Do you have the Disease to Please?


Unable to say no to friends or family? Or are you always making compromises to come across as being nice? You may be suffering from the disease to please. HEALTH finds out why this can be damaging to our well-being and emotional health.

The Profile
The typical people-pleaser is someone who lacks an internal compass to gauge the value of their own actions, explains Linda Tillman, a psychologist at Emory University. “As a result, they spend their lives looking for validation from others.” People-pleasers expend so much energy meeting others’ needs that they lose sight of what they want from life.

10 Ways to Break Out of the People-Pleasing Pattern

1. Recognize and admit that excessive people pleasing is a problem in your life.
2. Make a decision to start expressing your needs to everyone in your life in a clear manner.
3. Practice articulating your needs with someone who is non-threatening.
4. Understand that confrontation need not be a negative thing. Indeed, if handled well, a healthy confrontation can actually lead to better, more honest communication.
5. If you currently gravitate toward friends, bosses, and/ or partners who have controlling personalities, consider befriending people who do not possess these personality traits.
6. Remind yourself that it is perfectly acceptable to disagree with other people. In fact, you will command greater respect from just about everyone you know as soon as you start expressing your honest, heartfelt feelings.
7. Disagreeable or negative feelings don’t always have to be buried in a secret chamber. There is a way to express them in a thoughtful and considerate way.
8. You don’t have to meet the demands and expectations of others if they are unreasonable, unrealistic, or unfair.
9. Do something to please you for a change. 10. Take charge of your life.


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