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People pleasers have an unfortunate habit of presenting themselves weakly. They lack assertiveness training and therefore have bad body language, posture and voice tone. This makes people disrespect them, partly because they don’t respect themselves! In this video, we explore why people pleasers and nice guys (or guys with nice guy syndrome) struggle to get respect, and how their weak communication skills often lead to misunderstandings, creepiness, or just a feeling that what they have to say simple is not good enough, creating the toxic shame that kills self confidence.
08:35 General issues
11:57 Why this happens
So recently I did a short video about people pleasers, sounding weak, kind of criticizing and pointing out the fact that nice guys and people pleasers have a weak way of expressing themselves verbally, that causes them to be disrespected. And that got a fairly mixed reaction. So I thought I’d expand on it, he’ll explain a bit more about why this happens, what it looks like, why it causes you to be disrespected, why it causes you to ruin your confidence, and why it’s such an important thing to work on first, when you’re trying to recover from people pleasing and nice guy syndrome.
Now, there are actually lots of different categories of people pleaser, and I’ve covered that in different material. For now, I’m just going to focus on two different types which are kind of the introverted and the extroverted, because they do present differently, both have weak presentations, but in a different way. So in general, the more introverted type people will tread softly and gently with the way that they express themselves, they take the path of least resistance to try and avoid disapproval as much as possible, they’re trying to do as little as possible that might provoke a bad reaction. So they’ll take the bass and the balls out of their voice. And this applies to men and women equally, they’ll kind of pitch the voice up and sort of soften it like you talk to a baby or a puppy, or like customer service people talk to you, there’s kind of a gentle voice that doesn’t have any kind of threatening tone to it. And they tend to end sentences with an inflection. Like they’re asking a question. Like, they’re not sure about what they’re saying, maybe, and creates this kind of tone of like, I’m not really committed to what I’m saying, I’m not really sure of what I’m saying, I’m open to being challenged moment is changing my mind. They will do this, of course, with a content, they tend to choose middle ground perspectives, like they might argue for or against something, but in such a way where they’ve got a backdoor, they can easily change to the other side of the argument of the disagreement gets too intense. They pick and choose not only the way they present, but what they say, with plenty of Get Out of Jail Free cars, they never fully committed into the thing. So they can avoid a confrontation. Some of them at least tend to interview rather than share equally. So if you’re in a conversation with them, you’ll find that you’re giving all the information. And they’re kind of provoking you into doing that. So they share very little about themselves. And they seem to be running on a program where if they get you talking about what you want to talk about and ask you questions, it’s the safest conversation they can have, they can’t possibly accidentally provoke you with things that are true about themselves. And they can just ask sort of gentle softball questions that get you talking about the things you love and the things that you always feel agreement about. They have eye contact issues, I won’t say they just avoid eye contact. Because that’s not always the case, though, of course, a lot of my clients do feature somewhere on the autistic spectrum, even the high functioning ones. So sometimes the eye contact thing is just a kind of inborn problem that they have. But what I find with introverts is they’ll avoid eye contact while they’re speaking. Like they don’t want to face you, they don’t want to see that disapproval. They don’t want to come across as too assertive or aggressive. But when you’re talking, they might overdo the eye contact, like they’re deeply enthralled with what you’re saying, deeply committed. Another way we could separate these categories, not just introvert and extrovert, but anxious and avoidant attachment is just introvert and extrovert happen to align with those quite strongly in my experience. So the anxious attachment style also sort of clinging to the other person, let them do all the work, while they sort of do everything they can to not lose the person. So generally, the introverted anxious type will present in such a way that emphasizes the other person’s higher status. You always feel like your superior when you’re talking to them, they make you feel that way. And they’ll do whatever they can to ensure that you feel that way. Whereas extroverts and avoidant attachment people pleasers a nice guy as you get almost the opposite, but still crazy kind of approach happening. So generally, what they’ll do is they’ll try too hard to get your attention and keep your attention even when they try to look cool and apathetic. They’re still trying hard to look like that, you know, and if you have even some social intuition, you’ll see that they’re trying too hard. You know, that the staunch face is a little too staunch and the snakes and everything they use is just a little too tactical. But generally what they’re trying to do is seek approval. So whereas the introverted anxious people try to avoid disapproval, avoid rejection, prevent it from happening. The extrovert avoidant type person will actually try to manufacture approval, right, they’ll make you like them. And that’s the general approach. But there’s lots of exceptions to everything I’m saying some people sort of slip through the cracks. But you know, I’ve worked for 1000s of people in this category now and there definitely are themes. So the extrovert avoidant types you might see they’re talking louder than as needed, you know, center of attention type stuff. So that’s kind of rare if they also socially anxious, but you’ll see them interrupting.
They do story stealing, and joke stealing, they always try to top whatever is being talked about, they want to be the punchline of the conversation. So if someone says something funny, they’ll top it with something even funnier, and kind of steal the thunder, or they’ll beat you in the story. You know, I had this thing Oh, you said that you should see what I heard, you know, and they always trying to be the bigger person spotlight the center of attention, trying to show off basically, and they think it works. And sometimes it does, it can work actually, very effectively. Just look at a stand up comedian. It’s very effective form of avoidance style, people pleasing. They will ramble. So there’s the more anxious types, they’ll ramble. Refuse to cut threads. Just keep talking stalking topic on topic over explain themselves giving too much justification, too much rationale, and they’ll kill silences. They don’t let people just sit quietly. They certainly don’t allow awkward silences to occur. So they fill up fill that space with blather. And they’ll kill tension as well. So if there’s any tension rising, they’ll kill that with humor or distraction topic changes, things like that. They don’t let things get heated. They won’t let other people have a confrontation. They’ll step in and moderate and mediate it. can’t shut the fuck up. Basically, let people feel uncomfortable emotions. I say they I’m talking about my past self here, right, I get it. avoidant types will ask questions that aren’t really questions. They’re more like statements that show off. I remember seeing this a lot when I was in university, you always get that prick who just wish would just sit down. And maybe I was that prick. Actually, every time they got up to ask a question, it was five minutes of ranting. And there wasn’t even really a question. It’s just the guy trying to show how much he understood the teacher or how much he knows or that he’s better than the teacher. So sometimes you’ll get the extrovert type, they’ll ask you a question. But they’re actually showing just how amazing they are to have thought of that question. That kind of thing where they hide statements in questions. And they tend to be overly sensitive to dissent and disagreement. You know, they actually might be quite argumentative tribal, they get outraged, especially on the internet, where there’s no risk of getting punched in the face kind of thing. They’re resistant. They’ll say, Yeah, but a lot. So no matter what you say, they’ve got to resist it in some way. They can’t just agree with it wholesale, you know. So the interview times are much more agreeable, like let’s just not rock the boat with the extra type is more dominant. They’re like, I’m going to try and get you to agree with me to force us into agreement agreement, still the goal. And I’ll back down if I can get you to agree or back down to at least we agree. Rather than the shortest path the introverts take, the extrovert will actually try to control you into agreement, they’ll try to dominate you. I used to be this type of extrovert and there’s still bits of it in me. And then there are certain things that both do that all in like a general to nice guys and people pleasers and don’t really belong to any particular category, specifically, hunched posture, indicating fear and self protection, you know, the the leader of the pack opens up all of this area, any type of mammal, dominant confident member of the pack will open this area saying go ahead and try and bite me kind of thing. It’s a very open air, it shows I feel secure in myself, I feel like I can protect myself. And what you’ll notice is the classic it hunch with a lot of nice guys of people pleasers or crossing of arms, that kind of guy holds his beer like this, when he’s at the pub does this protection of this area in general. And chin down, head down, shoulders down, the thing that says I’m trying to take the least amount of space as possible. They might even be like they they don’t spread their legs out when they sit down on a chair, especially say in a bus was shared seating or anything, they try to stay within the lines so they don’t interfere with anyone else’s space physically. They’ll often do this with the volume of their voice as well. They’ll try to restrict it to just the person they’re talking to, which usually means a fall short and they’re hard to hear. And they try not to invade other people’s space. Nobody’s you know, not involved in the situation gets to hear with the exception of the show off who’s trying to get other people to hear so that you can bring them into a circle. They’re weak with eye contact in general. So you ask any sort of nice guy, what was the eye color of the person you’re just talking to, and he’ll be like me, because he was too busy staring at her chest, or the chin or the ground or anything that was more comfortable to look at anything that doesn’t create intimacy and confrontation. They’ve got a gentle customer service voice like I said the extroverts can be exceptional here but the general rule is take the base out speak really nice speak in a way that nobody’s gonna get too upset with us. That voice oversharing to anticipate and defuse objections. So people pleasers will speak in such a way where when they’re finished speaking, they’ve hopefully negated any chance of a confrontation, any chance of a conflict, any chance of being disliked. So as they’re speaking, they will overthink, they’ll consider all the possible things they’re saying and how those ramifications go. The ripple out effect of the emotions that they’re causing everyone. And if they feel that option, I’ve gone off track, I might be upsetting someone offending someone confusing someone. So quickly throw out extra stuff to try and cover that. Now, it’s amazing how often I’ll be talking to one of my clients, especially early on in our work. And I’ll ask him, you know, what would you like to talk about today, and it will take him five to 10 minutes to get to the point, because he’s doing so much kind of anticipatory work is saying like, well, this is the thing I hopefully you think it’s a good thing to work on. But, you know, I’ve been thinking about it a lot. And maybe it is important, because there’s other thing happened. I’m just sitting there going like, What the fuck are we talking about? But he wants to lay this groundwork first, make sure that by the time I hear it, all possible objections have happened as has great sense of suspense. That usually just leads to confusion and boredom, which backfires. people pleasers tend to tolerate bullying and disrespect. They’re very non confrontational. I mean, if you’ve watched any of my work, a lot of it’s about confrontation and managing manipulation. But generally, the hallmark of a people pleaser is that you can get away with treating them poorly, and fake laughs and fake smiles, which is the body language version of agreement, right? nodding. It’s kind of like if you’re in a team meeting, and you say something, that it’s both unfunny, offensive, and they disagree with, you’ll get a smile and a nod from the people pleaser. They’ll laugh at jokes that aren’t funny, that kind of thing. Why? Why do people behave in such a ridiculous way that has no real obvious benefits? Well, the innate belief of the people pleaser is that we are supposed to control other people’s emotions. Keep them within a narrow band of pleasurable sensations and comfortable, familiar sensations so that they’ll behave in a way that doesn’t upset us. And we’ll remain in a comfortable band of familiar emotions. So we’re controlling others to control our own comfort, we our comfort depends on them behaving in a approval type way towards us, to validate us and make us feel safe. And so we please them to please ourselves. That’s the Innate system that everyone works off. And if that doesn’t sound like it’s going to work very well. I’m here to tell you, it doesn’t police not once again to adulthood. So this affects way more than just what you say. It affects how you say it, how you hold yourself, how you walk, it affects everything. You are this constant presentation of yourself as constant expression. And people pleasing pours out of you all the time, almost like a vibration. And I’m not a spiritual person. But I can I can walk to a crowd and spot people pleasers, and they haven’t said a word to me yet. And I don’t think I’m the only one. That’s not some psychic ability. They’re obvious, right? They are obsequious in the way they act. They’re they’re supplicants, they’re just kind of stand out as people who even if they’re putting on a show, they are trying too hard. They want that approval, it just shows. Now, of course, it really has convinced ourselves that this approach is genuine. This is who we really are to who we really want to be. It’s respectful. It’s kind. And even though we’re like a role model, like we’re showing everyone how they should be, despite the fact that we secretly admire and even in the others who are way different, who are assertive, who respect themselves, who are willing to confront and stand up for what they believe and who speak with certainty. You know, we admire those people. And then we talk ourselves into believing that we need to speak a different way and present ourselves differently. You know, a lot of times people pleasers just not aware that they’re doing this, they lack a lot of self awareness about the nonverbals of their expression, so to speak, the tone and pitch and everything. And, you know, so often during coaching sessions, I’m pointing out these little flaws to my clients, and they just totally not aware that they’ve ever, you know, been this way. And then they’ll watch the video afterwards and just kind of be shocked, like Jesus Christ. Am I always doing it? It’s horrible. Now I can see it. I can not see it as it’s irritating. It’s how would anyone respect me if I’m doing this? And this is why it’s such a big deal, because these little things have a big impact. Do you want to be respected by others and eventually respect yourself. These little things a keystone, they’re not just some little extra bit there most of it, most of what we express his body language tone, it’s not the actual content that matters that much. And so most of the information that people are getting about us isn’t to do with the words. And so people pleasers and nice guys, again, to a self sabotaging cycle, you disrespect yourself, which provokes other people to disrespect you. I mean, they’re trying to get feedback from you on how worthy you are. And you’re telling them not very, so they go with that. And you take that disrespect, as negative feedback about yourself, like there’s something wrong with me, you worry that they won’t like you. And your solution to fix that is to double down on the very people pleasing stuff that made them disrespect you in the first place. And around and around you go. And this is why the people pleasing strategy that worked for children, and you know, people aren’t expected to be assertive just starts to fall to pieces when you become an adult. By the time you know, you’re 40 and married with kids, nobody respects you, and this doesn’t work at all. And you just keep doing more of it. Like thinking, I’m just not doing enough that used to work, I just got to double it. It’s not going to it’s only going to get worse. So not only is it unattractive, and hard to respect, but it kills your own confidence. You know, when you speak about yourself in this way that it’s moderated where you lie, where you water it down, where you present it weekly, like you’re not sure of yourself, you’re giving yourself feedback. And their feedback is what I have to say is not worth saying it’s not valuable. Now, if you’re giving yourself their feedback multiple times per day, basically every time you interact socially, for years and years and years until it’s decades and decades. Is it any surprise that you don’t like yourself, that you’re not proud of who you are, that you’re not even sure of who you are, that you wouldn’t recommend you to others? You’re and you’re your own worst enemy here. So of course, what should we do about it? Gonna get real practical with you here. I’m telling you right now prioritize this, spend a month going hard out on this. And that’s 50% of the work done. I’m not even bullshitting you maybe more. It’s kind of like a wedge that carries everything behind. If you work on getting your body language and your assertiveness of expression, correct. Your confidence follows it. Right? There’s literally studies that show that posturing confidently increases your serotonin. While standing up for yourself speaking concisely will get different results as well, and make you feel good about yourself. So your confidence will follow the behavior, right, you got to act right first and you feel good. list everything you can think of that you do to moderate your expression for other people, whether it’s trying too hard, or suppressing, or both, all the various tactics you use to be more pleasing in the way you express yourself and less confrontational. Now it can be hard to see these things. So I’ve got a few ideas as to how you can figure it out. Film yourself, film yourself talking as much as you possibly can try and talk like you’d usually talk, especially in a situation where you’re not socially comfortable, like try to talk about an idea that you’re not sure of and film it. And then watch the tape, watch the tape with the mute on so you can see your body language, and then watch it with the sound on so that you can hear just exactly what you sound like as if somebody else was talking. Listen for the things that I’ve been talking about in this video. Ask other people for feedback. There’s some safe people in your life, go and tell them like I’m working on this people pleasing thing trying to build my confidence. What do you notice about me that makes you think this guy doesn’t have much confidence? Or this guy’s hard to respect, you know, be brutal with me, tell me what are the things I do that make it hard for you to respect me. One way to figure this out. And this is a general rule for building confidence is what’s the difference between when you’re comfortable and feeling confident, at least temporarily. And when you’re not. So many of you will have someone that you feel okay, around and safe around maybe a best friend or family member or whatever partner. And you’ll notice you talk differently with them. You’ll be more expressive, more assertive, more opinionated, and so on. Then if you’re in a situation that makes you highly socially anxious, like meeting with your CEO, or in a big group of people or with an attractive woman,
whatever it is, and try to experience two of those situations as close together as possible. And then step back and go, What was the difference? How was this guy different to that guy? And you’ll see this list of stuff come out, you know, usually a do’s and don’ts, do’s and they will give you a sense of what the tactics and moderating behaviors are that you do that could change because you know how to do it here, just to transfer it over here. Once again. Got this list together. And it can just be a draft that you keep adding to and adapting, review it after every significant social interaction reviewed at least once a day, and choose some social interaction that you thought either went well or was full of people pleasing, and have a look at the list and tick off the things you did. And just notice that what you’re trying to do is bring this into your conscious awareness and make it something you notice when it happens. That you will notice that you’ve taken the bass out of your voice, you’ll notice that you’re nodding and smiling just because she’s attractive, or whatever, you start to see yourself, do it. And then you actually have a chance of intervening, because the first step is to just stop fucking doing it, or do nothing rather than do this moderating shit. You know, if you can’t tell the truth, at least don’t lie. Once you’ve got a clear awareness of your list, then you can start the basic work and the basic body language work is kind of two things. One is open up this area. It’s real simple, one, shoulders back, chin up, chest out, like, I don’t care. If you bite me in the neck, I’m really forward. Just least every half hour or so remind yourself to open that area up when you’re talking to someone especially try to keep your chin level will try to keep eye contact, like just keep this area open. They’ll do wonders for your neurochemical balance, if nothing else. And the second thing is start to project your voice with bass. Right male or female doesn’t matter. The gender voice that people do is a removal of bass. So you have the bass, but you’ve taken it out. Some of you and especially the female clients, I’ve had actually go to the point of putting on a little girl voice, which by the way, is really obvious really hard to respect. And we can tell the difference between when it’s natural and when it’s put on and learned but basically stopped putting some fucking balls or ovaries if you prefer into your voice. Like if I’m talking to someone who’s one meter away from me, I talk as if they’re two meters away, I talk past them. If you think of the sound traveling and then falling down and an arc as it goes over distance, you want to make sure that it hits them at the high point and falls down behind them not falls down in front of them. If you find that people can’t hear you, especially in crowded or loud environments, it’s because you’re only talking to them. And so they get the drop off. You want to talk past people right project and not shout. So this is about turning our base not volume. And opening up this area will actually help below that because this is a diaphragm issue. You can practice this at home by putting phone or recording device to the other side of the room and practice talking loud enough and with enough bass that the recording sounds like you’re holding it up to your mouth. Another big easy way to start being more concise with what you say. There’s a tactic I use with my clients called headlining. And in brief, what it means is whatever you’re going to say you give the main point first is like a spoiler. You tell them where this is all leading. So rather than than big, long winded statement that eventually with bits and pieces, turns into some sort of point or some sort of perspective, give them that upfront, like the headline of an article, right? Like you’ve only got one sentence to say at all, and just blast them with it. And then pause after that, and wait for them to ask for more. Rather than doing the anticipatory thing where you explain everything as if you’re being interviewed and grilled. Also in your sentences with an audible full stop or period. So rather than ending in a question, we’re just not quite sure into the full stop by drop the bass right at the end. So all of your sentences should end with a drop. That way they know you’re done. And you’re not asking anything, you’ve said it, you’re fucking staking your claim, and it was yours now. They want to fight back they can because you made a point. This is more about content than anything, but it’s also going to be represented with your boy languages. Pick a side. When you’re talking about anything. We talked about anything that involves opinion, pick a side and state it like you mean it. Now you can change your mind with better evidence you can allow yourself to have your mind changed, but until it genuinely is changed, die with it. Okay, pick that battle. And go I disagree. And here’s why. Right? And just hold it as if you’re explaining something as obvious as the need for humans to drink water or the existence of gravity or anything that you think this is beyond debate. Right? I don’t care about your nobility and seeing both sides of the story. The truth is you actually lean one way or the other you know you do you’re not directly in the middle. So whichever way you lean go hard on that side until better evidence changes your mind. But never express yourself as if you’re not sure as if you don’t know what you believe, you know You just got to use your hands to make points like I’ve been trying to do on this video, but sparingly, not fucking spacing around, right? Just make a point. Use your body to say this is what I believe. You can practice this on video. But this will free up your body to be a bit looser and a bit more confident as opposed to hugging and killing your diaphragm and hugging yourself like a wounded child every time you interact, and keep your fucking hands out of your pockets. And lastly, there’s the removal process. So we’ve talked a lot about why you should add and increase and change we’re going to talk about what you’ve stopped doing. Stop fake smiles and fake laughter. Okay, stop nervous twitches, and rushed movements, stop jerks and kind of ticks that you’ve picked up along the way, especially anything that you use as a kind of signal of approval seeking. Some people do weird things like they blink too hard, or they kind of laugh at the end of the sentence. Instead of using a full stop. There’s lots of little ticks that people pick up in order to try and sound pleasing and try and defuse potential confrontation. Slow down do lists, right, make a list of all the things that you can cut out, right things that aren’t necessary things that aren’t representative of the truth. Like if someone’s gonna make you laugh, make them make you laugh with the laugh is pulled out of you because how funny they are, the smile is like, Your face has creases into a smile because you’re so happy and you can’t stop it. Almost like you’re physically face in body a little bit resistant to reacting. That’s your initial position. So if someone does something like I’m not showing anything, unless I feel it provoked in me enthusiastically, rather than manufacturing responses, like you have been doing. Alright, so you think confident people smile all the time, it’s not actually true. confident people smile when they’re provoked into a smile. And when they’re not, they don’t. Alright, people that smile all the time are using it. Like chimpanzees to show I’m not threatening, right? Like I blew my teeth. I’m here just to play. Yeah, of course, some people are generally sort of gregarious, but for the most part, people smile too often. And actually, a poker face is usually a sign of confidence. You’re saying, Look, I will react, I’m not going to suppress any emotions. And they’re not going to pour out of me like some dramatic diva, right? Do you have to pull it out of me, you know, I’ll cry when I’m genuinely said I’m, I’ll laugh when I’m feeling the humor, right? And everything else, I just stay neutral. Now, all of this should be running parallel with deep inner work on your integrity, and the honesty of what you say and do. So those two working together become the two pillars of confidence, you know, the body and the mind working together. But I put this video out there because if you only do the body stuff, it actually pulls a lot of the mind stuff alongside with it. Right. If you speak more assertively, I’m not talking about faking anything that he’s able to about being more real. Stick with your convictions be opinionated, show your true hand with your body with the voice. You’ll find that your confidence comes alongside with it. But if you’re deliberately working on both, like you’re trying to speak more assertively while saying the truth, and while doing what you believe is right, then your confidence skyrockets as the two come together and move up together. Of course, if you want help working on that, if you want to make sure that this only takes weeks or months rather than years and decades, then get in touch email@example.com This is what I do. I’d make this journey easy for you. If you think this video is good, you should see what my coaching does. Thank you so much for watching. I hope this helped. Please share the video around comment below. And there’s a link below with access to everything else about me all my work all my contact information, everything. So chec