Angie, the Peacemaker
When I was 16 years old, I had a boyfriend who
would visit me at my Grandma’s house. One night
when he was leaving, he backed into my Grandma’s
new Chevy Cavalier and dented her bumper.
She was very upset and didn’t want to turn it into her
insurance. And he refused to pay her. So what did I do?
I took the money out of my savings and paid it, of course.
I wanted to keep the peace between them, and so I
got in the middle. I played peacekeeper.
Since then, I’ve often adopted this role. I hated conflict,
yelling, hurting someone’s feelings, and so I’ve had a
tendency to take over-responsibility for other people’s
actions and their feelings.
Are We Living a Fake Serenity
And if we are being really honest, most of us think this
behavior and all people-pleasing is good and healthy.
How could keeping the peace be unhealthy?
Isn’t harmony always a good result? But what if it’s a FAKE
serenity…where below the surface seethes resentment
and a feeling of obligation, where we know we’re only
doing something to not “make waves…..”
Does Outer Harmony Justify Inner Turmoil
The question becomes: does outer harmony justify our
inner turmoil? If we believe that our sacrifice of
happiness and well-being is for the good of the family or
community, then perhaps it’s worth it. It becomes a conscious
choice. Our suffering serves a meaningful purpose.
But think about this…. If you do things that truly serve the
good of the larger community or whole, those things
wouldn’t cause you to feel angst or resentment, would they?
Though you may be sad or in pain because of a self-less
decision, you’re still at peace, knowing it’s the right thing
to do for all concerned.
I’m not talking about THAT last scenario. I’m talking about
doing things that leave you feeling resentful and depleted,
all to keep the peace.
The opposite of people pleasing is not wanting conflict,
yelling, or hurting people’s feelings. It’s NOT rationalizing
cantankerous, narcissistic behavior for the purpose of
being your authentic self.
Gently Stand in Your Truth
The opposite of people pleasing, let’s call it Living and
Loving Fully, IS gently and firmly standing in your
truth as a Loving Self-Advocate. It IS speaking up
when you want to safely shut down. It IS expressing
your vulnerable thoughts and feelings.
When you Live and Love Fully, you create a sustainable
peace. It will last because it flows with your essence and
doesn’t rely on willpower.
To Stop People Pleasing Feels Like No More Dieting
It’s sort of like choosing lifelong habits of health that
promote a healthy body and abundance of energy, rather than
dieting, which feels restrictive and hard.
When we people please to keep the peace, it will never
last, because we’re building our relationships on a weak
foundation. People don’t really know the real us.
This sends the subconscious message to those we love,
“I don’t trust you because ultimately I don’t trust ME.”
Create a True Partnership Based on Mutual Respect
Would you like to create a true partnership with your spouse
or lover? Join me for tomorrow afternoon’s masterclass
on how people pleasing shows up in romance.
This will be a live, interactive class in which Morgan Higdon
and I will offer you very practical ideas on how to create the
sort of fulfilling connection you desire with your significant
other. Can’t wait to see you there!