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People Pleasing And Binge Eating

Mar 06, 2023

Are there times that you are doing something to make someone happy? Are you really willing to do it or is it mainly to please another person?

There is a difference between being nice and being people pleasing. Being nice is you are ready to help and serve out of your own will. It may also mean that sometimes you choose to do something you do not necessarily want to do. I think being nice aligns with who you are.

Being people pleasing is when you say yes to others to seek for others’ approval. You put your self-worth in others’ validation. You say yes because that is the way you feel belong. Sometimes you may even do things outside of your personality or character.

People pleasing stems from low self-worth and when you believe that your worth is determined by other people. When you care more about what other people think of you than who you really are, you start to do things out of alignment of your true values.

Trying to please others, especially when you are not being yourself, is exhausting. You spend much energy to act like someone else does. Over time, you may lose sight of who you truly are or what makes you genuinely happy. It is as if your authentic self is fading away. You may say yes to many things because you are afraid to say no. You may take more on your plate than you can handle. As a result, you neglect to take care of yourself while you put your concentration on making others happy. Resentment is building up from gradually abandoning your authentic self.

The stress accumulating in your body causes you to lack the ability to enjoy things you normally do. The anxiety initiated by the fear of not people pleasing enough may cause so much conflict within yourself that you need an escape or a relief.

People pleasing may lead to binge eating. One way is in meetings or gatherings. You may eat or drink like the others, thinking that is a way to belong. For example, when you are having dinner with your coworkers in a restaurant, you may order the same kind of food of the same amount of food as most other people do, even though you normally only eat half of that amount in a meal.

Instead of feeling the stress and anxiety within you, you want to avoid that feeling of discomfort. You want some immediate satisfaction instead. Binge eating seems to be the answer. It seems to provide constant relief with some fulfillment. It seems to provide you with some sense of security. It seems to offer a concentrated dose of pleasure – except many people regret after the fact, asking themselves why they over-ate. That guilt builds up within, then you go back to seek external validation to please others to earn a sense of belonging.

People pleasing may cause the disassociation between your internal self and your external actions. This disharmonious relationship causes anxiety, stress and resentment which may cause you to find comfort and relief by some outward means to gain immediate satisfaction, such as binge eating or overdrinking.

The first step in managing people pleasing is awareness. Are you serving others the way you want, or are you making decisions based on getting others’ approval?

It is important to realize that we cannot please everyone. Even famous people such as Beyonce, Taylor Swift and Ryan Reynolds have haters. Be yourself. In a dinner gathering when all your friends are ordering wine, you do not have to order wine if you do not want to. This does not make you less of a friend. This does not make you less worthy, as you are born worthy.

Allow the emotional discomfort. It takes practice to say no when you are used to saying yes all the time. Make your decisions based on your own values, not based on someone else’s.

If overeating is a problem, acknowledge it. Realize that you are eating to seek comfort and not just to fill your hunger. You get to decide ahead of time what to eat and how much to eat. Realize that the true fulfillment you are looking for is not in overeating, but in doing things and serving according to your true self.

Take the time and effort to care for yourself, to build comfort within. Make sure you spend some time daily for you, such as reading, listening to a motivational speaker, exercise or meditate. Spend time to acknowledge that you are worthy regardless of your appearance or your actions or how others think of you. The best response to people pleasing is to re-discover who you truly are and find comfort within you.

Are you ready to stop feeling stressed and overwhelmed? Are you ready to have more time to do what you want?


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