I was a people pleaser and I didn’t even know it. I said yes to everything, even when I wanted to say no. I let people push me into things I wasn’t comfortable with because I didn’t want them to feel uncomfortable by me saying no. I lacked even the slightest boundary and I wasn’t even aware of it. I thought it was normal to attract people that wanted to control me. I thought it was normal to feel like I could never say no to anything without the person hating me. I thought it was normal to hate letting people down to the degree that I did. And I thought it was normal not to know who I really was. I didn’t realize that all of these are signs of people pleasing and a lack of boundaries.
When someone has experienced trauma (even as far back as in the womb), they usually go one of two ways. The first is a people-pleasing complete lack of boundaries type person, and the second is someone who sets boundaries so high that no one can get past them. Sometimes, they do both.
In the past I would literally run myself ragged to please others. My last job nearly sent me into a nervous breakdown simply because I didn’t know how to say no. I was such a people pleaser that I didn’t even see a problem with that! Umm hello? That’s unhealthy.
If you’re anything like me then you might not realize that you don’t have boundaries (seriously, I didn’t know). Here are some warning signs:
- You worry people won’t like you if you have boundaries.
- You find decision making a real challenge.
- You despise letting other people down.
- You feel anxious and guilty if others aren’t happy with you.
- You have no time to do things for yourself because you’re too busy helping others.
- You wonder who you really are because you base your opinion of yourself on what other people think.
- You overshare private details of your life with people you just met leaving you open to hurt & manipulation.
I was all of these and more. Reading through that list was a real wake up call for me. If you resonate with anything I’ve said here then it’s time for you to reclaim your power and stop people pleasing to the point of your own detriment.
Jump into my Solopreneur Sisterhood to learn the skills you need to stop.