If I think about the person I was a few years back, I would describe myself as someone who always wanted to be liked by people, sought validation from everyone around me to feel better about myself. I used to be someone who’d be very upset if I hear someone talk badly about me, although the person might not be someone important to me. What I just described now is one of the signs of being a people pleaser.
Fast forward to today, I no longer feel the need to keep everyone happy and don’t feel to maintain an image to be liked by everyone. The people who are right for you, understand you and like you just the way you are.
People Pleasing is when a person feels the constant urge to be liked by everyone. They mold themselves according to people they’re with, so they are loved. People pleasers usually deal with low self-esteem because their mind has forced them to link their self-worth with what people think about them. If someone doesn’t like them, they take it personally and berate themselves of not being good enough. When in reality, what people think of you, whether they like you or not, has much more to do with the people themselves than it has to do with you. People pleasers are constantly worrying about fitting into the crowd because standing out might put them in a position where some people won’t like them.
How do you know you’re secretly a people pleaser? What are the common signs to identify someone as a people pleaser?
To answer your question, let’s identify the signs a people pleaser might show.
1. Apologize often
When someone wants to be in the good books of everyone, they try everything they can to have good relations with people. You will see them(or yourself) constantly apologizing even when you’re not the one at fault. You want everyone to be happy and comfortable at the cost of your feelings and comfort.
2. Can’t say no
People pleasers have a hard time saying no for things. You won’t even think twice about accepting to do things for them, no matter how uncomfortable or unwilling you are. As a consequence, you are always occupied with things to do which aren’t even your responsibility in the first place. Often, due to this nature, many people take your undue advantage and use you to get their work done.
3. Agree with everyone
One very common trait is, you won’t put forward an opinion if it differs from everyone else. You will go at great lengths to avoid any disagreement or argument because of your opinion. So you will often find yourself agreeing with everything people say even though you might not feel the same. There’s one thing to not want to have conflict, there’s another thing to suppress your thoughts to avoid disagreement. You feel you will be judged harshly for having a different opinion.
4. Hides their feelings
You don’t open up or talk about how you feel. You will try to be there for everyone and understand everyone’s feelings but will never showcase your feelings. Even when they did something that hurt you, they won’t hear about it from you. You always put up a happy face and do not show any signs of discomfort or sadness. The reason being, the feeling of not burdening everyone by talking about your emotions. Another reason might be that you don’t want anyone else to feel they did something wrong and put them in a position they don’t want to be. You might be hurt and crying from the inside but you won’t say a word.
5. Low self-esteem
People pleasers have a very low self-esteem because they link their worth with the number of people that like them. If you find even one person who doesn’t like you or refuse to hang out with you, you will create multiple scenarios or reasons in your head about what you did wrong. It might not even be about you, but you will blame yourself for it. Such people have a very low opinion about themselves, often joking about yourself which might not be healthy, degrading yourself when in tough situations.
Having this urge to please people all the time might have something to do with your childhood or past events.
Some might be have grown up thinking that they ‘need’ to make everyone happy in order to be happy themselves, some people might have faced rejection in the past that didn’t settle well within them. Codependent past relationships can also be the cause of this type of behavior. The constant need for validation consumes them into always thinking about doing things for others.
If you or anyone you know relate to these signs, you or they might be a people pleaser. It’s not something to be ashamed of, you should be aware of yourself and try to overcome anything that isn’t healthy for you.
If there’s anything I can tell you that could make you understand this is that No one should have the power to decide your worth.
You don’t need to please everyone in order to feel good about yourself. Your self-worth is not connected to people around you, it’s connected to you.
What you think about yourself, matters. If you think so low of yourself, everyone else would too. Similarly, the day you start taking yourself seriously and stop tolerating things that hurt or make you uncomfortable, the people around you will too. Even if someone doesn’t like you, that should be the least of your concerns.
You cannot make everyone happy, so better focus on keeping yourself happy. Speak out if you don’t agree with anything, don’t be afraid of being judged.
Don’t try to be ordinary if you’re not. Shout out your thoughts if you want to. Life is very short to worry about what anyone thinks of you, some might be so consumed in their own thoughts, they won’t take the time to judge you.
Think of yourself, invest in yourself, think about what makes you happy.
Because In the end, that’s all that matters.
If you still having a hard time, consider seeing a professional help you better.
Do you consider yourself as a people-pleaser or were you in the past? How did you change yourself? Comment down below.
Also, Let me know in the comment section below if you want to learn about easy ways to stop being a people pleaser.