Were you one of those people who were the teacher’s pet? That kid that got to pass out her papers, be first in line, erase the chalkboard, be hall monitor…the list goes on and on.
You might want to read that list again. Do you see what happened there? They were nothing more than chores: things she didn’t want to do. But you did! Because it felt good to be noticed, to feel wanted and recognized. You thought you were special cause you got that nod from the teacher.
When we look for validation from people, want to be noticed, want to be special, stand out, get the nod and constantly need attention, we are still running the program of wanting to be the teacher’s pet. And there is a price that comes with being the pet. It’s called manipulation. It is unconscious for most people, but for some not so much. They know exactly what they are doing.
I don’t know about you, but I refuse to be manipulated. You may not think you are having this done to you, but if you are seeking approval from someone, there will be an unconscious game going on where you have to do this thing to get this other thing from them.
Why would we want to partake in a game like that? Because we live in fear. We fear that something awful will happen to us if we don’t do what is expected of us. We fear we won’t be provided for, loved, that we will be abandoned and discarded. But the irony is, if you aren’t giving these things to yourself, then you have already discarded you and are letting someone else run your life.
You might think you’re in a relationship, but if you can’t be yourself, I mean, really be yourself, then you are living in fear. You are essentially playing small. You probably put their needs first, may not even think about yours as part of the equation or bypass your emotions when they try to alert you to their discomfort because like Scarlet O’Hara, “I’ll think about that tomorrow. Tomorrow is another day.” Guess what? It’s tomorrow!
Ask yourself this: Do I do things I really don’t want to do, in order to make someone else happy? You probably call this compromising and tell yourself it is necessary in relationships. Can you hear the buzzer? I’m pressing it right now. This is you being the teachers pet. You want this person’s approval, love, whatever it is, and instead of saying how you really feel or what you really want, you say nothing and go along with what they do instead.
I’m not saying you don’t do things for your partner, I am saying you voice your feelings instead of stuffing them down inside. It’s take guts to speak your truth. People don’t like it and they will push back. Think about when you were a kid and you told your parents you didn’t like something. Did they still make you do it? Eat it? Probably!
Well, you’re not that kid anymore and you don’t have to keep running this unconscious program of fear. You no longer have to be the teachers pet. You get to be you! Unapologetically! Cause anyone who rewards you because you do what they want, is not only manipulating you, they’re a real punk!