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Ep. 32 – People Pleasers

Are you a people-pleaser? When we people please, we are not living an authentic life. In a marriage, or any relationship, when you want a closer and true relationship it is important to be honest with yourself and with the other person. In this episode, I want to help you think about people-pleasing and where you might be doing this. Knowing why you are people pleasing and how you might be honest in a loving and kind way can open the door to a happier and more authentic life.


Hello, my friend what’s happening. So today I have what I love. It’s a great topic. If I do say so myself, and I’m excited to talk to you about it last week, I spoke with you about when you decide or you’re thinking about leaving your marriage and what that looks like. And most importantly, understanding the reasons behind why you think you want to end your marriage.

For some of you, you probably have some clear reasons why you want to leave or end your marriage. And for others, not so much, you maybe are in a place where you’re thinking about leaving. You’re not sure maybe you’re working on your marriage. You’re in therapy, something like this. Today. I want to speak with you about whether you are staying in your marriage, because you are what I call a people pleaser, but this applies to anything in which you are involved in, in which you are staying.

Or doing something you don’t really want to do because you are a people pleaser. So if you can identify with this or think you might be a people pleaser, all I can say is it’s not good. So let’s get started today on the topic of people pleasers. What if I told you that your divorce could end up being.

Best things that could have happened to you. I’m Doreen, YFA marital and family, lawyer, and certified life coach. I’ve been consulting women for over 25 years. I’ve seen it all. Now. I’m sharing my expertise and my own personal experiences to help you turn a difficult time into your amazing divorce. If you are new to my podcast, I want to back up a minute and explain that I touch on all kinds of subjects about divorce and life coaching and life after divorce and during divorce and tools to get you through to a better, more fulfilling, happier life.

Hence the name of my podcast, your amazing divorce mean that you will learn and grow and move forward to a better happier next chapter of your amazing life. You know, as a practicing divorce attorney, I meet a lot of people who are staying in marriages because they are people pleasers. The first thing I want you to know.

People pleasers are liars. I know this sounds a bit harsh, but I will explain what I mean by this. When you are a people pleaser. And especially if you’re staying in a marriage as a result of being a people pleaser, you may likely be staying in a marriage that you want over because you do not want to hurt someone else.

You are afraid that you will be judged and, or you are trying to make others happy. Over being happy yourself. What I mean by this is that sometimes a person will stay for the sake of others in a marriage that they know they’d rather move on from. And what I want to suggest with this is that you’re not being honest with yourself.

With your spouse, with your children and with anyone else that you’re staying in a marriage for when you want to leave. But again, this can apply to anything in your life in which you are people pleasing. When my kids were in school and mostly I would say this was elementary school, let’s say. For, I’m gonna give you an example.

They were having a bake sale or they needed some parents to assist in the classroom for an event and on, you know what I’m talking about. They would send out an email or stop you on your way from dropping the kids off or picking them up and say something like, Hey, can you help us by baking something for the bake sale?

And here is how my thought process would go when they would ask me that I would be thinking, are you kidding me? Do you see, I am here? In a suit with three kids in tow on my way to court. I’m a lawyer. And you want me to go to the store, come home and bake homemade cookies for a bake sale. Hell no, I don’t have time for that.

I barely have time to cook dinner and do homework and laundry and stuff for my own kids. And you want me to do this? So this is what I’m thinking in my head, you know, but the words that come out are something like, of course, no problem. What do you recommend or want me to bring. Why I did it and why we say yes when we mean no is generally because we want the person to like us to not think badly about us to make them happy over our own.

Happiness and what it took me a long time to learn, but I have learned, and I want you to consider this as well, is that this is not a good way to live your life because it’s not authentic. It doesn’t feel good for you. What happens is that you end up being a version of yourself that isn’t real people like you, for some version of yourself, that ISN.

You, and please let me clarify that there is a level of people pleasing that is done because we love someone like our children or our partner, and because we’re kind and polite and loving people, that is how we can all function in the world. So I think there’s a certain degree of people pleasing that’s fine and needed and right.

But it’s when people pleas. goes past that level that we have to think about and address it’s when you’re going through life or in a marriage, basically lying about who you are in order to keep the peace or get people to somehow like you, that ends up eventually wearing you down. And will I promise eventually turn.

When we are the ones, people pleasing, we are doing it for a reason. We are trying to please other people. So they will think a certain way about us. We have an expectation of a result, but with that, we also likely expect that if we do something or act a certain way, that the person that we are people pleasing should react to our people.

Pleas. In a certain way. You see how it just becomes like this vicious cycle. We may go out of our way to, for example, cook dinner or every night for our partner, even though we don’t want to, but we are doing it to please him. And then we expect that he will in turn, say something nice back, or even do something to reciprocate the act.

That is when it can get challenging, because there is now an expectation that he will do something. And when he doesn’t, that causes more conflict and issues, get it. When you do something for someone that you want to do. you likely wouldn’t be so offended if they didn’t reciprocate the action of kindness.

When you do something instead that you don’t want to do, you are more prone to be. Waiting for anticipating a reciprocal act. Does it make sense? So like cooking dinner when you really don’t want to, you can be honest about it and say something like, listen, we have to eat. And so while I don’t love cooking, I was thinking we might share this task.

Like I do it one night and then you do it the next. Or maybe we have an understanding that you clean up after or whatever. You see the difference here now, there is an understanding and less people pleasing and less expectation, and the relationship is more genuine between them more real, less tension and less expectations.

So going back to my people pleasing and the baked goods, the baked sale, when I finally understood people pleasing and they would ask me to bring something in, I would say, listen, I won’t do that, but could contribute in some other way. How about I write a donation for someone to get some items or towards whatever else you might need, would that work for.

And please know, notice, please, please notice that. I didn’t say it with an excuse, like, listen, I don’t have much time. I’m working full time. I have three kids at home and on you don’t have to give a reason because there is no need to explain yourself when you are being real and authentic. You just need to be kindly.

And with love honest in relationships, some of us have a tendency, especially in the beginning to people please, because we are trying to win them over. And so if you are exploring new relationships, maybe you’re post divorce and you’re thinking about dating again. I suggest that you’d be aware of this.

Are you being genuine as to who you are or are you acting in a phony. To get someone to see how amazing you are and to like you, that never works because you then get into the relationship down the line and they’re like, wait, who are you? I have a client right now who is past her divorce, I think, uh, about six months or so.

And she started dating and she was doing all these things for these guys, like even buying them presents. And I know she’s struggling herself financially. And I was like, why are you doing this? I had to call her out on it because I wanted her to answer the question for herself. This person you are dating should know and see the real you, you can be true and authentic kind and loving without putting on errors or pretending to be something or someone that you’re not, and also hurting.

She did not even realize that she was doing this. And when we dug a little deeper, she realized that she did this in her past relationships, including with her ex-husband. It was one of those aha moments where she was like, wait a second. I think when I’ve been in romantic relationships, I always try to go the extra mile to make this person like me doing things that typically.

Maybe I didn’t even wanna do or shouldn’t do, but did, in order to try to get them to really be into me, I need to work on that. You see people pleasing generally comes from a place of insecurity. So think about that for a moment. Is it coming from a place of insecurity or is it coming from a place of love?

And you know, if it’s coming from a place of love because you don’t expect anything in return, like for me, I think about this with my kids, even now as they are adults, I do things for them from a place of love. And when I do things I do so without expect. But this brings up one thing for me, you know, when the kids were little living in Florida, we always were around the beach and we had a pool and they would be like, mommy, come in the water with us.

And I was like, Nope, I just did my hair. And Nope, I’m not. That kind of mom. So I would just tell them, sorry, but no, but I am happy to do something with you after you take your swim and I’ll be right here watching you and loving you from over here on my lounge chair, reading my book and you all have fun.

I know it’s a small thing, but it was just something that I really didn’t want to do at the time. And so I didn’t, and I let them know with love and kindness. Just an example for you. to hopefully have you understand about people pleasing? Now, let me turn it back to divorce for a minute. Like I said earlier on some people are staying in marriages that they want out because they don’t want to hurt their spouse, their children, and or maybe even because their family or church or whomever will disapprove of the divorce.

Eventually. I just want you to consider that that will drain the life out of. And could likely implode on your marriage where you could just build up all this hostility and anger because you are not being genuine. I get that communicating truthfully is many times uncomfortable, but it’s really needed in a kind and caring way to create true, authentic relationships.

You can communicate with kindness in your relationships. Think about. You probably wouldn’t want someone to stay with you if they wanted out and were only staying in the relationship not to hurt you or because they were concerned about what others would think of them. And as for children, let me just suggest what are we teaching them?

If we live a phony life in front of them, if we don’t set clear boundaries and act in ways that aren’t genuine. Listen, kids are little sponges and they get and learn so much from what we do like with my ex Sam and I, I was like, I can stay in the marriage or I can be authentic and loving to them. Me to him and understand that we can still be a family and raise children together, but that he and I are no longer compatible moving forward.

That our relationship in that way, as a marriage is complete and that we have different life plans and vibes and that’s okay. rather than just staying and sticking it out in a fake or an unauthentic way that would serve no one, including our children. Who would not learn and see what a real and true relationship looks like.

Look, that is deep work. If you’re considering leaving your marriage. Like I did, when I was married to Sam, it’s just, we went our different ways. The marriage had basically then beautiful up to then, but moving forward where we were in our life, we both understood that it was time to move. That there wasn’t a future there, but that we could still be loving co-parents and work together for the benefit of our three girls.

And we did big decision though, and something that you have to really work on and work through. To get there. And when you decide not to people, please, and to be authentic, but in a loving and kind way with people, some people will think you’re a jerk. no matter how loving and kind you try to be. Some people likely have thoughts about me even doing this episode, but I’m at peace with knowing that’s okay.

To me, it’s more important to let you know. And convey these thoughts. So for you, people pleasers out there, which is me too. Look at what is the truth in the situation? Why are you doing what you’re doing? Are you considering divorce? Are you going through a divorce or post divorce? And as you go through this life, I hope you consider where you are people pleasing, which means you’re doing something to try and get a result, to try and get someone to think a certain way about you.

Where in your life are you being a people pleaser, and you will know that you are being a people please. Over pleasing what you want for your life, because of the way it makes you feel because of what you might expect in return for doing or acting a certain way. So my friends for today, think about where you might be a people pleaser in your life being authentic and kind to yourself.

Being honest with the other person builds more authentic relationships, real relationships that can stand the test of time and grow together as opposed to having all this built up resentment. Something to think about. Right. All right. My friends, I hope this was helpful. I know this is going to be a big one with many of you, because I know when I coach people on this, they are so appreciative of me giving them permission to not be a people pleaser.

So I’ll be excited to hear what you think about this one.

And until next time, have an amazing rest of the day. And remember, yes, you can buy everybody. Thanks so much for listening for tips, updates, and expert advice. Be sure to visit your amazing And remember my friends. Yes, you can have an amazing life after divorce. See you. Views expressed by the participants of this program are their own and do not represent the views of nor are they endorsed by YFA family law group or your divorce law center, their respective officers, directors, employees, agents, or representatives.

The content of your amazing divorce is for entertainment and educational purposes. Only none of the content on your amazing divorce should be considered legal advice, nor does anything here in create an attorney, client relationship as always consult a lawyer for your legal questions.

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