Do You Try Too Hard To Please?
If youre like most women, you go out of your way to make sure your loved ones are happy even if that means stretching yourself too thin. Women are 80 percent more likely than men to try too hard to please those around them, and they feel guilty when they cant, says Jana Kemp, author of No! How One Simple Word Can Transform Your Life.
If you know you try too hard to do everything for everyone, here are some tips on how to let yourself off the hook:
Wait 24 hours before agreeing to do something youre not sure about. Sleeping on it helps clarify priorities.
Find an easy solution. Instead of volunteering precious time to a charitable cause, for instance, make a donation just this once. Instead of baking cookies for the bake sale, buy them.
Try to temper or qualify your responses. Phrases like When I can or Maybe in the future will show youre open to a possibility but not locked in.
Delegate. If you cant do something, suggest or enlist someone else who can. That way you can stay involved without having to take full responsibility.
Optimize. When youve got some free time at home, turn off your cell phone, laptop and beepers so that you can focus on what you'd like to do.
Practice saying no to little things, even if its just to your reflection in the mirror at first. This can give you the confidence to make it a habit.
Reward yourself with stress-free activities, such as reading or watching a movie, taking a long soak in the bath or getting a massage. Youll feel more relaxed and learn to put yourself first once in a while.
Robin Westens latest book is Relationship Repair (Sterling).
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