In the above video, this person talks about sociopaths vs. people pleasers. It doesn’t get into the meat of it until about halfway through, but when you think about it in terms of high conflict divorce, these are typically couples made of people from both ends of the spectrum.
As a coach, I frequently see the people pleasers have gotten themselves into some really bad court orders. We examine what the chain of events were and how they got themselves there. Alot of times, in examining how the court process progressed, we can see that either the people pleaser entered into agreements that they truly did not want because they so badly wanted to stop the madness. They felt coerced or so afraid, fatigued, vulnerable or judged, that they finally gave in to the demands of the other person. Sometimes, the situation has materialized because the people pleaser thought about what the sociopath wanted and neglected to think about what they wanted. Suddenly, there is a court order that they are extremely unhappy about and the person decides it is extremely unfair so they try to get it changed, only to have the court keep reminding them that they agreed to it.
Am I blaming the people pleaser for everything that has happened? Not entirely, but in order to change a situation moving forward, you do need to know a little something about what has happened and how you got there, in order to make a conscious change in how things will be moving forward.
What usually has happened is that the people pleaser approached the situation by thinking about what the other person would want, or at least their interpretation of what the other person wants. People pleasers, or people living in fear of someone, will think in terms of tip toeing around the other person so as not to make them mad. This is a “give them what they want so as not to make them mad” tactic, but it is a tactic that is not good for the people pleaser long term.
Think about it this way, court is usually an arena that has a winner and a loser. If things have gone to court, one would think that both parties are approaching the system with the mindset of winning. That is not always the case. For the people pleaser, they tend to think about it in terms of the other person and not upsetting them. When you are embroiled in a court battle with a sociopath, narcissist or someone who can only see a conflict in terms of winning, that means that both parties are looking at what the egomaniac wants, and then one wonders why that person who is all about themselves, seemingly always wins in court?
Do the math here. Two people are in court, concerned about the needs of the egomaniac. Zero people are in court worrying about the needs of the people pleaser. If no one is addressing the needs of the people pleaser, how will the people pleaser ever leave court with an order that seems fair to them?
So I ask the question, who is looking out for your needs? Do you ask for what you want, give in to another and end up complaining about the deck being stacked against you? Why are you focused on the other person’s needs so intently? These are things that you want to examine so that you can be empowered in your life. Whether it is in the court setting, or whether you are dating. People pleasers have to actively work on learning to express their needs in a healthy way and if they do not learn these skills, they will continually give in to the demands of others and have difficulty setting and reaching goals. They will also have a hard time communicating with others and finding respectful, loving relationships.
You can learn to assert yourself and build confidence in who you are and what you want to achieve in your life. It starts with focusing on your own needs and desires. You may need to see a therapist to really figure out why you do the things you do, you may be able to work with a coach on boosting your self esteem and confidence, or you may need both, but being a people pleaser is a drain on your life and your energy level. If you think you are a people pleaser, find a way to move your needs up higher on your priority scale.