3 Unavoidable Truths About Stress and Unhealthy Relationships
Raise your hand if you’re a people pleaser.
If you’re like most people you do things to keep others happy.
Not always because you want to but because you fear what reaction you’ll get if you say no.
It can cause anxiety to a point where you’ll do whatever it takes to keep the peace and prevent friction even if it means dropping everything you are doing in order to do so.
After all, you’re not a selfish person so why should you put yourself first?
You sleep a little easier for it too, right?
You’re the one who responds to everybody else’s problems whilst your own needs are left out in the dark, all alone and starving.
You can’t go on like it.
Here’s the ugly truth.
This people pleasing behaviour is doing wonders for the people around you but absolutely diddly squat for you. It’s causing you unnecessary stress, anxiety and tension in your relationships, whether you consciously realise it or not.
I was a people pleaser for years until these unavoidable truths were staring me in the face:
Truth One – Saying yes all the time does more harm than good
It’s in our nature as human beings to want to help other people. There’s nothing wrong with lending a helping hand or offering a listening ear when others are in need. I’m not advocating a self imposed ban on helping people.
What I am saying, however, is that there’s a difference between wanting to help people and doing things for others because you feel you have to.
When you genuinely want to help someone you show up with enthusiasm and energy. You show up gladly and willingly with no expectation for anything in return.
From the bottom of your heart you’re just glad you can help.
When you help someone because you’re doing it out of fear you’re showing up with gritted teeth and frustration that will gradually grow into bitter resentment. This is because you’d rather be doing something meaningful in your life life. But instead your plans go on hold so you can help someone with theirs.
When you say yes to someone, you are saying no to yourself.
All the while the other person, without realising it, has taking stock of your generosity and willingness to help and will ask you again next time, and the time after that ‘because She helped me before I’m sure She’ll do it again’.
Meanwhile you’re thinking ‘I helped Him last time, I can’t possibly say no this time’.
What a dilemna!
Eventually your level of resentment increases to a point where it’s outwardly visible to the other person. Tension between you bubbles to the surface and the more the other person tries to figure out why you seem ‘off’, you’re getting more anxious because you’re afraid of the reaction you’ll get when you tell them the reason why.
This situation is unhealthy for everyone involved.
Here’s the solution:
Set tight personal boundaries and guard your time better.