As adults, it’s important to prioritize our needs, wants, truths, and thoughts. This is healthy! At the same time, it’s normal to want to make others happy — and feel joy, satisfaction, and fulfillment in return. But when does this dynamic turn into people-pleasing?
A "people pleasing" dynamic is not:
This is being considerate. This is living relationally, rather than individualistically. For many of us, this is simply being human and loving well.
When your care for loved ones turns into fear or worry, it can be helpful to examine those feelings. Here are some signs of a people-pleasing dynamic:
We may have learned to please people from the formative relationships in our childhood. But as adults, we’re responsible to disrupt these dynamics and be accountable for our own actions. It’s crucial to distinguish between people-pleasing and just being a caring person. Otherwise, we can feel the need to “fix” some part of ourselves which is really not broken and never was.
People-pleasing is not a sickness or a disease — these are common dynamics that most people will experience at one time or another.
Part of finding our balance in relationships includes experiencing the imbalance, noticing what's no longer working for us, and making shifts as necessary.
If you’re looking for support, Shift has some great therapists that specialize in relationships who can help!
This article was written by Hannah Ciordas during their time at Shift Collab.
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