of blending in.
Sweetheart, just take a good look at yourself in the mirror. You are amazing. You are incredible. You are beautiful. You are enchanting. You are breathtaking. You are dazzling. YOU ARE YOU.
For you to genuinely love others, you just have to love yourself first. You can’t give what you do not have. Even the good book tells us to “Love our neighbours as ourselves”. If you do not love yourself, how do you intend to love others? “Charity begins at home”, so the saying goes.
So, true love begins with you. Play the lead role in the movie of your life and do not be a side character or an understudy. It is your life for crying out loud. You should be the star in it.
There is a great difference between having a low self-esteem and modesty. Modesty enables you to see you for who you are whilst appreciating the possibility of you enhancing your strengths. Low self- esteem is all about downsizing your potentials, capitalizing on your weaknesses and seeing yourself as a no good. Don’t delude yourself into thinking you are modest when in actual sense, you are ridden with low self-esteem.
No matter what you do or how much of yourself you give out, people are still entitled to their own opinions. They would still be judgmental, so why stress it? You just have to realize that whatever others think of you, are not facts but just their view of you. What really matters is what you think of yourself.
Live life to impress yourself and not to impress others. To be candid, you don’t even get or feel any satisfaction in becoming someone you are not just because the world wants you to be like that. The truest joy and greatest feeling of happiness comes from being you and finding people who love and accept you for that. You save yourself so much stress and headache when you are just you instead of trying your hardest to fit into where you do not belong.
Remember, a round peg can never fit into a square hole. Just like everyone else, you have a right to refuse other people if it isn’t convenient for you. You can’t say “Yes” to others while saying “No” to yourself.
How long are you going to do that for? You risk turning into a bitter and insufferable shrew in the long run because one day you realize you just can’t anymore. You would hate yourself for trying to suck up to others in the first place and you would detest others because of how you were with them.
You have a mind of your own and a right to your own opinions and decisions too. You have a right to life ergo you have a right to be yourself.
Don’t be the “go-to” person whom others approach to get information about the “cool” friends in your circle. Be a “cool” friend so others can ask about you. Now, you can only be cool if you are just yourself and you thrive in your forte…..by that I mean feel comfortable in your own skin.
How can you justify been the “manageable” friend among your friends or surrounding yourself with fake friends so you can feel like a socialite? You are not a doormat neither are you a schmuck.
Reinvent yourself. Rebrand yourself. Build your self-confidence. It’s a whole new beginning. It’s a whole new you. If you are uncomfortable with your position in life or in the social hierarchy, get your behind up, shove off the pity cloak and go do something about it. It’s not too late to start over.
You are full of potentials and you can do this. You don’t need the validation of others to feel good about yourself. You don’t need the approval of others to feel confident about yourself. You are incredible and smart and don’t need to worry how others see you. The important thing is how you see yourself.
Stop feeling it is your responsibility to make others happy. You can’t make everyone happy. Remember that you only have control over your emotions, feelings and reactions and not over others. They would be happy if they choose to be happy regardless of whether you had anything to do with it or not.
It is your responsibility to make you happy. If you are happy, you would better be able to spread true love and sunshine to others as against feigning happiness and dying on the inside.
Do not think that having the habit of been a people pleaser makes you important or feel like you are contributing to world peace or the lives of others. It’s very okay to say “no” too, you know. It doesn’t make you uncaring or egocentric and it doesn’t even mean your friends or family will dislike you.
It’s just you acknowledging the fact that what is been asked of you is not convenient and tendering a simple “I am sorry” shows your polite decline to their request.
One significant fact someone pointed out is that “people don’t think about you as much as you think”. Most times, after you say “no”, people are busy racking their brain searching for the next help stop and not dwelling on your refusal let alone take offence at you because they too won’t hesitate to say “no” to others when it is not convenient for them to help also.
Come to think of it, if they do take offence, then they aren’t even worth pleasing. Disconnect yourself from such negative energy. True and caring friends understand the need for you to take care of yourself and your own needs too.
People pleasing is a load of stress and can put a tremendous amount of pressure on you. It can cause depression and anxiety because now you are over-committed, taking on so much more than you can handle that it begins to overwhelm you. Why choose to cause yourself so many hassles? Is it really worth it?
I mean, wouldn’t it just be way easier to be yourself and let people love and accept you for you? Depression and anxiety are some symptoms of mental stress which are not easy to tackle. It wouldn’t be fair to put yourself through this unnecessary duress. Think about it.
Have clear communication skills. Give a firm “yes” when you mean it and a firm “no” when you mean it. Do not say yes to something while your body, heart and soul screams a big “no” within you. I mean who are we kidding here?
You really don’t want to say yes to something you don’t want to do just so you can make others happy and put a smile on their face while you feel disgruntled, do you? That is you really disrespecting yourself. You deserve as much love, happiness and respect just as much as you are trying to give to the other person. You do neither yourself nor the world any good when you look down on you.
Saying “no” gives you a firm stand and sends an indirect message that you cannot be manipulated. Do not try to defend the “no” you give to others. It only opens room for negotiations and chances are you may give in to the persuasive argument of others and then you find yourself doing something that doesn’t make you happy or that frustrates you. Say “no” in a polite way that feels good to you. For example, you could say, “I would love to help but unfortunately, I wouldn’t be able to”. Stop there. Do not defend it.
Don’t be a pushover. Being a people pleaser makes you vulnerable to manipulation and abuse. It gives people room to take advantage of you and that is totally unacceptable. Let people see your true worth and potential and value you for it.
This can only happen when you break free of the expectations of others and give yourself room to thrive. Trust me, the world would better have the best of you contributing positively to its growth than an overly indulgent you who have no stance or mind of his/her own.
Show respect for yourself and don’t go over your boundaries. It’s one thing to help someone and be happy doing it and it’s a totally different ball game to “help” someone grudgingly with feelings of frustrations welling up inside you.
If you ask me, that is no help at all in fact, it is called “eye service” so that everyone says you are good and always helpful. If you can truly help, do it happily but if you can’t, then say so explicitly.
Helping people is a good and noble gesture but only when you do it right i.e. doing it because you want to and not because you feel you “have to”. Someone did say, “The greatest acts of kindness are those done by choice not out of fear or guilt”.
Set your priorities straight. You don’t have to feel beat or exhausted from putting the needs of others before your own. You also deserve care as much as you try to give others. Learn to feel good about yourself.
Do something you want not because others want it. Do something for you irrespective of what others think. Don’t compromise your values and personal ethics all in the name of pleasing others. Always voice out your opinions. Remember, “If you stand for nothing, you fall for anything”.
Be assertive. It is good to value other people’s opinion as they are – just opinions but ours is the determining factor – what we choose to do. Be the best of you first for yourself and then the world at large because neither you nor anyone would gain anything from your low self-esteem or from you belittling yourself.
My friend, Ehi Ade-Mabo wrote, “It is not “humble” to brush yourself aside….I know your light scares you but it really isn’t noble to talk down on yourself because you are trying to “level” with folks…..it’s not cool. You don’t need to be boastful, arrogant or esteem yourself more highly than another but you should think highly of yourself. Even Jesus thinks you are worth dying for. You are VIP.”
She couldn’t have said it any better. You are so much more than you realize. Just like the ocean, you are pretty on the surface but a lot more beauty dwells in the depths of you. You are an absolute wonder. You are awesome.
You are remarkable. Be the amazing you that you were born to be. That in no way connotes pride. It is about understanding….understanding yourself and what is important to you so you can be the best of you.
Do not always feel guilty or bad whenever you turn down the requests of others. It is sometimes misplaced guilt. Say to yourself, “I deserve to have this”, “I deserve some alone time”, “I made the right decision”.
Wouldn’t you rather spend some quality time developing yourself or even resting rather than gossiping with a so-called friend all because you want to be in his/her good graces? Now, my friend, how does the gossip help you?
In conclusion, the fact remains that not everyone is going to like you same way you do not like everyone and its okay. Wanting to please everyone is a desire from a place of low self-esteem.
Yes, you feel good and like yourself more when other people like you and when they don’t, you don’t think so highly of yourself anymore. That is because your happiness is still dependent on what others think.
It’s only your opinion of you that really matters. Love yourself more and appreciate yourself better and you wouldn’t care a wink what others think about you.
I really would love to read your comments on this. How did you overcome being a people-pleaser? How did great self-worth or self-esteem help you? In what ways have you benefited from being a new you living a happy life and not one expected of you? Kindly leave your comments in the box below.