There is nothing better than the person who is always helping out. But if that person is you and you are the only one who is helping out then it’s really not so great after all. Many of us have a not so hidden “people pleaser” inside of us that craves approval, attention or both, especially from people in authority.
This probably stems back to our childhood when we sought to get the nod of approval from a demanding, if not difficult, parent. We continue with these patterns through our friendships and into our relationships and working careers and while it sometimes achieves the desired result, more often than not, it also feels like we are being used.
Here is a little test, courtesy of St. Louiswriter Tamiko Cuellar at http://www.examiner.com/x-25339-St-Louis-Evangelical-Examiner
How do you know if you are being used?
- You find it hard to say no.
- You feel obligated to do what people ask you to do.
- You do things just to please other people.
- You constantly seek others’ approval of you.
- You let people guilt you into doing things that you really don’t want to do.
- You are always there for people but have no one to depend on when you are in need.
- You feel like doing things for people will secure their place in your life.
- You only feel like you are worth something when you are rescuing someone.
- You find yourself complaining that you give too much but keep doing it anyway.
10. People often tell you that you are being used or are “too nice”.
If you answered Yes to more than one of these questions you may be a “people pleaser”.
If you answered Yes to 3 or more of these questions you are definitely a “people pleaser”.
So what can you do about it? Lots. But only if you are willing to change your behaviors, go through your fears, and stand up strong for yourself.
See my post later this week for more suggestions about how to stop being a “people pleaser” and to start learning to please another very important person…. You.
Mike Martin is a freelance writer and consultant specializing in workplace wellness and conflict resolution. He is the author of “Change the Things You Can” (Dealing with Difficult People). For more information about Mike please visit: