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The desire to Constantly Please: negative in the long term?

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Have you ever met a person who made you feel the need to meet all of their needs? Sometimes, either due to the hypervaluation or romanticization that we make of them, the expectations that we had placed in them or Simply because we want to, we end up giving excessive importance to the emotional care of other people, developing a constant desire for please them.

The constant desire to please another person can jeopardize the emotional attention we pay to our needs. When we give more importance to the emotions and needs of others than to our own, we question our relevance and importance of self-care. Furthermore, sometimes we do not focus on taking care of other people, but we do not consider whether we are receiving something in return in that exchange, or if what we receive even has an impact positive.

In this article, we are going to reflect on the desire to constantly please other people, delving into the possibility that, maintained in the long term, it can have a negative impact on our psychology, self-esteem and way of relating to others.

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What is the desire to please?

To understand what we are talking about when we refer to the constant desire to please, it is important to first break down its meaning. The constant desire to please is manifested when a person continually seeks approval and satisfaction of others, often sacrificing their own needs and desires in the process. Thus, it is reflected in everyday actions, from accepting additional tasks to avoiding expressing disagreement, all carried out in the hope of maintaining superficial harmony.

This desire may be rooted in the need to be loved, fears of rejection, or people's constant search for validation from people whose opinions we consider more important than those of others. At their core, a person influenced by the constant desire to please finds themselves becoming a emotional juggler, balancing the expectations of others while fighting to maintain his own authenticity.

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Short term benefits

In the short term, the constant desire to please can offer a number of seemingly positive benefits. In general, when we are constantly pleasing other people's wishes, we receive good initial treatment from them, showing gratitude for what we do for them. Thus, people who strive to meet the expectations of others often experience an immediate sense of social gratification.

Instant approval and recognition can cultivate strong interpersonal relationships and minimize superficial conflicts. Additionally, this behavior can generate a sense of belonging and acceptance in various environments. The ability to adapt and please is commonly perceived as a valuable social skill. For their part, these experiences and emotions can be very rewarding for us not only in the short term, but they can have some type of influence on our self-esteem and self-image that we have of ourselves. themselves.

However, it is crucial to question whether these short-term benefits justify the potential long-term costs in terms of emotional well-being and personal authenticity. Is it possible that, behind the façade of complacency, tensions and challenges accumulate that might initially go unnoticed?

  • Related article: "6 guidelines to learn to say 'no'"

Long-term risks and challenges

Those who constantly seek to please others often find themselves in an emotional dilemma. The constant sacrifice of your own needs and desires can lead to the gradual loss of personal identity. Anxiety, emotional exhaustion, and difficulty setting healthy boundaries are potential consequences. Additionally, maintaining a complacent image can result in superficial relationships, as others may perceive a lack of authenticity.

The constant desire to please can also create a vicious cycle of unrealistic expectations. Those who have established a pattern of complacency may find themselves trapped in the pursuit endless approval, fearing the consequences of saying "no" or expressing their opinions genuine. This fear of rejection can undermine self-esteem and fuel social anxiety.

Additionally, there is a risk that those who constantly seek to please others will find themselves exploited or misunderstood. People may perceive your behavior as manipulative or inauthentic, which could result in the loss of genuine relationships.

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Achieve a healthy balance

Given the challenges associated with the constant desire to please, it is essential to explore strategies that allow you to find a healthy balance. Setting clear boundaries is essential; learn to say "no" in a respectful and assertive way can preserve authenticity without compromising relationships. Open and honest communication plays a crucial role: expressing needs and wants clearly fosters more genuine relationships.

Cultivating self-awareness is also key; Understanding the motivations behind the desire to please allows you to make more informed decisions. The practice of taking care of yourself, both physically and emotionally, is essential to avoid burnout. Ultimately, finding balance involves recognizing that meeting the expectations of others should not come at the expense of your own happiness and authenticity. By adopting these strategies, it is possible to transform the desire to please into a valuable social tool, while preserving personal integrity and emotional well-being.

  • Related article: "Do you really know what self-esteem is?"


In conclusion, while the constant desire to please may offer short-term benefits, its long-term risks are significant. Loss of identity, emotional exhaustion, and difficulty setting boundaries can undermine mental health.

Thomas Santa Cecilia

Thomas Santa Cecilia

Thomas Santa Cecilia

Consulting Psychologist: Master in Cognitive Behavioral Psychology

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However, adopting strategies for healthy balance can transform this desire into a valuable social tool, preserving authenticity and fostering genuine relationships. The key lies in self-awareness and assertive communication.

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