Second Chance to Live

Sharing Hope in the Face of Adversity — One Piece at a Time

Approval Seeking, People Seeking, Anxiety and Hope

Posted by Second Chance to Live on January 24, 2013

Hello and welcome back to Second Chance to Live. I am happy to see that you decided to stop by to visit with me. Thank you. Lately I have been experiencing some anxiety. My anxiety motivated me to do some thing that I have found to be very helpful over time. Let me explain my friend.

In my anxiety I felt led to write in a journal to process my thoughts, feelings and why I have been experiencing this anxiety. By writing – using a pen or pencil on a sheet of paper — I discovered why I was experiencing  anxiety. I discovered that I had been engaging in an old behaviors – approval seeking and people pleasing.  

Where as approval seeking used to be a way that I sought to cope in life, I discovered — through my process – that such behaviors only serves to produce anxiety in me.

In my process of writing in a journal, I also took some time to do some reading in a few daily meditation books. In the process of my writing and reading I remembered an important question that I need to ask myself when I begin to experience anxiety due to approval seeking and people pleasing, “What is my motive?”

In my process of writing, reading and reflecting I was reminded that I needed to ask myself several other questions. These question help me to identify my approval seeking motive or motives, the consequence of my anxiety and provide practical solutions to help alleviate my anxiety.   

  • What am I seeking to gain by winning this individual’s approval?
  • What would I accomplish through feeling approved by this individual?
  • Am I seeking to gain some thing – by gaining this individual’s approval – that I need to give to myself?
  • What am I seeking to control through gaining this individuals approval?

These questions bring me to another series of question that I need to ask myself — as I continue to interact in the future with this individual.

  • Is this good for me?
  • Is this really what I want?
  • Is this what I need?
  • Does this direction feel right to me?

I am in the process of answering these questions for myself. If you find yourself engaging in behaviors that bring about anxiety in you – for whatever reason – you too may benefit by asking questions of yourself. If such questions prove to be helpful to you, please let me know my friend.

My encouragement to you is that you take out a pen / pencil with a piece of paper and begin writing. In the process of writing — processing your thoughts and feelings — you may find that this exercise will help you to identify and alleviate your anxiety.

In the event that you would like to be in touch with me, please use my Contact Page. I look forward to hearing from you. All questions are good questions.

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All material presented on Second Chance to Live is copyright and cannot be, copied, reproduced, or distributed in any way without the express, written consent of Craig J. Phillips, MRC, BA Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-NoDerivs CC BY-NC- ND

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