LIFE

Why You Should Stop Being A People Pleaser

If you try to please everybody you'll hold back your career.

11/11/2016 1:24 PM AEDT | Updated 13/11/2016 4:13 PM AEDT
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It's all about being yourself.

We've all worked with people pleasers. Sometimes they're referred to as 'an appeaser' and they're the type of personality who will do and say anything to make other people like them.

It doesn't matter if, deep down, they vehemently disagree with whatever might be going on, they will say YES and be supportive, without thinking about the consequences of their behaviour.

Rowdy McLean, international keynote speaker on motivation, leadership and culture told The Huffington Post Australia people pleasers usually nod their head at every comment and support every idea, no matter what it is.

"The people pleasers contribute very little, never rock the boat and try to be everyone's best friend. In some organisations people pleasers do very well, but they're not the sort of organisations I would want to work with," McLean said.

"The places where people pleasers get traction are often toxic, command and control organisations where no one is happy, even the people pleasers! In good organisations with robust cultures the people pleasers don't make progress because they are spotted as fake and marked as people that do not add value to the organisation and they never climb the corporate ladder."

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Every office will have at least one person who makes a huge effort to please everybody.

The Collective CEO Lisa Messenger told HuffPost Australia people pleasers are experts at self-sabotage.

"If you're constantly trying to please others, no doubt you are holding yourself back as you'll be perpetually self-sabotaging and putting yourself and your needs behind those of others," Messenger said.

"It's imperative to gain a good sense of self, know what you stand for, know what your 'not negotiables' are and be able to stand true to those in an assertive, yet respectful, way."

Instead, Messenger advises people to work out who you are, what you stand for and what your 'why' is in life.

"If you shift your focus to this, chances are you'll be a hell of a lot happier and you'll stop trying to be something you're not. You'll be in it for the right reasons. I also wouldn't focus so much on 'people pleasing' but also just be yourself. Be true, honest and authentic and, in my experience, the rest has a way of taking care of itself. Just be unafraid to keep checking in on yourself."

The Collective
Lisa Messenger believes people pleasers need to stop trying to be something they are not.

Rowdy McLean believes there are several steps to take in a bid to stop being a people pleaser – including being authentic to yourself and your colleagues.

Rowdy's Six Top Tips

1. Remember the 'real you' is far more valuable than the 'pretend you'.

2. Stop compromising your opinions and trying to be liked. Respect is far more likely to take you up the ladder than being liked.

3. Choose to gain peoples trust and respect because you are being real.

4. Bring something that adds to the conversation instead of simply agreeing with everything.

3. Listen to the conversations and consider your opinion on the subject. Do you agree or disagree. Would you do something different? What would it be and why would you do it? (You don't need to shout it out loud, straight away)

4. Consider the best way to challenge an idea or concept. Depending on the culture, you might have to go slowly and softly at first.

5. Have a really good 'why?' for your opinions so that when people challenge them you can back yourself.

6. Understand that very few people like or trust a people pleaser, yes man or woman or a brown-noser. It's a terrible career strategy.

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