I had a conversation with someone a few days ago and I truly got a mirror image of how I used to behave when I was actively participating in my people pleasing behaviors.
I got to measure how far I have grown as a result of this interaction.
It certainly DOES NOT mean I NEVER do this anymore. Every once in a while something will happen, I react to the situation and fall prey to my own people pleasing tendencies.
Here is what I mean by people pleasing, in this instance:
~Based on how I THINK you perceive me, I will say whatever I have to say in order to have you like me.
~I have no sense of self, so I must make you like me so I feel okay with me.
~I will say ANYTHING to keep the peace between us.
There are many ways this people pleasing behavior can show up in our lives. This is one of them.
During this conversation with them, I witnessed the vascillation within the story. One sentence was about what happened and why it happened the way it did. Then, they’d realize how I might have interpreted what they said and change it to be a way they thought would make me feel more comfortable.
This happened several times within this one conversation. It was amazing to see it from the perspective of how I used to behave in my life every single day. Today, I don’t actually live in that space.
I reflected on this conversation and saw how I have lived most of my life. I wasn’t honest because I didn’t know how to be. I was too busy attempting to make sure you still liked me, so I’d change the story based on how I THOUGHT you perceived what I was saying. The crazy part was I couldn’t see I’d changed it mid stream, even though I’d do it right smack in the middle of the sentence.
I was so busy in my head trying to figure out what you were thinking of me based on what I was saying that I was NOT PRESENT to the moment, nor was I truly listening to what you were saying. I was too busy figuring out the next thing to say to stay in your good graces.
THIS WAS EXHAUSTING!!!
The next time we speak now I must remember what BS I told you which time, so I can continue that vein of making sure you still liked me based on the story of that day.
Endless cycles of exhaustion and running on empty. I didn’t know any other way to do it then.
One of the first things you can do on this journey is learn to listen.
Actively listen, fully present and without formulating a response.
When we listen fully present, it creates a space for others to enter and share who they are with you.
Rather than share an opinion, ask more questions. Get curious and ask more about them.
This will keep you out of the people pleasing for a moment and you’ll discover more about them.
This is one solution to go deeper into your journey or simply begin.
Are you a people pleaser?
How does it show up in your world?
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