I wanted to share a quote from Debbie Forde. Debbie died on Sunday February 17, 2013 after a long battle with cancer.
One of the biggest diseases of our time is people pleasing. People saying ‘yes’ when they mean ‘no.’ Then they feel resentful. They can’t actually go about and meet their own soul’s vision because they’re too busy working on all these other people, or staying nice, or just thinking that they won’t be loved or they won’t belong if they’re not pleasing somebody else. When people start doing shadow work they often say: ‘I can’t say no to my mother because I don’t want to be a bad daughter.’ ‘I can’t say no to my husband because then he won’t love me.’ Or, ‘I can’t say no to my kids and set a boundary because then I’ll be a bad mother.’ The more we identify these things, then the more we realize it is related to something we were shamed for – such as selfishness. That’s a quality that most people hate about themselves. They don’t want to be selfish. But any quality that we make wrong or judge becomes part of the shadow – and becomes our nemesis.
In all her years of facilitating shadow work this was ONE THING that she learned:
If you don’t deal with the shadow – the shadow will deal with you!
People don’t realize that not being able to lose those extra pounds, or keep that job or save money is a result of their shadow. Your shadow is ALWAYS dealing with you.
We are complex human beings, and we have all become skilled at avoidance. I have been trying to run away from my shadow side forever. It’s exhausting. You can never outrun those parts of your self that you refuse to deal with or don’t like. You have to accept yourself. You have to face the darkness and open it up to the light. It’s the only way. Self acceptance is part of knowing who you are.
People-pleasing is so deeply ingrained in my way of being that I feel weird if I’m not allowed or prevented from fixing a situation. Helping, solving, being there for others isn’t a bad thing. It’s when you consistently put other people’s needs ahead of yours for fear that you will be rejected or abandoned, that problems arise.
I saw this article 0n Pinterest, and it talks about 3 People-Pleasing Myths.
I identify so much with this line:
Someone along the way taught you that setting a boundary was unloving and selfish. True love meant putting others before yourself, and if you did otherwise, you were self-absorbed. This lie perpetuates your empty cup, because if you’re empty, you really can’t give. In reality, boundaries protect the love you have and provide you with more love to give!
Boundaries may not make everyone happy, but they will make you much more loving.
I have walked around for far too long suppressing anger, being resentful and generally unhappy because I people-pleased my way into a kind of prison, and I was locked so far inside that I really couldn’t see it for what it was!
There truly is LIGHT always, at the end of the tunnel…after darkness…if we walk through our fears, set healthy boundaries, and be the love-filled giving souls we were meant to be!