It’s a pattern many of us adopted, often in childhood. Doing whatever we can to help others feel happy, to make them feel better, to take care of them.
Yet, it really isn’t our responsibility to ‘make’ someone else feel happy. Each of us has the power to make our own choices, including the choice to be unhappy or grumpy. Trying to ‘force’ someone to feel better is like banging your head against a wall. Sometimes you may dent the wall, but mostly you’ll only hurt yourself.
So, you may end up feeling like a failure, perhaps feeling guilty for not being good enough to help whoever you are trying to please.
If you have ever fallen into this habit, consider that you are only responsible for your own emotions. You can offer guidance and support to others, but you cannot ‘make’ them take what you offer. Trying to do so is a path to disappointment and feelings of inadequacy.
It is also a way of telling others that you don’t think they can take care of themselves. To truly empower others, you can acknowledge that they are responsible for themselves. You can encourage them, and act as a positive role model. What you can’t do is control them or their feelings.
This tapping video offers some help in making this change: recognising when you are stepping outside of your boundaries, and acknowledging what you do and don’t have responsibility for. Why not give it a go?