10 Powerful Mindset Changes to Practice Self-Love when You’re a Compulsive People Pleaser/Codependent

10 Powerful Mindset Changes to Practice Self-Love when You’re a Compulsive People Pleaser/Codependent

Are you someone who willingly, or unwillingly, gives your power away to others?  As noted in Psychology Today, “Any time you allow someone to have a negative influence over the way you think, feel, or behave, you are giving them power over your life. This will rob you of the mental strength you need to reach your greatest potential.” Does that sound familiar? Do you find that you will do almost anything, including sacrificing your own needs, in order to make someone else happy?  We have all done this at times, but when people pleasing is habitual, compulsive and subconscious, it can be detrimental to our physical, mental, emotional, social, and spiritual health. As a child in a family with addiction, trauma, or other dysfunction, we often learn strategies to keep relationships going that could help meet our most basic needs, such as: safety, security, love, food, shelter, clothing, etc.  For example, we may have learned “making mom happy” was the way we received affection.  Or, if we learned to keep the house picked up, dad would be pleased, drink less, and be, therefore, less likely to become angry.  These strategies, while meeting our needs, can become dysfunctional strategies in adulthood when we subconsciously and almost “blindly” do anything we can to keep our spouse, boss, friend, or family member happy and pleased. When that happens, you can find yourself in a relationship where you deprive yourself of “self-love” and care, because you believe that someone else’s needs are more important than your own or that you are undeserving or unworthy of safe, healthy, nurturing love from others. If this sounds familiar...
Men and Mental Health – The High Cost of Societal Pressure to ‘Be a Man’

Men and Mental Health – The High Cost of Societal Pressure to ‘Be a Man’

Joe* walked into my office feeling alone, sad, agitated, disconnected from family and friends, ashamed to “need” support from a therapist, and even guilty for not being able to “handle things on his own.” In reality, he has an accomplished career, is a high achiever, is financially successful. He was completely at a loss as to how he has ended up in my office. I assure you, Joe is not alone! Yet, many of the men who come to me feel this confusion and pressure about seeking help due to the stigma of men and mental health. There are societal beliefs and pressures such as “men have to be tough and strong,” “men don’t cry,” “men are allowed to express anger, but not hurt or sadness,” “men must provide and protect,” and “men must achieve and perform.” Men have tremendous pressure to stay within the societal walls of what it means to “be a man.” In fact, while the stigma of mental illness has lessened over the past several years, it remains stubbornly strong among men, who are typically averse to admitting to any problem and convinced they can “handle” anything themselves, according to a recent news story. Men know that if they go outside of these societal norms, they can be seen as “weak,” “not a man,” or “feminine.” And, because of this pressure, men often are fighting depression, anxiety, addiction(s), trauma, or other mental health concerns that are not being treated. Those underlying issues can manifest in unhealthy actions. For example, men can express their deep sadness, loneliness, and hurt as anger, agitation, impatience, isolation, and irritability....