Is Being a People Pleaser a Good Trait?

Is Being a People Pleaser a Good Trait? is being a people pleaser a good trait?
Photo by Jacob Rice on Unsplash

Is being a people-pleaser a good trait, trying to make others happy, trying to please them, or just trying to do something for others aside from yourself? It’s may really look like a very wonderful trait to have in life. You may look at it and think, “Actually, what’s wrong with it? What’s wrong with wanting to make another person happy?” What’s wrong with being a martyr and sacrificing yourself for the sake of others? These others maybe your family, your friends, your colleagues, your kids or just anyone you meet around the corner. Let’s look deeper into this.

People Pleasing = Giving Someone a Wheelchair

So, what happens is, in fact, I was discussing this with a friend a couple of weeks ago. Sometimes, we have a tendency to help others, but in our eagerness to assist, we may not truly be helping them. It’s like giving someone a wheelchair when they can already walk. Imagine this person can walk perfectly fine, but our overwhelming desire to assist them leads us to insist and be like, “Stop walking, let me give you this beautiful wheelchair, and I’ll take care of you.” Because of our natural inclination towards a sedentary lifestyle or a tendency to avoid responsibility, we may readily accept the wheelchair. This simply illustrates how our efforts to help can in the process strip individuals of their independence, making them reliant on our support rather than encouraging them to keep walking or to help themselves.

Truth Will Set You Free

Rather than empowering others to take responsibility for themselves — by advising them to manage their finances or prioritize their health, for instance — we often opt for the easier route of providing financial assistance. This avoidance of uncomfortable truths stems from a fear of causing pain or damaging relationships. However, it’s important to recognize that truth can indeed be painful.

For instance, confronting a sibling who frequently asks for money with the reality of their financial habits may strain the relationship and elicit negative emotions. Yet, by delivering this truth, we empower them to confront their behavior and make positive changes. It’s similar to choosing the difficult path of honesty, where we not only convey the truth but also provide the opportunity for personal growth and development.

Ultimately, while the truth may initially cause pain, it serves as a powerful catalyst for growth and introspection. They may choose to discard you or even hurl insults, but by empowering them to recognize their unhealthy habits — even at the expense of the relationship — you’re providing a profound act of care. A relationship built on a foundation of fake smiles and deceit lacks authenticity and genuine connection.

People Pleasing is Not Caring

So, in the grand scheme of things, it’s more loving to empower people to be responsible than to give people what they want or to give people what will make them dependent on you. And that’s what people-pleasing is. It’s very dangerous because it encourages people not to be responsible for themselves or not to be reliant on themselves. And as they grow that way, you get to the point where they really become so entitled to the point that they can even start becoming manipulative.

People Pleasing Breeds Entitled People

When you consistently prioritize others’ needs and desires over your own, it can foster a sense of entitlement in those you are accommodating. This entitlement may manifest as an expectation that their needs will always be met without effort or reciprocation.

So, it all starts with you wanting to give them something but gets to the point where because they’ve gotten used to being given things by their family members, by their friends, they now feel that they are entitled to those things.

So when you please others, when you make them ‘happy’, you are also breeding people who have a sense of entitlement or are not responsible for themselves.

And those people can then become manipulative or can then grow to the point where they really feel that they have to exploit others for their needs to be met. And that’s how abusers and manipulators develop.

We always have a part to play — me, you, anyone else. We have a part to play. We always think that they develop from a different planet, but no, we all have a part to play. If we encourage others to depend on us or if we push away others from seeing the truth in their behaviors, they’ll never really see the truth in those behaviors and they’ll keep looking away and looking away.

People Pleasing Breeds Victimhood

They may also reach a point where they perceive themselves as victims. Imagine you’ve been supporting them for years, and once you decide to stop, they suddenly feel abandoned. Because they’ve grown accustomed to your assistance, they interpret its withdrawal as a betrayal. In their eyes, you’ve gone from being a helper to a perpetrator, causing them distress.

Teach them How to Fish!

Instead of handing them wheelchairs, encourage them to keep walking, guide them, or provide support to help them continue their journey. As the saying goes, “Give a man a fish, and he’ll eat for a day. Teach a man to fish, and he’ll eat for a lifetime.” People-pleasing is giving that person a fish and keeping them stuck. But the opposite of that is empowering that person to fish for themselves and then they will eat for a lifetime. Then they will grow and even continue on with their lives after you are long gone. They may not appreciate you but in the eyes of the universe, at least, you were true to yourself.

Is Being a People Pleaser a Good Trait? is being a people pleaser a good trait?
Photo by stephen momot on Unsplash


So, always choose the path that may initially seem difficult — refrain from constantly pleasing others or shouldering their responsibilities. It’s likely that you’ll be viewed unfavorably by many, labeled as selfish or bad.

However, what truly matters is the service you’re providing to both them and the world. Despite their current perceptions, in the future, they may come to realize the significance of your actions. Twenty years down the line, they might recognize that you were the one who genuinely cared about their well-being. You were the individual who encouraged them to take full responsibility for their lives, rather than simply providing assistance.

It’s incredibly counterintuitive and certainly not an easy path to take. Society often emphasizes the importance of seeking help and support from others, which is a wonderful thing but we approach it from a wheelchair-perspective. However, if we collectively shift our focus towards promoting responsibility in ourselves and others, we can truly make the world a better place. I hope you found the insights shared here informative.

It’s important to recognize that following this path may lead to isolation or having fewer friends, but empowering others to be responsible is the greatest form of love we can offer to our siblings, children, and everyone in our lives.

While there may not always be immediate rewards for this, it’s a fundamental aspect of fostering positive growth and change. The fulfilment will always come with you leading an authentic life where you’re not harboring feelings of resentment or carrying people’s burden. You simply support when you can and if you can’t you’re also okay with it.

Note from the Author

If you’re ready and you’d like my help with healing, finding peace in life and breaking free from these toxic patterns, then you can book a FREE BREAKTHROUGH CALL with me HERE. Happy healing 💙💙. Feel free to share and comment! Use this information with caution, it comes from my own thoughts & bias, experiences and research😊.

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Edwin Bii
Edwin Bii

I'm Edwin Bii, a trained advanced conversational hypnotherapist (ACH) and Mind Shifting Coach from Kenya offering mental health support, and life coaching to help you crush your goalsand overcome your problems. Together, we'll navigate challenges, build self-awareness, and create a happier, healthier you. Let's unlock your potential.

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