If you are afraid of experiencing other peoples’ negative responses or emotions, then you will do everything you can to avoid this.This fear will make it hard for you to say NO to someone and you end up doing things you really don’t want to do.You feel compelled to always do as they say and become completely submissive to their needs. This is the core of being a people pleaser.
These fears usually stem from childhood abuse, where you had an overbearing, manipulative parent or parents. If your parents would punish you severely if you didn’t do what they wanted, then you will have been conditioned to be obedient at all times.
Some really important characteristics of being a people pleaser is when you have low self-esteem, are addicted to others’ approval and are always dependent on them for your self-worth and validation. This happens especially when you might have had a narcissistic/psychopathic parent that criticised you negatively all the time and made you feel excessively guilty and shameful when you didn’t do as they said. With extremely self-centered parents, everything is always about their needs and your needs take a back seat. Every time you want to take a step forward and be more independent in your thinking & behaviour, they will always find a way to pull you back and make you feel dependent on them and their way of thinking.(codependent).It is a very strong type of conditioning that happens in abusive homes and as a young child you aren’t able to escape this environment.
Something that is very common when you are people pleaser is always rationalising peoples’ abusive behaviour to the point of always forgiving it. You always make excuses for others’ bad behaviour and say things like ‘Yes my father beat me but at least he provided a roof over my head’ or ‘I know my mother is very manipulative but deep down she has a good heart’.This has a lot to do with ‘toxic bonding’ or stockholm syndrome’, where you are extremely attached to your abuser in a very emotionally damaging way. You aren’t able to accept the reality of how bad something actually is, because it is extremely painful.
Another couple of traits that make someone a people pleaser and also make them more susceptible to emotional abuse is the fact that they may be emotionally immature and have very weak boundaries. They don’t know what is theirs and what is others’. If they grew up in a home with a parent that would constantly go through their things as a teenager, always invade their space whilst at the same time parentifying them and giving them things to do that weren’t their responsibiliy, this has a detrimental effect on how they view others and how they view themselves. They grow up thinking that it is ok for someone to use them, to take advantage of their lack of assertiveness and self-respect.
A very important part of dealing with manipulative or pushy people is developing self- assertiveness. This is something very useful for people that are constantly submissive to others in an unhealthy way. Assertiveness can be taught and this is something I offer in Coaching.
If you think you might need assertiveness training, then please let me know.
When you suffer from a mental illness it is very difficult to feel hopeful when you are really struggling.Every day can be a battle and those negative thoughts can be very hard to silence. Sometimes feelings can overcome you at the most inappropriate times and others may think you are overreacting or being a drama queen. Paying close attention to the people in your life can determine how much your overall mood is affected. If you are an empath or highly sensitive person, you suck in other peoples’ emotions like a sponge. For this reason, you need to have the right kind of people around you or limit your time with those who aren’t enriching to your life.
Think about how the people in your life make you feel 80% of the time? Are they supportive & uplifting? Are they encouraging and empathetic? Do they understand your struggles and offer to help?
This is very important when you have a low tolerance for stressful situations due to a history of toxic child abuse. When complex trauma is part of your life, you need to feed your brain with the things you were starved of as a child. You should provide yourself with unconditional love, acceptance, validation and comfort. It is also important to have friends and family that can also provide these things for you. It might feel unnatural at first and almost feel silly to tell yourself that you are worthy and lovable every day, however this is what your brain needs. It needs a new healthy habit!
Recent studies have shown that victims of childhood abuse and combat veterans actually experience physical changes to the hippocampus, a part of the brain involved in learning and memory, as well as in the handling of stress. The hippocampus also works closely with the medial prefrontal cortex, an area of the brain that regulates our emotional response to fear and stress. PTSD sufferers often have impairments in one or both of these brain regions. Studies of children have found that these impairments can lead to problems with learning and academic achievement.
We know that psychotherapy can really help survivors of severe trauma and also we know that EMDR is very helpful for reducing nightmares, flashbacks & overwhelming emotions.What you do for yourself however is equally important as you are the person that feels, thinks and reacts to your surroundings 24/7! It has been proven that with a mixture of validating affirmations, manageable goal setting, therapy and loving relationships, people can improve the quality of their life dramatically, especially in regards to their overall outlook.
I have met many people who have very strong morals and values and are stuck working in a company that doesn’t reflect these in the slightest.
I have also met people who are lucky enough to actually have a job that reflects their values but in their personal life this isn’t the case.
What is it that stops people from ditching the uncomfortable situations they find themselves in and going for what they really want? Is it timing or circumstance?Or maybe they are just unlucky in their choices. Things start off well and then things take a turn for the worse.
The reason that people struggle with changing something in their life is due to the fear of it being the wrong choice again. I mean if it has already happened once, it can happen again right?
This is very common and when it comes to jobs or relationships it is quite understandable that people worry about not finding the right one.
In cognitive behavioural coaching, the coach can help the coachee self-reflect on their thought processes and find the thoughts that may be blocking them from making a decision. It can also assist with the steps that the coachee needs to take to reach their goal.
As always stated in any coaching session, motivation is key. If the coachee isn’t motivated to make a change then change won’t happen.
When you have set yourself a goal that you want to reach, you might set the actions you want to take (to achieve your goal) too high! By too high I mean that they aren’t achievable due to many factors such as lack of time, lack of motivation, no confidence etc.
It is generally best to suggest that you break down your ultimate goal into smaller chunks.
Create an action plan by listing small realistic steps that you can actually take to achieve your end-goal.
For any newly created site there is always a bit of a delay in the initial interaction. I am currently in Germany but hoping to reach more people via this platform.Since I am already familiar with wordpress and the people on here are very friendly, I decided that the creation of a page here would be ideal. I also have another blog site on here which focuses on trauma and healing from abuse. It is an anonymous blog so please be respectful of this if you know it. I will be creating YouTube videos very soon so bare with me.
Feedback is always wonderful so look forward to hearing from you!