It’s possible to care and nurture others while also caring and nurturing yourself, don’t you agree?
When you forget to set boundaries, establish your own self care practices or take on too many roles, you get into trouble.
Let’s talk about how you can eliminate the stress and overwhelm from trying to please everyone else. Also knowns as “people pleaser syndrome”. You have to put your oxygen mask on first in order for everyone to thrive.
When I started my podcast, my intention was to just start sharing some of the small tips and some of the little lifestyle habits, and strategies that I was learning every day in my own life. I wanted to have a place to share more of the ongoing personal development and growth that I was doing.
But, now I find myself digging even deeper now, into areas of our life that are seldom talked about, even in my products like the Sexy, Confident Woman formula. One of those topics is People Pleaser Syndrome.
I was thinking about why so many of us get so frazzled, stressed out, overwhelmed, over worked, and sometimes just simply beside ourselves.
I’ve talked to a lot of girlfriends, a lot of moms, and a lot of people that are saying “I just can’t keep up, I just can’t do enough. It never seems to be enough, I just don’t know what to do”. And I find that to be very, very discouraging – and hard.
I know that there’s a way to avoid feeling overwhelmed.
It comes down to what kind of principles we setting for ourselves – to set ourselves up for success, and not stress. I think a lot of people have such good hearts, especially women. You want to make everybody happy, right? I know so many people pleasers and I want to wring their necks sometimes, and just say “STOP! I’m good, it’s all good, you don’t have to worry about me.”
You know that after a while, that’s got to be exhausting.
Sit back and ask yourself right now, am I suffering from people pleaser syndrome? Call it the PPS. It’s like a virus.
I know that it’s important to care about others, to make others feel good, to show that we are there for people that we love, but there’s a difference.
If you’re suffering, struggling, and/or suffocating, you can’t really serve others to the best of your ability.
It goes unnoticed for a little while, right? You might notice people in your life feeling a little stressed out, a little overwhelmed, a little worked, and maybe you feel that way right now. Over time, it builds up, and all of a sudden… SNAP!. You lose it. You flip out at somebody, you completely quit something, you break up with someone, all of the sudden.
And the reason I talk about this is because I believe that you can be loving, caring, helping, and nurturing to others, and also be all those things for yourself at the same exact time. And the reason I think that we can do that is because of these three different strategies. Let’s start taking ownership, and say okay.
STRATEGY #1: Set Boundaries
I’ve got to set boundaries for myself. I don’t think enough people have boundaries. The number one boundary I had set early in my life was with friendships. I had to accept being one of six kids that my immediate family was always going to be a priority over friends. I mean, maybe if you’re a single child or you’re from a small family, your friends were your family but this wasn’t the case for me.
I had to draw the line somewhere because I can’t be the friend who is there for every wake and whim of your life, every up and down, every twist and turn that you’re going through.
And my friends know that about me. They know that if they send me a text message, they might not get one back that day. And my family even knows that about me, I’ve had to draw boundaries with my family too. Family will definitely try to take advantage of any type of energy and attention that they can. But for some reason, some families do it more than others, and I believe it’s because there’s been no boundaries set.
There hasn’t been a clear communication of what is okay, and what is not okay. What is over the line, what is asking too much? And I think it’s important, especially with friends and family, because as we get older, we have more responsibilities. We play additional roles in life. The family has to understand that and they have to be okay with that, right?
It’s communication, and it’s setting those boundaries up, so that nobody gets mad, nobody gets disappointed. You don’t feel guilty inside, or stressed out that you’re missing something. You know that your family understands, because you’ve set those boundaries. I think it’s important too with volunteer work, and other things that you’re doing, you have to know “what is the limit that I’m setting for myself?”
If you do this one strategy alone, it’s going to completely launch you forward in being able to take better care of you and the roles that you’re playing in life versus feeling frazzled, stressed, all over the place and trying to please everybody in every situation that isn’t necessarily your responsibility to do. Am I right? Are you feeling me? Are you starting to get on board with this?
Strategy #2: Set Up Self Care Rules
Establish what is vital to your self care, your survival and happiness. That’s doing a little bit of journaling, and a little bit of brainstorming on what is it that’s vital for you to be healthy, happy, pain free, stress free, guilt free, whatever it might be.
Have you taken some time to really think about what is most vital for you in your life? What do you need the most, what are the essentials that you need? Have you asked for them, or have you given yourself permission to take them, to do them, to practice them?
I hear it all the time, people are stressed – they don’t have enough peace and quiet in their life, or they don’t have the energy that they need. They never get the girl time that they want. Those are things draining you, those are areas that you’re falling short of for your own needs. If you write them down, see them in front of you, know exactly what it is that you need most, you can communicate that to the people that you might get help from or delegate tasks to.
If you’re lacking energy, and you’re thinking, “I need some energy and the reason I don’t have it is because I’ve got no time to make breakfast in the morning, I’m skipping breakfast every day. So my own self care is suffering because I want to make sure I get everybody else taken care of in the morning, except for moi.” That doesn’t seem fair to me. Does that seem fair to you? Does that sound like you’re putting the oxygen mask on before you’re giving it to everyone else? No.
Do yourself a favor, establish what is vital, what is absolutely vital for your self care, for your happiness, your — not just survival, but thrival! I talk about that a lot in the Sexy Confident Woman Formula course. Let’s not just survive life, let’s thrive through life. You can do that, but do you know what that looks like? Do you know where you’re falling short? Do you know what is causing you to fall short? Have you set the boundaries in areas of your life that might be draining too much of your time, attention, and your energy?
Strategy #3: Know Your Roles
The third strategy is deciding what roles you can sacrifice in order to be better at all of your other roles. This is really difficult to do. I’ve done it before multiple times and I always reevaluate this in my life.
Write down all your roles, and I’m talking every role that you play, everything from house keeper to laundry attendant, to cook, to CEO or professional, to wife, to girlfriend, to daughter, to mother, to friend. Every role that you play – you might volunteer, you might be a video host, a content creator, write down all your roles – the major roles that take up time, energy, effort and attention from you and you play these roles almost every day. If not every week.
So if you’re volunteering once a week, if you’re cooking three meals a day for your family, if you’re doing everybody’s laundry, you’re cleaning the house, if you’re working full time, if you’re available to your parents when they call, if you’re always that sister that is there when anybody needs anything in the family. If you’re the friend that everyone can count on…
What are those big roles that you play? You know what they are. And you cannot legitimately do any of those roles really well if you have more than six. It’s the golden number!
If you’ve got more than six roles in your life, you are struggling, suffering, going without oxygen my friend. You’ve given all your attention and energy to too many things, and you’ve got to draw the line somewhere.
I remember when I did this, and I really looked at my roles and what was really vital to me, I asked myself “what are the six roles that I will not give up?” What can I not survive without? To be honest, being the cook in my family wasn’t necessarily something I wanted to give up, because I value my nutrition over most things – Maybe more than my marriage. Just kidding, but it’s pretty close!
Taking care of and nurturing my body with food and fuel is so important to me. Unless I can afford to hire a personal chef who’s going to cook the healthiest foods for me, I’m not giving that role to anybody else. It’s something I love, it’s something that nurtures me, and it gives me a break from everything else that I do.
I cannot stop being a CEO, I love being a CEO, I love running my business, I love being a video and content creator. I would never give that up.
So there’s 2 roles already.
Being a wife is number 3, I don’t want to give that up – I love my husband Vito, we have the most fun life together, he’s my best friend, he’s the one that I love talking to the most. He is my go-to guy for almost everything .
I know it sounds harsh, but I had to stop being available as often as I was as a sister, as a daughter, and as a friend. And I communicated that by saying, “guys, I’m building my business, I have to really pay attention to that growth and my roles there. I have a husband, we’re married and we’re growing this life together.”
I had to give up gardening, I love gardening. But I had to hire a gardener. There’s no way I can garden this property that we’re living on. I do little things like water the plants and stuff like that, but I used to garden my whole property, when we were living in a smaller place.
I gave up housekeeping. I had to give up housekeeping, and you know what? It bothers me how other people clean my house, they never do things the way I would’ve done it but oh well, I had to suck it up and deal with it.
As we all know, we cannot play every role. And if housekeeping was a role that I had to hold on to, I’d have to let something else go. So think about how many roles you play. And make sure that you can sacrifice some of the ones that aren’t vital to your thrival and to your happiness.
Then, make sure you start to establish what is vital – what are those things that you need for your self care and your overall happiness, and go back to setting boundaries. Boundaries my friend are going to save you, and it’s all about communication. And this is what I feel is missing, some people don’t yet have that courage to talk to others about what they need.
It can be difficult to tell other people what you need.
Maybe it’s even telling your husband, “hey, babe, I can’t do our laundry, I don’t have time, I don’t have energy. I want to make you happy, I want to be a good wife, but guess what? You’re a grown ass man.” Luckily I never even took the role upon myself to do someone else’s laundry. I’ll probably have to do Lucca’s laundry when he’s born, but I’m not going to make that a role unless it is forced upon me.
Hopefully I can just throw all Lucca’s stuff in Vito’s laundry basket, and he’ll do it, because honestly, we have to set boundaries for ourselves. But we’ve got to do it with the best of intentions, and all that love and all that attention that we can give to our roles are going to be enough.
You’ve got to believe that it’s enough from you to only play six different roles in this world, and be okay with that. You have to communicate to the other people that that you just love them, but you don’t have the time or the energy to give them everything or to make it your priority.
People will understand. They’ve got their priorities, they might not be suffering form the PPS like you are. But if you’re suffering from the people pleaser syndrome, I highly encourage you to take on these three strategies, and take action today, because there’s nothing worse than feeling guilty, overwhelmed, stressed, or unable to care for yourself due to the fact that you care for others.
I hope today was a great topic for you to be proactive and helping you move forward in your life with more energy, vibrancy, and less guilt, less stress, more peace of mind, because that’s what I truly wish for you.
If you are looking for a list of simple self care habits, check out my 7-Day Lifestyle Planner.