Being A People-Pleaser: what it actually means, and how to rid yourself of this disgusting condition

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April 18, 2018

If you've ever read even the milder self-help/personal development texts, you've certainly come across the notion of the people-pleaser: the person who fucks himself over in the attempt to make everyone around them happy.

I'm here to disabuse you of the notion that the issue is that simple and superficial. People who consciously strive to please everyone have a very easy problem to fix, simply requiring conscious effort in the opposite direction. But that's a pretty rare situation.

The far more common case is that of the subconscious people-pleaser: someone who's always trying to please, appease or put-at-ease those around himself, and doesn't even realize that he's doing it. Let me tell you about this unfortunate character.

Our people-pleaser is someone who started out with good emotional intelligence. It may seem counterintuitive, but the people-pleaser is actually someone that can read people very well: where they fuck up is in what they do with that information.

Your typical people-pleaser grew up, whether by innate predisposition or learned skill, with a strong ability to read other people's expressions, tones of voice, gestures and so on. He could, especially, tell when people were attentive or distracted, engaged or bored, happy or angry.

Crucially, the people-pleaser learns to use this ability to adjust his own behavior in order to always elicit a happy response in his interlocutors. He doesn't do it because he's a dumb indoctrinated beta or some other catastrophic issue; he does it because we all naturally want to elicit a positive social response, and the people pleaser learned that he could do it by reading others and modifying his behavior accordingly.

The people-pleaser is not necessarily a whipped beta. In fact, strangely enough, he can also be a brash asshole. But what's important is that his behavior is constantly informed by his reading of his audience's reaction, and he modifies his behavior to elicit a positive response. The brash asshole people-pleaser will always seek to shock and entertain his audience with his asshole antics; he doesn't do it for his own amusement, and if he doesn't get the desired reaction then he's very much not happy.

The most important thing that you can understand about people-pleasers is to not expect them to be a stereotype. They come in all shapes and sizes, in all forms of behavior, and the only constants are, once again: strong ability to read others and automatic tendency to adjust their own behavior to elicit a desired positive response.

If you want to figure out whether you are a people-pleaser, ask yourself: am I constantly scanning others to see how they react to my behavior? am I very sensitive to this? do I constantly, and often without thinking, change my behavior so as to elicit a different reaction?

Of course, we all engage in this behavior to a point. The ability to read others and adjust our behavior accordingly is fundamental in a social species. But the people-pleaser overdoes it: he's constantly adapting himself to the world, to a great and self-harming excess.

There are two key things that people-pleaser doesn't realize. The first is that other people's reactions are not fully determined by what we do. If I'm telling a story and someone yawns, it might be because the story is boring (this is what the people-pleaser would automatically assume), but it might also be because that person is sleep-deprived, because he has something else on his mind, because he's a halfwit with the attention span of a goldfish, and so on.

The healthy way to handle this situation, a way that would not even occur to the people-pleaser, is to take the yawner's action as one of the inputs in your evaluation of the situation. If you judge that the story is good, if other people seem engaged, if the moment doesn't seem inappropriate, then it's likely that the yawner is yawning for their own reasons, which are none of your concern. The people-pleaser would, instead, make it his concern, and try to change his behavior accordingly.

The second thing the people-pleaser doesn't realize is that sometimes you need to make other people feel bad (or not-good). Other people aren't entitled to you laboring to always make them feel good. They simply aren't. Even when it's in your power to appease them, sometimes you just ought not to.

This thought would be completely alien to the people-pleaser, because he tries to appease others automatically, without thinking. If he sees someone that appears angry, upset or otherwise not happy, he automatically endavors to make them so. Even when he purposefully makes people mad, the people-pleaser is actually doing it to then achieve a happy state: the people-pleaser can be someone who teases, roasts, pranks, but he's only happy if the other person is a good sport and has fun with it.

The healthy way to approach this is, instead, to realize that other people's emotions aren't any more right than our own. If someone has their panties in a bunch over something, it's not your job to un-bunch them. If they are unreasonably upset with you over something, then it's their problem to deal with their unreasonableness. Always appeasing people will only teach them to be more unreasonable, if anything.

If you think you might be a people-pleaser, then Dr Derek prescribes you this therapy:

  • notice how you change your behavior in response to your reading of others' reactions

  • consciously tell yourself that you ought not to change your behavior, because the reaction is not necessarily due to your behavior, nor is it necessarily a reasonable reaction

  • decide if your behavior needs changing; err on the side of not changing, because your natural inclination (you're a people-pleaser after all) would be to alter it

You won't cure yourself immediately, but even in the first few days you'll make impressive, noticeable improvement. You'll feel far less burdened by the constant labor of people-pleasing, your interactions will become more genuine and, even though you might initially elicit some surprised negative reactions in people who are used to your people-pleasing, you'll then have a far more effective social and relationship life than before.

(Incidentally, this is a great part of why the "adopt a DGAF attitude" mantra works: people-pleasers take it on faith that they should stop striving to please people, which helps them overcome their natural tendencies. The problem is that they don't understand, notice nor counteract the subconscious mechanism that made them act as people-pleasers, so inevitably their people-pleasing sneaks back in somewhere. Hence why DGAF is only a stepping stone towards actually building solid frame.)

Post Information
Title Being A People-Pleaser: what it actually means, and how to rid yourself of this disgusting condition
Author Derek1382
Upvotes 1084
Comments 91
Date 18 April 2018 12:53 PM UTC (3 years ago)
Subreddit TheRedPill
Original Link
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[–][deleted] 206 points207 points  (12 children) | Copy

Wow. Great write up here, I’ve never seen the people pleaser topic covered so well and in a way that is so relatable. Gives me some good things to work on, it seemed like you were talking to me

[–]p3n1x 1 points1 points [recovered] | Copy

I watched a show on Netflix called "Love".

The male lead character, if you want to see the ultimate representation of a "pleasing" Beta. Dude is physically underweight and unhealthy.

Like a glowing beacon of "don't be this fucker".

[–]KRISTAPORZINGA26 points27 points  (5 children) | Copy

And yet he gets mad ass on that show. Shows you how unrealistic that shit is.

[–]p3n1x19 points20 points  (3 children) | Copy

mad ass on that show

I wouldn't call 3 girls (over years) in Hollywood "mad ass".

What the show represents is actually fair. It is a good point that is posted around here often. Beta's "DO" get pussy, just not on their terms.

His main girl in the show is an ultra Red Flag emo nightmare. The other chick was trying to advance her career. The Ex to start the show is having total buyer's remorse.

[–]KRISTAPORZINGA4 points5 points  (1 child) | Copy

It wasn't over the years. He was with the main character for like 5 months. In reality none of those girls would be interested in him except for maybe Mickey cause she's fucking nuts and obsessive.

[–][deleted] 0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy

I mean that’s not the point in my opinion. The asshole guy, for example, is he embodiment of what an incel may imagine every redpill guy. From the show, it’s obvious that these types of extremes can be unrealistic

[–]cBIGONE5 points6 points  (0 children) | Copy

I still think it's fake. Mad Betas do get 0 pussy most of the time unless it is a fat hog

[–]ddin730 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy

Isn't that the message netflix are pushing though. "be like this if you want... "

[–][deleted] 3 points4 points  (3 children) | Copy

Oh shit this is pretty good. Just threw it on. Pretty funny how characterized these people are lmao. Straight away the asshole and the nerdy character. It’s good for how exaggerated and ridiculous it is.

Edit: definitely more of a novelty though. I can’t imagine watching more episodes

[–]Solitary_Solidarity5 points6 points  (1 child) | Copy

Dudes I actually like that show..

[–][deleted] 0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy

Lmao and I just wanted to let you know that your taste is shit

[–]javaberrypi1 point2 points  (0 children) | Copy

That's Judd apatow though.. he takes stereotypical characters, exaggerate them to the point where it's funny/cringey and then puts them in situations you wouldn't expect to find the characters in.

[–]Thundersnow695 points6 points  (0 children) | Copy

I had to turn the first episode off because that guy annoyed the shit out of me!

[–]1studentsensei50 points51 points  (3 children) | Copy

I alyways had this problem because I was heavily bullied in school by both men AND women. I was 4'11 at 12 years old. I was shorter than 99% of the student population.

Do you know what it's like to get punked by a 5'1 girl that could legitimately kick your ass? Talk about being at the bottom of the totem pole. I used to miss the bus on purpose in order to avoid school but then they threatened to take me away from my mom because I missed too many days.

I learned to adapt by being manipulative, well liked, and just a "cool sport" about things. I also learned how to defend myself physically and verbally but when I reached a point in my life where I felt "overwhelmed" I would revert back to my old habits.

Then one day I learned about the story of Dennis Rodman and how he contemplated suicide. He said that instead of killing himself, he'd just kill his "imposter." That's when he dyed his hair, got all the tats, dated Madonna, etc.

So that's what I did. I killed the "nice guy" and never looked back.

To be who you are REGARDLESS of the consequences or reactions of others takes character.

[–]burrrahhh7 points8 points  (0 children) | Copy

That thing you said about killing thd beta hit me so hard. I realised all my life I've been scared of people's reaction thats why I don't talk much. Now I will kill the beta and do whatever the fuck I want to do.

[–]Kinbaku_enthusiast1 point2 points  (0 children) | Copy

I really needed to read this. Tough love. Very good.

[–]TraditionalFox80 points81 points  (15 children) | Copy

Only through the beginning of this so far but fuck this is me. When I’m talking or on fuckin Reddit I’m always too conscious of how people will perceive what I’m saying, worrying about how to not get a negative reaction to what I want to say.

[–]1Mr_Badass37 points38 points  (6 children) | Copy

You have just described "excessive conscientiousness", which is caused by an unhealthy mix of perfectionism and performance anxiety. The worry of getting a negative reaction is actually a defense against not being seen as perfect. The root cause tends to be parents who demand perfection from their children. The book "The Drama of the Gifted Child" goes quite deep on this topic.

[–]Revenant22121 points22 points  (4 children) | Copy

Couldn't agree with this more. I'd also add that it could be from when a parent's emotion rules the household. In my case, when I wa growing up, if my mom wasn't happy, she made sure we weren't either so I'm thinking that I learned to always make sure the other person is happy before I worry about myself.

[–]eboody6 points7 points  (1 child) | Copy

We're kindred spirits, you and I

[–]Revenant2211 point2 points  (0 children) | Copy

There are a few of us on here apparently haha good thing we found this sub

[–]Cynthaen2 points3 points  (1 child) | Copy

Stop readin my mind. I'm still trying to get this excessive constientiousness out of my damn subconscious. Any clues on how to do it?

[–]Revenant2215 points6 points  (0 children) | Copy

Haha well as much as it sucks to be this way, it's good to know there are other guys in a similar situation and it's better to be conscious of it than to be oblivious.

The thing that kinda "woke me up" was when I was told a few weeks ago that it's completely ok (and actaully expected) to put yourself and your emotions first. It's harder to do this when you need to respond right away but I've begun to look at a situation and ask myself "I'm leaning toward choosing this option because I will be happier and more comfortable choosing that or is it to make sure the other person is as happy as possible?" If the answer is to make the other person happy at the expense of my own happiness or comfort (even the slightest bit), I've begun choosing the other option.

For example (and maybe a decent RP one too), I was supposed to meet an old hookup for drinks a few weeks ago. She was working and was supposed to get out at a certain time so we agreed to meet about a half hour after that (sometime around 11 or 12 at night). During her shift, she told me she wasn't gonna get out on time and didn't know when (red flag for me). So I said ok, let me know when you do and that I was gonna go meet up with some of my buddies in the meantime. She ended up messaging me at least an hour after we agreed to meet and by that time me and my friends were having a good night so I didn't want to leave but I thought it'd be meant to skip out on meeting up with her. Then I asked myself if I was going to meet her that late because I wanted to or if I felt like I should because it'd hurt her feelings. Well the answer was definitely because I didn't want to hurt her feelings. So I just replied with something like "I'm with my friends at [bar]. You're welcome to stop by but I’m not looking to travel all the way up to [where she was] at this point."

I could have gone up there, but I didn’t really want to do that as much as staying with my friends so I just did what I wanted. I didn’t do it to hurt her on purpose (key point because that just seems petty). I did it to make sure I was making myself happy before I worried about making her happy. It wasn’t mean, and I wouldn’t even call it selfish. It was just taking care of myself before the other person. The other person is responsible for making sure they are happy, not me and not you. And this is how most people think and act. They look out for themselves because it’s a normal thing to do. If you begin to realize this you’ll realize it isn’t mean to make yourself happy first. Also, this has helped me care much less about when people do the same thing to me. Before I might have been ticked off if someone did something like I did above but now when something similar happens I just think “well yeah I’d do the same thing so I can’t blame them.”

I’m sure you weren’t expecting an essay haha but I got carried away. I’m far from being perfect with this or with RP in general but this was a big, helpful step for me so I maybe it’ll help you like it did me. LMK if you have any other questions.

TLDR: When you’re presented with two choices, the first being an action that will make you happy first but may make the other person sad, and the second being an action that will make the other person happy at the cost of your happiness or comfort, choose the first. It’s not mean. A majority of people do this. We’re in the minority that doesn’t. And this pertains to RP because women do not find guys attractive when they let people walk all over them. If you feel guilty, just remind yourself that there’s a big chance that the other person would have done the same thing if they were in your position. And most of the time, those people will understand your choice because they know they’d do the same thing in your position

[–]daniel_knows3 points4 points  (0 children) | Copy

Amazing description. I find myself fully in the perfectionism and anxiety mix. Will try to find the book. Thanks mate.

[–]masteryimain3410 points11 points  (3 children) | Copy

damn that used to be me nohhafg dhary fkjszbyiixathbkfsyjndf now i dont care!?!123 fuck you poster youre so stupid i hate you!!!!!!

[–]TraditionalFox5 points6 points  (0 children) | Copy

Fuck you and fuck everything...I’m learning

[–]RA71M4 points5 points  (0 children) | Copy

FUCK ALL OF U MOTHERFUCKER !!!!! whoof ... ihad to say it

[–]Mike_34876 points7 points  (0 children) | Copy

lol...I was on the sex forum in reddit and caught myself being upset because I was down voted for saying that the main function of sex is procreation. Jesus.

[–]ImportantMechanic2 points3 points  (2 children) | Copy

Giving a fuck about your karma points is an extension of this: You seek constant validation for your ideas and every time you open Reddit and see your score higher you're FeelsGoodMan

[–]TraditionalFox0 points1 point  (1 child) | Copy

For sure that's my biggest problem, I've started to care less about getting negative points but it still triggers something in me that I try to reject cuz I don't want to give a fuck

[–]Scriptopeia1 point2 points  (0 children) | Copy

Just practise by posting controversial stuff. I embrace the downvotes.

[–]memphisjohn31 points32 points  (6 children) | Copy

Middle child here. Classic pattern, well familiar with it. RP learning and self awareness helps, but it's a constant in my deep personality that I find myself slipping back into if I'm not aware.

[–]RubrumPilula7 points8 points  (0 children) | Copy

My father is pretty charismatic in social situations, so my brother and I picked it up as well. Except that we both became people pleasers. We’ve both been class clowns for years.

Eventually I developed a DGAF attitude but my brother still has no idea that the way he is acting is detrimental. He’s going down a bad path of thug culture too, just to please kids at his high school. Just have to get him hooked on TRP first.

[–]bl_12 1 points1 points [recovered] | Copy

Same. At work, I've sat next to the most obnoxious human I've probably ever met in my life for 2 and a half long years. Mainly because I'm afraid of his reaction when I get my seat moved. He thinks we're friends to some degree. He's a full blown lunatic with sociopathic tendencies. Has talked many times about grudges he holds with people, getting revenge on people, and shit like that. He pretty much ruins my work life, but once I get on his bad side, I feel like I'm going to be looking over my shoulder all the time, waiting for the headcase to do something.

[–]9mmgun 1 points1 points [recovered] | Copy

Lol, is he some jacked dude or a average, fat beta?

[–]bl_12 1 points1 points [recovered] | Copy

He's an average fucking beta. Total beta. 33. Hates everybody. Complains about everything. Lives alone. Smokes weed every day.

But a super angry, hostile guy. To the point where he's been spoken to about it a lot.

[–][deleted] 2 points3 points  (0 children) | Copy

Sounds like someone who should be smoking weed everyday. He'd be even worse if he didn't

[–]TheBalancedMan32 points33 points  (3 children) | Copy

They come in all shapes and sizes, all forms of behavior

New here, but TRP has been speaking to me lately. I have been slowly realizing that I might be a people-pleaser and this post made me realize it more. However, like stated, I'm not someone people walk over. I'm pretty decently built, have been lifting for 3 years, know that I have a pretty decently high SMV, and all my friends know I can whoop their asses if it came down to it (we've boxed before). However, I always unintentionally go out of my way to get reactions out of people and to make them feel good. I feel like if I say something and they just ignore it or have a straight face then it bothers the hell out of me and it lingers in my mind. I always wonder if I said something wrong when I know for a fact the other person isn't giving a shit about it. But here I am, wondering if I made them happy or not, and wondering what I can do to consistently get people's approval. I used to be the guy who would delete a fucking tweet if it didn't get enough approval from people, or retweets. I have always, and unintentionally been a people-pleaser and I am barely starting to realize it now at the age of 20. This is why I got fucked over so many times in high school, because people knew I was trying to always get approval and would use it to their advantage. If I were to ever upset someone I would go so far out of my fucking way to make it right even though I knew they would not do so for me. Today I make the change.

Thank you, TRP.

[–]mark22624 points5 points  (2 children) | Copy

Solid comment. Glad you've become more self aware. Keep being conscious of your day to day interactions

[–]ramfex212 points3 points  (1 child) | Copy

So much work to do! And this is just one bad habit many of us got. Socialisation can royally fuck us over. But it’s time to take back our power. Our power to be men again! While the women of the world have every resource and institution at their disposal, we men aren’t given much. So fuck them. slowly but surely TRP and the manosphere are changing men’s lives for the better. We can see through the bs

[–]mark22620 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy

Yes, there's much work to do, and also yes it does suck, but that's just the way it is. No need to have an emotional reaction to it and get upset, just play the game that life is having us play. Nothing else we can do so let's do it brother.

[–][deleted] 8 points9 points  (1 child) | Copy

No More Mr. Nice Guy is a great read for anyone looking to fix being a people pleaser

[–]Immune2DNP14 points15 points  (2 children) | Copy

Being a people pleaser is selfish and often an attempt at manipulation. When people try to please others, it often stems from insecurities they have (I have to do X to make them like me, what if they judge me for doing Y).

There's nothing inherently wrong with trying to please people, but it depends on the place it's coming from. If you are doing something nice for validation, in hopes that someone will like you, or with an expectation of getting something in return, that's "Nice Guy" syndrome. If you are doing something for someone because you genuinely want to or feel like making someone's day out of generosity, then that's a completely different frame it's coming from.

Also, often times people change who they are to please others, because they are afraid of putting their full personality out there, getting judged, and letting their authenticity shine.

[–]dominicthetiger0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy

The problem is, we tend to get these two mixed as we are so indoctrinated into this behaviour. A lot of times we will feel we're doing something for someone because we genuinly want them to feel better, and when things don't go our way we'll feel angry but not know why. The problem now is I sometimes feel guilty when I slowly try and change this behaviour.

[–]KingDoni35 points36 points  (7 children) | Copy

I'm somewhat addicted to making white lies on the spot in order to impress, calm or please anyone(ranging for randoms to family), and that is both a blessing and a curse, I've developed (what I think is) an extremely charismatic attitude and can almost all the time win debates about anything against anyone as long as I know how they think (which is a trait I think perhaps I developed as well) after talking to them and listening to how they react to certain questions and facts, but that also gets me into really embarrassing situations where I underestimate my "victim" and get caught or I make promises I can't keep.

[–]1Mr_Badass25 points26 points  (1 child) | Copy

Making white lies is actually a common form of compensation for having been regularly neglected, ignored, or abandoned in childhood. Probably learned to tell white lies as a defense mechanism to prevent other people from neglecting or abandoning you. The cure is to increase your self-kindness, (you care about yourself more than other people).

[–]KingDoni7 points8 points  (0 children) | Copy

That's a really good assumption, I agree with you to a high extent.

[–]Lavlamp26 points27 points  (3 children) | Copy

You only think your "white" lies impress people. Anyone with half a brain sees through this, especially women. Trust me. This only makes you the guy everyone else in the shop doesn't want to connect with. Get caught lying? Instantly drop a rank in the social circle.

[–]TheRedditGod5 points6 points  (0 children) | Copy

This reminds me of a college friend from earlier this year. He seemed like a decent enough dude, and always had good smoke, but every story out of his mouth was just an obvious lie. He was an interesting enough dude that he didn’t need to do that, but literally no one I know believes any story he tells anymore after a few months of hearing these kind of either flat out lies or super exaggerated stories.

[–]salinorum2 points3 points  (0 children) | Copy

God, I had a friend who did that exact same thing. He lied so much that I stopped believing anything that came out of his mouth. He would do it for the same reasons as you, while also doing so to make people pity him. I could not do it anymore and am no longer friends with him.

Don't know if I'm typical or not as far as judgement, but I'd watch the lies. If you build relationships upon lies, everything will eventually fall.

[–]CrispyDeetz 1 points1 points [recovered] | Copy

Being a cocky asshole is very useful and appropriate in the sexual marketplace. But in your work, with friends, and broader society (basically anyone you arent trying to fuck) your goals should be to get them to like you. You should be a people pleaser. When people like you, they support you and this is essential to achieve your mission. But this should come from a place of strength. You make people feel important, give honest and sincere appreciation, take genuine interest in others, and exhibit every other "people pleasing" quality without expectation of reciprocity. You do it as the bigger man. As the person capable of caring about others without needing to be cared about yourself because the vast majority of people think about themselves only 95% of the time. If you can make people like you, if you can care about others as much as they care about themselves, and do so from a rock solid core of self concern, you can attain the good will and friendship of vast numbers of people which gives you power. Read Dale Carnegie's "How to Win Friends and Influence People."

[–][deleted] 17 points18 points  (2 children) | Copy

You cant make people like you unless you like yourself. As cliche as that sounds I think it is very true. When you like yourself and talk about things you like you will sound genuine and people will be attracted to you.

[–]5ubstanc34 points5 points  (1 child) | Copy

right on mate, such great input. I want to thank both of you for the best realistic input i think i could find so far, combining both your logics made me really think about the best way to portray myself

[–]AwakenedGuidoRican4 points5 points  (0 children) | Copy

No More Mr Nice Guy helped me expose this behavior. I realized that I negatively affected me and myself. That tendency does arise from time to time, but I realized that my happiness and well being is priority to making others happy. I saw this in my ex and looking back, I am better off.

[–][deleted] 7 points8 points  (0 children) | Copy

I was a people pleaser for a long time of my life. I was one till 18 years of my life. Then I met a man 6 years elder to me who instead of using me for confirmation of his stupid and arrogant thoughts and behaviour, introduced me to the red pill of life and masculinity and not just of the dating world.

I had to suffer through a lot because of my people pleasing attitude. I was a doormat for everyone, people used me as yay-sayer, boss me around, bully me and not even give me the basic decency of a human being. When I changed it all around, my social circle changed without me even realising it. The people I use to hang around with before didn't like me anymore because apparently - ' I had changed. Old I was better' . (Tip:- Don't fall for this.)

I remember, even girls and women used to boss me around. They wouldn't request me to do something, they would order me because I was a really good friend to them.

I still remember telling them - 'Fucking No'

I am glad that I met that guy and glad that he introduced me to this sub. He literally mentored me for two years but has now moved to a different city.

[–]abramN5 points6 points  (0 children) | Copy

recovering people-pleaser here - what I have realized too is that other people have their preferences and opinions that they are often trying to foist upon those around them. But, just because they have these preferences and opinions doesn't mean you have to do anything at all with them. It seems like that happens a lot especially with guys trying to impress women - they cater to the female's opinions and preferences, and end up losing themselves in the process. One simple example is trying to pick a movie to go see. The female wants to see a rom-com, the AFC eagerly says "great!" and dies a little inside. But what's wrong with saying "I prefer sci-fi" and then having her resolve the issue. Maybe she gets pouty and says "fine." She's unhappy maybe, but you're enjoying yourself. Isn't that a better way to live?

[–]1Jaereth4 points5 points  (0 children) | Copy

Honestly the best way to rid yourself of it is to just force yourself, no matter how much it makes you uncomfortable, to start doing it.

Once you see others start truly respecting you, social interactions start going favorably your way, etc, You'll know you are on to something and any nervousness towards your newfound attitude will be gone pretty quickly.

[–]plascra4 points5 points  (0 children) | Copy

People pleasers value their life and time to be less worthy than of others. Simple.

[–]majestyalphaq2 points3 points  (0 children) | Copy

Honestly this post hits me so hard. I have such a good grasp at reading other people(like if they're lying, bored etc.) and when I was in school, would do what you described in always making people feel good.

In college however, after several bad experiences in school, i did the asshole approach as you mentioned. I didnt make much friends, but girls definitely digged me more. I basically ignored people's reactions, and continued saying what I wanna say.

However, I don't think being emotionally attuned and reacting accordingly to what benefits you is "people pleasing". Its machiavellian.

[–]AJ_Ak473 points4 points  (0 children) | Copy

It's taken me awhile to really comprehend the wisdom behind this post. Spent my life as someone who was a walking cesspool of self loathing and out of that insecurity I developed the habit of trying to make people happy around me. It is spot on when the OP says you're able to read people because people like me notice the smallest shift in the vibe and want to compensate. When you love and care about yourself, when you realize you matter just as much as anyone else it all becomes bullshit, the talking, the pleasing, the constant acquiescence. You have little patience for all that bullshit because for the first time in life, your focus is on making yourself happy. That moment you become apathetic to other peoples bullshit, and irrationally putting others before you is the most freeing and satisfying moment in life.

  • Recovering Beta.

[–]KBeer013 points4 points  (0 children) | Copy

Fantastic post. I would like to recommend to everybody the best book I ever read to help my people-pleasing ways. It's called Not Nice by Dr. Aziz Gazipura. Easily one of the best books I've read so far this year.

[–][deleted] 2 points3 points  (0 children) | Copy

I am the type of person OP describes, down to a t. Two months ago I listened to suggestions similar to the OPs and the results have been astounding. 10/10 would recommend

[–]Revenant2212 points3 points  (0 children) | Copy

This described me to a T for my entire life up until a few weeks ago.

I was just told this by a close friend and I started constantly asking myself "am I doing [x] to make me happy or them happy?" and I'll stop myself if it's just to make the other person happy and I've already noticed a substantial improvement in my life. Less stress from worrying about if the other person is happy, less annoyed if someone does something that screws me over a little since I now understand where they're coming from, and overall people have been wanting to hang out more, friends and women alike.

I think it was the most important thing that was holding my RP journey back so I'm glad to see it discussed on the sub to get other guys like me informed.

[–]ManSoldWorld2 points3 points  (0 children) | Copy

Dude, I used to be like this (fucking ADD). It nearly made me kill myself, so, I had to change that.

Now, I'm of the idea that I can't control everything that people think of me; shit's too hard and complicated. I'll just do me and what I like doing, and if they don't like it, they can go and let the door hit them on the way out.

Point is, your real friends come about when you are yourself, and when you're not trying to be someone you're not.

[–]Rhynovirus1 point2 points  (0 children) | Copy

Great post. We need more like it on this sub.

[–]LZIII1 point2 points  (0 children) | Copy

Derek, don't know if you're a real doctor or not (probably not) but this was a brilliant post, which I felt was directed to me personally. It seems that plenty of others have the same feeling. Do you know where I can learn more about this?

[–]Sero-Flex1 point2 points  (2 children) | Copy

Can somebody with more knowledge of this topic explain to me the difference between people-pleasing and manners/politeness and upholding the social contract?

[–]vast_rightwing 1 points1 points [recovered] | Copy

My take is that your motivation and results make the difference. A people pleaser compulsively tries to make other people like him for the sake of being liked. A well adjusted person maintains the social contract at times when following the rules benefits them but isn't afraid to be disliked when it's appropriate (ie, not letting people walk all over you).

[–]Sick_dick_4evr1 point2 points  (0 children) | Copy

I know the redundancy is strong in this comment section, but fuck me if this isn't on point. I've even been through the DGAF stage and didn't even realize it til' just now! I shit you not just the other day I was wondering, "what happened to the guy that was dropping truth bombs on people, and telling their feelings to get fucked left and right". Obviously, I've already come full circle back to pleasing because, as you so succintly put it, I didn't understand the subconcious mechanics of what was happening.

I guess the amount of shit I kept dealing with, subconciously, to keep my social circles happy finally came to a boiling point and blew up in a DGAF explosion. Like clockwork, I got the bemused reactions, I recieved the 'you've changed' talks, etc. Simultaneously, I also gained more respect, and became more attractive or noticeable to females. Suppose there's a balance to be had somewhere, but I believe it's a choice of being respected and sought after, or being enjoyed and insignificant. Incredibly insightful post, thank you.

[–]OneShot1091 point2 points  (0 children) | Copy

I’m a long time lurker and it’s shit like this that keeps me coming back, props dude

[–][deleted] 0 points1 point  (1 child) | Copy

Great read, OP. I’ve been pondering about the people-pleaser for the last few days and what you wrote is similar to my theory that a people-pleaser acts similar to a work-horse: He wants others to reward him with a carrot or whip, and bases his actions around that.

[–]bl18711 point2 points  (0 children) | Copy

Dude some of this gets lost in that this sub preaches machivellianism and a main part of that is don't out shine the master, and not to let your true intentions be known, comments or clarification welcomed

[–]LoneWolf15570 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy

I'm a people pleaser, it's been said to my face before sadly I get it from my mother

[–]manitor067830 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy

This essentially describes me in a way I never even realised. Will be trying this starting right now.

[–]skoobled0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy

Great post! And quite a few points I hadn't thought of

[–]california_poppy0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy

I’ve noticed this about myself. You were able to articulate it and allow me to understand the reasoning behind it. Thank you very much.

[–]HarrySach690 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy

Have you been watching Jordan B. Peterson lectures to? Good post man

[–]3d_truth0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy

This is a good point. But look up 'i need your love, is that true' by Byron Katie. She is the master on this subject.

[–][deleted] 0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy

Dammit, this one hits home hardcore

[–]TheEnglishman280 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy

Think of all this shit as RL upvotes and downvotes.

[–]spawnend0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy

Amazing and relatable. Something i’ve been working on.


[–]P4_Brotagonist0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy

This has been a rough one for me. I grew up a people pleaser by having my mom be unmedicated bipolar from an early age. It was like a survival mechanism to be able to read and basically predict her future mood for the next hour or so. Obviously I didn't want to get grounded for eating too loud or whatever when she was in the wrong mood, I got incredibly good at instantly reading people and changing my mood.

As an adult it constantly permeates my life. I would never call myself beta at all,but sometimes it is extremely hard to break old habits by not just morphing into something else quickly to keep the peace between others.

[–]Ninja_Mooman0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy

I find that underneath my personality this desire exists to tailor my specific actions to the people I’m with. I developed this after having been socially awkward and unable to socialize.

My learned response was that I could actually alter my persona in context of who I was with and gain a desired reaction or outcome. This was useful at first, and still can be, but now has become a crutch and a force of habit. Often times, I notice myself doing it and have trouble turning it down and fading to the background. I find it necessary in certain social situations (mostly with people I know better, oddly enough) to actually consciously dial back this behavior, since it is neither useful or productive in the context in which I use it most.

I don’t seem to care about pleasing people on the outside of my circles, but when I’m with people (both men and women) in my closest circles I find that I tend to employ this mindset most frequently. I walk away at the end of the night feeling depleted, and as though I wasn’t myself and let the pendulum of “class clown” behavior swing too far.

I didn’t quite reflect on the extent of it until reading this and am now going to actively focus on mitigating it when needed. Good looking out man, haven’t heard anything quite as pointed towards me as this in a long time.

[–][deleted] 0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy

Wow, when you started talking about the 'brash asshole' I realized that thats me to the letter. I've always known that I can be too much of a clown sometimes, but I never considered the reason might be subconscious people-pleasing; which I've so desperately been trying to avoid since swallowing the pill.

Thanks, this got me thinking.

[–]DrBarnabyJonesJr0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy

Great post.

I was brought up the son of a pastor. I always had to uphold a facade and make sure that the parishioner's were pleased with me as the pastors son. I never grew out of that. I would even tell lies (if I was in school, where I was employed, my religious views, etc), depending on the person(s), in order to gain approval.

To this day, it's still something I struggle with as I still attend the church and am the head musician (despite me being a closeted agnostic). I stick around and pretend to be interested in the traditions and customs for the sake of my dad's approval and social ties.

[–]Enigma_Stasis0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy

How to not be a people person:

Step 1: Work customer service for a year.

Step 2: Good fucking luck.

[–]ISaidThatOnPurpose-2 points-1 points  (4 children) | Copy

I'm a people pleaser and I LIKE it. I might be in the exception group of any rule that dictates, if you know the rules and how to follow the rules then you're allowed to break the rules.

[–]Andgelyo1 point2 points  (3 children) | Copy

Being a people pleaser is what I consider to be beta AF. It means other people’s opinions of you dictate your actions. A real alpha doesn’t give two shits and does what he wants. You are only hurting yourself man.

[–]ISaidThatOnPurpose0 points1 point  (2 children) | Copy

Lol then watch as I conform to your ideal and now I'm an alpha in your eyes?

Listen to me. In my world, an alpha isn't the fucking scraggly ass tramp mut outsider infiltrator loaner, I have no interest or use for that.

To me an alpha is a leader. And when I'm leading, I want my followers to thrive.

It's what I want.

So what now

[–]Andgelyo3 points4 points  (1 child) | Copy

You are wrongly associating a people pleaser to a leader. The word “people pleaser” has a negative connotation to it, especially here. A people pleaser can’t think for himself. A leader is not a people pleaser. You can lead for the benefit of the group, even if they don’t like it. A leader makes hard decisions, even if it hurts others for the greater good. “What now”?

How can a people pleaser lead others if he can’t even think or act for himself? I understand leaders are selfless, but everything comes back to (at least some) self confidence.

[–]ISaidThatOnPurpose0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy

good point, i made a spectrum and put people pleaser on one side and leader on the other and just put myself on it and said i was a people pleaser. I shouldn't have done that.

That said, to explain my initial reaction, I don't think the spectrum is incorrect and it might be worth it consider the positives of allowing someone else to have what they want at your own expense, for the bigger picture of your own well being.

You can kill a man, but you can't kill an idea.

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