I have always been a people pleaser. I would go out of my way to make sure no one would ever accuse me of being inconsiderate. I think part of the reason I was such a people pleaser was because I wanted to steer clear of conflict at all costs. But, I have come to realise something, while I was making sure everyone else was pleased, I was unhappy.
As a mother, putting your own needs last come effortlessly: second nature. And that is very well when it comes to your child or children, but what about everyone else? Should I really be putting everyone else’s needs before my own? There’s this myth that women should always be ready to sacrifice and I have witnessed this multiple times. We don’t always do what we want to; we do what we HAVE to. We have been fashioned to think that women should be willing and able to give easily, without any question and to any degree. And, if we don’t, we end up feeling guilt ridden. “Identify a need or want, and you will probably find a woman willing to take responsibility for it.” (Vermeulen,S. 2011. ELLE) I say be a little selfish from time to time. Say no to this favour or to that thing you have to do for your cousin’s friend. If it is not making you happy or making you feel even vaguely good, feel free to refuse.
It’s been a very difficult thing for me to do; saying no. People tend to treat you differently when you finally muster up the courage to say no. But I can tell you it has been both liberating and eye opening at the same time. Now I am not saying you should suddenly run around saying no to everyone. Just be aware that you do have that option. Real friends will stick around whether you are able to do things for them or not. And the rest...well who needs the excess baggage.
TILL LATER, LAUREN!