I’M super tuned in to this message, not only because it’s important, but because we all know someone who trips themselves up in this way fairly regularly.
Hell, we’ve probably all done it at some point!
Please, please stop telling everyone what you *think* they want to hear.
I don’t care how much of a people pleaser you are, this habit will hang you in the end!
Whether you’re giving different stories to different peers in an attempt to keep the peace, constantly promising to attend events you don’t really want to go to and then having to create dumb excuses and lay low for a while, or just holding back on having an opinion all the time for fear of not being liked, you need to stop.
You need to audit yourself well enough to have an awareness, so you can catch yourself before it happens, and you need to understand why you do it and heal/work on whatever the issue is.
Otherwise, here’s what happens…
In business: it’s okay at first, until people talk and realise you’re spinning different tales, changing your opinion to suit the circumstances or constantly letting people down with broken promises. Long term, you start to lose credibility and people won’t trust you – or your opinion – any more.
In personal relationships: see above, except the heart’s often involved more and there’s usually increased hurt. Ultimately, all those conflicts you were trying to avoid with your people pleasing just turn into a bigger shitstorm, with you at the centre and your trust in tatters.
Please take this on board… you CANNOT always please everyone at the same time, and you CANNOT always be liked. It’s impossible. And if you try to avoid being disliked by being ultra easy going and never voicing an opinion, people will dislike you for being insipid.
Own your opinions
I don’t know about you, but I’d rather be disliked for having an opinion and passion about something that goes against someone else’s world view than be disliked for being insipid! I’d rather agree to differ and celebrate the differences than keep on changing my skin to suit someone else. I’d rather piss someone off by saying I can’t make / don’t want to go to an event than make attendance promises I won’t keep. I’d rather be authentic and true to my beliefs than insult them by changing with the wind, depending on who I’m talking to.
And, one more, if someone seeks my counsel, I know they won’t thank me in the long run if I tell them what I *assume* they want to hear instead of speaking authentically from the heart.
Whatever your reason is, do the work. Get to know yourself and love yourself enough to not need everyone else to like you. Aim for the point where it’s a bonus if everyone agrees with you/likes you/praises you, not a requirement.
Everyone makes mistakes, but it’s foolish to keep repeating the same ones over and over again.