How to Stop People-Pleasing and Attract a Soul Tribe That Will ALWAYS Love the REAL You
A thought that I had while I was in bed this morning was, “I don’t have to be a victim in order to be worthy of love.”
I was never flat-out told that I had to be that way, but it was implied. I’d been told that my directness was intimidating, although I am always well-mannered. And I’d been told that my independence and strength were “too much” by people who I now realize couldn’t possibly carry the load of taking care of another person, so, what the hell did I listen to them for anyway? And I even dated a couple of guys who said I “made them feel dumb” whenever I found a solution to problems they couldn’t figure out.
Unfortunately, the person I was during those times felt guilty and shrunk as a result thinking that my intelligence and “too muchness” were offensive and made me unlovable.
Really, I was just a broken little girl inside who was willing to dumb herself down in order to be accepted because I didn’t know that there was another way.
I am enough. I’m not “too much” and I’m not “too little.” I’m perfectly enough and you are too.
When I look at my life now, I’m surrounded by people who love every part of me. They’ve been my strength when I couldn’t be strong for myself, like when my grandfather passed last summer and they’re my biggest cheerleaders when I make boss moves like when I first established my business as an LLC or when I landed my first paid coaching client. My friends and boyfriend celebrate me, tell me they’re proud, and remind me that I am powerful, whether I’m feeling that way or not.
Let’s take a second to return to the thought I started my day with: “I don’t have to be a victim in order to be worthy of love.” This means that you don’t have to be uncomfortable, hide who you truly are, change yourself, or settle in order to have people in your life who like, love, and accept you.
Keep reading to find out HOW!
Step One: Set Boundaries with the Other People in Your Life
You’ve gotta fall in love with who you are and stop accepting people into your inner circle who don’t jive with it, no matter how lonely you may get. If loneliness arises, and it likely will, those dark moments will lead you to support, unconditional love, and an ally who will never ever leave your side. It’s you, you’re your own ride-or-die ally!
So, commit to loving yourself enough to stop people who drain your energy, stress you out, and hurt more than they help.
Step Two: Set Boundaries with Yourself
You have to take responsibility for your emotions and thoughts, your healing journey, and your life as a whole. You are the one and only person who is in the driver’s seat, so choose the route you take like your life depends on it because it does.
Trust me when I say that I understand this process is scary, but if you’re serious about making changes, you have to be willing to sit with your fears and uncertainty while you work things out. None of these uncomfortable emotions are permanent. And as difficult as it can seem while you’re in the thick of it, don’t give up on yourself.
Give yourself permission to be happy and set up rules that you must follow in order to achieve the joy you deserve.
Step Three: Own Your Emotions
Remember when I mentioned the ex who said that my intelligence made him “feel dumb?” He was projecting his insecurities on me. It wasn’t fair and it wasn’t okay. I took the bait and shrunk in response because my own feelings of unworthiness told me that I had to sacrifice myself in order to receive love and acceptance. That wasn’t okay to do either.
You are in charge of the way you feel. There’s no such thing as someone else making you feel any particular type of way, no one is born with that power. People only have access to the power you give them and since you’re in control, you can choose to take it back at any time.
The next time you have a thought like “He makes me feel unlovable.” notice that you’re giving away power and control of your emotions. This puts you in the victim’s seat and eliminates all other possibilities of ways that you can feel lovable and valued.
Instead, accept that the “He” in this situation is too blind to see how amazing you are. “He” is far too narrow-minded to grasp your specialness. But since you’ve committed to loving yourself enough to set yourself free from relationships that aren’t serving you well, you know that “He” isn’t worth your energy or time.
Want my tips on building a strong foundation of self-love? Read this next: "9 Shortcuts to Starting a Solid Radical Self-Love Practice That Will Last a Lifetime"
Step Four: LIVE This Mantra: “I Choose to Empower My Damn Self”
Healthy partnerships are magical and I am in no way telling you not to have that goal. But before you can attract healthy, supportive relationships (romantic and platonic) you have to overcome the beliefs and behaviors that attracted you to crappy relationships in the first place.
Knowing your worth and refusing to settle after negative experiences like heartache, abuse, people-pleasing, and codependency can take some work, but it isn’t impossible–I’m living proof of that!
When you stand in your powerful self-love energy, you will attract people into your life who always want the best for you, but this starts with YOU choosing YOU.
Journal Prompts for Building Self-Love and Self-Acceptance
Journaling is part of my daily morning routine and it was extremely powerful for building self-love and self-acceptance while healing from childhood abuse trauma and people-pleasing.
Use these journal prompts to pinpoint your blocks and break through them!
- List the things that you’ve been convinced are “wrong” with you. What are your earliest memories of believing that these things are true?
- People often project their own fears and insecurities onto others as a defense mechanism or a misguided way of protecting themselves. Write about the root issues that may have caused these opinions of you to develop in yourself and the minds of others (bully, abuser, parent, etc.)
- How are these “flaws” of yours truly your unique strengths?
- How can you accept your “wrongness” with self-love and an open heart?
- What can you do today to celebrate your "wrongness?"
Your People Are Out There Waiting for You to Show Yourself!
Please don’t give up on this journey. Let me reiterate that developing and maintaining deep, healthy friendships was extremely difficult for me when I was still trapped in my people-pleasing behaviors. I played small, hid my opinions and goals, and only displayed “acceptable” parts of my personality because I didn't want to be disliked or judged since I didn't think "the real me" was good enough.
Now, I'm fully open and vulnerable with my friends, whether we agree or not. And our differences help us grow and celebrate each other's unique gifts in the most empowering ways.
I'm so grateful for my badass soul sisters and loving partner who I would never have met and connected with if I hadn't made my healing journey my number-one priority when I did.
People-pleasing a lonely game, but you don't have to play it forever. I created The Be Your Own Hero Method, a program that helps women who are stuck in people-pleasing and self-sabotaging patterns break free and live life on their own terms, whether that means starting a business or wearing the red lipstick and mini dress they never thought they had permission to wear! Want to learn how I can help you attract your soul tribe and say what you really mean, even when others judge? Let's meet for a free intro chat! Just click here to access my calendar!