Why You Need to Stop Being a People-Pleaser

Do you put everyone before yourself? Is saying yes a habit, more than a true intention? If

more people helped others, the world would be a better place. However, psychologist

Susan Newman says it can be dangerous to be a constant people-pleaser.

This behavior can lead to you not taking care of your personal obligations, developing

resentment for those around you, and eventually feeling under-appreciated and taken

advantage of. Newman is the author of The Book of No: 250 Ways to Say and Mean It,

and Stop People-Pleasing Forever. She points to the following reasons why you should

not let helping others get out of hand.

Your Relationships Can Suffer

You probably have a desire to help everyone, and make everyone happy, if you can’t say

no. Sometimes though, trying to please everyone means leaving some people out. You

have already agreed to so many obligations there is not enough time left on your

schedule. Also, when you take on too many commitments, the quality of your efforts can

suffer. This means your personal and business relationships can be damaged as a


You Begin to Resent Yourself

A lot of “yes men” and women do not like that part of their personality. They realize that

they are stress-filled because they are constantly trying to keep everyone around them

happy. They see their own obligations taking a backseat, while the people they do favors

for advance in business and in their personal lives. This can cause you to resent

yourself, as you recognize your people-pleasing personality is pleasing everyone but


You Are Hurting Those You Care About

If you do everything for your friends, family members and coworkers, they never

experience growth. You limit their ability to take on new tasks successfully when you

can’t help them, because they may not know what to do on their own. Even if you see

someone you care about struggling in a particular endeavor, sometimes it’s best to let

them learn the process themselves, as this develops a new skill and an improved sense

of self-esteem.

You Might Be Wrong

Is your every behavior dictated on what you think will please someone else? This is the

case with a lot of people-pleasers. They try to perceive what will make others happy, and

then act accordingly, even if it is detrimental to their own situation. Remember, you are

not a mind reader. Trying to assume what will keep everyone happy could lead to the

opposite result.

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