People-Pleaser – Learning to set Boundaries

Hi Brooke,

October is my first month of Scholars and it’s been an absolutely privilege to be surrounded by like-minded people who are interested in increasing their awareness in an effort to serve themselves. What really pushed me into action was, I’ve been listening to your podcast for about 1 year and a half and I decided NOW is the best time to start working toward the live the life that I want.

Something I’ve been focused on recently is leaning how to set boundaries. I LOVE your podcast about this and I recognize I’ve been a people-pleaser since day 1! I certainly catch myself getting, as you explain, “weird” in trying to keep others happy around me and in association with me……I dislike this about myself and really want to understand it better.

I have an example. I was recently visiting home and met up with some friends I still keep in touch with from high school who all live in the same area. One of their parents’ are going through a hard time with health issues after health issues and has been in the hospital for weeks now. That friend, let’s say, Sally, has always been a “controller”, specifically, she’s constantly trying to make plans (I was in the area for birthday plans she made for herself) she’s like this for all our birthdays, making plans and coordinating events after events. No sooner did I get back home (Wednesday), she texted me about meeting up that weekend since she’d be in the area. Additionally, she message our group thread looking for us to volunteer next time I’m in the area next. I told her I would be happy to volunteer with everyone next time I was home and that this weekend wouldn’t work since I want to spend sometime with my boyfriend since I was just gone for a week. She responded “gotcha”, wouldn’t take no for an answer and that she’d text me that day to keep in touch for us to meet up…..

Here’s my currently thinking:
This all very well intended planning that is keeping me in touch with all of them, who I love but I catch myself feeling suffocated by it. I then instinctively think, she’s probably stressed out with family health issues right now so that may be why if feels o amplified right now. Yet, in justifying that possibility, I’m not serving myself since I still think I need to say yes.

In writing this out, I now think I’m putting wayyy too much drama around this and simply need to change my thinking and be comfortable with saying no. I’m struggling with teaching myself how to be comfortable not being a people pleasure so I can just worry about thinking and taking action in a way that serves me.

Am I a bad friend or am I making progress in setting boundaries and growing away from being a people-pleaser?

Thank you Brooke,