Beyond “people-pleasing” motives

Over the years, I’ve had to work to overcome the fear of being assertive when I’ve had a different perspective from another person. I’d withhold my two cents, or opposing ideas, to make sure everyone liked me. This desire to always be well liked also led me to take on more work than needed in certain situations, and I often apologized when it wasn’t necessary, feeling pressure to gain consistent approval. 

This attitude wasn’t the same as just being hospitable or kind, which are certainly natural ways for both men and women to act. It was partly correlated with a false sense of womanhood. I felt a pressure to act superficially polite, especially in uncomfortable situations when I should have spoken up. Some men do face unfair, “people-pleasing” pressures as well, such as being encouraged to sweep their feelings under the rug. 

Since my thoughts and actions were primarily based on self-concern, I knew I had to purify my motives and prayerfully address the issue.

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