Anxiety and Vulnerability: “The Need to Please: Mindfulness Skill to gain freedom from People Pleasing and Approval Seeking”: Micki Fine

A primary belief in the people-pleasing cycle is that bad things will happen if you don’t satisfy others.


Therefore, it’s understandable that you may feel fraught with anxiety and vulnerability.



The combination of vulnerability arising from the desperate desire for love, fears of not receiving it, and pervasive feelings of unworthiness and unlovability are a setup for pervasive anxiety.



Furthermore, the desire for unconditional acceptance and the fear of being seen exactly as you are work in opposition to each other, creating an anxiety-inducing internal conflict.


Because the natural reaction is to push difficult experiences away, most of these thoughts and feelings go unrecognized, which can prime you for more anxiety when they threaten to arise into consciousness.


One way to distance yourself from these feelings is continuing to focus on others and what they might want or need.



When anxiety arises, we aren’t in the present moment.



When we feel vulnerable, our focus narrows in on the perceived danger, and we feel compelled to fight, flee, or freeze.



Moreover, when we’re aware of anxious thoughts and feelings, we often react with negative criticism toward ourselves, which intensifies our reactions.



This is why it can be so difficult to extricate ourselves from the grip of anxiety and vulnerability.

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