People-Please!

No, I’m not yelling at people. I reaching out to you (and to me) to stop trying to please everyone. It cannot be done no matter how hard you try. It’s all lies, what you may have heard about it being a positive character trait. With the ever-changing attitudes and feelings of people, it’s impossible to please all who are residing in your circle. IMPOSSIBLE. And it’s very bad for your health.

 

How to identify the people-pleasers who hide behind their masks (maybe it’s you):

  • People-pleasers say things that will help them receive favor from other people. The only problem with this is that the real reason for handing out compliments is so that the people-pleaser will feel good about himself; it’s not really about making the person receiving the compliment feel good themselves. The people you’re trying to please might recognize your good deeds, but they might not.
  • People-pleasers are sensitive people who care about making others happy; only it’s at the cost of their own happiness. They say yes when they really want to say no. Ironically, this produces the opposite feelings in the pleaser. They feel frustrated and resentful.
  • People-pleasers seem like wonderful and honest people, but in truth, they are master manipulators. To get the feelings of favor they desire, they arrange situations in order to acquire them. Loyalty is a word to which they are unfamiliar.
  • People-pleasers apologize even when they aren’t at fault. They are ready to take the blame when clearly, the problem has nothing to do with them. The goal is to promote themselves as the fixer.
  • People-pleasers agree with everyone even when they don’t agree. When they do speak up, they feel threatened they will lose the respect of those they’ve tried so hard to manage. It’s better for them if they simply hold their tongue.
  • People-pleasers struggle with authenticity. They don’t really know how they feel about a given subject. People become frustrated with them. I don’t know, you decide, or It doesn’t matter to me, are familiar phrases among people-pleasers.
  • People-pleasers don’t deal well with conflict or arguments. They generally have a fear of anger. If the other person is angry, that means the other person is not happy. This produces inward stress in the people-pleaser and can lead to emotional and even physical health issues.

 

If after reading these bullet points you’ve found that you are among this group, what can you do to get rid of this trait that seems good but that is really born of the devil and is a life-stealer?

  • Confess it to God. It is a sin to please people rather than to please God.
  • Say only things that are true. Give gifts or help to others in ways that are empowered by the Holy Spirit. In other words, consider your motive for showing kindness through words or through actions.
  • Seek to know who God is. The Bible tells us to seek to be like Jesus. He wasn’t a people-pleaser, that’s for sure. How are we to know what He was like except that we study His word? If we are to be like Him, the only perfect human, it would be good to know Him. How can we emulate someone we don’t know?
  • Seek to know who you are in God. Who does He say you are? His opinion of you should be the only thing that matters.
  • Seek the Godly counsel of others. There is support for those of us who want to keep the peace and to keep people happy no matter what the cost to us.

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Suzanne Sommerville

Life Blogger

Christ-follower, daughter, mom, Mimi to 6 grandchildren, teacher, writer, and musician

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