It's a great feeling to help others. Helping someone is rewarding, as long as we are looking after ourselves at the same time and not sacrificing our own happiness.
I was a perfect example of a people pleaser. Saying yes to everything was a habit, I'd put everyone else's needs before my own and it sucked the happiness right out of me.
Now I know how important it is to take care of myself. When I take care of me, I then have the energy to give to others. Here are some great tips on how to be there for others without putting your own happiness at stake.
1. It's your choice. I always felt like I didn't have an option when someone asked me for help. Know you have a choice, you can say 'no'. You can choose who you want to spend your precious time and energy on.
2. Take your time. Most of the time the person doesn't need an answer straight away. If someone asks you for a favour tell them you have to get back to them later so you can check if you're busy, then you have time to think about whether you actually really want to help and if you have the time and energy to fit it in.
3. Saying no. If you figure it's not worth it, say no. It's tempting to explain why you can't but this can backfire. 'I can't help because I've got my gym class then and I'll be really tired after', the person asking for your help can still try to talk you into it by saying 'what if you have a rest then come later?'. When saying 'no' you don't need to defend your decision. 'Im sorry I can't help. I hope everything goes well', with this answer there's no room to wiggle and try to convince you.
4. Baby steps. Like learning anything new, take small steps. Start by saying no to the coffee date you've squeezed in rather than saying no to being your friends brides maid. Saying no takes practice when you start small you can work your way up to the more difficult 'no's'.
5. Fear. You may fear you will have a falling out with the person. I always imagined it to be far worse then it turned out, I thought all my friendships would end when in fact they didn't. They became stronger, my close friends always understood and respected my decisions.
You have to take care of you, invest your time and energy into yourself first. You always come first, no one can look after you for you, it's up to you. You'll be more energised and have time to help the people you really want to help.
If you like this post and would like to receive my new posts weekly, please leave your email address here.