Breaking Free: The Journey to Recovery from People-Pleasing
I discovered something startling this year: the Flight/Fight or Freeze (a biological stress response) has additional layer: Fawn. It is often called ‘people pleasing’ and many of my clients seek to break free from this once and for all What Is Fight, Flight, or Freeze? Do you recognise this trait? Read on to discover more […]
I discovered something startling this year: the Flight/Fight or Freeze (a biological stress response) has additional layer: Fawn. It is often called ‘people pleasing’ and many of my clients seek to break free from this once and for all
What Is Fight, Flight, or Freeze?
Do you recognise this trait? Read on to discover more
Interestingly, I had not considered this to be a response to stress but the more I read, the more it made sense.
In sessions, I discuss the ‘fight, flight or freeze’ responses with clients who are suffering from stress. These are the three most basic stress responses. They reflect how your body will react to danger. Fawn is the fourth stress response that has recently been added.
The fight response is your body’s way of facing any perceived threat aggressively. Flight means your body urges you to run from danger, understandably at times of ‘fight or flight’ our body ramps up our cortisol (stress hormone) response to make sure we can survive whatever is coming at us. Freeze is your body’s inability to move or act against a threat. Fawn is your body’s stress response to try to please someone to avoid conflict.
The goal of the fight, flight, freeze, and fawn response is to decrease, end, or evade danger and return to a calm, relaxed state. This is often why clients say they have panic attacks because their bodies appear to take over and create physical symptoms in an effort to adjust to the cortisol.
It would appear that the ‘fawn’ response is a people pleasing behaviour – in the same way that an animal may lay over on its side in an attempt to placate another animal. Although we may not change or body position as humans, nevertheless; fawn; is a common behaviour that can be detrimental to one’s mental health and overall well-being.
The constant need for validation and approval from others can lead to exhaustion, anxiety, and a loss of one’s authentic self. In this blog post, we’ll explore the concept of people-pleasing, its impact on individuals, and how hypnotherapy can be a valuable tool in the journey toward recovery.
People-pleasing is rooted in a deep-seated desire to be liked, accepted, and validated by others. It often involves sacrificing one’s own needs, opinions, and boundaries to meet the expectations of those around them. This habitual behaviour can lead to a cycle of discontent and a gradual erosion of self-esteem.
The Impact on Mental Health:
The constant pursuit of external validation can take a toll on mental health. Individuals who engage in people-pleasing may experience heightened stress, anxiety, and even depression. Over time, the inability to prioritise personal well-being can lead to burnout and a sense of emptiness.
Recognizing the Signs:
Recovery from people-pleasing begins with self-awareness. Recognising the signs of this behaviour, such as difficulty saying “no,” fear of rejection, and a constant need for affirmation, is crucial. Once identified, individuals can start the process of reclaiming their autonomy.
The role of Hypnotherapy:
Hypnotherapy, a therapeutic technique that uses guided relaxation and focused attention, can be a powerful tool in addressing and overcoming people-pleasing tendencies. Through hypnosis, individuals can access their subconscious mind and work towards rewiring patterns of thought and behaviour.
How Hypnotherapy Works:
Hypnotherapy can help individuals explore the root causes of people-pleasing behaviour, often stemming from past experiences or learned patterns. I see this often in clients who have experienced trauma as children or adverse childhood experiences which they may not have even acknowledge has triggered such a response in them. Often these patterns are so hard wired that a client may not even be aware they exist. By accessing the subconscious mind, hypnotherapy aims to replace negative thought patterns and behaviours with more boundaried responses. In hypnotherapy sessions, empowering individuals to establish healthier boundaries and prioritize their own needs is often a main focus.
As individuals undergo hypnotherapy sessions, they can gain the tools needed to break free from the cycle of people-pleasing. Empowered with a newfound sense of self-worth and confidence, they can learn to set boundaries, express their needs, and cultivate more fulfilling relationships.
Recovery from people pleasing
Recovering from people-pleasing is a transformative journey that requires self-reflection, awareness, and, in many cases, professional support. Hypnotherapy serves as a valuable complement to traditional therapeutic approaches, offering individuals a unique and effective way to break free from the shackles of people-pleasing and embrace a more authentic and fulfilling life.
If you would like to talk about making changes to your life including improving your confidence to create and maintain boundaries and put an end to people pleasing patterns of behaviour, get in touch. I offer a free phone consultation.
You can contact Julie on her facebook page or email [email protected]