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People-pleasers, gather around! (part 1 of 2 parts)

I can’t overlook this topic in my month-long blog discussion of stressful relationships. If you don’t know what a people-pleaser is, you won’t find a dictionary entry at

But in general, here’s what people-pleasers do:

  • take on burdens and responsibilities that are not theirs — as a regular routine, not as a special favor now and then
  • feel guilty for saying “no” to anyone, even when it is inconvenient to say “yes”
  • try hard to make everyone happy even at the risk of their own unhappiness and stress
  • boost everyone’s self-esteem, even at the expense of their own

It’s been nicknamed “the disease of please” by some people because at the heart of it, it’s all about trying to make people like you! You want so much for everyone to think well of you that you go overboard and simply do too much for others.

Now, of course, to some extent we should all be people-pleasers and be nice to one another. But when the driving force is a feeling that you aren’t good enough unless you are “doing, doing, and doing some more” then it’s a pattern that’s gotten in your way!

Tomorrow I’ll give you some tips to combat the people-pleaser the tendency because it keeps you stressed out! It really is not a healthy interaction in relationships because it leads to resentments when the other person simply takes and takes and takes, and expects you to keep on giving.

your happiness guru,


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