• Valerie Borkovich

5 Powerful ways to become more Authentic + Stop People Pleasing

Updated: Jul 30, 2021


We learn from a very young age that it’s safer to be agreeable.

We learn how to “feel out” a room, and adjust our words and actions accordingly.

We learn how to anticipate the needs of others, and do our best to provide for them.

We learn to say yes, when we really mean NO!

We learn to use external validation; others approval, to fill an aching void and feel


We learn to please.

scrabble tiles layed out to spell the words Who Are You?
Who are you?

Kindness, Generosity, and Manipulation...OH MY!


People Pleasing is manipulation in disguise.

According to Sasha Heinz, PhD, a developmental psychologist and life coach, “

We’re managing our own anxiety that people won't like us, by trying to control their

opinions of us.

Saying Yes to requests that you really don’t want to do, in order to be perceived in a

certain way is lying. Period!

I cause myself a lot of unnecessary suffering when I do this.

The anger, irritation and seething resentment that I ruminate in, is far worse than any

temporary disapproval I have received from saying NO to someone.

What people pleasing is NOT...


Now, I don’t want you to confuse the need to please, with the qualities of being kind,

generous , empathetic, and helpful. These are all positive traits that contribute to the

amazing person that you are!! It’s these positive traits that help build trust and


It’s when these positive traits morph into a survival skill of sorts - used to avoid rejection

and fill the need for approval, that things start to get messy.

I Can't Tell You What The Key To Success Is, But The Key To Failure Is Trying To Please Everyone - ED SHEERAN



As my days go by faster... and my time grows shorter, the lines around my eyes grow

long, and I’m met with a pulsating, ever growing need to live an authentic life...on my

own terms. There is no room for the anxiety of disappointing others. There's no time to

try and control their perception of me, in an authentic life , well lived.

Learn 5 simple steps you can use today to begin releasing some of the anxiety, anger, and disconnection that's been holding you down

But, I know that I’m not ALWAYS living according to this value. I give up my needs for

others wants...more often than I’d care to admit. I say yes and feel resentful. I say

No...and feel guilty. I’m plagued with a never ending stream of thoughts that want to

justify and prove that I am still a good person if -I-say -No.

Thoughts that criticize and make the other person the enemy for even asking for such a


People Pleasing Kills Authenticity


People pleasing shows up in big, obvious ways in our life. Ways in which there’s no

denying it.

Yep, I’m a people pleaser! It also shows up in little, insidious ways. Ways that we don’t

even realize that , bit by bit, we are killing our true selves.

Your co-worker is going on and on about another employee and how lazy they are. You

cordially listen, a perfectly timed “ uh-huh “ every now and then...just to let her know that

you’re engaged in the convo. Meanwhile, you’re cringing inside because you HATE

talking bad about people behind their backs. ( This is a value for me. Can’t tell, can you?)

But you stay and listen. To be polite . A piece of yourself dies.

The food you ordered took 45 minutes AND came out cold and rubbery, but you silently

choke it down anyway. You shrink.

The guy you’re seeing cancelled plans at the last minute...again! You politely tell him it’s

“no biggie”, we’ll try again next weekend. Then, you hang up and ruminate over all the

things you should have said. Your spirit dims.

It NEVER feels like the right time to ask for that money back ...that you lent out 6 months

ago! So, we’ll just sit around broke til payday.

Each time we deny our truth, a little piece of our true self shrivels.

Think about it like this...Each time you say YES to someone, you’re saying NO to yourself.

Why do we so often deny ourselves the very things that will make our spirit soar?

"Each time we say YES to someone, You're saying NO to yourself"

People Pleasing is Rooted FEAR


There’s nothing that young children want more than love, attention, and affection. To be

told you are a good boy/ be praised , appreciated, and approved of by the people

that you look up to, brings on a feeling of love and safety.

But what if the people that you look up to become disappointed in you? What if you

don’t get the approval you so desperately desire? What happens if you have loving

caretakers, but they are emotionally distant, stressed out and dealing with their own

fears? What if your caretakers are highly critical? No matter how hard you try, you can’t

seem to earn their approval...if you do, it’s often short lived.

I had a constant fear of being exposed as a a “bad girl”. The times I

remember being caught or getting in trouble for something and the feeling that stuck

with me was shame. Shame is defined as a painful feeling of humiliation or distress

caused by the consciousness of wrong or foolish behavior. Shame was always looming

in the back of my mind, and I would do anything to avoid that emotion.

There are many situations that can foster people-pleasing tendencies, but the bottom

line is this: You didn’t receive the message that you were valued and loved for who you

are. You felt like you needed to hide the “unlovable” parts of you.

Give your confidence a boost fast with these 13 easy tips

Many of these people pleasing tendencies carry over into our adult relationships.

In these relationships, you feel like you have to be of service in order to be loved. Being

nice is Safer. But it comes at a terrible cost...

A woman's arm with the words Live Authentically. Be True To You tattooed on it.
Live Authentically. Be True To You.

Authenticity Kills People Pleasing


In the same way that people pleasing kills authenticity, the opposite is true. If you want

to nip it in the bud...become a more authentic person. So, how do you go about doing

that? I was just about to tell you!

In order to become the most authentic version of your wonderful self, you’re gonna need

to get to know you a little better. More specifically, your core values.

Understanding what your core values are will help you to simplify your life. When you

know what’s important to you, you can eliminate those things from your life that no

longer serve you. Your values are the things that are important to you. You prioritize your

life based off of what your values are. Some examples of core values are: Security,

Acceptance, Self-Control, Loyalty, Creativity, and Dependability. I found an article that

has a great process for discovering what your core values are. You can check it out here .

Let Your Values be your guide


Knowing your priorities will help you determine if you have the time and energy for

something. Figuring out what makes you tick requires self awareness and mindfulness.

If something doesn’t align with your values, let it go. Becoming a more authentic person

will take a little effort. It might be uncomfortable at first. But the feeling you get, when

you live life more in alignment with your truth, is priceless. It feels like relief. It feels like

having space in your mind and your life to finally choose you. It feels like freedom!

But determining what your Core Values are, and prioritizing your life accordingly, is just

the first piece of the intricate puzzle that is you.

As promised, here are 5 quick tips to becoming a more authentic you + stop people

pleasing in the process!

5 Power Moves to Live a More Authentic Life + Stop People Pleasing.
5 Power Moves To Live A More Authentic Life + Stop People Pleasing

5 Powerful Tips to Become More Authentic

+ Stop People Pleasing!


1. Redefine your core values


As I mentioned above, knowing your values helps you prioritize things that are important

to you and make space in your life for them. Sometimes we have values ingrained in us

that we grew up with. Values that no longer ring true for us. Time to re-evaluate.

2. Put yourself first


Take some time before you quickly say “yes” to requests for your time, energy, o

money...if you don’t really want to do it, or you feel like you “should” do it...think again!

When you start listening to what is right for YOU, you’re getting closer to honoring your

authentic self.

3. Notice when you’re being inauthentic


Notice those times when you see yourself being inauthentic in your words or actions.

Then explore the fears and beliefs that prevent you from showing up as your most

authentic self in these situations.

4. Speak from your heart


This can be scary. If you hate confrontation, want to be seen in a certain way, and want

to avoid conflict, let me repeat again... this can be scary! But facing the fear is a

necessary evil if you want to live a life aligned with your truth. The important part about

honestly speaking your truth is to make sure that you consider the other person as well.

Are you blaming? Are you putting pressure on the other person? Or are you simply

sharing your truth? Also, speak your truth sooner rather than later. Stuffing your feelings

for too long is a recipe for passive/aggressive outbursts of rage.

5. Get in touch with your body


Past trauma, overthinking, information overload, and chronic busyness, all can

contribute to becoming disconnected from our bodies. It’s important to pay attention to

our physical selves as our bodies will convey some important info to us if we listen. Are

you feeling tense? Have you been carrying a knot around in your stomach all week?

How long will you ignore the pain and stiffness in your neck? Take a deep

hold release slowly...4...3...2...1….what is your body trying to tell you? Do

you need rest? Stress relief? Movement is so important for releasing stress and old

stagnant energy from our bodies.

Get out there and move! Go for a hike in nature. Ride a bike. Go to a park and see how

high you can swing! Dance! There are so many ways to

get moving other than just going to the gym….Just Do Something!!

My friend Simone has created a wonderful program! The emphasis is on dancing and

movement, to remove energetic blocks surrounding success and money. You can check

her out here !

Authenticity for the win!


There are so many ways to start moving towards your truth.

Applying even 1 of these tips in your life (1. Define your core values. 2. Put yourself first.

3. Notice when you're being inauthentic. 4. Speak from your heart. 5. Get in touch with

your body.) will massively affect how you show up in the world.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on authenticity and people pleasing. Please tell us about

your experience and what has worked for you. Let us know in the comment

section below.

If you found this post helpful , please share it with others.

Want an instant shift in your vibe and boost in your mood? Checkout this free checklist to become happier in minutes!

As Always, Love, Light, and Happiness,



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