26 January 2016

People-Pleasers and Co-Dependents

I don't normally repost from other bloggers, but I adore Amy Poehler's Smart Girls site. She has everything from how to choose the perfect dog to how to change a tire. The articles are empowering for both young girls and "old" women (like me) alike. She celebrates the accomplishments of brainiacs, athletes, and artists. And unlike so many negative sites, this one focuses on the positive whenever humanly possible.

Today, Smart Girls shared an article about People Pleasers (posted by Jenna Regan). If you've read just about anything else I've posted, you know that I am a former co-dependent. I spent years trying to help everyone through their crisis. I was the "mother" of several music departments and tried to solve everyone's problems. The trouble was no one ever learned to solve their own problems and new problems kept coming up. So I wasted enormous amounts of time and mental energy trying to make the world perfect. And the world is not perfect.

I personally (my opinion only here) categorize people-pleasers as slow developing co-dependents. I definitely started out life as a people pleaser. At some point everyone needs to learn to stand up for themselves and respect themselves enough not to let people take advantage. There's a difference when you do something nice for a friend when the friend is the one asking/telling you to do it. I didn't figure all this out until I was in my 20s, but then had a tremendous backslide in my 40s. Not that I have it all figured out now, but now I am well aware of my need to say "no" when necessary. No one needs rescuing. And no one needs to be taken care of unless they are an infant or an invalid. Everyone needs to work out their own problems.

It's a really interesting article and definitely has a concrete example of how the mind of a people pleaser works. We all need to teach our children and young adults to stand up and respect themselves, but that doesn't mean you can't do a favor for a friend...


Spread Your Wings!

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