Years ago, I was hosting a retreat.  I was teaching the attendees about decisions and commitment.

Now, we had spent many hours over our three days together getting clarity, setting intention and identifying next steps and big dreams.

I said that in my experience, intention is only the beginning of the movement and the shift.  At some point you have to ground your intention with decisions and commitment and action.

Jeannie, a vibrant woman with wild curly hair and a constant smile, looked up and said, “But wait…”

She began listing all the reasons why it was so hard for her to make clear decisions or to commit to any new direction.  Suddenly, she sighed. She concluded by saying, “Oh, forget it. It’s just hard to run a business well when you’re a people-pleaser.”

There were “amen’s” all around. Many of the women nodded their agreement.  They too knew the pain of being a people-pleaser.

I interrupted the moment of martyrdom.

I asked Jeannie: “Are we really people-pleasers? Or just approval whores?”

It was one of those moments we coaches have occasionally. You know the ones. Where you want to take back what you’ve just blurted out… where your own inner approval-whore wishes you’d be “nice” instead of being a coach.

Which meant that there were two directions this could take:

Jeannie could be livid. Or she could have a great big “Ah-Ha!” moment.

Jeannie’s giant burst of laughter told me it was the latter.  “Oh my God!” she shrieked. “That’s so true!”

Often, we think that we’re being nice girls and oh-so loving when we’re constantly making sure everyone else is okay.

But what we’re really doing is giving away our energy and power to get approval from anyone who will give it to us.  We’re ensuring that we will never have to face the discomfort of having desires or dreams (or preferences!) and acting on them. We want to make sure everyone will like us first.  Then we will be okay, albeit deeply unhappy. And often unsuccessful.

Martha Beck aptly names it “being an approval whore.”

All during the retreat, I’d hear snippets of conversations that went, “Well, you can’t just stop being her friend!”

“You can’t just set a boundary with a client who pays you THAT much!”

“You can’t just not move your father-in-laws’ furniture!”

“You can’t just uninvite your family over for Thanksgiving!”

Well.

Actually.

You can.

You just can’t always do this AND have everyone like you at the same time.

And this is the big trap for an approval whore.  It makes her panic. Who am I without their love and approval?

It’s a question SO worth asking.  And SO worth finding out the answer to.

In Martha Beck’s words:

Anything we do solely to please others, in the absence of either real desire or moral necessity is a way of selling ourselves, our lives, our energy. Ask yourself whether the dose of approval you expect to gain from this behavior is worth losing a piece of the real you. I’d be the last one to judge you if the answer is yes. All I ask is that you be aware that this is prostitution, not virtue.

The impact of this behavior on your business is devastating.  You discover that you’ve set yourself up to make too little money, not charge enough, take on non-ideal clients, not take the risk to create that new program, never invest in yourself or your growth, and make never-ending excuses for why you can’t believe in yourself.

And the truth is that it’s about your refusal to be aware and conscious of this needy side of you. It’s not bad. It’s just an old survival pattern that no longer serves you.  The good news is that you can take action to shift it.

So share your advice with others please. What’s one step you’ve taken to stop the “people pleaser” pattern?

62 COMMENTS ADD A COMMENT
  • Jen

    Very relate-able article! Thank you for publishing this! I have always been criticized for being “too nice” and that I care too much about other’s feelings. I have always resented these criticisms but recently had an a-ha moment about how my being an approval whore (such a succinct term!) was sucking the joy out of my life. I lost all motivation to set goals. I was doing nothing to serve my own wants and needs (except pleasing others). I could not visualize a dream life. So I wrote out everything I want and need – from the seemingly insignificant to the lofty and grandiose. I now take this list with me everywhere I go as a reminder to weigh most decisions with the one question: “does this fit into my wants and needs?” It’s day-by-day, but my happiness and motivation is back!

  • Beverly Efughu

    Great Article. Women Must Decide At Some Point In Their Lives You Need To Say No. Stand In Your No And Mean No. This Could Be Their Moment To Learn To Love Those Individuals Differently. Many Women Have Carried This Burden Many Years Because Of The Role They Were Birth Into. Many First Born Daughters.

  • Ann

    I used to be such a people pleaser! I have learned to set boundaries in that, although we are to be helpful to others, if ‘it’ puts me behind on being productive towards my goals, then I will decline. There are only 24 hours in each day, so using discernment, I am closer to my goals and I am less stressed!!! THANKS Christine!

  • Sara May

    I let go of a toxic friendship after realizing there was a good reason that I had been her only friend.

  • Bethany Lynn

    Wow, what great timing! Just yesterday I realized that I don’t boldly say what I really want to say when I am leading a group for fear of turning someone off, and this morning your message about being an approval whore was in my inbox. Awesome. I had already decided I will communicate my ideas and beliefs clearly, believing that the ideal people will be drawn to me, but THANKS for the reinforcement! Love you, Christine.

  • Jeanine

    Well. Attention and approval whore in recovery mode. It is really hard to not put myself last. But I realize more and more every day what length I go to to please others. And how all my time was spent there instead of doing what I really want to do

  • Linda

    If you buy a house with land, it will have boundaries like a fence or a wall or a clear line around it.
    This is to point out to others the space you own or rent.
    Do you notice people come in and trample all over your prized roses?
    No?
    Well, why the heck would you let that happen to you?

  • Victoria

    Thanks. I would like to read how to stop people pleaser pattern

  • Mary

    After having spent years tying myself in knots to try to please Directors, I set myself three criteria for the coaching, consultancy and freelance work I now do.

    1. Is this work worth doing?
    2. Is this work interesting?
    3. Do I like the people involved?

    My theory was that at least one of those boxes needed ticking. But it’s as if I sent a message out to the universe at that point. Since setting those criteria, the work that has come my way has fulfilled all of them. So, by setting this expectation that the work, and the people involved would please me, that’s what I’ve received. I can free my energies to focus on being of deep service to my clients without craving their approval.

  • Dee

    I ask myself if what I am doing Is Mutually Beneficial
    Meaning there is a benefit for Both Parties. If I can not see or feel a benefit to myself, then I do not move forward with that action.

  • David Jason Williams

    This had me laughing out loud. Mostly because I seriously can relate to being a people pleaser so much so that I now attract other people pleasers and do my best to not people please them and help us both earn more money, focus on our passions, and stop blaming everyone else when the truth is we are the ones who are afraid to stand up for ourselves. Approval Whores?! wow. That hit home. I am getting better though. I had a break through this week when outsourcing video editing.

  • Kelly

    I use this phrase to tell people NO: “I’m not available to do that right now”. How could anyone argue with that statement? And it’s a giant relief to say that to people. The guilt falls away.

  • Diana

    People Pleasers AKA Approval Needed

    One must begin to realize over a lifetime of people pleasing one is giving away their power, their autonomy and their rights to their dreams to people who will gladly take, take, take. Don’t give away your power anymore…

    People pleasing isn’t selfish, but rather comes from a lack of a strong sense of self and wanting to be what others expect from you, not what you expect from yourself, so there is no one at the leadership helm. Letting others expectations lead you this way or that way is truly abandoning one’s leadership post.

    My mother use to say to me when I was in my 30’s that I had good girl handwriting. I asked her what she meant, and she responded you are still shaping your letters so perfectly as if to meet the expectations of your primary and secondary school teachers. She told me to create and find my own style, have fun with the alphabet by playing with it!

  • Diana

    People Pleasers AKA Approval Needed:

    One must begin to realize over a lifetime of people pleasing one is giving away their Power, their Autonomy and their rights to their dreams to people who will gladly take, take, take. Don’t give away your power anymore…

  • JENNIFER EPPERSON

    It took me a long time to figure it out but when decided that I could choose not to be a victim my life completely changed for the better.

    I stopped looking for others to meet my needs and started to take responsibility for me rather than being responsible for and to everyone else.

    I learned to love and trust myself then dug up and disolved as many limiting beliefs as I could find (I still do this at every opportunity), my self-confidence grew immensely.

    Within this process I learned that pleasing others is just another form of selfisheness with a smiley face on it which also makes it manipulative. Crazy right!? But, still very true.

    So many times I chose to please over doing what was best in order to avoid conflict and feel accepted. I see now how I damaged relationships and even avoided vulnerability by pleasing.

    There are people in your life who desparately need to hear “no” so that they can grow. Don’t deny them that. It may be “nice” and easy but, it isn’t kind or loving and it only makes you feel resentful. You make yourself the victim.

    Martha Beck also says there are three kinds of business…yours, God’s and other people’s. The only one you control is yours. Stay in your own and when you feel upset ask yourself “who’s business am I in”? The opinions and feelings of others belong to them, not to you.

    The most loving thing we can do for both ourselves and for others is to stop pleasing. Learn to love and trust yourself. Step into your own power and be true to you.

    When you get to that place life gets really good. I call this kind confidence and it’s how I see the new me. I live every day now in peace and freedom I didn’t even know existed. I no longer struggle to escape the quicksand of being a victim with now way out.

    I wish the same for each and every one of you.

    Thanks Christine! Loved this article. It is so very needed.

    Jennifer

  • Nancy

    I am a Yoga teacher who, what seemed like forever, had make up classes for those who missed a class in a series. Not any more. If they miss a class they miss a class. ♥️ All done in love.

  • Nancy

    I have stopped make up classes for those who miss a class in a series.

  • JENNIFER EPPERSON

    It took me a long time to figure it out but when decided that I could choose not to be a victim my life completely changed for the better.

    I stopped looking for others to meet my needs and started to take responsibility for me rather than being responsible for and to everyone else.

    I learned to love and trust myself then dug up and disolved as many limiting beliefs as I could find (I still do this at every opportunity), my self-confidence grew immensely.

    Within this process I learned that pleasing others is just another form of selfisheness with a smiley face on it which also makes it manipulative. Crazy right!? But, still very true.

    So many times I chose to please over doing what was best in order to avoid conflict and feel accepted. I see now how I damaged relationships and even avoided vulnerability by pleasing.

    There are people in your life who desparately need to hear “no” so that they can grow. Don’t deny them that. It may be “nice” and easy but, it isn’t kind or loving and it only makes you feel resentful. You make yourself the victim.

    Martha Beck also says there are three kinds of business…yours, God’s and other people’s. The only one you control is yours. Stay in your own and when you feel upset ask yourself “who’s business am I in”? The opinions and feelings of others belong to them, not to you.

    The most loving thing we can do for both ourselves and for others is to stop pleasing. Learn to love and trust yourself. Step into your own power and be true to you.

    When you get to that place life gets really good. I call this kind confidence and it’s how I see the new me. I live every day in peace and freedom. I no longer struggle to escape the quicksand of being a victim with now way out.

    I wish the same for each and every one of you.

  • Thuto Mali

    Time to Let Go With pure & Light.

    Put healthy boundaries that promote your self care & work on pleasing & loving and approving of YOURSELF.

    It’s that old saying about love. If you love something let it go, if it comes back to you, it was MEANT to be.

    If only I could take my own advice 😂

  • Patrice

    I am learning to pause and do nothing until I’ve had time to digest what’s happening rather than blurt out my fears. When I give myself the time I need, I know what to say and how to say it. I journal and ask my Inner Wise Self for advice. I take her advice above that of all others.

    We all know what to do, we’re often just too scared to do it. I’m learning to move through this and planning to grow my confidence and business this way. Thanks for your wonderful words of wisdom, Christine!

  • Joh

    I started saying “no” when I couldn’t do something, I had a habit of helping everyone except myself. I also started doing what felt right for me, not what people expected of me. I also now ask for what I need and want. This has given me a sense of empowerment.

  • Judy McLeod

    It is my nature to help others but I have to stay within my boundaries…. Out of balance giving is depleting… Robs me of pursuing my dreams.

    So when I get excited about giving… I go back to my plans, my schedule, my wealth Building strategies making sure I stay on point to keep with balance. It’s OK to say NO….

    I do set up giving my time money resources…anything beyond that is off limits…. I’m working on building something amazing and other folks will not understand….but that’s OK…

  • Sandi Lake

    OMG…did this hit me right where it needed to and at the time I needed to read it…thank you! An approval whore and not a people pleaser, wow!

  • Lauren Klopfenstein

    I committed to teach a class and was really excited about it. The person, whose owns the store where the class was going to be held, promised to do a write up, send emails, promote it at the store, and talk to people about the class. A week ago I went into the store and none of what she promised had happened. There was no signage at all promoting the class, the sample of what I was teaching was in a bad place, nothing had been done and the only people that were signed up for the class was her and her Mom. It would have been easy to just fester over it and not say a word but I thought how does that help either one of us if I want to continue this relationship. So I confronted her in an email. I was straight forward and let her know that I was disappointed that she didn’t follow through with what she said she was going to do. I stayed true to myself and my needs. I want to try this again and I know what I need to do different to make it a success for both of us. And the bonus is that there is not an elephant in the room that I have to work around because I did not open my mouth and share my frustration. I have no hard feelings and am excited to try again.

  • Tessa Dowell

    When I finally decided and accepted that MY well-being was THE most important thing, I began to shift out of “people pleasing” and began a guilt-free life of feeling good and raising my own vibration. It is so freeing and glorious!

  • Kim

    In order to break the people pleasing cycle to need tolearn the following,
    Putting others needs first makes you a puppet with no control of your life and resentful.
    If you do a favor it should be completely without expecting anything in return.
    Saying no to a person means they keep working on solving their problem and it doesn’t become yours.
    Real friends don’t care if you say no, it’s only selfish lazy people who want you to make their life easier that will get mad and try to manipulate you.
    By making your needs a priority and getting them met, you will be able to help the most important people in your life.

  • Beatrice

    “Ah-ha” moment…. Yes, hard working, always giving my best, “of myself”, to others … all at the expense of my own well being or should I say, “Self-Sabotage”. Well, it’s time … to take back the “me” I want to be.

  • Princess People Pleaser

    While I am definitely in the ranks of people pleaser/approval whore (sorry sex workers, but that term works here), there is another side of this issue that stumps me: how to deal with my sister, who has so “mastered” the art of approval whoring, I call her the Queen (sorry to offend any monarchies here). I wish I could just blurt it out the way you did. It is infuriating the lengths she goes to, to put everyone else first and herself last, because she then sulks in self-appointed isolation, seething in anger at the people she has tried do hard to please, at how put upon she is. We do almost nothing together, it is so difficult for us to figure out what to do, even a simple dinner out together. Once we got past the usual, “anything, whatever you want,” she actually said, “Well, I am going to say ‘Mexican food,’ because I think that is what you really want.” Once, she was on a long car ride with our parents, cramped in the tiny backseat for hours, she never enjoyed the destination, she was so sore and in pain for days. She even complained that although Mom had offered to trade seats on a break, apparently she didn’t insist hard enough, and she didn’t offer to move up her seat (well, she did, but my sister said, “no, I want you to be comfortable,” and was in disbelief that Mom took her at her word. And she actually told me this story!) Recently, she offered to host strangers who were going to visit her mother-in-law in her nursing home. She insisted they stay with her, bending to accommodate their strict diet, chauffering them around, waited on them hand and foot, and then was angry they were so demanding of her. She vented for 10 minutes and I squirmed in guilty silence that I could not give her some valuable feedback; my own desire to please reigned over my ability to be authentic. I wouldn’t even have known what to say. I love her and I don’t want her to be mad at me. My family isn’t very good at taking criticism. I don’t want to wait until I am so fed up I blurt out something mean. I sense she feels so needy, I try to let her know how much she means to me, but I wish I could do more. Any ideas?

  • e

    here are the ones i’m sticking with for now. i’m sure i’ll wonder in about a month if i would have been better going with another word:

    1. I’ve changed ORDER to “DIVINE ORDER” not sure why maybe because everything in my life is always in a state of disarray and i’ve been trying to get more organized and this made the word order less scary to know things are lining up as part of a bigger purpose to help remind myself to have order and structure in my life.
    2. CONFIDENCE – every close girlfriend/gay best friend of mine and every guy i’ve ever dated since high school has told me that I need more of this. Maybe I need to start listening to what life has been trying to tell me.
    3. HEALTH/HEALTHY – I debated with this because I’ve really been blessed with good health. What i mean is for it to encompass everything. Healthy relationships. Healthy habits/lifestyle. Healthy living space etc. Which hopefully will bring me even better health and energy
    4. EXPANSION which I have changed to POSITIVE EXPANSION. My first thought when I saw Expansion was ooh that’s good then I was like wait I dont want my expansion in everything (eg my behind!). So I adjusted it. I would love to expand on the business, creativity, writing, friendships, and positive things that have been happening in the last year for me. I guess it’s kind of like growth but this seemed even more Success/Career related and excited me more.

    (if i can throw in love as a general blanket word too that’s something i’d like more of in every area of my mind/body/heart)

  • connie carpenter macko

    Sigh… so wish I had been up to date on my google reader before thanksgiving. Perhaps had I read this, I could have been a wee bit more ready for the fiasco that was our family gathering. Maybe I will call my mother up and explain why taking all the grandchildren into a room away from their parents and berating them and feeding them racist nonsence and hurtful opinions was horribly damaging. maybe I will just stopping whoring myself for her approval (which I NEVER get anyway) and just be able to live with myself at peace for a change!

  • Andrea

    Well, this does hit home. I have called myself a “temple prostitute” for years and I meant exactly what you are describing. The only problem is that I believed the “temple” part of it….that it was really very clever and cool and holy of me to be able to do this. Frankly, I am ready to leave the temple and let the gods find their next prostitute. One foot out the door…..

  • Bettie

    Christine – can you recommend a coach? I’m too busy getting everyone’s approval!!

  • Bettie

    WOW! WOW! WOOOOWWWWOOOOWWWOOOOW!!!
    i think this might be me. All wrapped up in confusion and matrydom, angry, desperately wanting to change my life – but how? when I’m so drained, and busy, making everyone else happy. And my back hurts… tomorrow I”ll think of me. Yes. I get it. I stumbled on this blog today. It was meant to be

  • Vicki in Michigan

    Sometimes it pays to be “the bad one.”

    They already know you are bad, so you can do what needs to be done, even if it is unpopular or makes the matriarch sad or whatever, without fear of disappointing someone………

    “Well, what do you expect, from *her*………….”

  • Ria

    How serendipitous! I just wrote about the exact same thing… that is so easy for us to shelve our needs (or desires or dreams) for everyone else’s. And your question, “Who am I without their love and approval?” cuts right to the heart of the matter, illuminating WHY it is that we do that!!! Thanks, Christine!

    Ria

  • Candace

    Thank you, Christine, for “doing the work” and “walking the path.” We all gain from your insight. Thanks for helping us to remember. Candace

  • Christina

    OK…so when I read this I thought People pleaser-that’s me, no way was I prostituting myself for approval. Then I re-read my response to “How to Say No (Before You get Put on the Spot). Yikes!!! That was a long hard cold look in the mirror.

    And although the word “whore” is a bit icky, so is the word approval junkie or addict, but sometimes in this day and age of trying to not step on anyone’s sensibilities, the truth hurts. Thanks Christine for having the guts to point out the obvious to the sometimes oblivious (just raised that way I guess) and giving us the opportunity to receive a swift kick in the blog and make adjustments if we want.

  • Malea

    Hi, I love this blog, and this is my first time posting. I really get what this post is saying, and as a woman I relate to it in many ways. As a person who writes a great deal for my job, I also understand the impact that using a word like “whore” here, and exactly how you used it to shake up people’s perceptions of themselves, changing from virtuous to, well, not virtuous.

    However, I’m also passionate the rights of women, and am particularly involved in sex worker rights. And every time I stumble on talk of hookers or whores (and thank god no one is here using “pimp” in a way that is positive or glamorous), I find it a bit hurtful towards these women (and men, and those who don’t fit into either of those boxes), who are marginalized and discriminated against in so many ways. I just wonder whether, as thoughtful people, we might want to choose our words somewhat differently, moving away from words like hooker and whore, which are so often used against women, and not just those actually engaging in sex work. Just a thought.

  • Suz

    Wow! Thanks for the dose of reality; sometimes a blunt statement is just what is needed. So this morning I stand up and say, ‘Today I am not for sale’!

  • Monica

    Christine-this is off topic, but is in response to your newsletter regarding that little voice that asks, “Who do you think you are?” Check out this web video.

    http://www.whodoesshethinksheis.net/

  • Mary Miller

    Wow! I am my very own red light district. It never occurred to me that all my bending over backwards to please everyone (wink, wink), was actually about ME finding new and inventive ways of getting approval-love me, love me, love me. Great insight-thanks!

  • Jeanie

    My name is Jeanie and I’m an Approval Whore-aholic. Everything is about what other people will think. I clean the toilet the day before our cleaning lady comes. I even feel the need to justify my morning latte to my husband, in case he thinks I’m being extravagant during tough times. People will think I’m a drama queen if I mention that my mother is back in ICU, critically ill, on the other side of the world. My boss will think I’m slacking off if I work from home. I have to go out to community functions, no matter how much I don’t want to, in case people think I’m a hermit. But then… I try to remind myself that to 95% of the people I encounter every day, my existence and actions are completely irrelevant. People are wrapped up in their own lives. They don’t sit back, pondering the state of Jeanie’s toilet rim.

    Thanks Christine, another great post.

  • Christine Kane

    Thanks everyone! These are great to read, as usual!

    William — if you know what your “yesses” are — then the best way I know how to begin to actually do them is to first intend, then DECIDE – and lay out a plan/schedule for doing them. Hire a coach too! I can’t tell you how much that has helped me in my work.

  • Debra

    Christine, I found your website through Martha Beck’s site and I’m so glad I did. I’ve been reading your old posts the last few days and it’s been very uplifting for me. Thank you. I wasn’t resonating with being a people pleaser, but maybe I’m not as self-aware as I think; one reason I was on Martha’s site is to find a dream for myself, and then I read your insight that we seek approval from others to avoid having dreams of our own. Also, I really enjoy reading everyone’s comments above– thank you all, too!!
    Debra

  • Mindful Mimi

    Christine,
    This is soooo true. I have been chasing approval of every single person in the world for most of my life. Where is the root of that I wonder. I wanted to be liked by everyone. It took a while (and my husband to clarify things) before I realised that you can never reach the stage where you are loved by everyone, nor do you want to. But the real issue was to find out why I was so people pleasing and yearning approval. That took some time. And it took some more to find a way to live without that need.
    I can now say that I have found it. I relapse from time to time and that is fine. As long as the biggest chunk of my life is lead by the real me for the real reasons.
    Thanks for making me realise I have come a long way.
    Mimi

  • Tracy McCabe Stewart

    Guilty! 🙂

    Tracy

  • William

    Am I enabling if I tell you that I approve a lot of this posting? 🙂

    Over the years I’ve gotten better at whoring for approval less, but mainly on the side of saying no to others rather than yes to my long-term needs and plans. Anybody have tips on building up that other side?

  • ChickiePam

    Ha! God I needed that laugh! Thank you so very much! The biggest problem with being an approval whore is that it never ends. You can never do it all, never please everyone, never get it all done, never, never, never. I know, because I’ve tried. I don’t do it as much anymore, thankfully!

    I have worked in my life to live authentically. To discover what I am here to do and to live according to my values and beliefs. For so long I lived the life that my parents lived, or what I though was expected of me. I’m pretty much free from that now. And with a sudden empty nest resulting from my daughter’s passing, I am continuing to evaluate who I am and where I am going.

    I have been successful at some things, and not so successful at others, but find that my regrets are few. The regrets that I do have are over the things that I didn’t do and not over the things that I did and failed at. That knowledge keeps me going.
    Thanks,
    Pam

  • Deb

    I think the line in the film “In Her Shoes” was most eloquent (read: it got my attention):

    It’s where Rose tells her former co-worker she doesn’t want her job back and didn’t love the work, but she had kept doing it because (not a direct quote)”I was afraid that without all those people to please and tasks to complete I would fall apart.”

    It hit me that I did someone’s work for them for the same reason. And all that busy-ness was getting in the way of my own work and my sleep. And on top of it I still wasn’t getting any approval.

    When you’re right, you’re right Christine.

  • Kevin Blake

    As a complete and utter Approval Whore this really resonated with me.
    It also got me thinking, “Do I always do it to get people to think well of me?”
    And while a lot of the time it is, I also think I use it as an excuse to avoid doing those things I most want to do and am most afraid of failing at.

    Thanks for this article Christine.
    Now I can work on not using this as yet another excuse to not try.

  • Wendi Kelly-Life’s Little Inspirations

    Christine,

    I just laughed out loud when I read this! I am that “Other one” that just says no and walks away leaving people standing there with their mouths open. But…then later when I get home I think…gosh, I probably shouldn’t have done that…now they won’t like me…and then the guilt sets in.

    Thanks for giving me permission not to be a whore. 🙂

    P.S. We are still working on getting up to Wisconsin this weekend, it would be a stay over so we have to find someone to feed the dogs, if we can get someone to do that, we will see you there!

  • Connie

    Approval Whore checking in and reporting great progress on setting boundaries and just saying NO! Thanks for the reminder

  • Jannie Funster

    Some one pointed out some years ago I cared too much what people thought, then I went totally the other way and ended up in jail.

    Well, I jest on the jail.

    But where do we draw the line between helping out and being a doormat? This of course ties in with the preemptive no, so if we get good at knowing how to keep our balance and saying No in the first place we may not need to pick up the pieces later.

  • Glad

    I adore Martha Beck! I think I’ve read every book! I’m so happy to see her mentioned here!!

  • sheista

    When I saw “people pleaser” I thought, “that’s me”. Then I read “approvoal whore” and thought, “that is a more accurate description”. This is something I’ve been struggling with.
    And this is the catch for an approval whore. It makes her panic. Who am I without their love and approval? This question puts it into a new perspective.
    Thanks.

  • Emily

    I’ve gotten a LOT better at saying no or doing what is right for me even if others don’t approve. Often time, however, after I do something I think others don’t approve of, I find myself apologizing or making excuses for why I did. (i.e. trying to get so & so’s approval back) I kind of annoy myself when I do that 🙂

    I recently made a move and shift in my life that several people didn’t approve of and I’ve been practicing simply staying true to ME without apologies or excuses. It’s been challenging but I feel much more authentic and centered when I simply do what’s right for me and leave it at that.

  • alina

    It is so wonderful that you keep on sharing your ideas with the rest of the world. Thank you:)))

  • pati

    When will I learn? When I realize the pain of not going along . . . hurts less than the pain of going along.

    Thanks, CK

    • JENNIFER EPPERSON

      Recognize that people pleasing is selfish. Nice isn’t kind, it’s dishonest. When we please we put on a false face and even without conflict that lie keeps us from having real relationships. That realization went a very long way to helping me stop it. Hopefully it helps you too.

      Lots of love and hugs.
      Jennifer