The urge to people-please might make you bend and twist this way and that, trying to make everybody happy. You may fear not gaining approval and do your best to act in ways people like.
No matter how much you go out of your way to charm, however, you won’t always get the results you crave. Someone will condemn your conduct and show resentment. Unless you have a thick skin — and don’t let them disturb you — you’re doomed to face a painful life.
I learned a great deal about sticking to my guns and being myself, rather than aiming to please, as a student. In the days before I recognized psychology was ‘my thing’ rather than a paint box, I attended art college.
My two main tutors came from the previous rebellious creative generation before mine, and they had strong beliefs about what art was and wasn’t. My attention to fine detail and a keen eye to convey what I saw in front of me bothered them.
They wanted my wild side on canvas, teenage angst in acid colors. But I always had a calm nature. The roar they wanted to hear wasn’t inside me, just a pleasant purr. So my pinpoint focus on nature and beauty horrified them.
“That’s not art,” they’d bark, furrowing their brows. Later though, after college, I sold my work and the fact it wasn’t a crazy blur of rebellion didn’t put off customers after all.
The rest of life is like the circumstances I met back then. My idea of what’s admirable and someone else’s might clash — not too often, but it happens. My choices, the way I dress, and even how I speak have undergone scrutiny over the years, although I do nothing odd enough to be worthy of such a fine line of inquiry.
It’s the same for you because you can’t help but please some folks while displeasing others. Change yourself to fit in or make people like you and you’ll be unhappy. Your luster will fade as your personality crumbles beneath a facade.
I’ve discovered trying to appeal to other people’s taste not only flattens your persona, but it also stops you developing into the finest version of you. There’s only one you, so it’s best to make the most of who you are and let your originality shine.
Some people won’t approve of you, even if you’re fascinating, accomplished, and kind. They won’t see you properly because their opinion is colored by their background and it’s different from yours.
Likewise, you may not always like other people. Some aren’t to your taste. Knowing this, though, helps you find your tribe — those folks who lift you up and inspire you to flourish.
Don’t worry when people shun you or disapprove of your behavior. Maybe they can’t understand you because they vibrate to a different frequency. Perhaps they see themselves in you and have issues. Their reason for disliking you need not matter though. Shine as you are and you’ll attract true allies.
Copyright © 2018 Bridget Webber. All rights reserved