I’ve always known that I tend to be a “door mat” constantly sacrificing my own happiness in order to guarantee those around me are happy. I do this much too often even though the end result is the same each & every time. I get asked to do something, that I know right away I have no desire to do, but I cheerfully agree (because it’s impossible for me tell people no) then I get angry at myself & my mind runs wild the entire time I am doing something I never wanted to do. I tell myself I should’ve just said no, I should’ve been honest, I should’ve, could’ve, would’ve but unfortunately I am a “Yes Man”.
Now here I am, stuck in a commitment that 2 minute phone call graciously declining would’ve done the trick but no. It’s 10:30am & I am in downtown Austin, super hungover & eating cheeseburgers even though I don’t eat red meat and I desperately wanted to be heading home to San Antonio as soon as we checked out of our hotel. But how could I say no to my best friend? Easy Jen, “Hey Chris, I am hungover and tired and I would like to get home at a decent hour so we’re gonna hit the road now but I hope you guys enjoy the greasy burgers & I will see you back in SA later this afternoon”. Sounds simple enough, doesn’t sound like a statement that anyone would take offense to, but still, I AM PHYSICALLY UNABLE TO SAY NO.
I realized while in treatment last year that a lot of addicts have issues with boundaries. Maybe it’s embedded into our naturally co-dependent nature or maybe its tired to drug use in general, but whatever the case, boundaries are not only good to set, they are also necessary if you ever want to find inner peace.
This topic was one of the many issues that I was required to work on while in rehab, this along with finding inner peace, meditating, allowing myself to make female friends (ughh) and most of all learning to love myself. I knew that I would have to work on the “Door Mat” thing before I could successfully work on the others. I had decided I would no longer be a “Yes Man” & I was going to keep my own happiness in mind from now on. I told myself I would do ANYTHING that does not bring me joy. But sadly, that rule I put on myself was very short lived.
I have realized, even in sobriety, I struggle with the people pleasing aspect of my personality. Unsure if this is caused by my fear of being alone or the overwhelming desire to fit in and be liked. What I do know is that I will never find happiness if I don’t learn to stand up for what I want.
- Give: but don’t allow yourself to be used
- Love: but don’t allow your heart to be abused
- Trust: but don’t be naive
- Listen: but don’t lose your own voice