I want to tell you about a moment that went on to completely transform the trajectory of my life. It was small, and the person who gave it to me doesn’t even know how powerfully her words impacted me (and continue to do so)... but they did indeed change everything… and so I want to share them with you.
“For as long as you’re waiting for him to finally change… you’ll be waiting to finally be happy.”
She then went on to ask me the question that I want to ask you…
“What if he never changes? Are you going to be ok with never ever being happy because of choices he is making?”
I was only 19, and it changed everything.
Not overnight, in fact as a codependent and poster-child for people-pleasing I still had a long, long road ahead of me, but that question that day in that tiny office was the first time I realized that I could choose a different path for myself.
With every new season of life my people-pleasing habits showed up and threatened to derail me. Every big life change first felt like an invitation to regress but then I realized it was actually an invitation to grow, heal and experience mastery on my healthy-boundaries journey.
That is what I hope you choose for you too.
When I was 19 I was willing to change and contort everything about myself, do anything in exchange for love and belonging in my family of origin.
When I was 21, I was willing to change and contort everything about myself, do anything (including suffer acute adrenal burnout and an emotional meltdown) in exchange for love and belonging in my newly found faith family.
When I became a mother at 25 I found myself doing everything I possibly could to simultaneously manage my children’s emotions and the expectations of the people around me, watching my mothering.
When I immigrated from South Africa to the US in 2016, I thought that I had finally hit the jackpot: with a squeaky clean slate I could finally belong. I could be whoever I wanted to be - I could be whoever ‘they’ wanted me to be… I finally had somewhere to belong...
Except I couldn’t, not once did my character contortions, personality perfectionism or empath manipulations give me what I had been craving all along: love and belonging.
All my people-pleasing & codependency ever gave me was pain, explosive anger, resentment, bitterness, a trail of broken relationships, loneliness and bucketloads of anxiety.
Every single season brought with it a deeper, wider and richer healing, and my faith, expertise as a social worker, my experience after 12 years in ministry and the nonprofit sector, and my unquenchable thirst for learning, understanding and practical application of what I was learning was beginning to accumulate and build momentum.
My “growth & healing opportunities” haven’t stopped for one second: even as I embarked on my own entrepreneurship journey.
You see, your personal problems with people-pleasing will always become business problems (just like they become marriage problems, family problems, motherhood problems and friendship problems)...
You might know what I mean, you might be here because you have the same struggles & obstacles:
Constantly worrying what other people think about what you're doing.
Managing your messaging/marketing in light of what you think others are thinking about you.
Constantly questioning your own decisions.
Always needing reassurance from other people.
Being paralyzed by not feeling supported by significant others.
Feeling terrified of hurting or disappointing your children.
Feeling overwhelmed by all the needs & emotions you are managing at any given moment.
Constantly changing your approach and decisions… always chasing the latest and greatest things.
Over-investing in the latest gadgets or secret formulas with no success.
Adapting your style and approach to mimic the successful people around you.
Feeling like you need to be someone else to be successful.
Feeling guilty about prioritizing your dreams and goals over the needs of others.
Giving away too much for free and feeling resentful of your clients.
Struggling to REALLY ask for help and be vulnerable in your support circle for fear of shame, judgement and not wanting to look like you don’t have it all together.
Constantly comparing yourself to others.
Your personal problems are your business problems.
You don’t necessarily need a better strategy or a prettier website or a different personality profile and strengths/talents…
You need to deal with your people-pleasing.
You need to learn how to get back into the driver's seat of your own life, and how to stay there… no matter how scary, new, different and chartered that territory is.
Friend, I have been there, done that and I have a collection of T-shirts.
I am also still there… taking everything I have learnt over 15 years of dedicated formal and informal study and learning how to make it real in every single area of my life.
I know that you know that when it comes to people-pleasing there is a lot at stake:
Your physical health
Your mental health
But did you know that your mission is at stake too?
I didn’t choose how or whether people-pleasing and codependency came into my life BUT I will choose to get it out of the driver’s seat.
I am choosing for it to be a thing I am GROWING through, and out of.
I am choosing to have every single area of my life flourish together.
I am choosing to re-write the script that has been imprisoning me...
Won’t you come with me?
If you are ready to tap out of trading who you were born to be for love and belonging…
If you are ready to trade shame and guilt for curiosity and freedom.
If you are ready to trade fear or rejection & isolation for courage & true belonging…
If you are ready to trade their choices for your own power...
Then I am ready to walk alongside you as we take this journey towards whole life flourishing, together :)
LET’S DO THIS. LET'S FLOURISH.
I am in the process of accepting applications for beta testers of my new Healthy & Heart-Centered Boundaries Masterclass. If you would like to be considered for a coaching & learning opportunity of a lifetime, one that might just change EVERYTHING for you, your life & business - Fill out the following form and I'll be in touch with more details.