Hello, everyone, and welcome to the latest episode of High Functioning Human Podcast, where you connect to yourself as a high-functioning human. 

Today, let’s discuss a term often used lightly but with deeper implications. The word or the term is ‘People Pleaser.’ More specifically, ‘Pathological People Pleaser.’ 

You’ve probably heard it, maybe even laughed about it, but have you paused to think about what ‘pathological’ really implies? In medicine, ‘pathological’ relates to pathology, the study of diseases. 

I recently watched a talk by the remarkable Gabor Mate, which has opened up a new perspective on the physical costs that there are to being a ‘People Pleaser,’ and how this ‘pathological’ behaviour is as serious as any other disease, having serious or even deadly effects on your health.

My goodness it sounds extreme I know but it’s important that you really consider the costs of people pleasing, and we’re going to talk about this a little bit more now.  If you resonate with the label ‘People Pleaser’ I really want you to pay attention. 

And take a look at the full talk by Dr Mate, he’s a brilliant speaker and it’s a fab watch, I will link it below.

Firstly, I want to discuss, ‘Why do people fall into the pattern of people-pleasing, and what are the real risks involved?’. And I’d love to hear your answers to this as well. This is just my conversational ideas around it. 

So, in his talk, Dr. Mate’s insights reveal that consistently prioritising others’ needs over your own can lead to chronic health issues. 

This is more than just about being nice or too nice; it can be a deeply ingrained habit. There’s a hidden cost to People Pleasing. What is that cost? Well that cost can be long term health or wellbeing issues.

Ask yourself  ‘What are the real-life consequences of people-pleasing for you, personally?’

 Dr. Mate shared stories of individuals who, in their relentless dedication to duty and suppression of negative emotions, especially anger, which I find fascinating, harmed their own health. So when they basically suppressed those emotions, their personal health was harmed. What an interesting idea.

One extreme example was a doctor who continued working through his cancer treatment, basically, neglecting his personal health needs. Even before it reaches such an extreme point, this habit of ignoring your own needs, if we’re coming back to you, can result in emotional burnout, stress, and a loss of personal identity. 

Basically, recognizing and addressing these patterns is crucial for your mental and physical health and wellbeing.

Finally, let’s explore ‘How can you find a balance between pleasing others and staying true to yourself?’ 

The key thing here lies in embracing your authenticity – understanding and honouring your true feelings and needs. Which can only happen if you’re actually paying attention to what those true feelings and needs are. And that, I believe, happens from connecting with your body, because all emotion lives, essentially in the body. Paying attention to the emotions in your body is super important but there are also things that you can do that will allow you to take tangible actions in your everyday life. 

For instance: Setting clear boundaries: Start by identifying what you’re comfortable with and what really drains your energy. Communicate these boundaries clearly to those around you.

Then practise some self-reflection: Regularly take time to reflect on your actions and decisions. Ask yourself, ‘Am I doing this for myself or to meet somebody else’s expectations?’

Learning to say No is another one, and that one can be super tough. It can be especially challenging if you’re used to being a People Pleaser and saying ‘yes’ so saying ‘no’ feels super counterintuitive. But it is a powerful tool for maintaining your authenticity. It’s about prioritising your needs instead of overcommitting yourself.

Mindful decision-making is another one. So, when faced with choices, take a moment to consider the decisions. Make sure they align with your values and your truest desires, rather than just being an auto-response to what somebody else has asked you and you’re automatically trying to People Please them. 

In a world where you’re all too often expected to jump through hoops for those around you, I would love for this to be a wake-up call for you. For you to start valuing your own needs and emotions as seriously as you would a physical ailment. So, if you find yourself resonating with this, it’s a journey that begins with self-awareness and the bravery to make changes. 

Embrace a life where your wellbeing is as crucial as your desire to make others happy. 

Thank you for joining me on today’s ‘High Functioning Human Podcast’. Here’s to a healthier, more authentic path ahead for us all.

Remember, Trust your instincts, follow your intuition, the world needs your voice and the magic it brings for all of us.   

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As always, I look forward to chatting with you next time on High Functioning Human Podcast. Take Care and talk soon,

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