Confessions of a Recovering People Pleaser

I have a confession to make. I am a “People Pleaser”, and it can be rather bothersome at times. I really want to be liked and accepted. I want to be able to say with Sally Field, “You like me, you really like me”. However, life is not an awards ceremony and ultimately people pleasing is a rather exhausting and frustrating activity. The good news is, I am in recovery. The bad news is, sometimes I relapse. The best news is God loves me anyway AND “I can do all things through Him who strengthens me”! 
Now don’t get all preachy on me, I know I am supposed to want to please only God. But I have three things (last count) working against me and I sometimes don’t recognize them, at least right away. They are the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life. They are common to all of us who believe. All sin will fall into one of those categories at its root. Fortunately, Jesus supplies us with all we need to do battle with all three. First of all, He laid down His life to gain our freedom and give us victory over sin and death. Then, He gives us our Spiritual Armour, His Holy Spirit, grace for the journey and friends in our faith. He lives to intercede for us and never abandons us. So how is it we, or I, still manage to find myself entangled in sin? “The devil made me do it”, is not something that a believer really can say. The book of James tells us it’s our own desires that lead us astray. Jesus has severed the puppet strings which Satan held on any believer who calls on His name in faith. So it goes back to the big three. All three are involved in the area of people pleasing. In it’s most subtle way it can lead us off God’s path for our lives as well as impact His will in the work He is doing in the lives of others. It can busy us with activities that are not in accordance with His Ephesians 2:10 “good works”  prepared in advance for us to do. It leads to discouragement with self, others and at times, those we want to please most! So how can we avoid the “PP” in our lives? Well, I will say we follow the One who came to lead the way. We pray, confess, and bring it into the light. Darkness and light are incompatible. Sharing our struggles with another brings light and keeps the enemy from making mincemeat out of we little sheep! That being said, remember that pleasing people is a by-product (sometimes) of pleasing God. He is able to make our enemies at peace with us, how much more will he allow us to be pleasing to those who love us anyway and grant us favor with others.
 In the end, knowing that regardless of who likes us or doesn’t, 
we are completely accepted, embraced and loved, 
not just “liked” by the One who has given us all we need 
for every good work by the power working in us in Christ Jesus. 

You think about that. 
And be sure to let me know if you like my post. 
Oops, relapse. 
  I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me! 
Have a God pleasing day, friends!

Published by enthusiasticallydawn

Dawn Paoletta is the author of Journaling for Discovery and Delight. Her writing is included in several anthologies and her poems have been included in the Wickford Poetry and Art Exhibit and Books. Dawn is currently working on her next book. Inquiries at

2 thoughts on “Confessions of a Recovering People Pleaser

  1. From one PP in recovery to another: “I like this post, I really like it!”Seriously, this is wonderful and resonates so deeply with me. I'm a People Pleaser from way back, and it never ceases to amaze me, for example, how 29 people can say something positive & encouraging to me, but then along comes one who says something just downright mean and awful, and I'll spend hours agonizing & stressing over that one person & their ugly comment. But as I said, I'm in 'recovery' in this area, too. It's been a long time comin'. Thanks for this post and the lesson within! 🙂


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