When we think about pleasing people what is the first feeling we experience? I tend to feel that sense of “it is the right thing to do”. In my previous blog on “Change your health change how you feel about life” I spoke in detail about my experiences at University where I had been reaching out and saying yes to everything to find that instant gratification of happiness through the vehicle of significance. A similar feeling happens when you think about ‘people pleasing’ but the topic has moved towards the need to be needed and that need of contribution.

Contribution is one of the six human needs and we very much disregard the purpose of this goal, what we will achieve and why on earth we are acting in this way. It seems funny that we tend to carry on even if it causes us to feel negatively about things. So by saying yes to everything I reached a point where I had lost where I was going and in its place the need to fulfil others arose.

Do you find that you have many solid clear goals in your life? This is a question that needs to be asked more. I had no goal or plan so had nothing to say yes to in my life and therefore I felt could never say no.

At that social period in my life I was finding my confidence in meeting new people and gaining new friends without really knowing what I wanted. Through self-exploration I now know that I have the ability to choose whom I befriend. This is more meaningful for both sides of the party. I came to terms with the fact that finding internal validation helped me a lot. I became a person who sort out people with similar values. Like instant gratification, external validation is short-lived and puts a strain on all parts of your life, and your time and energy.

What will this allow you to do? I learnt to be honest for the good of my relationships with my family, friends, and most personal relationship. I became a lot happier, learned that the people I gave my valuable time and support too and didn’t reciprocate this support were not people to have around in your life.

Yes, it will be challenging at the start, just begin with these small steps:

• Say no to the smaller things and you’ll be able to eventually say no to the bigger things. Alter the terms in such a way to enable you to reduce the amount your commitment.
• Learn to be okay with living your own life and having that sense of internal validation – give to people who give back.
• Give space for thought and take ownership before committing. Say, “let me get back to you” or “I’ll check my diary”.
• Finally get your goals straight and clear because then you know why you are saying no to things and yes to your life.

It’s a known fact that you must attend to your own air apparatus and then help those around to you. By acting this way you’ll be able to give others the solid value and meaning, which they need and know your time and energy is well spent.