bothering peopleDo you say things like this a lot?

“I don’t want to be a bother…”

“Let’s do whatever is easier for you.”

Holy cow, I feel like my whole life has been spent saying things like that. I am constantly worrying about annoying or inconveniencing other people.

I always thought it was a lack of self-esteem. I am most concerned with not bothering people when I see them as being more important, more experienced, smarter, wealthier, or busier than I am. Who am *I* to bother *them*?

You know why I do that? Why I try so hard not to inconvenience people? It’s to prevent them from feeling like I did inconvenience them. I’m so afraid that people will think I am annoying, I go out of my way to make sure they don’t feel that way.

A people pleaser can also have a hard time saying no. “It’s no problem!” is something they’d often say. “Sure, I can work late tonight.” “Yeah, you can crash at my place.” “I can babysit, no problem.” “Sure, I can lend you more money.”

And why do people have a hard time saying “no”? Because they don’t want the other person to say they weren’t helpful. If you always say yes, they can’t say that you never work late, that you aren’t generous, that you never babysit, etcetera. You’re covered!

Are you a people pleaser?


If you do have a hard time saying “no”, then you may become frustrated, burnt-out, or overwhelmed when you take on too many responsibilities, or hold in resentment. But you probably knew that already. 🙂

A great book to help with this issue is The Disease to Please by Dr. Harriet Braiker. It helps you realize that you can’t ever make everyone else happy, plus how to create clearer boundaries. You may think never saying No makes you a generous, open-hearted person, but it can actually make your life worse! Great book.

Are you a people pleaser? Do you say “I don’t want to bother you” a lot? Leave a comment below!

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photo credit: Lili Vieira de Carvalho via photopin cc